The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

More Flexibility

Pundits on the Left are making much of wording in the GOP platform, suggesting that platform positions be taken as a direct reflection of the positions of Mitt Romney. Okay, fair enough.

Today, The Washington Free Beacon reports that rather significant changes have been made in the Democrat platform and that many of these changes reflect directly on the party's position on Israel:
For Jerusalem, the new platform has been brought into line with the Obama administration’s policy of not recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and supporting its division. Jerusalem is unmentioned in the 2012 document, whereas the 2008 and 2004 Democratic Party platforms declared “Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel…It should remain an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths.” The Obama administration’s refusal to recognize Jerusalem has been a point of significant controversy in recent months.

On the issue of Palestinian refugees, the new document has removed language from the 2004 and 2008 platforms specifying that Palestinian “refugees” should be settled in a future Palestinian state, not in Israel.

The 2004 platform: “The creation of a Palestinian state should resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees by allowing them to settle there, rather than in Israel.”

The 2008 platform: The peace process “should resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees by allowing them to settle there, rather than in Israel.”

The 2012 platform contains no language on the matter.

In addition, past Democratic platforms have condemned the terrorist group Hamas—gone in the 2012 Democrat platform. Past Democrat platforms have indicated support for helping Israel maintain a qualitative military edge going forward. Now the following weasel wording has been substituted: “[t]he administration has also worked to ensure Israel’s qualitative military edge in the region,” with no commitment to doing so in the future.

Despite significant evidence to the contrary, the President's supporters argue that he is a good friend to Israel. However, if one were to take the new changes in the Democrat platform into account, and follow the lead of the president's supporters in suggesting the the candidate is irrevocably connected to the platform, one can only assume that Obama is less of a friend of Israel than many claim.

Furthermore, Obama has been caught [on an open microphone) stating to Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev that he will have "more flexibility" to conduct his version of foreign policy once the election is over. Implying with a smile, that once he is re-elected he will no longer have to court key electoral constituencies and can do as he pleases. One can only wonder if the substantive changes made to the platform are intended to set the stage for "more flexibility" when addressing the Israeli-Palestinian issue. Somehow, the changes in the Democrat platform imply "more flexibility" that will not be positive for our only ally in the Middle East. Typical, and very disturbing.

Update (9/5/2012):

In what appears to be a do-over, CNN reports that the Dems have decided to flee from a fire storm of criticism associated with the implications of their platform and revise it to be more more "pro-Israel." If, as pro-Obama supporters claim, the original platform statements and deletions provided such strong support for Israel, why on earth change them?

What's really amusing, though, is that it was done only after many voices were raised in opposition, most from outside the Democratic party. Looks suspiciously like a politically expedient, but begrudging move the belies the antipathy of the Obama administration (and some Left-wing Dems) toward Israel.

The next time you hear one of the President's spokespeople tell you that he's "the most pro-Israel president in history," ask a simple question: How could the most pro-Israel president in history allow the original platform (with its glaring omissions and lack of specificity) to be submitted, approved, and published?

Seems to me that Obama was okay with the platform in its original form, until the angry telephone calls from big donors began. Then he was against it. Can anyone say, flip-flop?