web analytics
February 1, 2015 / 12 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Déjà Vu All Over Again?

In 1967 too, a U.S. president told Israel to rely on the international community and resist going to war. In the end, Israel acted on its own as it became clear that international efforts were not succeeding.
U.S. President Lyndon Johnson and Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol at Randolf Airbase, Texas, June 1, 1968.

U.S. President Lyndon Johnson and Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol at Randolf Airbase, Texas, June 1, 1968.
Photo Credit: David Elfan/Government Press Office

The current clash between President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu over U.S. policy regarding Iran’s efforts to secure a nuclear capacity calls to mind the contretemps between President Lyndon Johnson and Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol in 1967.

At that time the disagreement was over the proper response to Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser’s threats to close the Straits of Tiran and the Suez Canal to Israeli shipping – a crippling blow to Israel’s economy – and to attack Israel from the Sinai in a war of policide against the Jewish state.

Then too, a U.S. president told Israel to rely on the international community and resist going to war. In the end, Israel acted on its own as it became clear that international efforts were not succeeding. The risks became intolerable and what became known as the Six-Day War ensued.

Despite the virtual certainty that sanctions against Iran are not deterring its nuclear development, President Obama still wants more time. This even though there are numerous loopholes in the sanctions and Russia and China are not cooperating in any event. Indeed, Iran just recently demonstrated that it is hardly isolated in the international community when it hosted a conference attended by most of the nations of the world.

The president has given no quarter to Israel, refusing to concede that maybe Israel has a point that the sanctions approach has failed.

In 1967 Israel from the start was prepared to go it alone but was accused of seeking to push the United States into war. This time, even more so than in 1967, careful deliberation is needed – by Mr. Netanyahu no less than Mr. Obama. Because the notion that the U.S. is being drawn into war by Israel is an incendiary one in a war-weary America and fraught with a danger all its own.

The New York Times spelled it all out, in blatantly incendiary fashion, in a September 4 editorial titled “No Rush to War”:

Amid the alarming violence in the Arab world, a new report about the costs of a potential war with Iran got lost this week. It says an attack by the United States could set back Iran’s nuclear program four years at most, while a more ambitious goal – ensuring Iran never reconstitutes its nuclear program or ousting the regime – would involve a multiyear conflict that could engulf the region.The significance of the report by The Iran Project is not just its sober analysis but the nearly three dozen respected national security experts from both political parties who signed it: including two former national security advisers, Brent Scowcroft and Zbigniew Brzezinski; former Undersecretary of State Thomas Pickering; and the retired Gen. Anthony Zinni.

Yet Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel is trying to browbeat president Obama into a pre-emptive strike. On Tuesday, he demanded that the United States set a red line for military action and said those who refuse “don’t have a moral right to place a red light before Israel.” Later, Mr. Obama telephoned him and rejected the appeal. On Friday, Mr. Netanyahu suggested in an interview that Israel cannot entirely rely on the United States to act against Iran’s program.

Leaders need flexibility and ambiguity, not just hard and fast red lines. And it is dangerous for Mr. Netanyahu to try to push the president into a corner publicly and raise questions about Washington. Is that really the message he wants to send to Tehran?

There is no reason to doubt president Obama’s often repeated commitment to keep Iran from having a nuclear weapon. But 70 percent of Americans oppose a unilateral strike on Iran, according to a new poll by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, and 59 percent said if Israel bombs Iran and ignites a war, the United States should not come to its ally’s defense.

So there you have it. Despite the fact that by any measure there is no apparent prospect that the sanctions are working or will work, the Times has the audacity to charge Prime Minister Netanyahu, whose country is at greater risk from a nuclear Iran than any other country and who only asked that the U.S. not stand in its way, with “trying to browbeat President Obama into a pre-emptive strike” and “push[ing] the president into a corner publicly….”

This past Sunday, a veteran Times columnist went even further with the theme of an Israel bent on pushing America into war against its own interests. In a disturbing column titled “Neocons Slither Back,” Maureen Dowd invoked several infamous stereotypes in making her case.

The title itself is revealing. In the George W. Bush years, the term “neocons” came to be, in all too many cases, code for “Jews,” especially when certain critics of the Iraq war tried to make the case that some sort of nefarious cabal had hijacked American policy.

Such critics would cite by name Jewish administration insiders like Richard Perle, Elliott Abrams, Scooter Libby, Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith, usually ignoring the non-Jewish officials – including, of course, President Bush himself – who actually were responsible for the decision to invade Iraq. Depicting Jews as manipulators of pliant and trusting gentiles has not been uncommon in anti-Semitic literature.

Ms. Dowd railed against the influence on “neophyte” vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan of Jewish adviser Dan Senor, whom she described as “the neocon puppet master.” She went on: “Before he played ventriloquist to Ryan, Senor did the same for Romney, ratcheting up the candidate’s irresponsible bellicosity on the Middle East.”

She alluded to a potential attack on Iran as the neocons’ promoting an American sense of “duty to invade and bomb Israel’s neighbors,” something she described as “all ominously familiar,” harking back to the Iraq war. She even said the neocons,“abetted by Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld,” prodded “an insecure and uninformed president into invading Iraq.”

Imagine, the real driving force was the Jewish cabal, with even such notoriously hard-boiled types as Mr. Cheney and Mr. Rumsfeld assuming the role of mere pawns.

As if there were any doubt about her message that only those with an agenda not in sync with true American interests could support Israel’s position on Iran, she referred to “Netanyahu’s outrageous demand for clear red lines on Iran.”

Outrageous? Not even an arguable position?

This is serious stuff. And the Obama campaign has circulated the Dowd column via Twitter.

We suggest that President Obama take a deep breath and consider where this sort of thing could easily lead. Especially since Israel only seeks to act, unimpeded, in its own security interests.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Déjà Vu All Over Again?”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
The United States condemned Iran for honoring Hezbollah terrorist Imad Mughniyeh but is not so bothered when Abbas honors PA terrorists.
CIA, Mossad Collaborated on Killing Hezbollah No. 2 Leader in Damascus
Latest Indepth Stories
Eli Weiss

Shepherding in the Shomron isn’t your usual kind of shepherding – despite his business-minded beginnings, Eli has discovered that a strong ideological impetus powers the job.

Resnick-013015-Pilot

I said to myself, “This story has got to be told. We’re losing this generation of World War II and if we don’t listen to them now, we’ve lost it.”

Eller-013015

His entire existence was about spreading simcha and glorifying G-d’s name on a daily basis.

IRAN-US-POLITICS-MILITARY

An Israeli strike could theoretically damage Iran’s nuclear program; only US can terminate program

At some point we need to stop simply defending and promoting Israel and start living in Israel

“We Jews are the only people who when we drop a book on the floor pick it up and kiss it.”

Though Zaide was the publisher of The Jewish Press, a big newspaper,I always remember him learning

Speaker Silver has been an extraordinary public servant since his election to the Assembly in 1975 and has been an exemplary leader of that body since 1994.

He spent the first leg of his daylong visit to the French capital at Hyper Cacher.

Drawing Congress into the Iran nuclear debate is the last thing the White House wants.

Great leaders like Miriam and like Sarah Schenirer possess the capacity to challenge the status quo that confronts them.

Obama’s foreign policy is viewed by both liberals and conservatives as deeply flawed

Many journalists are covertly blaming the Charlie Hebdo writers themselves through self-censorship.

Why does the Times relay different motivations and narratives for jihadists in Europe and Israel?

More Articles from Editorial Board

He spent the first leg of his daylong visit to the French capital at Hyper Cacher.

In this particular case, the issue was whether the Arkansas prison system could prohibit, for security reasons, a devout Muslim’s maintaining a beard of a certain length as a matter of religious practice.

According to Natan Sharansky, director of the Jewish Agency for Israel, France was the largest source of Jewish emigration to Israel last year and he believes as many as 15,000 French Jews may make aliyah in 2015.

Despite the president’s respectable anti-terrorism record, he doubtless has little interest in being identified with anything that might suggest, however tangentially, criticism of Muslims or Islam.

One wonders what connection that rejection has with turning to the ICC, which would allow the Palestinians to bring war-crime charges against individual Israelis and is certainly one more step away from seeking a negotiated settlement.

In the NPR interview, Mr. Obama said Iran could become a “very successful regional power” if it agreed to a long-term nuclear deal.

Thus, despite the increasingly serious problems for the mayor arising out of the current anti-police protests, Mr. de Blasio apparently will be cut no slack by those who seem to be aiming for a significant role in running the city from the streets and who will do whatever they can to prevent their momentum from ebbing.

Despite strong pressure to throw the book at the accused, Mr. Thompson allowed him to plead guilty to assault.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/deja-vu-all-over-again/2012/09/21/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: