Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Did He Mean What He Said?

Much ink has been spilled analyzing the latest stop on Obama's world apology tour: his September 23rd address to the United Nations General Assembly. The critics are right, for reasons already addressed here.

Much also has been said about Obama's mention of Israel, focusing on the President's emphasis "that America does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements." I think Obama overstates the case, particularly by failing to realize that "land for peace" has failed, so far. Still, a compromise remains possible--but only were there a moderate, moral and trustworthy leader who could negotiate for Palestinians, a potential I rate just south of the Easter Bunny and tooth fairy.

But this post is about the very next paragraph of Obama's UN speech, quoted here in full:
The time has come -- the time has come to re-launch negotiations without preconditions that address the permanent status issues: security for Israelis and Palestinians, borders, refugees, and Jerusalem. And the goal is clear: Two states living side by side in peace and security -- a Jewish state of Israel, with true security for all Israelis; and a viable, independent Palestinian state with contiguous territory that ends the occupation that began in 1967, and realizes the potential of the Palestinian people.
Obama's position propounds a false premise pointing to a flat contradiction: on the one hand, the President seeks the status quo ante prior to the Six Day War; on the other hand, he casually describes the resulting Palestinian state as "contiguous." The problem is that Arab lands -- they were not Palestinian, but Jordanian and Egyptian controlled -- during the time from the 1949 Armistice to the 1967 War were not contiguous:

source: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Gaza and the West Bank are geographically separate today. As ex-UN Ambassador John Bolton confirms, "Gaza and the West Bank were never contiguous Palestinian areas before." And, perhaps stating the obvious, connecting those regions would require slicing Israel in half. As even Palestine supporters acknowledge, this is a profound pro-Palestinian posture.

Yes, Obama previously mentioned a "contiguous" Palestine. It remains radical, a-historical and wrong--and a rebuff of Israel only barely better than Zbigniew Brzezinski's.


A_Nonny_Mouse said...

I cringe every time our Clown-in-Chief stands before an international audience and opens his mouth. The man NEVER says ANYTHING that advances the cause of the USA, benefits our allies, or promotes the merits of Western Civilization.

The Leader of the Free World? Pffft.

Geoffrey Britain said...

So, either Obama is so ignorant as to not realize that making a Palestinian state contiguous would require cutting Israel in two OR he's deliberately suggesting a 'non-starter'. In either case, neither ignorance or deliberately being disingenuous is encouraging.

OBloodyHell said...

> but only were there a moderate, moral and trustworthy leader who could negotiate for Palestinians, a potential I rate just south of the Easter Bunny and tooth fairy.


The Easter Bunny leaves eggs. The Tooth Fairy takes a tooth and leaves money behind. Both of these have legions of individuals who will indicate that these events have taken place.

Now show me any evidence at all to support the existence of a moderate Palestinian!! Go on, I dare you.

"Moderate Palestinian" does NOT belong anywhere in the vicinity of comparatively near-proven things like The Easter Bunny or The Tooth Fairy. PFeh!


Bob in Los Angeles said...

Obama says contiguous, so he must mean give back the west bank. Or the other part. Take your pick Arabs.

Carl said...

Good point, Bob--and since they already have Gaza, game over.

A_Nonny_Mouse said...

Y'know, the part about "a viable, independent Palestinian state" is also less believable than the aforementioned Tooth Fairy....

It's obvious to me that the Palestinians will never create a viable state -- or anything else. Their focus is simply NOT on building or creating. Nor will they ever be independent, because they're totally committed to victimhood and retribution -- they have no psychic energy left over for the long, boring slog of nation- or economy-building.

So they'll remain dependent on aid from other countries. (And they'll remain bitter that somehow-- again-- still-- they can't achieve a productive society. This will only confirm to them that some outside force MUST be holding them back from their rightful glory. Even if they can't quite figure out the details, they'll assure themselves that there's a great Western conspiracy --maybe the Jews, maybe the US-- which is responsible for all their problems.)

But back to the text of Obama's speech: ain't no possibility, nohow, no way, of a "viable" and "independent" Palestinian state.

Just like with Iran and North Korea, we're treating hostile savages as our moral equals. We're naive to think that we have values and ideals in common, and ultimately we're deluding ourselves that our nuanced diplomacy can persuade them to give up their dreams of expansion-by-conquest.