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The grotesque injustice of Obama’s speech at the Washington synagogue

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The issue with President Obama’s speech to Adas Israel Congregation in Washington yesterday was the sense of entitlement. Obama is pandering to alleged liberals at this synagogue, liberal Zionists, and he gets laughter for saying that Palestinians are not easy partners–

Palestinians have a right to be a free people on their land, as well.  (Applause.) Now, I want to emphasize — that’s not easy.  The Palestinians are not the easiest of partners.  (Laughter.)

and applause for completely ignoring the Nakba and every act of Israeli violence from 1948 to the present.
But he does mention Sderot.
As many of you know, I’ve visited the houses hit by rocket fire in Sderot.  I’ve been to Yad Vashem and made that solemn vow:  “Never forget.  Never again.”  When someone threatens Israel’s citizens or its very right to exist, Israelis necessarily that seriously.  And so do I.  Today, the military and intelligence cooperation between our two countries is stronger than ever.
The only way in which he ever mentions Palestinian suffering is in terms of the lack of opportunity for a Palestinian child in Ramallah.
And the rights of the Jewish people then compel me to think about a Palestinian child in Ramallah that feels trapped without opportunity.  That’s what Jewish values teach me.  That’s what the Judeo-Christian tradition teaches me.
That’s fine as far as it goes, but then he talks about how Israel can’t be expected to take “existential risks”, as though the Palestinians posed an existential threat.
And we cannot expect Israel to take existential risks with their security so that any deal that takes place has to take into account the genuine dangers of terrorism and hostility.
This is why the discussion in the US is so screwed up–the so-called liberals on the Zionist side (and I exclude a few genuine liberals like Jerome Slater) laughed when Obama made that No-easy-partner comment.
If they were real liberals they should have booed him.  Imagine him saying that about Israelis in general.  Imagine the reaction if he told Palestinians he was an honorary member of their tribe.

Jeff [Goldberg] reminded me that he once called me “the first Jewish President.”  (Laughter.)… I was flattered. And as an honorary member of the tribe, not to mention somebody who’s hosted seven White House Seders and been advised by — (applause) — and been advised by two Jewish chiefs of staff, I can also proudly say that I’m getting a little bit of the hang of the lingo.

If he told them he was inspired by their struggle:

And to a young man like me, grappling with his own identity, recognizing the scars of race here in this nation, inspired by the civil rights struggle, the idea that you could be grounded in your history, as Israel was, but not be trapped by it, to be able to repair the world — that idea was liberating.  The example of Israel and its values was inspiring.
Imagine Obama giving an equivalent speech to Palestinian-Americans. Says he’s same tribe, mentions the Gaza bombing and the shooting of fishermen, maybe the Nakba, too. The national reaction would be fun to watch.
Donald
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119 Responses

  1. Kay24
    Kay24
    May 23, 2015, 11:56 am

    Obama is disappointing to say the least. It is hard to stomach the fact that he has to grovel and show such devotion to the American masters in Israel. All that, and he expects the victims of Israel’s occupation and other Arab people, to have confidence that he is truly devoted to a 2SS. It is all an eye wash, typical of American leaders. Next time Israel starts their massacre in Gaza, Obama will hand over the ammunition again.

    OT but seems Israel’s loyal sugar daddy, Adelson, will have to face a US court.

    “Sheldon Adelson to face allegations of graft, ties to Chinese organized crime in U.S. court
    Wrongful termination case of former CEO of Adelson’s Macau casino, which raised questions about mogul’s business practices, will be heard in U.S., not China, Nevada judge rules.” Haaretz

    A man who truly deserves to be in the hot seat. :)) I hope he melts.

  2. Sion 1
    Sion 1
    May 23, 2015, 12:09 pm

    A photo on the front page of the New York Times showed President Obama as he addressed a Jewish group at Adas Israel, a Conservative synagogue in Washington, D.C.

    He wore a yarmulke which has become the de rigueur sartorial accessory for presidents when they speak to Jews, particularly when they are assuring their audience of America’s ” unshakable bond ” to the self-proclaimed ” Jewish State ”.

    So, I have a question: Who was the last president NOT to don the yarmulke when speaking to such groups? I vaguely remember Ford wearing one but not Nixon. Clinton wore one so often one would suspect he was covering up a bald spot. More importantly would Washington or Jefferson have worn one? How about Jackson or Lincoln or Teddy Roosevelt ?

    Maybe I am being rather petty, but ask yourself: What would be the reaction if the President put on the traditional Arab headdress, the Kafiya Keffiyeh , when addressing a group of Muslim Americans?

    There is a precedent: Calvin Coolidge was once photographed wearing an Indian headdress.

    Frank

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 24, 2015, 3:57 am

      President Obama is wearing a kippah (“yarmulke”) not because he’s addressing a Jewish group, but because he’s doing so in a synagogue.
      When the President speaks at events such as AIPAC conventions he doesn’t cover his head.
      In a synagogue , he’s simply showing proper respect, as I assume he would in a church or mosque.

      And Happy Shavuot to all those celebrating today!

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 24, 2015, 11:08 am

        jon s: “And Happy Shavuot to all those celebrating today!”

        For those who, like me, didn’t know about Shavuot:

        “But from Abraham’s “ten trials” to 21st century America, Judaism has never been about comfort, enjoyment or even personal fulfillment (though, to be sure, the latter surely emerges from a God-centered life). It has been about Torah and mitzvot, commandments — about accepting them, not only when they sit well with us but even — indeed, especially — when they don’t.” http://forward.com/opinion/spirituality/308704/shavuot-means-not-trusting-ourselves/

        I wonder how a “God-centered life” in the “Jewish” nation fits in with actions like this; oddly, none of you Zionists has bothered to comment about it: “Israel says boy is ‘moderately injured’ after his skull is fractured by rubber bullet in East Jerusalem” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/moderately-fractured-jerusalem#sthash.zA41U1bP.dpuf

        More, here: “Palestinian boy, 10, critically injured by rubber bullet in Jerusalem” http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=765554

        Why wouldn’t this apply? From Amos 5:

        21“I hate, I despise your feasts,
        and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies.
        22Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings,
        I will not accept them;
        and the peace offerings of your fattened animals,
        I will not look upon them.
        23Take away from me the noise of your songs;
        to the melody of your harps I will not listen.
        24But let justice roll down like waters,
        and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 24, 2015, 12:17 pm

        “And Happy Shavuot to all those celebrating today!”

        That’s right! And all of you who are not celebrating today, you’re a bunch of apostates, and you’ll get yours later!

      • annie
        annie
        May 24, 2015, 1:56 pm

        speaking of shavuot, i just won a bet!

        recently i was part of a code pink delegation to cuba (i highly recommend code pink tours, bop til you drop, they run you ragged) and i can’t recall how it came up but i mentioned this jewish holiday i couldn’t recall the name of where people studied jewish history or law or something all night long. i heard about it because my ex roomie (a rabbi) and a bunch of his friends planned this camping trip up on the mountain for an overnight and they were going to do this study thing all night long. so, we were on the tour bus on the way to the che guevara museum near santa clara (where the big battle took place) and ted from brooklyn (i forget his last name) insisted there was no such holiday! and then he asked some other jewish friends on the bus and they all insisted no such holiday existed! i said i think it was in the spring, probably may and they laughed at me and he said wanna bet, i said sure and he said how much and i said i don’t make money bets.

        oh wow, now i really have to get his email because i looked up shavuot after reading your comment jon and scrolling down it says: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shavuot

        All-night Torah study[edit]
        The practice of staying up all Shavuot night to study Torah – known as Tikkun Leil Shavuot (Hebrew: תקון ליל שבועות‎) – has its source in the Midrash, which relates that the night before the Torah was given, the Israelites retired early to be well-rested for the momentous day ahead. They overslept and Moses had to wake them up because God was already waiting on the mountaintop.[19] To rectify this perceived flaw in the national character, many religious Jews stay up all night to learn Torah.[20]
        The custom of all-night Torah study goes back to 1533 when Rabbi Joseph Caro, author of the Shulchan Aruch, then living in Ottoman Salonika, invited Rabbi Shlomo Halevi Alkabetz and other Kabbalistic colleagues to hold Shavuot-night study vigils for which they prepared for three days in advance, just as the Israelites had prepared for three days before the giving of the Torah. During one of those study sessions, an angel appeared and taught them Jewish law.[21][22][23]
        The mass-consumption of coffee in the Ottoman empire is thought to be one factor in the emergence of the practice of all-night Torah study on Shavuot.[24][25]
        Any subject may be studied on Shavuot night, although Talmud, Mishnah, and Torah typically top the list. People may learn alone or with a chavruta (study partner), or attend late-night shiurim (lectures) and study groups.[26] Both men and women participate in this tradition.
        In Jerusalem, tens of thousands of people finish off the nighttime study session by walking to the Western Wall before dawn and joining the sunrise minyan there.[26][27][28][29] This practice began in 1967. One week before Shavuot of that year, the Israeli army recaptured the Old City in the Six-Day War, and on Shavuot day, the army opened the Western Wall to visitors. Over 200,000 Jews came to see and pray at the site that had been off-limits to them since 1948. The custom of walking to the Western Wall on Shavuot has continued every year since.[26][27][28][30]

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 25, 2015, 9:32 pm

        In a synagogue , he’s simply showing proper respect, as I assume he would in a church or mosque.

        Better brush up on your Christian literacy: “Every man praying or prophesying, having his head covered, dishonoureth his head.” 1 Corinthians 11:4

      • just
        just
        May 25, 2015, 9:36 pm

        lol.

        ahem.

  3. Brown-Eyed Girl
    Brown-Eyed Girl
    May 23, 2015, 12:50 pm

    “The idea that you could be grounded in your history, as Israel was, but not be trapped by it” I can’t believe he said that; he must be kidding. Does anyone seriously think Israel and Israelis are not trapped in history? That they are not trapped in a hell of their own making, seeing Nazis everywhere, seeing anti-semitism in every other nations actions. Seeing conspiracies against them in the shapes of the clouds? These are people who think you can make international boundaries by what was written in the Bible, -or their interpretation of what was written in the Bible. “This is our land, God gave it to us.” The way that Obama cowers, sucks up to, and is obviously terrified of the Zionist lobby is sad and disgusting. I can only wonder if he feels he is doing what he has to in order to help Hilliary win in 2016 and get money from wealthy Jewish donors for his post-Presidency career. He will need groups willing to pay him $250K per speech in his retirement. To point out the obvious, he is a black man, therefore, he has to know that the same racist comments and slurs he is so happy to throw around about Palestinians and Arabs in general are the same ugly comments that used to be openly made about black people in this country. I suppose he is stuck in the past of that part of our history as well. I have never been so disappointed by a president.

    • truth2power
      truth2power
      May 23, 2015, 1:13 pm

      @Brown-Eyed Girl

      Well said! Perfect! When I think back to the promise of Mr Obama, like you, I am thinking – not, “Yes we can” but, “No we can’t”. What a pity! He held so much promise and none of it (almost) has been redeemed. I’m not American and the idea that “sucking up” to wealthy Jewish donors is the route to the Presidency of the US is … appalling!! Aren’t you “The land of the free and the home of the brave” :) ?

      • amigo
        amigo
        May 23, 2015, 1:48 pm

        “What a pity! He held so much promise and none of it (almost) has been redeemed.” truth2power.

        Indeed and he got to pocket a Nobel peace prize for his efforts.

      • ritzl
        ritzl
        May 23, 2015, 6:23 pm

        Yeah, amigo. Has anyone seen what he (or his blind trust) has done with the cash? Anything stirringly and/or unequivocally good?

      • Frankie P
        Frankie P
        May 23, 2015, 7:45 pm

        Actually, he did NOT pocket a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts. He pocketed a Nobel Peace Prize for the expectations that people, including the idiots who decide who receives the prize, had for him. That is the world we live in. A world in which prizes are handed out to politicians in the hope that they will do something right.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 23, 2015, 11:05 pm

        “A world in which prizes are handed out to politicians in the hope that they will do something right. ”

        Let’s not give up. It might work one day.

      • Froggy
        Froggy
        May 26, 2015, 1:10 pm

        truth2power : ‘When I think back to the promise of Mr Obama, like you, I am thinking – not, “Yes we can” but, “No we can’t”.’

        It looks to me like ‘Yes we can; but No we won’t’.

      • RockyMissouri
        RockyMissouri
        May 26, 2015, 1:30 pm

        NEVER. They are STILL OCCUPIERS.

        Palestinians matter!

    • ritzl
      ritzl
      May 23, 2015, 6:21 pm

      “Seeing conspiracies against them in the shapes of the clouds?”

      Brilliant, Brown-Eyed Girl!!

      Spot on, and so, so dangerous.

    • Marnie
      Marnie
      May 24, 2015, 5:02 am

      Exactly !

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 25, 2015, 5:14 am

      Shavuot is one of my absolute favourite holidays, maybe even #1!

      In Israel in recent years Shavuot study events have become more and more popular, as part of an increase in interest in the study of Jewish sources. I participated in two such events , here in Beersheva. One of the texts which is traditionally read and discussed on Shavuot is the Book of Ruth, which contains a powerful anti-racist message.

      It’s quite sad that Annie encountered Jews who don’t have a clue, who lack “Jewish literacy”.

      • James North
        James North
        May 25, 2015, 10:19 am

        What do the 20 percent of the population who are not Jewish do on Shavuot?

      • catalan
        catalan
        May 25, 2015, 11:34 am

        “What do the 20 percent of the population who are not Jewish do on Shavuot? – ” James North
        Enjoy the weather, go to the beach, eat the best falafel in he world. Not so shabby.
        I like Christian holidays. On Christmas, everyone asks when I am putting my tree up. They can’t tell I am Jewish despite the name. I am told I look German and the worst is I take it as a compliment.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 25, 2015, 12:11 pm

        I don’t know, James. What do the 25% of Americans who are not Christians do on Christmas and Easter?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 25, 2015, 12:15 pm

        Is it any wonder that Jewish kids today only pass their Scripture Knowledge test by dint of caffeine and a list of begats inscribed on their shirt-cuffs? No, not when we consider that:

        In Israel there’s a rising tide of racism , xenophobia and anti-democratic tendencies, especially (though not exclusively) among the Orthodox Jews. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/20#sthash.CHA7vLW1.dpuf “Jon s”

      • just
        just
        May 25, 2015, 12:58 pm

        “It’s quite sad that Annie encountered Jews who don’t have a clue, who lack “Jewish literacy”.”

        jon s~ seems like you spend a great deal of time worrying yourself silly and sad about what other Jews do. I find it odd that you teach “Israeli history”… it’s so short in relative terms, you know? How far do you try to reach back anyway? This “Jewish literacy” that you write of~ what is it, and do you teach it?

      • justicewillprevail
        justicewillprevail
        May 25, 2015, 1:39 pm

        It’s quite encouraging that she met people who happen to be Jewish, rather than people who think it makes them something other, a zealous foot soldier of a nationalist, segregationist ideology who imagine that everybody must subscribe to their narrow-minded fixations because they share some cultural beliefs.

      • Hostage
        Hostage
        May 25, 2015, 9:27 pm

        To rectify this perceived flaw in the national character, many religious Jews stay up all night to learn Torah. … It’s quite sad that Annie encountered Jews who don’t have a clue, who lack “Jewish literacy”.

        Well its sad to see so many stuck-up Jews who really only like the parts of the Torah about their license to commit genocide bitching about all of us who have read all of that shit and chose to move on to more grown-up night-time activities. You need to stop working on our perceived flaws Jon and focus on the ones in Israel’s national character.

      • just
        just
        May 25, 2015, 9:34 pm

        Perfect, Hostage.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 30, 2015, 12:08 pm

        “You need to stop working on our perceived flaws Jon and focus on the ones in Israel’s national character”

        Huh? Say what, Hostage? I tell you, “Jon s” is well aware of “Israel’s national character”, and summed it up very well:

        “In Israel there’s a rising tide of racism , xenophobia and anti-democratic tendencies, especially (though not exclusively) among the Orthodox Jews.” – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/jon-s/20#sthash.PpUtH3Tn.dpuf “Jon s”

        Why, “Jon s” even knows who to blame, it’s those Orthodox, the ones who wear the funny hats! They make such easy targets.
        Yup, if you ever want to hear the truth about Israel from a Zionist, just get them talking about some other political party or group in Israel, and the truth comes right out! Goodbye, Tribal Unity!

      • annie
        annie
        June 16, 2015, 8:09 pm

        What do the 25% of Americans who are not Christians do on Christmas and Easter?

        sometime they eat at my house. the others? chinese food.

      • Walid
        Walid
        June 16, 2015, 8:37 pm

        “sometime they eat at my house. the others? chinese food.” (Annie)

        Some prepare a Christmas or Easter dinner of their own. Can’t have a Christmas tree without the gifts and the dinner. Chinese food doesn’t sound very Christmassy.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        June 16, 2015, 8:52 pm

        Annie, I am now imagining all the Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, Sikhs, Hindus, Parsees, Taoists, and assorted whatnots of America piling into your house for dinner. Sounds like a fun gathering, but you must have a lot of plates.

    • Froggy
      Froggy
      May 25, 2015, 9:57 am

      Brown-Eyed Girl : “Does anyone seriously think Israel and Israelis are not trapped in history? That they are not trapped in a hell of their own making, seeing Nazis everywhere, seeing anti-semitism in every other nations actions. Seeing conspiracies against them in the shapes of the clouds?”

      Did you see Yoav Shamir’s documentary film ‘Hashmatsa’ (‘Defamation’, in English)?

      I saw it when it was shown in the UK on Channel 4.

      One story line in the film shows the education of Israeli teenagers — indoctrination, really — prior to their being taken on a school trip to tour Auschwitz.

      Clearly, this indoctrination was real for these students. What I don’t know, and the film didn’t explain, is how widespread this form and degree of indoctrination is in Israeli schools.

      These kids had been taught that all the Poles hated them because they were Jewish, and that their lives were in danger in Poland.

      In one scene some friendly elderly Polish men sitting on a park bench try to talk to the Israeli girls. The girls are convinced that these men are calling them names.

      Shamir describes the mindset of these kids as ‘…being brought up thinking that everybody hates them, find themselves in a cycle that is very hard to break.’
      http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2010/jan/25/israel-race

      Is hate indoctrination part of the Israeli system of education? Is that where these paranoias come from? (I’m asking because I don’t know and have no way of finding out.)

      ‘Defamation’:

      • just
        just
        May 25, 2015, 11:26 am

        Thanks so much for linking that film, Froggy!

        I only read this morning that the ADL has ‘honored’ Lady Gaga…

        “Pop star Lady Gaga accepted an award from the Anti-Defamation League on behalf of her Born This Way Foundation.

        On Thursday, the ADL announced that Gaga had received its Making a Difference award for “work championing positive social change.”

        “The Foundation shares ADL’s mission of combating bullying among young people,” an ADL press release said.

        “This is such an incredible honor,” Gaga said in a videotaped acceptance speech. “The No Place For Hate Making A Difference Award is a huge deal for both of us, especially because of all of the hard work ADL has been doing to fight anti-Semitism, homophobia, bigotry and intolerance for the past 100 years.””…

        http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/jewish-world-news/1.658011?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

        Neither the ADL nor Gaga seems concerned with rising Islamophobia…

        And Gaga plays TA.

      • jon s
        jon s
        May 28, 2015, 5:15 pm

        Hostage,
        “All that shit” – that’s how you regard the study of Jewish sources. Combined with your arrogant boast that you’ve read it all -that’s one disgraceful comment. Talk about being “stuck – up”.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 30, 2015, 12:21 pm

        ““All that shit” – that’s how you regard the study of Jewish sources. Combined with your arrogant boast that you’ve read it all -that’s one disgraceful comment. Talk about being “stuck – up”. “

        That’s it, “Jon s” you just talk to Hostage like he is some impressionable, ill-informed Israeli kid you indoctrinate. Would you like to threaten him with exclusion from “the Jewish community”.
        Really, what good is having a community if we can’t exclude people from it?

        So, in “Hostage” we’ve got a Jewish person who thinks “all that shit” doesn’t add up to a deed to Palestine and ethnic superiority, and he’s the “stuck-up” one? Uh, okay.

        And now, a brocha: Thank you, G-d, for making the balebatisheh Yiden a closed book to me. May I stay illiterate!

      • Walid
        Walid
        June 16, 2015, 8:47 pm

        “the film didn’t explain, is how widespread this form and degree of indoctrination is in Israeli schools.”

        We’ve discussed tis a few times here; it starts in kindergarten and follows them all through their schooling years until the task is picked up by their military services. It’s a militarized mentality that takes 5-year olds to visit military bases to get them used to being around military power and arms in general. Al-Mayadeen had a great 2-part program about it but it was only in Arabic. The whole of the education system is militarized.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        June 16, 2015, 8:50 pm

        Spoken like someone who doesn’t know many Israelis.

  4. hophmi
    hophmi
    May 23, 2015, 1:01 pm

    Well, Donald, welcome to reality. Israelis and Palestinians are not equal in the United States. The Israelis have deep connections with the United States on every level – political, economic, military. The Palestinians do not. So if you think that these simplistic analogies carry any currency, or that they should, you’re being delusional.

    • eljay
      eljay
      May 23, 2015, 1:33 pm

      || hophmi: … The Israelis have deep connections with the United States on every level – political, economic, military. … ||

      Folks, you know – you just know – that had a non-Zionist made this comment, hophmi would have immediately:
      – distorted the comment into “The Jews control the United States on every level”; and
      – smeared the commenter with accusations of anti-Semitism and/or “Jew-hatred”.

      Funny stuff.

    • Qualtrough
      Qualtrough
      May 23, 2015, 2:40 pm

      I would never expect that it would be Hophmi affirming that “Israelis have have deep connections with the United States on every level– political, economic, military.” Will wonders ever cease?

    • a blah chick
      a blah chick
      May 23, 2015, 2:50 pm

      “The Israelis have deep connections with the United States on every level”

      Yeah, it’s called money.

    • Kris
      Kris
      May 23, 2015, 4:12 pm

      hophmi: “So if you think that these simplistic analogies carry any currency…”

      Yes, CURRENCY is exactly what it’s about!

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 23, 2015, 7:38 pm

        LOL. Lots of countries have deep connections with the United States. The US-Israel relationship has nothing to do with money. The China-US relationship is about money. The Japan-US relationship is about money. The US-Israel relationship is about shared values. That’s why most people in the anti-Israel community hate both Israel and the United States.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        May 23, 2015, 11:18 pm

        @ hophmi
        “The US-Israel relationship is about shared values.”

        What shared values?
        Name some.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 23, 2015, 11:20 pm

        hophmi: “The US-Israel relationship has nothing to do with money.”

        Uh, huh. “How to talk about Jewish money influencing politics without getting into trouble.” http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2014/08/how-to-talk-about-jewish-money-influencing-politics-without-getting-into-trouble/

        By the way, Hophmi, you and the other mondoweiss zionists have had nothing at all to say about this story:
        http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/moderately-fractured-jerusalem “Israel says boy is ‘moderately injured’ after his skull is fractured by rubber bullet in East Jerusalem”

        Palestinian boy, 10, critically injured by rubber bullet in Jerusalem

        “JERUSALEM (Ma‘an) 21 May — A Palestinian child was critically injured after Israeli forces shot him with a rubber-coated steel bullet near the Shu‘fat refugee camp on Thursday, witnesses said. Yahiya Sami al-Amudi, 10, was walking near a checkpoint by the East Jerusalem refugee camp when he was shot by the bullet.

        ” He was taken to the Hadassa hospital in Ein Karem with a fractured skull, jaw, and left ear and had surgery to remove his left eye. Medics said he is in critical condition.

        “A spokesman for Fatah in the camp, Thaer Fasfous, condemned the targeting of children with tear gas, stun grenades and rubber-coated bullets.

        Israeli police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld said that there were “disturbances” in the Shu‘fat area after locals threw stones at municipality workers. Israeli border police used “non-lethal” weapons and a 10-year-old boy was moderately injured and taken to hospital, he added.”

        Here’s a link with more pictures of this child, Yahiya Sami al-Amudi, age 10. He is in critical condition, with a fractured skull and jaw; his left eye is gone.
        http://www.maannews.com/Content.aspx?id=765554

        You and the other Zionists who post here never object to atrocities committed by Jews, although if this had been a Jewish child maimed by anyone but another Jew, you would have had plenty to say. What numbs your heart so effectively to the suffering of non-Jewish children?

      • amigo
        amigo
        May 24, 2015, 5:54 am

        “The US-Israel relationship has nothing to do with money. “hopknee

        Codswallop,

        http://www.wrmea.org/congress-u.s.-aid-to-israel/u.s.-aid-to-israel-articles.html

        How about 150 billion dollars of the US taxpayers money.

        What color is the sky on your planet hoppy.

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 25, 2015, 12:13 pm

        The Occidental Observer? I see that we’re STILL putting through comments from overtly anti Semitic sources.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 26, 2015, 11:59 am

        @hophmi: “The Occidental Observer? I see that we’re STILL putting through comments from overtly anti Semitic sources.”

        The link is to the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, not the Occidental Observer.

        Is Hasbara Central pushing the “anti Semitic sources” ploy this week? Both you and jon s seem to be leaning on this claim lately.

        If you’re seeing antisemitism, please copy and paste for us, so we know what you’re talking about. FYI, criticism of Israel is not “anti-semitic.”

        “The American Educational Trust (AET) is a non-profit foundation incorporated in Washington, DC in 1982 by retired U.S. Foreign Service officers to provide the American public with balanced and accurate information concerning U.S. relations with Middle Eastern states. AET perceives a dearth in knowledge about the Middle East, Arabs, and Muslims, in the U.S., and pursues an educational mission of “Interpreting the Middle East for North Americans; Interpreting North America for the Middle East.”

        “AET’s Foreign Policy Committee has included former U.S. ambassadors, government officials, and members of Congress, including the late Democratic Senator J. William Fulbright and Republican Senator Charles Percy, both former chairmen of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Members of AET’s Board of Directors and advisory committees receive no fees for their services.

        “AET does not take partisan domestic political positions. In general, AET supports Middle East solutions which it judges to be consistent with the charter of the United Nations, international law, the Geneva Conventions, and traditional American support for human rights, self-determination, and fair play.”

        “For more than three decades this publication has taken a critical look at U.S. aid to Israel, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), pro-Israel PAC contributions and Congressional and diplomatic support for Israel. AET also maintains the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs Web site with decades of articles available to readers.”

        http://www.wrmea.org/faq/frequently-asked-questions.html

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 26, 2015, 12:05 pm

        Not worth my time to have a debate with you about whether the Occidental Observer is an antisemitic website.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 26, 2015, 12:19 pm

        Hophmi, is this why you think the Americal Educational Trust, which publishes the “Washington Report on Middle East Affairs” is “anti-Semitic”:

        “In general, AET supports Middle East solutions which it judges to be consistent with the charter of the United Nations, international law, the Geneva Conventions, and traditional American support for human rights, self-determination, and fair play.”

        “For more than three decades this publication has taken a critical look at U.S. aid to Israel, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), pro-Israel PAC contributions and Congressional and diplomatic support for Israel.”
        http://www.wrmea.org/faq/frequently-asked-questions.html

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 26, 2015, 12:30 pm

        || Kris: Hophmi, is this why you think the Americal Educational Trust … is “anti-Semitic”: “In general, AET supports Middle East solutions which it judges to be consistent with the charter of the United Nations, international law, the Geneva Conventions, and traditional American support for human rights, self-determination, and fair play.” ||

        At first glance, that blurb appears benign. But if you re-arrange some of the letters you’ll see that it contains “Jew-hatred”.

        (Sure, it also contains “fuck Canada”, but that’s not important right now.)

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 26, 2015, 1:18 pm

        || eljay: … (Sure, it also contains “fuck Canada”, but that’s not important right now.) ||

        I just noticed that it actually doesn’t contain “fuck Canada”, which means that the blurb must be anti-Semitic.

      • Kris
        Kris
        May 26, 2015, 2:45 pm

        Sorry, Hophmi. I see that I myself linked to the Occidental Observer, here:

        May 23, 2015, 11:20 pm
        “hophmi: “The US-Israel relationship has nothing to do with money.”

        “Uh, huh. “How to talk about Jewish money influencing politics without getting into trouble.” link to theoccidentalobserver.net”

        The Occidental Observer describes itself as a “white identity” website, and I wish I had read about it before linking to it, since I would then have instead linked to one of the mainstream websites discussing the great influence Jewish money has on U.S. politics.

        However, as you know, the truth of a statement doesn’t depend on who makes it; you were making an ad hominem attack. It would be great if you’d comment on the actual ideas and facts people are discussing, and share your sources.

      • RoHa
        RoHa
        May 27, 2015, 1:53 am

        Given the current position of the Canadian Government, I’m pretty sure “fuck Canada” would count as anti-Semitic as well.

      • Brewer
        Brewer
        May 27, 2015, 2:51 am

        @Kris (and every poster with an IQ above room temperature).

        “Sorry, Hophmi. I see that I myself linked to the Occidental Observer”

        Please do not apologize for linking to a site no matter how it is perceived.

        In the first place, whether or not common perception labels it an anti-Semitic site has no bearing on the information or argument you wish to reference. The information or argument stands or falls on its’ own merits.
        Secondly, if a source identifies itself as a “white identity” website, how does this differ from a “Jewish Identity” website” or a “Black American” website? Are we similarly to dismiss all ideas emanating from any source that declares its’ bias on it’s banner? I hope not.

        Diners at this feast of ideas are surely mature enough to distinguish the message from the medium. The trick of dismissing valid argument by attacking the medium is effective but is not logical.

        Anti-Semitism is a canard. The concept is itself racist, I have written about this before with little or no dispute:

        Anti-Semitism is a very odd concept in that it posits that an action is of a particular type if (and only if) the recipient is of a certain group…….
        ….Racist acts are the same class of action when perpetrated against members of any group. The identity of the victim is not (or at least should not be) relevant to the act, its severity or the response, yet if a Jew is the victim of racism or assault, that is exactly what happens – the act takes on a different name, motive and response and what is more, other acts or speech that would not normally be considered racist (e.g. political, critical) can now be included, bringing the full weight of every crime against every individual Jew throughout History behind the the severity of the “crime”. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/brewer#sthash.5V6BGNj6.dpuf

        Despite this, I acknowledge that the “anti-Semitism” canard is powerful. I believe however that it is part of the responsibility of clear thinkers to deconstruct it and relegate it to the museum of false concepts.

        Personally, I read any and all opinions regardless of reputation. To me it is the logic that matters.

      • gamal
        gamal
        May 27, 2015, 8:24 am

        Brewer are you saying even Apostates should have a voice?

        If Jerry Hough can publish,

        http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/05/26/the-education-of-professor-jerry-hough/

        who should be silenced just because they may believe in some racist crap, Liars Homphi have no moral authority to damn anyone, we refuse to be divided we refuse your sanctimonious inquisition. Even a broken clock is right twice a day, however wrong it is at other times, you cant argue against that, arent you the “all those radical sheikhs at Al-Azhar” moron, the undercover out-reach fabulator.

        you H, you benefit from the fact that some us just don’t have any standards, if you aren’t beyond the pale no one is.

        Charlie, Charlie what have you started.

        Who knows (sending love to my friends and foes)

        https://youtu.be/hzqFmXZ8tOE

    • Donald
      Donald
      May 25, 2015, 4:04 pm

      Hophmi, those ties might explain why Obama pandered to his audience, but doesn’t excuse it. And you’re not even trying to excuse it. Good.

      JWalters makes a more interesting point below–not sure I agree, but Obama must know how hypocritical his speech is and I wonder what it would take for him to be honest

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 26, 2015, 12:09 pm

        I disagree. Peter Beinart wrote in The Crisis of Zionism that Obama thought like a liberal Zionist and he was right, as he usually is about things like this.

        There’s really nothing hypocritical about Obama’s speech, except to political extremists who tend to believe Israel is the world’s most horrible place, which I can understand if Mondoweiss is your only source of news. In real life, Israel is a democracy, and the US and Israel share many liberal democratic values in common and have a strong alliance that transcends who is in the Oval Office. It is a common enough fallacy to believe that anyone who doesn’t see the world your way must be a hypocrite.

      • Donald
        Donald
        May 28, 2015, 1:57 pm

        It’s hypocritical for an American President to condemn Hamas violence against civilians and say nothing about the much greater Israeli violence against Palestinian civilians, especially when America helps arm Israel. I wouldn’t expect a politician to be honest in these circumstances, but that doesn’t mean we should give him a pass.

        And my views of Israel’s human rights record come mainly from other sources, not MW. Nobody cites MW as a primary source on such issues. There are these organizations called human rights groups which investigate such things.

    • jon s
      jon s
      May 25, 2015, 4:51 pm

      Just, it’s true that I’ve made this point before, on the lack of Jewish literacy, because it does concern me:

      http://mondoweiss.net/2014/09/hashanah-after-gaza#comment-712538

      As to your question, assuming you’re really interested:
      I don’t teach only “Israeli History”.
      The farthest back I go in the courses I teach is the Second Temple period.
      “Jewish literacy” means not being ignorant of your heritage, having at least basic knowledge of Jewish traditions, culture, history ,language and so forth. To go back to the example I used in my previous comment, it would mean catching Leonard Cohen’s reference in “Who By Fire”, and not losing a bet to Annie out of ignorance.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 30, 2015, 12:27 pm

        “Jewish literacy” means not being ignorant of your heritage, having at least basic knowledge of Jewish traditions, culture, history ,language and so forth.”

        And why it adds up to a deed, free and clear, to Palestine, and ethno-religious supremacism. That’s the entire point of it, “Jon s”
        You don’t ‘teach” you indoctrinate. (Don’t forget to tell the kids the Orthodox are leading them to fascism, as you say)

        Wanna refer us to your syllabus for the course? I don’t think it will be too hard to see exactly what is going on.

    • Hostage
      Hostage
      May 26, 2015, 9:47 am

      We get it, the article pisses you off Hophmi. If your best agit-prop line is that people are not equal in the USA, then you’re just an ignorant racist with too high of an opinion of yourself.

  5. Froggy
    Froggy
    May 23, 2015, 1:53 pm

    “Never forget. Never again.”

    Unless it’s being done by Israel to the Palestinians.

    • Bornajoo
      Bornajoo
      May 25, 2015, 4:32 am

      “What numbs your heart so effectively to the suffering of non-Jewish children?” (Kris)

      Can only speak for the nutty zionists in my own family. That ingredient that numbs their heart so effectively is a deadly cocktail of supremacism, racism and an utter lack of empathy for those that they have so thoroughly dehumanised. And that’s the very sad truth and nothing but….

  6. ramzijaber
    ramzijaber
    May 23, 2015, 2:22 pm

    USA is no longer relevant.

    1S1P1V has already been conceived and will soon be born.

    Demographics always comes on top.

    zionists and usa OUT.

  7. italian ex-pat
    italian ex-pat
    May 23, 2015, 3:49 pm

    @hophmi

    The one and only connection I can see between the US and Israel is that both countries were created on the dispossession and ethnic cleansing of the existing peoples who had inhabited the land(s) for centuries.

    The other connections you mention are secondary to, and in fact a logical progression from, that same original crime. This, I believe, is the real explanation for that ‘unbreakable bond’ we keep hearing about, and why the Israelis feel entitled to the unending support of the American government, no matter how often they break all international laws in the occupation of Palestine and all human rights in their treatment of the Palestinian people. Add to that the not-too-subtle constant reminder of the US’ failure to intervene and stop the Holocaust, and there you have it – what you call “deep connection”, which might also be called blackmail.

    • Boomer
      Boomer
      May 23, 2015, 6:10 pm

      Like the perceived rampant antisemitism that some Zionists cherish, these may be factors in the minds of some Zionists, but that doesn’t mean they exist for other people. For me, any guilt about the treatment of native Americans by my ancestors supports a desire not to repeat the process by supporting and enabling Israel’s policies with regard to Palestinians. As for the supposed failure by the US to stop the Holocaust, by the time it was underway the US was fully engaged in the war effort, doing everything it could, mobilizing all the nation’s resources in a way never seen before or since. Practically speaking, it couldn’t have done more. Some may say, with the benefit of hindsight, that the US should have foreseen what was coming and acted sooner, but that’s an ahistorical fantasy, which certainly causes no guilt on my part.

      • italian ex-pat
        italian ex-pat
        May 23, 2015, 8:47 pm

        @ Boomer

        Thanks for replying.
        My point was not to induce feelings of guilt in present-day Americans for the willful extermination of the Native Indians by your ancestors (not mine, I’m Italian. Although Columbus may have a thing or two to answer for). And as an Italian, I acknowledge that MY parents’ generation carries more guilt for Mussolini’s role in helping Hitler carry out his genocidal plan than America can be guilty of indifference to the plight of the German Jews – the horror of the death camps didn’t surface until the end of the war.

        But getting back to my post, contrary to what you seem to think, the parallel between the expulsion of the American Indians and that of the Palestinians from their respective land is very much a part of the Israelis’ narrative. And many Israel apologists who comment in the NYT never fail to bring it up at the slightest opportunity. Trust me, I know. And while to you and me it is a lesson to never allow a similar injustice to happen again, to them is a valid reason to justify it happening now.

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        May 23, 2015, 11:24 pm

        Hitler also was fond of bringing up what the Americans did to the natives. Too, at table talk when contemplating the Jewish Question, he’d scoff, “Hey, who remembers what was done to the Armenians?”

      • SQ Debris
        SQ Debris
        May 25, 2015, 12:36 pm

        Not so fast on absolving the USA regarding the Holocaust Boomer. The refusal of the USA to allow entry to Jews fleeing the Nazis is a matter of record. Ship loads were denied entry. It is truly shameful. I’ve never seen an authoritative source on the role of the American Jewish community in the formulation of that policy.

        As far as the shared Israeli/American value of liquidating indigenous peoples is concerned, if the genocide of native Americans was happening right now, what would a person of conscience do? Everything in their power to oppose it. That’s what.

    • hophmi
      hophmi
      May 23, 2015, 7:41 pm

      Sure, Italian ex-pat, whatever you need to believe. What’s the US-Saudi relationship about?

      • Citizen
        Citizen
        May 23, 2015, 11:25 pm

        @ hophmi

        Oil?

      • for-peace
        for-peace
        May 24, 2015, 11:29 am

        As you pointed out, it has nothing to do with money. It is all about “shared values”

  8. Blownaway
    Blownaway
    May 23, 2015, 5:24 pm

    Such hypocrisy just tiday they ruined a key platform non proliferation of Obama in favor of Israel and protecting their nukes. Who would listen to the U.S. Anymore. We have sold our entire credibility for Israel.

  9. Nevada Ned
    Nevada Ned
    May 23, 2015, 5:30 pm

    The connection between the US and Israel is that the US ruling class and Israeli ruling class both want the Arab world to be divided, backward, and weak. The US wants to stop Arab nationalism and nationalization of the oil. Israel wants to prevent the Palestinians from regaining their rights, their land and their society.
    So there really is a common interest, although it’s not the lofty thoughts expressed by Obama in his groveling to the Israel Lobby.

    It is certainly *not* the US feeling sorry for Jews because of the Holocaust.

    Want proof? If you look at the pattern of US aid to Israel, you find that it was quadrupled around 1973 in the wake of the 1973 war and the oil embargo. Aid has stayed about the same level since then. *

    Which US president quadrupled US aid to Israel? Nixon, who strongly disliked Jews (in general). The Nixon heirs fought (and lost) a battle to keep private the tape recordings of Nixon’s ranting against Jews.

    *It’s on the website of the US State Dept.

  10. Stephen Shenfield
    Stephen Shenfield
    May 23, 2015, 5:38 pm

    Doesn’t it violate the principle of separation between religion and state for a president to speak at a place of worship? Is it accepted practice in the US for a president to speak at a church? (Forgive my ignorance.)

    • David Doppler
      David Doppler
      May 24, 2015, 11:03 am

      No Stephen, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof,” reads the first line of the First Amendment and the Bill of Rights. It would violate the First Amendment in several respects to prohibit a politician or government official from speaking in a house of worship. Now if he set up a government office there, that would be a problem.

    • michelle
      michelle
      May 24, 2015, 2:53 pm

      .
      that is a question i was also trying to better understand
      in this matter all i have come up with is
      welcome to the mad hatters tea party
      .
      G-d Bless
      .

      • hophmi
        hophmi
        May 24, 2015, 3:13 pm

        No, it does not violate the church-state separation principle when a head of state visits a house of worship.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        May 25, 2015, 12:20 pm

        Admit it, Hophmi. The latest tonsorial fad among men with alopecia, shaving one’s head, was a real kick in the guts to Jewish conversion efforts. Who needs a yarmulke now?

  11. Xpat
    Xpat
    May 23, 2015, 6:03 pm

    “Not the easiest of partners” is Obama’s sanitized version of Netanyahu’s “Israel lives in a tough neighborhood.” He copied-and-pasted the rest: Holocaust, Yad vashem, Jewish values,

    In the wake of his nuclear disarmament kerfuffle with Israel, Obama needed a feel good moment with the Jewish community. This speech nailed it. Thank God for synagogues. If they didn’t exist, we’d have to invent them.

    • can of worms
      can of worms
      May 24, 2015, 7:03 am

      I take it more like this— “Palestinians have a right to be a free people on their land, as well. (Applause.) Now, I want to emphasize — that’s not easy. The Palestinians are not the easiest of partners. (Laughter.)”

      It’s plainly about averting the one state solution, as everyone in that Synagogue knows.

      O: “Palestinians have a right–” (that’s just the set up…)

      O: “Palestinians have a right to be a free people on THEIR land!” (That’s the baseline denial of democracy, an idea involving equal rights and belonging for all people.)

      Response: Applause.

      O: But wait. “Now, I want to emphasize — that’s not easy.” (ha, easy as eating apple pie; easy as flattering Zios; easy as the PA accepting even a powerless Bantustan “state”.)

      O: “The Palestinians are not the easiest of partners.” (Here’s the joke: Hurry up and choose the easy 2ss Bantustan now, the PAuthority are the easiest rape victims you’ll ever have. )

      Response: Laughter.

  12. Kris
    Kris
    May 23, 2015, 6:40 pm

    Obama: “The Palestinians are not the easiest of partners.” But it is Israel, the Jewish state, that wants to water down international law against killing large numbers of civilians. “Israel Seeks International Law Rewrite.” https://consortiumnews.com/2015/05/23/israel-seeks-international-law-rewrite/ From the article:

    “The fact that Israel is among those states, perhaps the main state, attempting to do away with the laws protecting us all from crimes against humanity should come as yet another shock. How can a state that loudly proclaims that its reason for being is the protection of all Jews, seek to undermine laws that were, in good part, promulgated in response to the brutal persecution of Jews?

    “Israel and its supporters are leading a charge to rewrite how international law defines crimes against humanity to create more leeway for military attacks that kill large numbers of civilians, a bitterly ironic development, says Lawrence Davidson.
    https://consortiumnews.com/2015/05/23/israel-seeks-international-law-rewrite/

    “Part of the answer to this question may have to do with the fact that Israel does not represent all Jews, but only those who adhere to the Zionist ideology – the ideology of the Israeli state – and it is with the well-being of these Jews that the state appears most concerned.

    “As for the alleged danger to all Jews (for instance, the resurgence of anti-Semitism), one suspects that Israel’s leaders use this as a pretense to pursue policies and practices relevant only to the State of Israel and its guiding ideology. And these policies and practices happen to consistently contravene the laws proscribing crimes against humanity.”

  13. Refaat
    Refaat
    May 23, 2015, 7:32 pm

    Thank you for describing Barack Obama’s disgraceful rant as “grotesque”. No other word conveys how abhorrent it was.

  14. JWalters
    JWalters
    May 23, 2015, 7:43 pm

    As many commenters have pointed out, Obama’s speech was not remotely a balanced picture of the conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians. But that, it seems to me, was not its purpose. When Netanyahu recently declared his opposition to a 2 state solution, Obama said the U.S. would review its Middle East policies in that context. In this speech he lays out the U.S. operating principles going forward.

    “As George Washington wrote to the Jews of Newport, Rhode Island: The United States ‘gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance.'”

    “And where other nations actively and legally might persecute or discriminate against those of different faiths, this nation (America) was called upon to see all of us as equal before the eyes of the law.”

    He characterizes the above as “values that we share”.

    “Around the world, those values compel us to redouble our efforts to protect our planet and to protect the human rights of all who share this planet.”

    He definitely sees the glaring contradictions between these goals and the behaviors if Israel. He makes these statements not to a Palestinian audience, who would surely appreciate them, but to a Jewish audience, many of whom will oppose them. He wraps the direction to come in a sincere statement of understanding the Jewish community’s fears, including a statement that he will not let them be destroyed. Hopefully this will win some support, or at least acceptance, when the change begins.

    This preparation is sensible because so much of the Jewish American community is still oblivious to the true nature of Israel. They do not even acknowledge the past and present injustices perpetrated by Israel, let alone the outright crimes, let alone the fact that Israel was the criminal project of a war-profiteering Jewish mafia from its beginning. (“War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror”)

    Abraham Lincoln tried for a political resolution of slavery’s injustices. In the end he found it necessary to bring the hammer down. Israel’s policies are equally unacceptable in a civilized world.

    • Atlantaiconoclast
      Atlantaiconoclast
      May 24, 2015, 1:50 pm

      Actually, Lincoln, at his inauguration, proposed keeping slavery forever legal in the South, as long as the South did not secede. Lincoln has been overrated. He did not attack the South to free slaves, but to “save” the union.

    • Boomer
      Boomer
      May 25, 2015, 1:23 pm

      JWalters, you say, among other things, that Obama was sensible to speak as he did because “. . . so much of the Jewish American community is still oblivious to the true nature of Israel. They do not even acknowledge the past and present injustices perpetrated by Israel, let alone the outright crimes . . . ”

      That may be true (I am surprised that such ignorance would be common among Jewish Americans, but then I’m surprised that so many people deny climate change), but–if it is true–I wonder if that is not all the more reason for the President to speak plainly to them, rather than seek to ingratiate himself by reinforcing their stereotypes and rationalizations regarding the Palestinians, who are the victims, not the perpetrators.

    • Donald
      Donald
      May 25, 2015, 4:11 pm

      You’ve made similar points before and you might be right, but in a way it is irrelevant what Obama’s private motives are. We should point out that what he actually said was unfair and if enough people point this out, it would provide cover for Obama or some other politician to be more truthful.

      • JWalters
        JWalters
        May 26, 2015, 5:42 pm

        I think it’s great for masses of people to holler about Israel’s clear and profound violations of the “shared values” Obama layed out. I think that’s why he stated them so bluntly. The violations are impossible to miss for any informed person. Netanyahu, for instance, would never have mentioned THOSE values.

  15. eGuard
    eGuard
    May 23, 2015, 7:44 pm

    Never trust someone who can not tell “Jew” and “Zionist” apart.

  16. eGuard
    eGuard
    May 23, 2015, 7:46 pm

    So he said a Palestinian child in Ramallah that feels trapped without opportunity.

    Not: … that IS trapped. What a brave man.

  17. Abdul-Rahman
    Abdul-Rahman
    May 23, 2015, 10:32 pm

    Seeing just how much Barack Obama has prostrated himself over these last few years to the Zionist lobby, corporations, the military-industrial complex, etc. is a lesson in what young activists, of true conviction, should never do or allow the system to do to them. Max Blumenthal just recently made a point on his Twitter page; who would have imagined Obama coming to this, juxtaposed with that well known picture of Obama at a community event back in the late ’90s sitting at the same table as Professor Rashid Khalidi and the late giant Edward Said.

    http://electronicintifada.net/content/how-barack-obama-learned-love-israel/6786

    • MRW
      MRW
      May 24, 2015, 7:40 am

      In other words, an opportunist.

    • Froggy
      Froggy
      May 24, 2015, 9:22 am

      Abdul – “… who would have imagined Obama coming to this….”

      Before Obama was elected a number of progressive Brits told me that Obama was another Tony Blair.

      They pegged him as a fake, and predicted that once he got elected he would be ready to jettison his base to support war, Wall Street, banking, money interests, and big business whenever doing so would be in his personal interest.

      We will see what he does after he is out of office. I very much doubt that he will go the way of Jimmy Carter.

      Obama not only threw Edward Said, Professor Rashid Khalidi and his minister and long-time mentor, Pastor Wright ‘under the bus’, but also everyone who voted for him. These people are not the rich, powerful friends he is looking for.

      It will be interesting to see how much money Obama accumulates, and where that money comes from, in the years after he leaves office.

      Of course I may be wrong… but I don’t think so.

      • eljay
        eljay
        May 25, 2015, 11:40 am

        || Abdul-Rahman: Max Blumenthal just recently made a point on his Twitter page; who would have imagined Obama coming to this … ||

        The Barry O. dream ended when, upon his election, he essentially absolved all of the previous administration’s war-mongers of their (war) crimes: ” … we need to look forward as opposed to looking backwards … ”

        The new boss was the same as the old boss.

  18. Accentitude
    Accentitude
    May 24, 2015, 3:09 am

    Obama could have amounted to something instead he became nothing. The only “change” he made was a few quarters and a couple of nickels jingling in his pocket.

  19. MHughes976
    MHughes976
    May 24, 2015, 4:36 am

    I guess – just a guess pending the evidence, memoirs and all that; well, I suppose they’ll not settle anything either – that Obama went through three stages. In the first he sympathised with the Palestinians rather as we do now.
    In the second, as he advanced in the political world, he met and became friendly with the main supporters of Zionism, many of them Jewish, and saw in them people of highly progressive mind and genuine humanity: I don’t say this with any kind of sneer. He determined that the way forward was to fix things up with these reasonable forces and he received many assurances that it would be done from people who mentioned Netanyahu’s name with a kind of fastidious shudder. Obama is the kind of person who believes above all in civilised dialogue and reasonable compromise. The problem is that no reasonable compromise has ever been found in the ME except for the 2ss which resists even approximately agreed definition.
    Then came the campaign against Hillary Clinton and the Jeremiah Wright issue, ie the issue of those who say plainly that no reasonable compromise is in sight and therefore use disturbing language. This was the moment of truth: sympathy for the Palestinians at the cost of disturbing words or reassuring words at the cost of distance from a cause he had long considered to be just? Obama manoeuvred brilliantly, left Clinton flat-footed, gained the world and lost his soul -the breach with Wright, the once-beloved pastor, being a kind of religious disillusion and mutation of worldview. At the time I thought he was being clever.
    However the fact that this latest speech is detested by the likes of us while seeming, I’m sure, perfectly sensible and all in a day’s statesmanlike work to the huge majority of people, just shows what a bunch of misfits and moral oddballs we still are, making visible progress only in universities, which aren’t normal places.

    • Donald
      Donald
      May 26, 2015, 12:23 am

      “However the fact that this latest speech is detested by the likes of us while seeming, I’m sure, perfectly sensible and all in a day’s statesmanlike work to the huge majority of people, just shows what a bunch of misfits and moral oddballs we still are, making visible progress only in universities, which aren’t normal places. ”

      Most people probably paid no attention to this speech at all. Anyone who did was a misfit no matter what position they took on it. Some probably thought it was moving–liberal Zionists, for instance, might have thought so, as they seem to be the targets. More Likudist types thought it was Obama trying to pull the wool over their eyes. Some might have thought it was smart politics and some might have thought it was pandering, and some might have thought it was both at the same time, because those sometimes go together.

      I could well understand those who think it was smart politics, pandering, and also disgusting, because that’s how I see it. I’m not sure about the smart politics, but it probably is. Obama is a successful politician and he probably knows his business, or has people advising him who know it.

  20. Elisabeth
    Elisabeth
    May 24, 2015, 6:11 am

    Did no-one, really no-one walk out at the ‘no easy partner’ comment?
    That is disgraceful!

  21. just
    just
    May 24, 2015, 10:17 am

    Here’s another “grotesque injustice”! Western hypocrisy at its very finest.

    …”Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, thanked the US secretary of state, John Kerry, for blocking an Egyptian-led drive on a possible Middle East nuclear arms ban at a United Nations conference, an Israeli official said on Saturday.

    It was a rare message of thanks from Netanyahu, who has repeatedly accused President Barack Obama of undermining Israel’s security by attempting to reach a nuclear deal with Iran.

    A month-long review conference on the 1970 nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) ended in failure on Friday, over disagreements on the issue of a Middle East atomic weapons ban. Washington blamed the failure on Egypt, which in turn blamed the US, British and Canadian delegations.

    Netanyahu spoke with Kerry “to convey his appreciation to President Obama and to the secretary”, a senior Israeli official said on condition of anonymity.

    “The United States kept its commitment to Israel by preventing a Middle East resolution that would single out Israel and ignore its security interests and the threats posed to it by an increasingly turbulent Middle East,” the official added.

    Israel also thanked Britain and Canada for joining the US in blocking consensus at the conference, the official said.”…

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/may/23/netanyahu-thanks-us-blocking-middle-east-nuclear-arms-ban

    Compare and contrast with:

    “Iran will allow UN nuclear inspectors to visit military sites, negotiator says”

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/may/24/iran-will-allow-un-nuclear-inspectors-visit-military-sites-negotiator-says

    • eljay
      eljay
      May 24, 2015, 11:03 am

      Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, thanked the US secretary of state, John Kerry, for blocking an Egyptian-led drive on a possible Middle East nuclear arms ban at a United Nations conference, an Israeli official said on Saturday.
      . . .
      Netanyahu spoke with Kerry “to convey his appreciation to President Obama and to the secretary”, a senior Israeli official said on condition of anonymity.

      “The United States kept its commitment to Israel by preventing a Middle East resolution that would single out Israel and ignore its security interests and the threats posed to it by an increasingly turbulent Middle East,” the official added.

      No nukes for any country but Israel: Zio-supremacists will no doubt express tremendous outrage at the fact that Israel is being singled out and treated differently from other countries in the region.

      • just
        just
        May 24, 2015, 3:10 pm

        Yeah, ’cause they’re the only ones who have them in the region, and they keep it ‘secret’~ no inspections, no NPT, no nothing. Yet Ya’alon threatens to nuke Iran, admits to war crimes and promises more! The world (the US) not only stays silent, but they also continue to endorse and facilitate their rogue behavior and status.

        http://mondoweiss.net/2015/05/ministers-nagasaki-hiroshima

        So is the sole purpose of Israel and the US’ affinity for it to serve as the base for nuclear weapons while the entire region is destabilized because of Western/ Isreali actions and threats?

        I really have a sick feeling about it all.

  22. a blah chick
    a blah chick
    May 24, 2015, 11:16 am

    Did anyone else see this opinion piece in the WAPO? It’s by David Bernstein (Volokh Conspiracy). And it’s not horrible.

    Concerning Obama’s nostalgia for Old Israel “To understand how this sounds to someone sensitive to the history of various historically disfavored groups in Israel, imagine a foreign leader had said “I came to know America based on images of Dwight Eisenhower, Harry Truman, the American Federation of Labor, the Daughters of the American Revolution…” Each of these individuals and groups had their virtues, but lots of us would think, “Geez, you’re nostalgic for an America dominated by White Protestants, and you aren’t even sensitive enough about the course of American history to recognize it, or assumedly you wouldn’t say it.”

    Yes, an African American president is pining for the days of old White Israel.

  23. just
    just
    May 25, 2015, 11:35 am

    Netanyahu’s latest appointment to his grotesque menagerie:

    “Dore Gold, new FM chief: Known critic of of 2-state solution and Iran deal

    Gold, a Columbia graduate who made aliyah in 1980, served as foreign policy adviser during Netanyahu’s first term, then as UN ambassador.”

    http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/1.658012?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    yech.

  24. John Salisbury
    John Salisbury
    May 25, 2015, 8:55 pm

    A grotesque injustice it is. Unfathomable too.

  25. michelle
    michelle
    May 25, 2015, 9:10 pm

    .
    one wonders would the laughter have stopped if the POTUS
    had replaced the word Palestinian with the word Black in
    his speech
    from the state of the world one doubts if the POTUS would
    take issue with the word change
    .
    he may be chipping at the issue but the clock is ticking and his
    time for transparent hope and change is almost up
    .
    G-d Bless
    .

  26. Hostage
    Hostage
    May 26, 2015, 10:01 am

    But he does mention Sderot.

    As many of you know, I’ve visited the houses hit by rocket fire in Sderot.

    Maybe he should build them a floating island somewhere off shore in the Med?
    See for example: Could Artificial Island Solve Gaza Problem?
    Minister proposes giving Gaza a port, airport – without compromising on Israel’s security.
    http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/183222#.VWR747y37tQ

    All that a visit to Sderot really proves is that those houses are still standing, unlike the ones in Gaza, and that it’s the one place in that entire region where the IDF takes the time to make sure it doesn’t kill civilian bystanders. Even Obama’s security detail knows that he’ll be relatively safe there (from IDF attacks).

    • just
      just
      May 26, 2015, 11:34 am

      +1, Hostage!

      • Bornajoo
        Bornajoo
        May 26, 2015, 11:36 am

        Ditto! +another 1 Hostage

    • Brewer
      Brewer
      May 27, 2015, 3:38 pm

      “But he does mention Sderot.”

      Sderot was settled by Jews in 1951. According to Walid Khalidi in All That Remains, it along with the settlement of Or ha-Ner, founded in 1957, were established on the village lands of Najd, which means “elevated plain” in Arabic.*

      Najd’s Palestinian villagers, approximately 620 in 1945, were expelled on 13 May 1948, before Israel was declared a state and before any Arab armies entered Palestine. According to UN Resolution 194 and also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 13, Section 2, the villagers of Najd have a right to return home to their personal property and to their native village.

      http://www.ifamericansknew.org/history/sderot.html
      I often use this example to introduce neophytes to the conflict and to explain rockets. “Imagine being driven from your home at gunpoint and confined in the concentration camp called Gaza, where, from behind a barbed wire fence you can almost see your former home. For sixty years you watch the invaders build their homes on your land while no-one hears your protest. Who would not fire a rocket?”

      The audacity of Hope?

      Our Mania for Hope Is a Curse

  27. mumblenny
    mumblenny
    May 26, 2015, 1:41 pm

    Making more mockery of democracy…

  28. May 29, 2015, 2:41 pm

    Obama is a huge disappointment to me. Like a pimp for Israel with a feather in his hat. The fact that he could say these things to a group of affluent Jews shows that he is not a good person. What he said was indeed grotesque. There is not a better word to describe it. It is far beyond inappropriate.

  29. Citizen
    Citizen
    June 1, 2015, 12:47 pm

    Ebony article rips to shreds Obama’s equation of Israel’s history with the US Civil Rights Movement: http://www.ebony.com/news-views/a-direct-line-between-love-and-hate-or-no-mr-president-theres-no-comparing-israe#ixzz3bpJyo7X3

    • oldgeezer
      oldgeezer
      June 1, 2015, 1:59 pm

      What a powerful commentary. Thanks!

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 2, 2015, 11:33 am

        Does Obama think what he says in a Temple is a secret between him and the people attending the service? Or only available to “the Jewish community”? Or is he just that condescending, and have that low an opinion of American Jews, that he would expect them to swallow the pandering, and like it?

      • Froggy
        Froggy
        June 2, 2015, 2:15 pm

        Mooser :

        Most Americans have low absorption, and a short attention span. The mention of Obama making a speech in some synagogue is when Richard Average gets up to get a beer, and his wife Jane Average yells at the kids to pick up their toys. They don’t see what happens in Israel as being relevant to their lives.

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