Obama and the Right Wing Rage MachinePosted: May 22, 2011
President Obama reiterated the same US stance to Israel that we’ve always had today at a meeting of the powerful pro-Israeli lobby AIPAC, just as he did in his speech last week. For some reason, the speech at the State Department last week was mislabeled by Mittens Romney and others as “throwing Israel under the bus.” Here’s what the President said today.
[S]ince my position has been misrepresented several times, let me reaffirm what “1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps” means.
By definition, it means that the parties themselves – Israelis and Palestinians – will negotiate a border that is different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967. It is a well known formula to all who have worked on this issue for a generation. It allows the parties themselves to account for the changes that have taken place over the last forty-four years, including the new demographic realities on the ground and the needs of both sides. The ultimate goal is two states for two peoples. Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people; each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace.
If there’s a controversy, then, it’s not based in substance. What I did on Thursday was to say publicly what has long been acknowledged privately. I have done so because we cannot afford to wait another decade, or another two decades, or another three decades, to achieve peace. The world is moving too fast. The extraordinary challenges facing Israel would only grow. Delay will undermine Israel’s security and the peace that the Israeli people deserve.
Why the outcry over the past few days to Obama’s maintaining the status quo? Here’s some quotes from SOS Clinton and Ex-prez Dubya that demonstrate this was nothing but manufactured rage on the part of the right wing noise machine.
Even the NY Times is getting into the act. In one sentence they claim that “using the 1967 boundaries as the baseline for a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute” is a first by an American president, and just two paragraphs later quote President George W. Bush using the phrase: “it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949,” another way of describing the 1967 boundaries. Those two statements, by Obama and Bush, convey the same concept.
In 2009 Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said:
We believe that through good-faith negotiations the parties can mutually agree on an outcome which ends the conflict and reconciles the Palestinian goal of an independent and viable state based on the 1967 lines, with agreed swaps, and the Israeli goal of a Jewish state with secure and recognized borders that reflect subsequent developments and meet Israeli security requirements.
Where was the manufactured outrage then?
In 2008 President George W. Bush, on a middle east trip, said:
I believe that any peace agreement between them will require mutually agreed adjustments to the armistice lines of 1949 to reflect current realities and to ensure that the Palestinian state is viable and contiguous.
In 2005 President George W. Bush, at a White House meeting, said:
Any final status agreement must be reached between the two parties, and changes to the 1949 Armistice lines must be mutually agreed to.
President Obama is following the same policies put forth by George W. Bush. To claim that Obama’s speech represents some departure from previous U.S. policy is absurd.
When not manufacturing right wing rage, Republican Presidential contenders are demonstrating their foreign policy ignorance. Thank goodness we have some one who knows foreign policy at the State Department! Here’s pizza king and right wing talk show host Herman Cain demonstrating his foreign policy ignorance.
Despite his shallow understanding of foreign policy issues, Cain is still trying to go on the attack against Obama and create a partisan divide on Israel. He said last week that an “arrogant” Obama “threw Israel under the bus” in his recent speech on the Middle East. Trying to sound a hawkish note, Cain said his “Cain doctrine” is “You mess with Israel, you are messing with the United States of America.”
But this morning on Fox News Sunday, Cain showed just how limited his understanding is of the Middle East peace process. Asked by host Chris Wallace what he would be prepared to offer Palestinians as part of a deal, Cain responded, “Nothing.” Just moments later, Cain was dazed and confused when Wallace referenced the issue of “right of return” of Palestinian refugees:
WALLACE: Where do you stand on the right of return?
CAIN: The right of return? [pause] The right of return?
WALLACE: The Palestinian right of return.
CAIN: That’s something that should be negotiated. That’s something that should be negotiated.
Wallace then helpfully offered Cain a definition of “right of return” — “Palestinian refugees, the people that were kicked out of the land in 1948, should be able to or should have any right to return to Israeli land.”
Other foreign policy nitwits have joined the faux outrage ranks. Quitterella even points to the old testament as some kind of geopolitical playbook. Do you suppose she’s read stories about the Kraken so she can have an opinion on Greece’s Navy?
I can never figure out why the I/P issue causes people’s heads to blow gaskets. I always hesitate to even offer up any news in the area because it’s caused complete meltdowns on blogs in the past. There are some people on each side of the issue who simply can’t seem find any middle ground from. Derailing any peace process appears to be their goal.
I consider the entire topic to be a hell realm. However, this particular kerfuffle reeks of the same kind of derangement we saw during the Clinton years. It’s getting so bad that I’m cracking this particular nut or group of nuts as the case may be. This is like trying to deal with birthers and those who subscribe to the ‘secret Muslim’ meme.
Obama isn’t my favorite President by any stretch of the imagination, but aren’t there enough things to complain about right now–like the sneaky renewal of the Patriot Act–without manufacturing yet another conspiracy theory? SHEESH!
I can’t see the US selling out Israel anywhere in the near future. They are obviously a US ally. Trying to get both Palestinians and Israelis to be reasonable and come back to Peace Talks should be in everyone’s interest. Don’t they still have their copies of the Oslo Accords or has every one forgotten President Clinton’s work already?