Clinton should cut ‘how Israel is treating the Palastinians’ from DC speech — Podesta in email

US Politics
on 14 Comments

Another landmark in the censorship of Palestinians from the official discourse: This John Podesta email at Wikileaks is getting a workout on twitter today. The Clinton campaign chairman urged speechwriters to take out a cue to “how Israel is treating the Palastinians” from a speech Hillary Clinton was giving to the Saban Forum in Washington the next day, December 6, 2015.

On page 16, in the graph beginning Many Americans feel a deep emotional connection…the paragraph is about Israel, but evokes how people feel about how Israel is treating the Palastinians. I think I’d cut or rework.

Clinton gave the speech that Sunday to the pro-Israel shop at Brookings, with Haim Saban on stage. There was only one reference in her speech to Palestinian suffering, and no indication of who causes it: “Israeli children have been killed as have Palestinian children.”

Clinton also said Palestinian leaders were inciting violence, and Israelis lived in the shadow of “terror.” The speech made one indirect reference to Israeli settlements, and promised just what Democrats have been promising lately— no unilateral action against Israel at the U.N.

Everyone has to do their part to create the conditions for progress by taking positive actions that can rebuild trust andby avoiding damaging actions including with respect to settlements and at the same time we should oppose any unilateral action at the United Nations.

As for the paragraph Podesta tagged, it was almost the end of Clinton’s speech. As she delivered it, the ending was a hymn to the miracle of Israel.

Many Americans feel a deep emotional connection with Israel. In its story we see some of our own and we see the story of all people who struggle for freedom and self-determination. We see a homeland for people long oppressed and a thriving economy that is a model for how innovation, entrepreneurship and freedom can delivery prosperity even in unforgiving circumstances. So we are two nations woven together. Lands built by immigrants and exiles seeking to live and worship in freedom, given life by democratic principles and sustained by the service and sacrifice of generations of patriots. Yet even with all this history, with all our common interests and shared values none of us can or should take our relationship for granted.

With every passing year we must tie the bonds tighter, reach out to the next generation to bring them with us and do the hard necessary work of friendship because there is a new generation in both countries today that does not remember that shared past. Young Americans who didn’t see Israel in a fight for survival again and again, young Israeli’s who didn’t see the United States broker peace at Camp David or kindle hope at Oslo or stand behind Israel when it was attacked, they are growing up in a different world and the future of our relationship depends on building new ties for a new time. Ben Gurion once said, “In Israel, in order to be a realist you must believe in miracles.”….

Former Obama national security adviser Tom Donilon also weighed in on the speech that Saturday, Dec. 5, saying that the pro-Israel talk had to be stronger:

At page 4–not sure that “take to the next level” is strong enough. Maybe something like  Take our already strong relationship and continue to deepen and perfect it. The US and Israel must always do the work necessary to ensure that we are the strongest of allies.”

The Clinton team did not incorporate his suggestions.

Podesta’s stance is consistent with the Clinton team’s all-hands-on-deck effort on the Democratic Party platform last summer, to make sure that it didn’t refer to “occupation” or “settlements.”

Oh, and this email came out last week: back in June 2015, ardent Israel supporter Haim Saban offered political counsel to the campaign braintrust.

She needs to differentiate herself from Obama on Israel .It can easily be done w/o criticizing the President,and this so that she can recapture the 11% [of the Jewish vote] lost between 2012 and 1992. We addressed this in our meeting yesterday: +speak strongly against anti-Semitism, and boycott. +reaffirm the US commitment to Israel’s security…

This is NOT a NY or California issue,,,,it is a Florida one.

Saban referred to Bill Clinton getting 80 percent of the Jewish vote in 1992, and Barack Obama getting 69 percent in 2012. But Obama had polled at 78 percent in 2008. It’s not a NY or California issue, because only in Florida are Jewish voters a swing vote.

Two weeks later Clinton released her letter to Saban attacking the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, and promising to work with Republicans to defeat BDS.

Thanks to Adam Horowitz, and Eli Clifton on twitter: “Podesta knows audience for HRC’s speech @ Saban Forum.” 

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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14 Responses

  1. pabelmont
    October 24, 2016, 5:17 pm

    Clinton probably makes the same pillow-talk to Koch and the BIG-OILers. Where’s her adamant declaration of the danger to the world (and to the USA) about global warming climate change (GWCC)? I know it’s boring to talk about GWCC on this I/P site, but if we want a future for ANY part of the human race, we need that future to be on earth. (You know, the earth love it or leave it.) That includes I/P.

    (I do wish the holocaust remembrancers (may I so refer to them?) would start talking about GWCC which would kill all the Jews who survived holocaust unscathed (or scathed for that matter).

  2. inbound39
    October 24, 2016, 5:47 pm

    She most certainly does not put America first…..she is paid to put Israeli interests first and on that basis should not be allowed to fill the Presidential position. She betrays America and drags its Status further down by supporting Israel’s detestable actions and promising to ensure their impunity…absolutely disgusting.

    • Rob Roy
      October 25, 2016, 11:24 am

      Excellent comment.

      • Citizen
        October 26, 2016, 3:32 am

        She’s a real Frankenstein monster. Power-mad parrot.

  3. Talkback
    October 24, 2016, 7:32 pm

    “Clinton also said Palestinian leaders were inciting violence, and Israelis lived in the shadow of “terror.””

    Sounds like the Palestinians have been occupying Israelis for nearly half century.

    • Kay24
      October 25, 2016, 6:58 am

      It is unbelievable how American leaders keep spewing total zionist propaganda to justify our role in this conflict. Yes, indeed it certainly sounds like poor pathetic Israel is the victim in all this, and live in terror of powerless civilians. She conveniently forgot that we are sending billions of aid and arming the “poor victims” with the most sophisticated weapons. How many Palestinians died by American weapons?

      • Rob Roy
        October 25, 2016, 11:26 am

        Another excellent comment.

      • Dougal
        October 25, 2016, 1:40 pm

        Well said Kay24. How the American people ignore the reality of the persecution of the Palestinians by the Israelis is unbelievable. Disgusting!

    • Elizabeth Block
      October 25, 2016, 9:32 am

      I remember an interview on the CBC, a few years ago, with a settler from Sderot, at a time when there were rockets coming out of Gaza. “Oh, it’s terrible,” she said. “I’m so scared. I have to pull over to the side of the road and hide in a ditch.”
      I thought, “Hon, go home. Go home to Brooklyn. Or New Jersey, or California, or wherever you’re from. I recognize your accent – it’s the same as mine. You have a US passport. The Gazans don’t.”

      • Rob Roy
        October 25, 2016, 11:26 am

        Thank you.

      • Talkback
        October 27, 2016, 8:21 am

        Under Israeli attack even a ditch won’t help you. They do not only killl you, but destroy the whole block, the road passing through it and the ditch that comes with the road. That’s what they call a “war against terror” which actually means the massacre of mostly innocent Nonjews.

  4. Rashers2
    October 25, 2016, 2:40 pm

    “Ally” my a*se (Oxford English orthography)! If all the USA’s “allies” treated it with the contempt, perfidy and worse that Israel does, neither the State Department nor the Democratic Party would need to invent “new” enemies such as Russia. It frustrates me beyond words that NO-ONE in MSM has the cojones so spell out to the American public the simple truth about this “special relationship”, the damage it does to their country’s image and credibility on the world stage, the facts about some of Israel’s acts of “friendship” towards America over the decades; and the motivation behind such acts.

    • inbound39
      October 25, 2016, 6:14 pm

      Yes….Israel has made a complete laughing stock of America and totally eroded its ability to wield power over World Affairs. America is viewed these days as the little running dog of Israel. Americans are apparently happy with that.

      • Rashers2
        October 25, 2016, 10:17 pm

        Not for the first (or probably the last) time, I’m relieved not to have been born into the Land of the Free; even if some European governments – including my own in particular – are also mightily partisan about I/P.
        A little off-piste in relation to PW’s article itself but, from afar (M-E), I observe with interest and much misgiving the by now quite dramatic resurgence after three-quarters of a century of the far right, nationalist xenophobes in many countries of Europe – and of course, right now, in the USA. Advocates of the Zionist Project habitually use history as a weapon of self-justification but they seem to have learned few real lessons from it. Many such advocates in Israel themselves pursue and support just such policies/ideals, the outcome of which IS the current Jewish State of Israel as oppressor, occupier and abuser of Palestine and the Palestinians. Some outside Israel have latched onto the common, Islamophobic platform which all these groups espouse and now tacitly or privately support these European nationalist movements in their particular countries as being potentially even more partisan in favour of Israel than their incumbent governments.
        The principal lesson of history which these Zionist advocates who empathise with the Islamophobia of the current wave of European nationalist parties have failed to learn is this: far-right, nationalistic groups (for want of a better term, let’s call then “neo-Fascists”) wherever they emerge seek to gain popular support and, ultimately, to achieve and retain political power by generating fear among their constituencies. Whether it’s Mexicans “stealing” jobs in the Rust Belt and Mid-West, whether it’s fences around Hungary or whether it’s Brown-shirt-style attacks on immigrants in rural Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (N-E Germany), the neo-Fascists’ arsenal consists of fear, fear and more fear – fear of the “other” – whichever “other” is the easiest and most expedient target at any given juncture, whether it be, as today, Muslims; or red-heads and brunettes (everyone knows the brunettes are worse than the red-heads*…).
        The Muslims are breakfast. The Jews and other minority groups are likely to provide lunch and dinner.
        * Acknowledgement to the late, great Sir Charles Chaplin

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