“Us” Versus “Peace”

Petra Marquardt-Bigman makes a good point:

Anyone in Israel who is unhappy with Barack Obama’s speech in Cairo will have a hard time to come up with a good reason. Indeed, the quick and completely undignified reaction of the settler movement only served to underline the fact that beyond racist ranting about “Hussein Obama”, there wasn’t really much to object to. Inadvertently, the settler movement’s reaction also illustrated what Obama had accomplished with the speech: he had set up a litmus test that greatly improved on his predecessor’s formula “you are either with us or against us in the fight against terror.” In the Obama era, the choice is a different one – you are either for or against peaceful co-existence – and the consequences of the choice are clear: “America will align our policies with those who pursue peace”.

With the Bush Administration, everything always was about them. I dimly remember a news story (if you can find this and link to it, I’d be grateful) in which Condi Rice was in the Mideast, meeting with representatives of several Mideastern countries. She dictated to them what the United States expected from them, adding something to the effect of “this is what we want for you.” Someone spoke up and countered, “What about what we want for ourselves?”

At Salon, Gary Kamiya provides a good analysis of the Cairo speech. And not everyone on the Right absolutely hated it. Captain Ed had some good things to say. Max Boot also found some points to admire in the speech, which must have killed him.

On the other hand, this is just sickening. Be sure to read the commentary that goes with the video. The far Right of Israel has launched an anti-Obama campaign. At the Weekly Standard, Caroline B. Glick explains why allowing Israeli settlers to build whatever they want on the West Bank is essential to peace with the Palestinians. Next: The Fiji Mermaid!

8 thoughts on ““Us” Versus “Peace”

  1. I think that Israel is losing its wiggle room.
    It needs to resolve itself that the two-state solution is for its own good, as well as for the good of the Palestinians.
    If it doesn’t, it’s headed for a South African system of apartheid. As the population of the Palestinians continues to grow, they will soon outnumber the Israeli’s. The Israeli’s will then face the same choice as did the South Africans: have a two-tiered system that will be seperate, but inherently unequal. And we know how well that went.
    Netanyahu needs to realize that further growth of the settlers will do nothing to enhance the possibility of the two-state solution, let alone peace – which is probably his aim.
    The Israeli people need to wake up and realize that having a hard-line leader is doing nothing for them, either internally or externally (and hopefully the Iranians will follow suit). God knows it took us long enough…

  2. On the video, I think it’s important to point out that those offensive drunks are all American offensive drunks, and college-age Americans who go spend a year in Israel are not representative of Israelis and not at all representative of American Jews. They tend to be more right-wing and more Orthodox than either. This may (or may not) be of interest: http://www.forward.com/articles/107114/

  3. Ghetto Palestine is similar to ghetto America. The social dynamics and dysfunction are the same. It’s a human thing. Anybody who can leave such a condition usually does so and is much better situated to move on with their lives – those who cannot are forced to eke out a living in their cultural and economic hell, best they can. Yet how many wingnuts continuously blame “Palestinians”, “Arabs”, or “Islam” for the Palestinian situation instead of the ‘ghetto dynamic’ itself, as if that ghetto was proof of some larger cultural inferiority?

  4. The Forward article Melinda links to is very interesting. I recommend it.

    I guess I’m not surprised that Righties are ignorant in other nations and cultures besides ours. It’s almost a comforting constant, like the sun rising every morning in the east.

  5. I realy don’t want another penny of our tax dollars going to support Israel.
    That video speaks volumes. While those college drunks MAY be Americans, one look at a map showing land stolen from the Palestineans over the past 10 years and Israel’s nuancing of language regarding settlements, outposts, over night camp-outs, or what ever thay wish to calling land theft is sickening and all too transparent.

    We need to replace the “pretty please” with “hell no”. The Holocaust was over 60 years ago. There is little if any discrimination of Jews in the free world. How long does the world have to pay for Hitler’s sins?
    I’m NOT anti-semitic but I’m c ompletely anti asshole, and the kids in that video are flaming assholes.

  6. The ability to absorb all the memes, talking points, fractious positions and factions then delivre nuanced rhetoric that exposes some for what they are is a gift that might help Obama usher in changes that a blustery, piss-and-vinegar little men like Bush, Cheney and the rest of the GOP could not.

    Obama has a skill for assessing, dissecting then dividing the opposition.

    He is making them all look awful puny next to him which only leads them to be more shrill and unreasonable…almost as if they don’t want peace.

    Is there just something about young American Jews that prevents precludes a diversity of opinion that exists in Israel itself? I had precisely the same experience in college in the early 70’s. They seemed to be exclusively hawkish and unquestioning about their icons. It took a few gentiles like myself to prove that Israel really did have diversity of opinion whether they did or not. To say the least, the efforts were not appreciated.

    Let Israel bite the hand that feeds them. Our government needs to tighen the belt a little anyway. There is a bargaining chip if ever we choose to use it, given that our politicians can resist the lobbying for a moment.

  7. I opened to the editorial page of today’s Investor’s Business Daily, and saw a cartoon showing Air Force One in flight, towing a sign that read “Obama’s Apologize For America Tour”. This is how wingnuts view anyone who doesn’t hold their own self-righteous viewpoint. It is all about them.

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