Barack Obama's disgraceful abstention from a veto to block an anti-Israel vote by the UN security council is a show of cowardice and duplicity that rivals another anti-Israel president, Jimmy Carter. In 1980, Carter allowed a resolution that rebuked Israel for "settlements" on land claimed by Israel for millenia. Israel re-captured the land during the six day war.. When faced with the uproar precipitated by his actions, Carter then made excuses and effectively disavowed them.
At the time, Democratic Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan suggested that by allowing the resolution to pass, Carter was "joining the jackals
" throughout the Middle East and in many European countries. The jackals were perfectly willing to see Israel destroyed. Moynihan—a man of character that makes most of today's Democrats look weak by comparison—understood that the only liberal Democracy in the Middle East needed our help and support; that palestinian claims on Israel's land were based on revisionist history, and that the violence perpetrated by Islam on Israel has more to do with the very existence of the country than any specific "settlements."
Yesterday, Barack Obama joined the jackals. Sure, Obama is a leftist and as such, he has followed the anti-Israel siren song of the Left throughout his presidency. His actions toward Israel and its leaders in word and deed have been contemptible. But that alone makes him a jackal only in the sense that Moynihan used the term.
One of the ironies of Obama's shameful act is that like most things he has "accomplished" as part of his legacy, it will achieve little or nothing in the long term and likely be rejected by the new U.S. administration in the short term. Obama acted, as he almost always does, without the consent of the legislature and against the will of the people. He also acted in a way that bolsters our enemies. The Islamic terror group, Hamas, is the elected representative of the significant percentage of all palestinians, is an Iranian puppet, and advocates the complete destruction of Israel, and just for added interest—is violent, racist, homophobic, anti-Semitic, misogynistic—you know, all the things Obama claimed Donald Trump to be. Obama's action yesterday provides a pyrrhic win for Hamas. It's not the first time that he has opted to favor our adversaries (think: Iran—the "Deal" and the green Revolution in 2009) and screw over our friends.
With his actions yesterday, Obama also demonstrated that he is a political jackal and a coward. If, in fact, the Israeli "settlements" were the "impediment to peace" that Obama and Kerry claim, why did Obama wait until 30 days before he left office to act? Could it be that Obama waited so he wouldn't hurt Hillary Clinton during the election and acted in a fit of pique only after Hillary Clinton lost? Sure sounds plausible, doesn't it? In fact, you might argue that had Clinton won, Obama may have vetoed the resolution so that Hillary could continue her cozy political relationship with the majority of American Jews.
Richard Fernandez writes this on Facebook (via Instapundit):
The most instructive thing about Obama’s Security Council abstention is he didn’t have the guts to do it earlier, when he stood to lose something by doing it. Only after he calculated there was nothing more to squeeze from that particular quarter did he run up the Jolly Roger. Had it cost him it would have meant something, even as a gesture.
But even more interesting was his willingness to damage the Democratic party who he’s leaving with political bill, not to mention the fact that the policy his abstention represents makes little sense.
Israel is likely to emerge as a linchpin in the region, after Obama’s power vacuum bomb reduces the nearby countries to waste. If Turkey and Iran fall apart, which is not inconceivable, then Obama will have antagonized the last man standing.
It was bad timing and pointless, like a punch thrown by a fighter lying on the canvas — at the referee. That would leave his legacy a consistently dysfunctional whole: conceived in delusion, executed in incompetence.
To their credit, a few Democrats have condemned Obama's contemptible actions and many more seem uneasy when asked. But I notice that Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Keith Ellison are not among them. What a surprise! As Daniel Patrick Moynihan might say, the entire crew—Obama, Kerry, Sanders, Warren, Ellison, et al
—has formed their own pack (not
PAC). That's the collective term for a group of jackals, and it's entirely appropriate.
The New York Times
is sanguine about Obama's actions at the U.N. Two of their trained hamsters write:
UNITED NATIONS — Defying extraordinary pressure from President-elect Donald J. Trump and furious lobbying by Israel, the Obama administration on Friday allowed the United Nations Security Council to adopt a resolution that condemned Israeli settlement construction.
The administration’s decision not to veto the measure reflected its accumulated frustration over Israeli settlements. The American abstention on the vote also broke a longstanding policy of shielding Israel from action at the United Nations that described the settlements as illegal.
While the resolution is not expected to have any practical impact on the ground, it is regarded as a major rebuff to Israel, one that could increase its isolation over the paralyzed peace process with Israel’s Palestinian neighbors, who have sought to establish their own state on territory held by Israel.
Barack Obama shows his mettle by "Defying extraordinary pressure from President-elect Donald J. Trump and furious lobbying by Israel ..." What a man! Gosh, you'd think that the foreign policy decisions Obama has made in the Middle East over the past eight years resulted in a string of amazing successes, rather than a set of abject and dangerous failures.
And besides, the abstention showed "[the administration's] accumulated frustration over Israeli settlements." So ... let me see if I've got this straight. Obama and/or the U.N don't sponsor sanctions when Hamas builds tunnels under the Israeli border to terrorize and murder Israeli citizens ... no sanctions when palestinians stab women and children on Israeli streets ... no sanctions when rockets are launched into Israeli civilian areas. But Israel builds apartments and condo complexes in Israel—the horror!! It's just so "frustrating" for Obama's Team of 2s they need to lash out like the 3-year old children they often emulate.
destroys the progressive myth that Barack Obama has been pro-Israel:
Does the resolution matter? It does. The text declares that "the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law." This may turn both settlers—even those in major blocs like Maale Adumim, that everyone knows Israel will keep in any peace deal—and Israeli officials into criminals in some countries, subject to prosecution there or in the International Criminal Court. The text demands "that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem." Now add this wording to the previous line and it means that even construction in the Jewish Quarter of the Old City is "a flagrant violation under international law." The resolution also "calls upon all States, to distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967." This is a call to boycott products of the Golan, the West Bank, and parts of Jerusalem, and support for the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement.
Yet Barack Obama thought this was all fine and refused to veto. Settlements have been an obsession for Obama since the second day of his term in office, January 22, 2009. That day he appointed George Mitchell to be his special peace envoy, and adopted the view that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was the key to peace in the entire region and that freezing construction in settlements was the key to Israeli-Palestinian peace. But even if you believe all that—and looking at the Middle East today, no sensible person can—to allow this resolution to pass goes far beyond a flat demand for a settlement freeze. It is a strike against Israel. The inclusion of the usual language calling upon "both parties" to show "calm and restraint" and avoid "provocative actions" and "incitement" is pablum meant to attract European votes—and perhaps to attract Barack Obama. But in fact, there is no possible way that this resolution will advance the cause of peace between Palestinians and Israelis.
Obama has done us one favor, which is to settle the long argument about his attitude toward Israel. No partisan of his, no apologetic Democrat, can henceforth say with a straight face what we've been hearing for years about him. In 2012, for example, Thomas Friedman wrote in the New York Times: "The only question I have when it comes to President Obama and Israel is whether he is the most pro-Israel president in history or just one of the most."
Sorry, Tom, but statements like that are now simply embarrassing. Obama has done what he could for eight years to undermine Israel's elected government, prevent its action against Iran's nuclear weapons program, and create as much daylight as possible between the United States and Israel. So when the crunch came yesterday, Israelis had to turn to Egypt to postpone a U.N. vote. Think about that: there is more trust between Israel and Egypt today than between either of them and the United States. That's the product of eight years of Obama foreign policy. Israelis can only wish American presidential terms were just four weeks shorter.
Is there a silver lining? No, but Obama will be gone in less than 4 weeks. That's something, I suppose.