Donald Trump says he is considering retired Marine general James Mattis as a possible Defense Secretary:
General James "Mad Dog" Mattis, who is being considered for Secretary of Defense, was very impressive yesterday. A true General's General!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 20, 2016
Mattis has been outspoken, that the U.S. pays a “security price” in the Middle East because it is seen as biased in favor of Israel and that Israel is in danger of becoming an apartheid state due to its occupation of the West Bank.
From Haaretz three years ago:
A former U.S. general said last week that the United States is paying a military and security price “every day” because of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, warning that the continued construction of settlements is liable to turn Israel into an apartheid state.
Gen. (ret.) James Mattis, who until two months ago headed the Central Command of the U.S. Army (CENTCOM) and commanded U.S. forces in the Middle East, made the comments at an Aspen Institute conference last Saturday…
Gen. (ret.) Mattis then sounded a prophecy of doom regarding what is liable to happen if a Palestinian state is not established. “I would tell you that the current situation is unsustainable,” he said, adding, “It’s got to be directly addressed. We have got to find a way to make the two-state solution that Democrat and Republican administrations have supported. We’ve got to get there, and the chances for it are starting to ebb because of the settlements, and where they’re at. [They] are going to make it impossible to maintain the two-state option.”
Mattis discussed the dangers to Israel’s future and mentioned the settlements as an example. “If I’m in Jerusalem and I put 500 Jewish settlers out here to the east and there’s 10,000 Arab settlers in here, if we draw the border to include them, either it ceases to be a Jewish state or you say the Arabs don’t get to vote – apartheid,” he warned. “That didn’t work too well the last time I saw that practiced in a country. So we’ve got to work on this with a sense of urgency.”
The retired American general emphasized that a continuation of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict harms America’s security interests. “I paid a military security price every day as a commander of CENTCOM because the Americans were seen as biased in support of Israel,” he said. “That influences all the moderate Arabs who want to be with us, because they can’t come out publicly in support of people who don’t show respect for the Arab Palestinians. So [Kerry’s] right on target with what he’s doing. I just hope the protagonists want peace and a two-state solution as much as he does.”
Mattis’ harsh words confirm the current perception within the military and defense establishment in the United States regarding the Israeli occupation of the West Bank. Mattis’ reprimand is reminiscent of an almost identical statement by his predecessor, Gen. David Petraeus, during a Senate hearing in 2010.
Remember that Wolf Blitzer smacked down Jimmy Carter for using the apartheid word seven years before, so America is making progress. No one in the US mainstream could deny the imminence of apartheid in the West Bank and East Jerusalem– and anyone who’s actually been there knows that it’s in full flower right now. As for unsustainable, that has been the phrase forever; but forever doesn’t last forever, and there’s one state now in Israel and Palestine and a battle for equal rights has begun.
Mattis as DefSec might make it difficult for Israel to annex the West Bank, notwithstanding Trump’s position on same. If he even has a position. Cue SNL last night; and Trump reverting to traditional policies on everything.
Thanks to Yakov Hirsch.