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Friday, June 04, 2010

Obama willing to let Iran arm Gaza

Allahpundit links to this NYT story that the Obama administration wants Israel to end its blockade of Gaza.
The Obama administration considers Israel’s blockade of Gaza to be untenable and plans to press for another approach to ensure Israel’s security while allowing more supplies into the impoverished Palestinian area, senior American officials said Wednesday.

The officials say that Israel’s deadly attack on a flotilla trying to break the siege and the resulting international condemnation create a new opportunity to push for increased engagement with the Palestinian Authority and a less harsh policy toward Gaza.

“There is no question that we need a new approach to Gaza,” said one official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the policy shift is still in the early stages. He was reflecting a broadly held view in the upper reaches of the administration.

Israel would insist that any approach take into account three factors: Israel’s security; the need to prevent any benefit to Hamas, the Islamist rulers of Gaza; and the four-year-old captivity of an Israeli soldier held by Hamas, Staff Sgt. Gilad Shalit.

Since the botched raid that killed nine activists on Monday, the Israeli government has said that the blockade was necessary to protect Israel against the infiltration into Gaza of weapons and fighters sponsored by Iran.

If there were no blockade in place, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Israeli television on Wednesday evening, it would mean “an Iranian port in Gaza.” He added, “Israel will continue to maintain its right to defend itself.”
And now that is what Obama wants to pressure Israel to do - allow "an Iranian port in Gaza."
“Gaza has become the symbol in the Arab world of the Israeli treatment of Palestinians, and we have to change that,” the senior American official said. “We need to remove the impulse for the flotillas. The Israelis also realize this is not sustainable.”
Oh, please. Don't these guys realize that the Arab world doesn't need a symbol - they've been attacking Israel since 1948 long before there was a Gaza strip. Remember, Israel left Gaza so that they could rule themselves. That is what the foreign governments pressured Israel to do because that would, presumably, give the Palestinians in Gaza an opportunity to move on from their attacks on Israel. But of course those attacks continued. What do they think would happen if Israel abandoned the blockade? Iran would be shipping loads of arms into Gaza so they could continue their attacks on Israel. The Palestinians wouldn't suddenly wake up and smack themselves to say that since Israel abandoned the blockade they now have abandoned any desire to send rockets into Israel. How naive are these senior American officials?

As Charles Krauthammer writes today, the blockade is totally legal.
The world is outraged at Israel's blockade of Gaza. Turkey denounces its illegality, inhumanity, barbarity, etc. The usual U.N. suspects, Third World and European, join in. The Obama administration dithers.

But as Leslie Gelb, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, writes, the blockade is not just perfectly rational, it is perfectly legal. Gaza under Hamas is a self-declared enemy of Israel -- a declaration backed up by more than 4,000 rockets fired at Israeli civilian territory. Yet having pledged itself to unceasing belligerency, Hamas claims victimhood when Israel imposes a blockade to prevent Hamas from arming itself with still more rockets.

In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded ("quarantined") Cuba. Arms-bearing Russian ships headed to Cuba turned back because the Soviets knew that the U.S. Navy would either board them or sink them. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.

Oh, but weren't the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel's offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza -- as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.

Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel's inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.

Israel has already twice intercepted ships laden with Iranian arms destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?

But even more important, why did Israel even have to resort to blockade? Because, blockade is Israel's fallback as the world systematically de-legitimizes its traditional ways of defending itself -- forward and active defense.
Krauthammer goes on to explain how the world has denied Israel any method of defending itself. It doesn't matter what Israel does, any action they take will be attacked as disproportionate and contributing to the "cycle of violence." And why is that? We know why.
But, if none of these is permissible, what's left?

Ah, but that's the point. It's the point understood by the blockade-busting flotilla of useful idiots and terror sympathizers, by the Turkish front organization that funded it, by the automatic anti-Israel Third World chorus at the United Nations, and by the supine Europeans who've had quite enough of the Jewish problem.

What's left? Nothing. The whole point of this relentless international campaign is to deprive Israel of any legitimate form of self-defense. Why, just last week, the Obama administration joined the jackals, and reversed four decades of U.S. practice, by signing onto a consensus document that singles out Israel's possession of nuclear weapons -- thus de-legitimizing Israel's very last line of defense: deterrence.

The world is tired of these troublesome Jews, 6 million -- that number again -- hard by the Mediterranean, refusing every invitation to national suicide. For which they are relentlessly demonized, ghettoized and constrained from defending themselves, even as the more committed anti-Zionists -- Iranian in particular -- openly prepare a more final solution.
And now the Obama administration is joining up with those who would like this whole problem to disappear - even if that means the destruction of Israel.

Meanwhile, Danielle Pletka has a good question that may give Americans pause before they jump on the flotillas-to-Gaza bandwagon.
On Tuesday, I posted a short piece over at the American Enterprise Institute's blog asking what we would do if a flotilla made its way toward Guantanamo to deliver aid and comfort to the victims of American aggression, illegal detention or some such. And if that flotilla ignored warnings to turn away and refused to allow U.S. security to board peacefully to examine the contents. And if, once boarded, those on the boats attacked our servicemen. It hasn't happened -- yet. But why not?

After all, the flotilla wasn't really about the Palestinians. If it were, then why not float a shipment to the refugee camps in Lebanon? And it's not really about rights. If it were, then why not protest Hamas' treatment of girls in U.N. Relief and Works Agency camps? The spokeswoman for the flotilla made clear that the mission was more about Israel than it was about actually helping anyone; indeed, the flotilla refused to dock for inspection and transportation of goods to Gaza (maybe they were worried someone would think bulletproof vests and night-vision goggles were not educational). It's not even about getting food and medicine to the Palestinians, something Israel facilitates already.

There's no need to detail the reactions to this incident -- nor note the glee with which such champions of human dignity as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Daniel Ortega and the U.N. Human Rights Council have responded -- because others have done that job. The Obama administration is getting some credit in some quarters for not jumping on board the anti-Israeli bandwagon. But it deserves little. It is precisely the administration's harping on Israel from nearly day one that has given credence and legitimacy to these over-the-top criticisms.
Or ask Turkey how they would feel if so-called "humanitarians" wanted to funnel arms disguised as aid to Kurds in areas in Turkey. I don't think they would be so blithe about those humanitarian provacateurs, would they?


Anton said...

Question: If Israel is always hell-bent on murder, massacres, and genocide, why is it so bad at it?

tfhr said...


There are just some things that Turks will always do better. (Ask an Armenian)

So Cal Jim said...

I have no sympathy whatsoever for the denizens of Gaza. They voted for Hamas with full knowledge and understanding that Hamas was dedicated to the destruction of Israel. They are reaping what they sowed.

If the people of Gaza really wanted to help themselves they would boot Hamas from power, renounce all conflict with Israel, and establish a low tax, strong property rights, free market economy. Within 20 years Gaza would be the Hong Kong of the Middle East. Well, that is unless one of their Arab/Muslim brother states didn't crush them first.

tfhr said...

So Cal Jim,

Iran supports Hamas as well as Hezbollah. Do you remember what Lebanon was like before Hezbollah took hold? Before Syria rolled in and took over? Gaza could have been something like that but I'm afraid that could never happen now.

So Cal Jim said...


Too true, sadly. The Muslim world has always been motivated by hate and envy and has always been led by rulers who deliberately foster ignorant and easily manipulated populations. Their religion is the antithesis to Christianity.

Politically correct, multiculturalist Westerners insist that Islam is a "religion of peace." They advertise their foolish ignorance by doing things like sporting the ubiquitous "Coexist" bumper stickers on their cars. Of course, the actual practitioners of Islam don't operate under such delusions. Muslims are perfectly a ease with death and slaughter as long as they're doing it to someone else. It doesn't even matter if they're killing fellow Muslims. As long as it's the OTHER guy and his family that gets wiped out, murder is no big deal. Who can deny that in the Islamic world it's standard operating procedure to blow up rival sects' mosques and market places? How many times have we learned of girls schools being destroyed and women being brutally slain in the name of their god? Who can deny that the entire Muslim world celebrated the 9/11 attacks? They even celebrated openly right here in the USA! "Religion of peace?" What kind of sick joke is that?

So yes, tfhr, Gaza will never be free and prosperous whether or not Israel continues to exist. It's not in the Muslim character to build free, prosperous societies. They're pretty good at plunder and selling natural resources (oil) but not so adept at actually generating anything of value.

muckdog said...

Obviously, the terrorists have the end-game goal similar to what Helen Thomas said, and that is for the Jews to (quoting Amityville Horror) "GET OUT."

If those who hate Israel would put as much energy into making their government and economy work and their people prosper, wouldn't they be much better off?

reoconnot said...

What's untenable is a POTUS who's governing like he's a closet Muslim.

Tacitus Voltaire said...

So Cal Jim

Politically correct, multiculturalist Westerners insist that Islam is a "religion of peace."

Muslims are perfectly a ease with death and slaughter as long as they're doing it to someone else.

you get the 2010 award for glib statements about what hundreds of millions of people "believe". also the mind-reading award for knowing what other people think without taking the trouble to ask them

the last american political figure i can think of who said anything about islam being "the religion of peace" was when president bush a number of years ago was on TV saying "islam means peace". is he the leader of this weird group of people you describe as "Politically correct, multiculturalist Westerners'? i've never met anybody who describes themself that way. i wonder what a "multiculturist" is and where, perhaps, you could find their website.

listen, i'm a jew, and i condemn as immoral anybody who thinks they can further their political agenda by murdering innocent people. i also ascribe to the overarching political goal of making sure that no american child should have to grow up without decent nutrition, health care, or education. do you have a convenient stereotype or label for me?

Pat Patterson said...

I had no idea that David, Solomon, Joshua and Deborah were held in such low regard by Jews. Must be a multicultural thing!

tfhr said...


Are you suggesting that running a blockade is not an attempt to further a political agenda? Do you think "peace activists" running a blockade should attack a boarding party with steel bars, pipes and knives?

What do you think JFK would have done if Russian cargo ships had attempted to run the blockade he had set up around Cuba? You may remember that Cuba was being converted into a launch site for missiles aimed at the United States. Gaza is a launch site for missiles aimed at Israel. Don't you think the Israelis should defend themselves against attacks by stopping the flow of weapons entering into Gaza or would you just prefer that they wait for missiles and rockets to rain down and then strike back at the populated areas from which they are launched?

So you're a Jew, TV. What do you think of Helen Thomas' expressed desire to see Jews "get the hell out of Palestine"? I wonder if you share my view that it reveals an undertone of bias against Israel, a constant in the media reporting these days.

So Cal Jim said...

Part I

T.V. -- Yes, I do have a convenient stereotype for you. You are a naive progressive with no idea how the real world works or how wealth and freedom are created or sustained. You think, like all progressives, that government is the answer to all societal questions. You are probably highly educated. However, T.V., being educated does not confer wisdom, and wisdom is something you and your fellow progressives sorely lack. The intellectual leaders of every socialist/progressive movement have always been educated. But what have they achieved? If you count poverty, misery, and tyranny as achievements, then your intellectual guiding lights have achieved an awful lot.

Taking your points in reverse order:

(1) You chase after castles in the air. You dream nice warm & fuzzy dreams about all people living in grand fashion thanks to a benevolent government filled with experts making all the important decisions for everyone. Only you ignore the unbroken line of progressive failure everywhere your brand of government has been tried. You ignore (as you must) the terrible slaughter that progressive utopias have committed against their own people. Like all progressives you actually despise the common man, believing him too ignorant, too biased, too racist/sexist/homophobic/ fill-in-blank-here, to be left to his own devises. Thus, you support a government that will force its people to conform to the government's standard of behavior.

You wan all children in America to have decent nutrition. So do I. The difference between us is that you think universal nutrition/health/education can be legislated into existence and paid for by confiscating "rich" people's "unwarranted" or "excess" wealth. Never mind that this has NEVER worked and it NEVER will. But you and millions like you (despite your educations) haven't learned a damn thing. You think YOU can do it better THIS time. You progressives are all the same.

I, on the other hand, recognize the empirically proven truth that capitalism and a society that jealously guards property rights always and everywhere produces the greatest amount of nutrition/health/education for the greatest number of people.

So Cal Jim said...

Part II


(2) You think that Bush was the first and last person to call Islam a "religion of peace?" Are you kidding?

(3) In case you really don't know, let me enlighten you. A "multiculturalist" is a person who subscribes to the foolish notion of "multiculturalism." Surely, you've heard of multiculturalism. And I cannot bring myself to believe you have never heard the term, "politically correct" or that you have no idea about what it means. Therefore, a "politically, correct, multiculturalist, Westerner," is a person who believes in politically correctness, multiculturalism and is from what is generally considered Western culture. In other words, a progressive.

Incidentally, maybe you can answer some of these questions:

When have you expressed outrage for the thousands of rockets Hamas and Hezbollah have launch into Israel?

When have you ever condemned the brutal murders carried out by Abu Sayyaf?

Have you ever voiced indignation at the slaughter of Christians by Muslims in Nigeria, the Congo or in Darfur?

Do the murders of Buddhists by Muslims in Thailand bother you more or LESS than the botched Israeli commando raid on the "aid" ship?

Have you ever demanded equal rights for Christians and Jews in Arab lands?

What have you to say about Egypt's decision today to strip citizenship from Egyptian men who have Israeli wives?

Does it bother you that virtually no churches or synagogs are allowed to exist in Saudi Arabia?

When was the last time you demanded an immediate end to honor killings of women and girls by Muslim men?

Are you not alarmed at the spread of Sharia? Have you ever said so publicly?

Finally, do you think Islam can peacefully coexist with any other religion? Does it concern you at all that it NEVER has peacefully coexisted with any other religion?

tfhr said...

So Cal Jim,

I think you used a wood when an iron might have sufficed. You killed your troll but because you did it in two strokes, you do not get credit for a "troll-in-one".

So Cal Jim said...

tfhr -- Figures. I blog like I golf.

tfhr said...

I don't golf and I don't caddy. I said that once at an interview and the interviewer said, "We'll see about that", and then told me I was hired.

I've never understood why people talk about golf at work and work on the golf course. I actually worked on a golf course - tending greens, sand traps, fairways, etc. - and we sure didn't talk about golf.

Poor TV doesn't talk anymore at all...thanks to your brutal smack-down. You should've teed off on him long ago.

So Cal Jim said...

Unfortunately, progressives are like the undead. Always coming back to life to suck the money from someone else's wallet.

tfhr said...


tfhr said...


You said:

listen, i'm a jew, and i condemn as immoral anybody who thinks they can further their political agenda by murdering innocent people.
3:11 PM

To which I asked, "Are you suggesting that running a blockade is not an attempt to further a political agenda? Do you think "peace activists" running a blockade should attack a boarding party with steel bars, pipes and knives?"

I'm still waiting for an answer. You responded to my original query in another thread but did not attempt to answer the question. I think we need to maintain the context of the issue by staying with it here and I think you should explain where you stand regarding the blockade incident.

Tacitus Voltaire said...

i said: "i condemn as immoral anybody who thinks they can further their political agenda by murdering innocent people"

you asked: "Are you suggesting that running a blockade is not an attempt to further a political agenda?"

i never said anything about being for or against furthering political agendas. i said i'm against murdering innocent people, for any reason, really, but including of course for attempting to further one's political agenda.

what the, um, heck does whether or not running a blockade is a political act have to do with condemning murder? i couldn't possibly be "suggesting" anything about running a blockade by condemning the murder of innocent people, and that's why i stated:

"you seem to spend your entire life imagining that people said things that they never said"

get it now?

please try to read what people write and stop responding to the voices in your head

tfhr said...


The thread is about the blockade incident. Perhaps if you had not strayed from the topic, there would have been no need to try to bring you back to the subject.

By the way, you STILL have not answered the question:

"Do you think "peace activists" running a blockade should attack a boarding party with steel bars, pipes and knives?"

My question is germane to the post and addresses your initial comment about agendas, innocent people, and murder. I'm not sure why you decided it was necessary to tell us about your religion or your feelings about the nutritional needs of American children, but here we are in a thread about "peace activists" wielding knives and steel bars and you're running off about people putting words in your mouth when you can't seem to manage the ones you choose well enough to stay relevant.

Give it another try, if you don't mind.

So Cal Jim said...

What did I tell you, tfhr, T.V. is like one of those rotting zombies in a third rate sci fi movie. No mater how many times he gets smacked down he rises from the ashes and begs to be bitch slapped again. I'm beginning to think he likes it.

T.V., I weary of your childishness. The comments you've posted on these threads over time have shown you to be a disingenuous Lefty with very shallow political/social thinking. You may or may not be able to fart algorithms from your arse at will but assuming for the sake of argument that you can, your mathematical acumen only serves to confirm my opinion of you - an educated fool.

Your reply to tfhr is instructive in this regard:

Why do you mention that you are against "murder" to further "political agendas," when the subject of this thread is the boarding of the ship bound for Gaza by Israeli commandos and the resulting deaths? Since the only people killed were passengers and crew who attacked the commandos with lethal force (pipes, knives, and possibly guns), one must conclude you meant that the commandos "murdered" those men. Further, one can only conclude that you believe that Israel was "furthering" its "political agenda" by boarding the ship.

Well, excuse me, T.V., but you are wrong on both counts. It wasn't murder, it was self defense. The blockade is a necessary element of Israel's defense against annihilation. You wouldn't say Russia and England were furthering their "political agendas" by defending themselves against Nazi Germany in WWII, would you? If not, then why would you suggest that Israel was merely furthering its political agenda by boarding that ship? Could it be because you're a hypocritical Lefty?

tfhr said...

So Cal Jim,

The new Aliens v. Predators:

"Rotting Zombies v. Hypocritical Lefties"

Also known as the Democratic Party primary.