Monday, July 30, 2012

Romney in Jerusalem

Rabbi Brant Rosen has an excellent blog, Shalom Rav, where he presents his courageous views that all is not right with Israel. As with all first rate blogs, the comments are moderated and well worth reading. In a recent post, he received a comment that mentioned Mitt Romney's "spectacular" appearance in Israel to which I replied at length. I reproduce both here.

Commenter Steve says:
Most American Jews feel a great affinity towards Israel.  They vehemently disagree with Rabbi Rosen’s position that Israel should be voted away.

American Jews believe that Hamas and Hezbollah are Iran backed terrorist groups and that the PA is run by crack pot thieves.  And, now that Syria is in turmoil and the Sinai border is no longer quiet, any kind of land for peace is to risky and dangerous and would be considered insane.

Under the current circumstance the smart thing to do is to make sure a single Israeli State is solidified on the ground so that there is not a chance that Israel could be voted away.   This State of course included the annexation of Judea &  Sameria.  There most likely will be an unarmed Palestinian enclave in Judea and Sameria.

My guess is also that Barak Obama announces the movement of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem.  I think he will do this to try to one up Mitt Romney after Romney’s spectacular performance in Israel.
I responded

Steve:   Romney in Israel is indeed a spectacle, good in that it shows blatant pandering that makes no attempt to conceal itself. See the Haaretz article by Barak Ravid titled “In Jerusalem Speech, it was Romney’s Voice but Netanyahu’s Words”. Add a fund raiser closed to the press. What did Romney say to that audience that we Americans should not hear? How would it be possible for him to go any further than what he has said in public? That our supine president is lustily attacked as not complaint enough and an enemy of Israel is absolutely frightening to this American. There is no contact with reality.

That many American Jews feel an affinity for Israel is no reason by itself for America to support Israel in whatever it does, nor is it relevant that Israelis are fearful of their armed opponents. There are many countries that have supporters in the US and whose residents fear their neighbors. And what of it?

It is one thing to have a domestic lobby calling all the shots (pun intended), silencing all Congressional debate, such as is the case with the NRA. It is quite another for a tiny state on the other side of the world to do so. The behavior of the Congress, particularly the House, as a troupe of trained seals for Israel would be hilarious if it were not so terrifying. As Romney speaks, some in Congress are busy trying to get a resolution supporting the ludicrous Levy report.

Romney’s remarks in Jerusalem say that Israel is in charge of US foreign policy regarding the Jewish State, that Israel should feel free to do as it wishes with no limitations, whether it be starting a war with Iran, considering the capital Jerusalem, but most of all in continuing the ethnic cleansing which doesn’t even bear mentioning by Romney because it would upset those who can exert power and influence in American politics. If it can be ignored on the beaches of Tel Aviv, it can be ignored in the States.

I know of no example in history where such a tiny political entity as Israel has had the power of such a titan as the US on call. Vietnam has 10 times the population and 16 times the area of Israel, yet LBJ could call Vietnam “a piddling piss-ant country” From where does Israel come from that it dictates to the United States?

Liberty and justice for all has no meaning when Israel scoffs at the rights of the Palestinians but is unconditionally supported in a way that even a state of the union could never hope to expect from the federal government.

My fervent hope is that Americans will see and hear the Romney “spectacular” and be revolted by what it says about how a foreign power can leverage domestic support. Romney stands out as the very embodiment of the 1% that runs the U.S. at the expense of the 99% that are supposed to have a say. Romney’s words in Israel announce to the world convincingly what has long been suspected: U.S. democracy is a facade that can be manipulated by the few at the expense of the many.

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