This week the mob formed again, instantly, after the Gaza flotilla disaster, reinforced this time by the leadership of Turkey, whose language at the UN was more vicious than that used by the Arabs. As usual there was really only one question once the mob began to gather. It is the question that arose repeatedly in the Bush years—when the Hamas leaders Sheik Yassin and Abdel Aziz Rantisi were killed by Israel, when Israel acted in Gaza, when Israel put down the intifada in the West Bank, and during the 2006 war in Lebanon and the late 2008 fighting in Gaza: would Israel stand alone, or would the United States stand with her and prevent the lynching? Would the U.S., in Daniel Patrick Moynihan's memorable phrase, "join the jackals?"The result is that Israel is standing alone without the strong support from the United States that all previous presidents had provided.
This week the Obama administration answered the question: Yes we would, and Israel would stand alone. It is simple to block the kind of attack issued as a “President’s Statement” on behalf of the Council, for such a statement requires unanimity. The United States can just say “No,” and make it clear that orders have come from the White House and will not be changed. Then negotiations begin on a serious statement—or, there can be no statement at all. The killing of dozens of South Korean sailors by North Korea in an action that truly threatens the peace did not evoke the kind of action the Security Council took against Israel, proving that the UN does not always act, or act in the same way, when news flashes hit. Whether Israel is slammed depends on whether the United States is willing to take a stand.
On the Gaza flotilla, the Obama administration waffled and straddled. It agreed to a statement in which the United Nations condemned the “acts” that led to loss of life but did not say “We condemn Israel.” Presumably White House congratulated itself on this elision, but no one is fooled: the world media keep repeating that the Security Council condemned Israel, and in this case it is hard to argue. Yet it would have been simple to stop the mob had the White House wanted to.
Israelis see clearly the problems they face when the United States is calling for another international investigation and will not defend Israel. They understand that no one is going to investigate Turkey and its role, nor investigate the pro-terror groups on board those ships—not if the United States fails to insist on it. They realize that, thanks to the Obama policies, it is now open season on Israel in Europe and at the UN. They speak candidly (Israelis of the left, center, and right, not just Likud supporters) in private about all these problems, but they cannot speak openly about them, not when they may have the Obama administration to deal with for six and a half more years. They wonder most about whether their friends see their predicament, and will speak up for them even when they must—to retain a working relationship with the White House—remain silent or speak very carefully. So this crisis is not only a test for Israel, which faces difficult weeks ahead, and for the Obama administration, which in fact has already failed. It is a test for Israel’s supporters, facing the combined onslaught of the news media (from BBC coverage to New York Times editorials), scores of governments, UN bureaucrats, and a White House that views excessive solidarity with Israel as a diplomatic inconvenience. The United States abandoned Israel in the United Nations and in the NPT Conference in the course of one week. Israel’s friends in the United States should say so, say it was shameful, and gear up for a long fight.And now Barney Frank is piling on saying that, "as a Jew," he is "ashamed" of how Israel treats a minority.
Remind me again why Jews vote overwhelmingly for this party? Oh, yes. They prefer the liberal policies and don't really care that much about Israel's continued existence. Perhaps, they, like Barney Frank, are "ashamed."