Showing newest posts with label J Street. Show older posts
Showing newest posts with label J Street. Show older posts

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Why the Obama Cairo speech was bad for Israel, the Jews and Western Civilization in general

Following up on our discussion on J Street and the problems they cause for the real pro-Israel (read: ZIONIST) movement we come now to the speech that inspired all this.

On June 4th, President Obama gave a speech to the greater Islamic world. At the time, I had intended to do a breakdown of Obama's speech but never got around to it. Luckily, thanks to J Street I have finally been suitably inspired. And I'm not alone. Many prominent Jewish organizations, leaders and commentators have criticized this speech as being damaging to public perceptions of Israel and may even go so far as giving terrorists a pretext for committing their atrocities.

But not according to J Street's "Obama Smear Busters" campaign. According to Smear Busters:

Latest Smear:
Obama threw Israel under the bus in Cairo speech? Nope. A nasty smear claims President’s Cairo speech was the “end of the America’s strategic alliance with Israel” or worse. That’s nuts – did they even watch his remarks?


Yes. We did watch his remarks. And read them. Or at least I did. And nuts is right. Smear Busters continues:

As a senior Obama Administration officials said about the speech, “The President went before a Cairo audience in a speech co-sponsored by Al-Azhar with Muslim Brotherhood members in the audience and spoke of America’s strong, unshakable support for Israel. He could have gone to a million different venues to say this, but he went to Cairo, and it wasn’t exactly an applause line.”

Wow, an unnamed Obama Administration official liked what Obama had to say. What a tremendously authentic, non-partisan authority on Zionism! But enough of the stupidity, because as Smear Busters itself tells us:

...don’t just take this advisor’s word for it. Read the speech transcript below – or watch the video (also below) and make your own conclusions:

Indeed we will.

For starters, Smear busters doesn't even give us the entire speech on their site...click here to read the whole thing.

For seconders even the parts they quote has several issues. The following is a selection of the more unsettling statements and some rebuttals for them:

Obama statement:

and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history that cannot be denied."
Rebuttal: The aspiration for a Jewish homeland is NOT "rooted in a tragic history" - it's rooted in the right for self-determination. We don't deserve Israel because the world feels guilty or bad for us, we want Israel because it is historically our homeland and it is our RIGHT to have one. Obama's statement plays into the "it's to make up for the Holocaust so go get your land from Germany" argument that Israel haters always like to throw around. That this is BOLDED by the J Street writer shows that he/she either has no understanding of the situation or is also on Team Hamas. Strike 1.

Obama statement:

On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people -- Muslims and Christians -- have suffered in pursuit of a homeland.
Rebuttal: Holocaust on the one hand, Palestinian suffering "on the other hand". I see, 6 million dead in 5 years, 99.9999% of which are innocent civilians brutally massacred just for being alive VS maybe 6,000 dead over 22 years, half of which are terrorists or their collaborators and 70% of which approve of the terrorists and were tragically caught in the crossfire of a war that their side instigated. Right. Totally the same thing. Great linkage there Mr. President. Strike 2.

Just for fun by the way, check out where the overall Arab-Israeli conflict ranks on the list of conflicts since 1950 with over 10,000 fatalities. I'll give you a hint - if it was the Billboard Top 40 list you'd never hear it on the radio. That's Gwar territory.

Obama statement:

Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead. They endure the daily humiliations -- large and small -- that come with occupation.
Rebuttal: Why are they in refugee camps exactly? It's been several decades and billions of dollars in aid already. Shouldn't the Palestinians have built up some infrastructure during that time, using that money? Or maybe...you know...a few permanent houses? Why hasn't Hamas, Fatah, Jordan (which administered the West Bank for almost 20 years in an ACTUALLY apartheid occupation), or Egypt (which administered GAZA for almost 20 years) done anything to build anything other than rockets, bombs and terrorist summer camps for children? Why keep the Palestinians in refugee camps? It's pretty clear why...if they're in refugee camps they're angry. If they're angry they fight the "Zionist occupation". If they fight the "occupation" they're too busy to realize how badly their leadership is screwing them on a daily basis. Which keeps the leadership in power.

And why is there an occupation anyway? Is it a land grab? Is Israel just keeping the Palestinians down for the sake of keeping them down? Or is it because every Palestinian that crosses into Israel is a potential exploded bus or restaurant or mall or school. To be very clear, not all Arabs who cross into Israel-proper are terrorists. The vast majority of them want to work in Israel's economy and bring Israeli money back to their families.

However, nearly every attack in Israel has originated in the West or Gaza. If the Palestinians did a better job of reining in the murderers, there would be no need for checkpoints or "humiliations" of any kind. When there is quiet, restrictions are relaxed. When there is violence, the military does what it needs to break it up and prevent it from affecting innocents. To suggest otherwise only feeds into the enemy's propaganda. Thanks Mr. President! STRIKE THREE.

Obama statement:

And America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own.
Rebuttal: Who doesn't give them dignity? Israel? Check the standard of living for Arabs living in Israel VS say... Arabs living in Egypt. You know where Palestinians have the least amount of dignity and opportunity? In Gaza, which is also the only place on Earth where they happen to have a de facto state of their own. And Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Iraq and the rest of the Arab states are in a 22-way-tie for 2nd-worst conditions. Strike 4.

Obama statement:

For decades then, there has been a stalemate: two peoples with legitimate aspirations
Wrong again. There have been numerous opportunities for the Palestinians to achieve their national aspirations and they have declared war at every opportunity. Israelis have legitimate aspirations for peace and security. Palestinians in large part and especially their leadership, have aspirations to destroy Israel. Is that legitimate? I think not...what say you Smear Busters? J Street? Mr. Obama? Jimmy Carter? Anyone? Anyone?



Bueller? Bueller?

Strike 5.

Obama statement:

each with a painful history that makes compromise elusive.
Rebuttal: There's that ridiculous equivalency again. Holocaust = Palestinian rejectionism? Again, I think not. Remember, no one asked the Jews if they WANTED to be brutalized by the Nazis or any of the other groups that have tried to put an end to our way of life over the centuries. Palestinians have been asked SEVERAL times if they want a state or prefer violence and destruction. They have chosen war every time. Strike 6.

Obama statement:

It's easy to point fingers -- for Palestinians to point to the displacement brought about by Israel's founding, and for Israelis to point to the constant hostility and attacks throughout its history from within its borders as well as beyond.
Rebuttal: Whoops! There's that false moral equivalency again. Displacement? How come there are more Arabs living in Israel today than in 1948? Compare that to the number of Jews in Arab countries today VS the 40's and I'll school you a bit about the term "displacement", sir. Strike 7.

Obama statement:

But if we see this conflict only from one side or the other, then we will be blind to the truth...
...that this is a terrible speech.

Obama statement:

For centuries, black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was a peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at
the center of America's founding.
Rebuttal: This is possibly the most egregious and insulting error of all. Drawing a comparison between the non-violent struggle of Blacks in America to the ultra-violent rocket attacks, bus bombings, pizzeria explosions, hotel massacres and all-out war of the Palestinians is absurd. Comparing the ACTUAL enslavement of Africans...their kidnappings and forced transportation to be beaten on the plantations of Virginia...to the reality of Palestinian life in Israel is embarrassingly false, only serves to cheapen the narrative of Black history in America and pushes the view that Israel is some kind of "apartheid" society for Palestinians. Which again, is not true and only feeds into their propaganda. Palestinians are not slaves. PERIOD. They have no non-violent Martin Luther King and their struggle is EXTREMELY violent. PERIOD. Strike EIGHT!

Obama statement:

At the same time, Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel's right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine's.
Rebuttal: This too is a false equivalence. Regardless of whether or not the Palestinians should have their own country (they should)...comparing a theoretical independent Palestine to the established state of Israel (which had a tradition of independence for a thousand years before it was destroyed once and for all by the Romans...who then renamed it as the province of Palestine as a final insult to the conquered Jews and to prevent a re-emergence of rebellion) removes legitimacy from Israel much more than it grants it to "Palestine". I will say this emphatically, there has never been an independent state of Palestine ever. EVER. There is no equivalency. Acting as if there is, is something Israel's enemies do in their propaganda. It is NOT something our alleged BFF should be doing. MAJOR strike 9.

Obama statement:

The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. (MASSIVE APPLAUSE from the crowd)
Rebuttal: Which settlements precisely are you referring to Mr. President? Are you talking about those guys who squat in trailers in outposts that are frequently vacated by the Israeli military? Or are you talking about Ariel? Gilo? The Old City? Tel Aviv? WHICH SETTLEMENTS. Furthermore, we have already established that the presence of Israeli settlers are NOT the cause of Middle Eastern strife, as violence existed there long before any "occupation" of the West Bank or Gaza. Strike 10.

Obama statement:

This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace. It is time for these settlements to stop (APPLAUSE APPLAUSE APPLAUSE APPLAUSE).
Disgusting. Strike 11.

Obama statement:

And Israel must also live up to its obligation to ensure that Palestinians can live and work and develop their society. Just as it devastates Palestinian families, the continuing humanitarian crisis in Gaza does not serve Israel's security; neither does the continuing lack of opportunity in the West Bank. Progress in the daily lives of the Palestinian people must be a critical part of a road to peace, and Israel must take concrete steps to enable such progress.
Rebuttal: WHAT!?!?!?!?! Did he get this right out of the Hamas "how to brainwash ignorant Americans without really trying" handbook? Does Obama even know what the biggest source of money for Palestinians is? Money that they feed their families with! Money that ironically, they also use to build rockets and suicide bombs. Is he serious? Because if he really doesn't know who provides Palestinians with more assistance and economic opportunity than ANYONE including the Arab states, I'll give you a clue...it starts with "Is" and almost ends with "real". Too bad this speech was real.

And in other news, the West Bank economy is booming! Mahmoud Abbas says he has a "good reality" and that his people are "living a normal life". How terrible! Please note that the statements from Abbas came out almost a full WEEK before the Cairo speech. This is an astonishing willful ignorance of the facts my friends. Strikes 12, 13 and 14 ALL ROLLED INTO ONE!

Obama statement:

The Arab-Israeli conflict should no longer be used to distract the people of Arab nations from other problems.
Rebuttal: So this is what we get in return?! Palestinians get a nice chunk of prime real estate and we get.................the opportunity to not be used as propaganda tools? Shouldn't this be a basic expectation for all civilized countries and UN members? Enough already! This is absurd! If Obama could pick up this many strikes in bowling he'd be the national champion! And I haven't even touched the Iran stuff yet!

The argument I always get from pro-Obama Jews (like J Street) is that they're citizens of America, not Israel and it's not the president's job to defend a foreign country like Israel. The world expects impartiality, so that's what they should get. Right? Well, that's really great and everything if this issue was only limited to Israel. While al Qaeda and other worldwide terrorist organizations do not take their orders from Hamas, Hizballah, Fatah and all the other organizations who want to turn me into a shish kabob...they are necessarily linked together by their common ideology.

Their war isn't against Israel, it is against all of Western Civilization. Israel is just their most immediate target...and as we have learned from history, totalitarian dictatorships are never satisfied with their first target. A shark is never satisfied with its first meal. And you can keep feeding it and feeding it - until you run out of food...and then guess what?



YOU become the food.

To hell with this speech and to hell with anyone who tries to defend it. This was a stab in the eye for all of us and to try to tell me that it was anything but that, is a massive insult to my intelligence. You got that, "Smear Busters" ? You get it J Street? You got that Jimmy Carter? And no, it's not racist to point this out by the way - you naive clown.

That a group of supposed pro-Israel lobbyists defend it speaks volumes about their organization. That the president is pushing them as a legitimate voice for Israel says even more.

Now go stick that in your smear pipe and smoke it.




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Monday, September 14, 2009

J Dead End Street

אם אין אני לי מי לי

If I am not for myself, who will be for me? Ethics of the Fathers, 1:14

____________________________________________________

In weeks leading up to the 8th anniversary of 9/11, I had the misfortune of coming across J Street's absurdly titled Obama Smear Busters campaign. Specifically, a friend of mine forwarded to me their impassioned defense of his speech in Cairo...any criticism of which is regarded by them as a "smear". Of course this is ridiculous because his speech itself was more a smear of Israel than any criticism of it. But more on that later. First, a short background of who "J Street" is.

From J Street's website:

J Street was founded to promote meaningful American leadership to end the Arab-Israeli and Israeli-Palestinian conflicts peacefully and diplomatically. We support a new direction for American policy in the Middle East and a broad public and policy debate about the U.S. role in the region.

Awesome...hope and change for the Middle East. This is gonna be great!

J Street supports diplomatic solutions over military ones, including in Iran; multilateral over unilateral approaches to conflict resolution; and dialogue over confrontation with a wide range of countries and actors when conflicts do arise.

And of course we all know that negotiating with totalitarian dictatorships never fails...



But hey, if it worked at Model UN club it HAS to work in real life! Right?

J Street brings together Americans who seek a new direction for American policy in the Middle East and broader public and policy debate in the U.S. about ways to achieve lasting peace in the Middle East.

So these are American Jews, trying to dictate to Israeli Jews how to run their country. Excellent.

A negotiated end to the Israeli-Arab and Israeli-Palestinian conflicts serves both U.S. and Israeli strategic and security interests. Achieving it must be a priority for the current U.S. administration;

Why does the solution have to "serve" US interests? And what if it doesn't? What if Israel, a sovereign nation finds a solution that serves its own interests? Should Israel be concerned with whether or not building a border fence between Texas and Mexico serves its strategic interests? It's not ACTUALLY the 51st state you know.

What to do about Iran’s nuclear program and support for terror against Israel and elsewhere in the region remains one of the most hotly-debated foreign policy issues of our time

Really? Is it as "hotly-debated" as Kanye West crashing the stage at the MTV Video Music Awards?? Ridiculous!




Way to reduce the gravest threat to the Jewish people in decades to buzz-words normally used when discussing the latest absurd celebrity scandal.

This however, is where things stop being polite...and start gettin' real.

The future Palestinian state will require unprecedented levels of international economic and political support to succeed, including a resolution of the refugee issue within the new Palestinian state and in current host countries

Excuse me? What do you mean by "resolution" of the Palestinian refugee issue?

A comprehensive regional peace that builds on the Arab Initiative

Oh I see. The same initiative that heavily favors a Palestinian right of return that would effectively end the Jewish State. Great pro-Israel advocacy there guys! Really stellar! By the way, any word on the JEWISH refugees that were ACTUALLY thrown out of Arab countries in 1948? Oh no, of course not - because they don't count for anything, do they J Street?

Israel's settlements in the occupied territories have, for over forty years, been an obstacle to peace. They have drained Israel's economy, military, and democracy and eroded the country's ability to uphold the rule of law.

Well this just isn't true. And it's disgraceful to feed the other side's propaganda machines with this kind of misinformation. Keep in mind that they're not even talking about illegal settlement outposts, they're talking about ALL settlements. ALL of them are an impediment.

The arrangements that have been made for the benefit of settlers and for security – checkpoints, settler-only roads, the route of the security barrier* – have all made daily life more difficult for Palestinians, deepening hostility and increasing the odds of violence and conflict.

NO. This is INCORRECT. Checkpoints and security fences are not "for the benefit of the settlers" they're for the security of innocent Israeli civilians. And the "settler-only roads" are not for the "benefit of the settlers" it's to KEEP THEM ALIVE after the numerous Arab shooting attacks on them over the years. They're also to protect Palestinians from Israeli military operations that defend these innocent civilians from their unprovoked attacks. As always, Israeli policies are designed to protect Israeli civilians (be they Jewish OR Muslim) while minimizing Palestinian casualties. Anything suggesting otherwise is a FALSE STATEMENT that feeds the terrorists' propaganda narrative.

In advance of negotiations, all sides should refrain from unilateral actions – including new construction of Jewish housing in the eastern part of the city, evictions, and demolitions – that will make the ultimate resolution of this issue even more difficult.

Why only Jewish housing in the eastern part of the city? What about Arab housing in the western part of the city? Why does East Jerusalem need to be Judenrein, but West Jerusalem can be crawling with Palestinians? Do the Arabs do anything wrong at all? Or is it all just a Jew-bashing-fest here?

American elected officials should respect the decisions of the parties on this issue and refrain from steps, rhetorical or practical, that inflame an already tense situation – for instance, moving the American Embassy to Jerusalem.

Unbelievable. They're against moving the American embassy to the capital. What other country is expected to accept this kind of treatment from its closest allies? Imagine we demanded that Britain move their only embassy from Washington to New York City? Ridiculous! What other country would be expected to operate under these conditions? And these are the people that purport to represent the pro-Israel camp? This is disgusting.

At least there's no partisan agenda here, though. There's certainly no ulterior motive to all this because as their site says on the bottom:

J Street and the Jewish Alliance for Change are 501(c)(4) organizations that primarily focus on nonpartisan education and advocacy on important national issues.

Oh thank God! I was worried for a minute there that there might be an agenda here beyond just a terrible excuse for Israel advocacy.

More from J Street:

J Street in general is supportive of President Obama’s effort to engage Iran diplomatically.

Barack Obama is most likely the last American President who will have the opportunity to lead the way toward a two-state solution

Providing President Obama with support as he pursues the two-state solution will be J Street’s number one priority in 2009 and 2010.

J Street supports President Obama’s call for an immediate and total freeze of settlement construction.


WOW! How incredibly unpartisan! Incredible! Suddenly it all becomes clear. These guys are part of the Obama "here's-a-bunch-of-sellout-Jews-who-support-me-so-you-don't-have-to-feel-guilty-that-I-conned-you-into-voting-for-me-and-will-ensure-you-vote-for-me-again-in-2012" strategy that you're all falling for again. Which is why he surprisingly invited their (for the most part previously unknown) representatives to a meeting in which the "mainstream" pro-Israel groups...

...told Obama that “public disharmony between Israel and the U.S. is beneficial to neither” and that differences “should be dealt with directly by the parties.” The president, according to Hoenlein, leaned back in his chair and said: “I disagree. We had eight years of no daylight” — between George W. Bush and successive Israeli governments — “and no progress.”

So clearly there is some distance between Mr. Obama and the representatives of the pro-Israel lobby that have successfully generated support for Israel over several decades. Indeed, as we told you, "change" for America and America's foreign policy also meant a change in Israel's standing with the president. Enter J Street, a perfect alternative to the "politics of the past" that have produced the close bond between Israel and the United States. Bonds by the way, that are based on mutually beneficial conditions. Nevermind the fact that as we established, J Street isn't actually concerned with improving Israel's situation.

All the Israel stuff is just a front. And for what?



Report a smear, huh? I guess the "report-a-dissident" email campaign is still alive and well. It's all very disturbing...and even more disturbing that a supposed pro-Israel group has attached itself so strongly to a political party and president. It's as if they're saying "whatever Obama says, is the right thing to do" - historically this attitude has brought nothing but disaster for the Jewish people. While it is absolutely imperative for Israel and the United States to continue their mutually beneficial alliance, acting as if Israel is subservient to the United States is a major violation of sovereignty. And the key word here is "mutually beneficial" - America's actions have not always been beneficial to Israeli interests and vice versa. Both nations must continue to pursue their own often (but not always) overlapping goals.

The whole point of founding a Jewish state was the notion that no one can look out for me the way I can and will. If I am not for myself, who will be? Forcing Jerusalem to take orders from Washington is a major violation of this principle and is a surefire path to the bad old days when Jews were enslaved by their host countries' mood of the day. And we all know, more often than not, how wonderfully that has turned out for us.

Like other ignorant or even outright anti-Israel Jews, J Street most absolutely does NOT speak for me. At best they are a distraction from reality - at worst (and in all likelihood) they are actually counterproductive to the cause they purport to advance. These guys are a very poor excuse for pro-Israel advocacy and frankly embarrass the real Zionists with every factual error they publish and every pathetic capitulation they support.

J Street most certainly is NOT the "political voice of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement". To qualify for that honor you must actually be PRO-Israel. Nor is J Street the "new address for Middle East peace and security". Again, to qualify for that you must ACTUALLY be PRO-SECURITY. After all, peace without security, is not peace.

Next time, we'll look at the actual Obama speech that J Street so vigorously defends and why it was bad for Israel, the Jews and the civilized world in general.




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