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November 28, 2015 / 16 Kislev, 5776
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Posts Tagged ‘Susan Rice’

Rabbi Boteach Shoots Back at Critics and Calls Susan Rice a ‘Bully’ [video]

Monday, March 2nd, 2015

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach delivered a masterful response on CNN Sunday night to critics of his organization’s New York Times full-page advertisement that described National Security Adviser Susan Rice as “blind to genocide.”

The advertisement was a response to Rice’s statement that Netanyahu’s speech to Congress tomorrow is “destructive” for the relationship between the United States and Israel.

Major American Jewish organizations and the White House harshly criticized the advertisement with adjectives ranging from “outrageous” to “perverse.”

The advertisement hit a raw nerve, and Rabbi Boteach explained to CNN’s Poppy Harlow that the goal of the publicity was “to raise consciousness in Americans to the indiscriminate slaughter of innocents around the world.”

He clearly illustrated that the Iranian threat to destroy Israel is only one of several threats or realities of genocide that the United States has not tried to stop. The problem is not the details of a deal with Iran. The problem is the fact that the Obama administration is even talking with Iran.

Harlow asked him to explain his goal by placing in the advertisement a picture of Rice next to skulls, with the headline “blind to genocide,” which smacked right in the middle of America’s conscience.

He answered:

We all have a blind spot when it comes to genocide, which is why we had Cambodia and Rwanda…. We have seen too many slaughters. This administration needs to step up and do something.

Iran is threatening the annihilation of the Jewish People. It is perverse that these negotiations are taking place without a demand that Iran first totally renounce their genocidal intentions against Jews.”

Rabbi Boteach justified his association of Rice with being blind to genocide based on a statement attributed to her by Samantha Power, her predecessor and now the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.

He said that Power stated in 1994 that Rice, who was an adviser to Bill Clinton, had declared that genocide in Rwanda could not labeled as such because it would harm Democrats in mid-term elections.

“The reason those pictures [of skulls] are there – those are skulls…from a church…in Rwanda. I was in that church. 800,000 people were hacked to death, and the United States did nothing.

We have to begin to intervene in genocide.

Rabbi Boteach added, “God gave us this military power…. That is our responsibility.”

As for the criticism of Jewish organizations, the ones who are armchair Zionists and carry the traditional torch of die-hard Diaspora Jews who want Israel to make them feel comfortable where they are, Rabbi Boteach said:

We don’t have our principles and convictions determined by popularity or by praise. We believe in the infinite human value and dignity of human life. We believe the United States has to intervene when it comes to genocide.

We believe Susan Rice should not be condemning the leader of a tiny little Middle East country, which is facing a nuclear threat from the foremost sponsor of terrorism around the world. She should not be saying on national TV that he has no right to speak out and [that] if he does he will harm the relationship with the United States.

That is a form of bullying… It is unfair. This country believes in the freedom of speech.

The interview with Rabbi Boteach on CNN can be seen here.

House Speaker Boehner Says Netanyahu Speech Won’t Harm US-Israel Relations

Friday, February 27th, 2015

Speaker of the House John Boehner hit back on Thursday at U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice, who characterized next week’s address to Congress by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu as “destructive.”

Boehner challenged her remarks, saying that in fact, the situation was quite the opposite.

“The president’s national security adviser says it’s destructive for the prime minister of Israel to address the United States Congress,” Boehner told reporters on Thursday.

“I couldn’t disagree more. The American people and both parties in Congress have always stood with Israel and nothing, and no one, could get in the way,” Boehner said.

The invitation by the Speaker came directly, without a first pass by the White House or the State Department, which presidential staff members have censured as a breach of protocol.

The prime minister maintains that Iran’s skyrocketing nuclear development and the pending agreement being arranged by the United States and world leaders with Tehran presents Israel with a clear existential threat. As such, Netanyahu said he cannot afford to pass up an opportunity to directly discuss the danger to Israel with America’s lawmakers.

Rice said Tuesday the prime minister’s acceptance of the Speaker’s invitation to address the joint session of Congress on March 3 is “destructive of the fabric of the relationship” between Israel and the United States.

“What has happened over the last several weeks, by virtue of the invitation that was issued by the Speaker and the acceptance of it by Prime Minister Netanyahu on two weeks in advance of his election, is that on both sides, there has now been injected a degree of partisanship,” Rice said.

Boehner disagreed, saying, “What is destructive in my view is making a bad deal that paves the way for a nuclear Iran. That’s destructive.”

The Speaker insisted that it is important for the American people to hear what Israel’s prime minister has to say about the grave threats Israel faces.

“I’m glad that most of my colleagues, Democrats and Republicans, will be there” to hear it, Boehner said.

Both Rice and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samatha Power, are expected to address the AIPAC annual convention which begins on Sunday, and where Netanyahu is also scheduled to appear.

Obama White House Sends Susan Rice, Samantha Power to AIPAC

Friday, February 27th, 2015

The Obama White House is sending National Security Adviser Susan Rice and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power to address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) policy convention, it was announced Thursday.

The announcement followed by just two days an attempt by Rice to delegitimize the upcoming address by Israel Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at next week’s special joint session of Congress.

Rice told a news briefing on Tuesday that the prime minister’s acceptance of the Speaker’s invitation to address Congress on March 3 is “destructive of the fabric of the relationship” between Israel and the United States.

“What has happened over the last several weeks, by virtue of the invitation that was issued by the Speaker and the acceptance of it by Prime Minister Netanyahu on two weeks in advance of his election, is that on both sides, there has now been injected a degree of partisanship,” Rice said.

House Speaker John Boehner, who extended the invitation personally a number of months ago, disagreed and in a briefing on Thursday with news media said bluntly, “What is destructive in my view is making a bad deal that paves the way for a nuclear Iran. That’s destructive.”

Prime Minister Netanyahu will also appear at the annual gathering, which begins Sunday, along with other top-line leaders.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest commented as he released the announcement that the choice of administration representatives to the convention was “consistent with the kind of administration participation we’ve seen in previous AIPAC conferences.

“If it is perceived by some as an effort to demonstrate bipartisan support for the relations of the United States and Israel, that would be great. That’s the kind of investment that has characterized this administration’s management of this relationship.

“Unfortunately,” he said in what appeared to be another clear attempt to add more fuel to the flames, “that’s not how everyone has invested in this relationship the past couple of weeks.”

More than 16,000 activists are expected to attend the event – the largest number in the history of the organization – along with two thirds of the members of the House of Representatives and more than half of the Senate, at some point during the proceedings.

Among those scheduled to speak are House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Democratic House Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

National Security Adviser Rice Calls Netanyahu’s Upcoming Speech ‘Destructive’ [video]

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Published at: Jewish Business News

By Ilan Shavit

Speaking on the Charlie Rose show, National Security Adviser Rice said Prime Minister Netanyahu’s scheduled March 3 speech before a joint session of Congress is “destructive of the fabric of the relationship,” between the United States and Israel.

“What has happened over the last several weeks, by virtue of the invitation that was issued by the speaker and the acceptance of it by Prime Minister Netanyahu on two weeks in advance of his election, is that on both sides, there has now been injected a degree of partisanship,” Rice said Tuesday night.

“It is not only unfortunate but it is also destructive of the fabric of the relationship. It has always been bipartisan and we want to keep it that way. When it becomes injected with politics, that’s a problem,” Rice said.

The Obama Administration has been taken aback by news stories detailing its anticipated deal with Iran over the latter’s nuclear program, which has been seen by many as a carte blanche to reignite its nuclear weapons project in ten years.

Secretary of State John Kerry said in response to the news that “anybody running around right now jumping in to say, ‘Well we don’t like the deal,’ or this, or that, doesn’t know what the deal is.”

Kerry was also responding to Netanyahu’s assertion Tuesday that “this agreement, if signed, will allow Iran to become a nuclear threshold state – meaning that, with the powers’ consent, Iran will get a license to develop atom bombs – and this is a country which openly declares its intention to destroy the state of Israel. That is why I will go to Washington to speak before the US Congress, because the US Congress may be the last defense before it is signed.”

What the administration dreads most is a unified Congress that would preempt its deal with Iran, regardless of what it actually says. After all, it’s a Republican led Congress, which has attempted to kill Obamacare 37 different times — they don’t need to see what’s in it to hate it.

US Says Turkey OK’d Use of its Bases for ISIS Fight, Turkey Says No

Monday, October 13th, 2014

It’s a classic case of wartime “he said, he said.”

The U.S. says Turkey said yes, and Turkey says it said no.

The question about which the answers differ is whether or not Turkey agreed to allow coalition forces use Turkish air bases in the fight against the ISIS terrorists in Syria and Iraq.

According to an Associated Press report citing unnamed U.S. officials, Turkey agreed to allow the U.S.-led coalition launch operations against ISIS in Iraq and Syria from Turkish bases, including Incirlik Air Base in the south.

Warplanes from the U.S., Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates launched airstrikes on four sites in Syria on Saturday and Sunday, three of which were in Kobane, according to U.S. Central Command.

Kobane is the strategically important Syrian town near the border with Turkey, where Kurds have been staging a valiant ground battle against the ISIS death squads for several weeks. The U.S. claimed this weekend’s air strikes destroyed an ISIS fighting position and staging area.

But a Turkish government official told AFP that while “negotiations are continuing,” there is “no new agreement with the United States about Incirlik.”

U.S. crews have long been based at Incirlik Air Base, about 100 miles from Turkey’s border with Syria. There are about 1500 U.S. air force personnel stationed there, but Turkey has thus far refused to allow airstrikes against ISIS to be launched from there. Instead, the aircraft bombing missions against ISIS have been flying out of air bases in the UAE, Kuwait and Qatar.

On Sunday, Susan Rice told NBC’s “Meet the Press” that the U.S. is “continuing to talk to the Turks about other ways that they can plan an important role. They are already essential to trying to prevent the flow of foreign fighters” from exporting oil through Turkey. “So Turkey has many ways it can contribute,” President Obama’s national security adviser said.

Turkey has refused to send in their own ground troops into Syria to fight against ISIS.

Saudi Arabia Refuses Visa to American Jewish Journalist

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

Michael Wilner is the Jerusalem Post‘s reporter based in Washington, and its White House correspondent. He is an American Jew who does not have Israeli citizenship and has never lived in Israel.

About midday on Monday, March 24, Wilner tweeted, “Saudi Arabia has denied me a visa to cover Obama’s trip this week.”

Wilner is the only journalist in the press corps who was denied entry by Saudi Arabia.

The White House declined to comment publicly, but the Jerusalem Post reported that U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice specifically requested that the visa be granted. Tony Blinken, a special assistant to President Obama, was also reported to have issued a request to Adel bin Ahmed al-Jubeir, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the U.S.

In another Twitter exchange, Wilner answered a reporter from AL Monitor who queried, “Any idea why?” [he was denied the visa.]  “not the faintest idea” Wilner tweeted back.

In a Politico report of the incident, Wilner is quoted as commenting via email, “U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East is a central pillar of our newspaper’s coverage – this trip was important to us. We can only assume Saudi Arabia’s decision was based on discriminatory principles.”

“Obama administration officials privately acknowledged the media outlet was discriminated against,” the Jerusalem Post reported.

Wilner is a 2011 graduate of Claremont Mckenna College and also attended Columbia University.


Rice: Settlement Plans Caused ‘Tensions’

Saturday, November 16th, 2013

U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice said Israeli settlement expansion announcements helped spur recent tensions between Israel and the Palestinians.

In a speech Thursday to a Washington think tank, the Middle East Institute, Rice said the United States remained committed to Middle East peacemaking, but made clear that Jewish settlement construction plans are hampering those efforts, Reuters reported.

“We have seen increased tensions on the ground. Some of this is a result of recent settlement announcements. So let me reiterate: The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlement activity,” she said.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said Wednesday his delegation of peace negotiators had resigned over the lack of progress in statehood talks with Israel. The development would mark a new low point for the talks, which resumed in July.

Abbas suggested negotiations would continue but that he would need a week to resume talks.

The disclosure Tuesday that Israel’s Housing Ministry had commissioned separate plans for nearly 24,000 more homes for Israelis raised U.S. concern and drew Palestinian condemnation.

Netanyahu intervened later in the day, ordering a halt to the projects amid condemnations by several world powers.

Netanyahu has accused the Palestinians of creating “artificial crises” over the settlement issue and has said that most of Israel’s building in Judea and Samaria and eastern Jerusalem is in areas it intends to keep in any future peace deal.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/rice-settlement-plans-caused-tensions/2013/11/16/

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