Photo Credit: Rebecca Zeffert/Flash90
New York Times columnist Tom Friedman after receiving his honorary doctorate from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, June 3, 2007.

At some point in his Tuesday diatribe (You Can’t Normalize Relations with a Government That Isn’t Normal), the NY Times pundit says this: “I want to appeal directly to President Biden and the Saudi crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman: Do not let Netanyahu make you his useful idiots.”

Talk about the pot calling the kettle a useful idiot. For nine months now, Friedman has been serving the outrageous crypto-fascist and military coup that’s taking place in Israel, and working as President Joe Biden’s errands boy, veering way off the highway of sober political analysis into the ditch of shameless propaganda. But none of it appears to be working. Biden is appeasing the anti-Israel lobby in the Democratic Party by humiliating Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, but security cooperation between the US and Israel remains intact, and some say is even improving, there will very likely be a meeting between the PM and the President this fall, and Friedman’s Israeli leftist buddies are still unable to bring down the government.


Even worse: it appears that some kind of a peace agreement between Saudi Arabia and Israel, under American sponsorship, is going to happen. It’s the stuff of political fantasy, sure to heap great international rewards on everyone involved.

Oh, and it’s probably going to require only the barest Israeli concessions to the hallucinatory idea of Palestinian Statehood.

And so, the good soldier Tom is joining the forces that are sworn to topple the Saudi-Israeli deal. And he starts with a commendable attempt at humor:

“The more I learn about the complex peace and security deal that the Biden team is trying to put together between the United States, Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the Palestinians, the more I’m convinced that if they pull it off, they’ll win both the Nobel Peace Prize and the Nobel Prize in Physics. Because finding a way to balance the different interests of all four of these parties makes quantum mechanics look as easy as tic-tac-toe.”

Here’s what’s going to happen, Tom: the Saudis will give Biden what he wants most, which is lower oil prices. Biden will give the Saudis what they want most, which is nuclear technology. Israel and the Saudis will establish an effective alliance with the ability to block Iran’s terrorism and nuclear threats. And the “Palestinians” will get more money from both the US and Saudi Arabia, complemented by some Israeli security concessions as long as they behave.

As the NY Times reported on Tuesday, the PA has decided to change its policy regarding peace between Arab states and Israel, after their rejection of the Abraham Accords left them bereft of friends and treasure (As Saudis Consider Deal With Israel, Palestinians Seek Sway in Talks). So, on Tuesday, a PA delegation went to Riyadh to see what they could get in exchange for their being good boys. Because, let’s face it, no one likes the “Palestinians.” They were kicked out of Beirut in 1983 and out of Kuwait in 1991, they are pariahs in Syria and Egypt. They are under a dictatorial repression of the Bedouin minority ruling Jordan. If not for Biden’s insistence, the Saudis would have shown them the door, too. But Biden must get them something if he hopes to win Michigan and Ohio in 2024.

The Times article quotes Ramallah-based analyst Ibrahim Dalalsha, who told him, “Basically, they (the “Palestinians”) have internalized their past mistake. They really felt that their reaction cost them,” so now, they have “rethought the whole process,” and concluded that “there is no other alternative for the Palestinians” other than a Saudi-Israeli deal.

Especially since, as the NYT puts it, “The Israeli government, dominated by ministers who favor annexing the entire West Bank, is unlikely to cede territory.”

Yes, Tom, that’s why the majority of Israeli voters chose them. We here in Israel believe the entire land is ours since it was promised by God to our forefather Jacob. Call us religious fanatics, it’s OK, we’ve been called worse, by you.

Friedman, who gets much of his information about Israel from the English version of Haaretz, devotes several paragraphs to Haaretz-style bickering about the shortcomings of Netanyahu’s right-wing government. He takes pleasure in quoting Haaretz describing AIPAC as the “pro-Netanyahu, anti-Israel lobby” in Congress. He is critical of Israel’s alliances with the growing conservative movement in Europe. As he puts it: “Yes, Netanyahu and his allies are trying to build an alternative to the diplomatic support of America with xenophobic and extremist parties in Europe, who don’t care about settlements.”

Well, for one thing, America’s diplomatic support depends on who will be in the White House come January 20, 2025. That president may also not give a hoot about the settlements. As to extremist Europeans, have you listened to Rep. Ilhan Omar recently or any other member of the “squad?” And AIPAC traditionally supports the sitting Israeli prime minister. Should they support Benny Gantz instead?

Toward the end of his bizarre column, Friedman appears to depart from our planet on a cloud of colorful haze. He believes Netanyahu “is trying to pull off a four-corner shot — undermine the power of Israel’s Supreme Court to restrain his extreme government, while making himself a domestic hero by pulling off a peace deal with Saudi Arabia without having to give the Palestinians anything of significance, thereby advancing his coalition’s dream of annexing the West Bank — all while getting Saudi Arabia to pay for it and Joe Biden to bless it.”

This is the point where a red lightbulb should start flickering someplace and a concerned nurse comes rushing in to inject brother Tom with something to calm him down.

He may not be very bright, but if Tom Friedman didn’t write his entertaining columns life would be grey and joyless. Because every time Tom Friedman writes a column, an angel gets his tricycle.


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