The final, in Iowa, Republican debate of the year is tonight and our comments section will monitor it. Aside from the debacles of the Obama-made-it-worse-economy, a debate discussion of the Middle East is desperately needed.
In a sense many of the foreign policy issues that require debate discussion in 2011 are directly related to the Barack Obama versus Hillary Clinton debates of 2007/2008. Obama’s “no preconditions” promises and flip-flops to dictators and enemies of America proved back in 2007 that Barack Obama was not and is not qualified to be president of the United States. Hillary Clinton’s clear line in the Arabia sand that an Iran attack on Israel would lead to obliteration of the Persian state was attacked by the Obama campaign and the crackpot websites of the Kook Left.
None of those issues have disappeared. Quite the contrary. Those very issues are now of the utmost importance. News reports allege that the recent downing of a U.S. drone was due to electronic hijacking of that essential weapons system. The American withdrawal later this month will also essentially leave Iraqi air space free for Israeli jets when Israel is forced to deprive Iran of nuclear weapons with which to threaten the entire region and the world.
This past May we discussed the “Arabs’ lawyer Barack Obama” and his ugly anti-Israel speech:
“What does Hillary Clinton think about the Barack Obama attacks on Israel? There is a concerted campaign of lies and deception about Hillary Clinton and it’s coming from Israel haters, Hillary Clinton haters, and Barack Obama lovers. The attempt is to glue Hillary Clinton to the Obamination which is Barack Obama’s treacherous speech last Thursday attacking Israel.
We wrote about why Barack Obama went to the State Department to deliver his TelePrompTer attack on Israel. It was an attempt to create the impression that Hillary Clinton was on board with his treacherous attack on an ally as well as an attempt to shut down any State Department/Hillary Clinton pro-Israel moves.”
Those attempts to tie Hillary Clinton policies to Obama continue. “She is his Secretary of State” goes the argument. What that argument misses is that Hillary Clinton is having to fight Obama all the way. On Libya, Hillary fought Obama. On Egypt, Hillary fought Obama. Hillary understood the stakes involved, Obama went to Rio.
Hillary understood that as bad as Mubarak was, the Muslim Brotherhood would be worse when, not if, it gained power in a post Mubarak Egypt. Hillary also understood that Libya’s Gaddafi was not an American friend and that getting rid of him would demonstrate that it was not only American allies who would be imperiled by turmoil in the Arab street. Obama only looked to see where he could get applause.
Unlike Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton also understands the need to destabilize and replace the Syrian regime:
“Hillary Clinton has urged the Syrian opposition to build a society that is free of the “whims of a dictator”.
The US Secretary of State spoke after meeting six members of the Syrian National Council, an exile group seeking to end the 41-year rule of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his late father.
She also urged the group to respect the rule of law and minority rights: “Obviously, a democratic transition includes more than removing the Assad regime.
“It means setting Syria on the path of the rule of law and protecting the universal rights of all citizens, regardless of sect or ethnicity or gender.”
The most recent example of the concerted campaign to tie Hillary Clinton to Obama’s anti-Israel policies involved some rumors of something or other that she supposedly said according to someone or other. What did Hillary (and Panetta and Gutman) say?:
“The U.S. ambassador to Belgium, Howard Gutman, caused an uproar when he suggested on Dec. 1 that hostility among European Arabs and Muslims toward Jews was rooted in anger over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and should be distinguished from traditional forms of anti-Semitism. Jewish groups condemned his remarks, which drew calls for his dismissal from Republican presidential front-runners Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney.
The following day, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta stirred controversy when he told an audience at the Saban Forum, an annual Washington conclave for American and Israeli policymakers, that Israel needs to “get to the damn table” to negotiate with the Palestinians and “mend fences” with its neighbors. The Anti-Defamation League expressed “surprise and dismay” at a speech that it said “disproportionately put the onus on Israel to overcome its isolation.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made waves a day later at the Saban Forum when she reportedly expressed some concerns about the state of Israeli democracy. [snip]
They’re “putting all of the onus on Israel, and that’s with Panetta, with Hillary and with the ambassador,” he said. “It’s something that we’ve had a problem with this administration.”
Gingrich and Romney are right to call for the firing of Gutman. If any political figure dared to say that discrimination against blacks was due to the high crime rates and welfare grubbing by blacks, that political figure would be rightly excoriated. As to Leon Panetta, he should stop blaming Israel and start condemning the duplicity of the Palestinian officials and their bad faith “negotiating”. Panetta should remember that it was not Israel that gutted the Bill Clinton peace plan of the 1990s which promised a two state solution – it was the Palestinians.
Panetta must remember that it takes to to tango and two good faith partners required to sign any contract or peace treaty. Israel does not have a good faith adversary with which to negotiate. Panetta is simply wrong to demand negotiations without good faith negotiating from the Arab side:
“In his wide-ranging speech on U.S.-Israel relations, Panetta said that Israel needed to take steps to alleviate its isolation.
“For example, Israel can reach out and mend fences with those who share an interest in regional stability — countries like Turkey and Egypt, as well as Jordan,” Panetta said. “This is an important time to be able to develop and restore those key relationships in this crucial area. This is not impossible. If gestures are rebuked, the world will see those rebukes for what they are. That is exactly why Israel should pursue them.”
After the speech, the Saban Center’s Kenneth Pollack asked Panetta what steps Israel should take to advance peace. Panetta replied, “Just get to the damn table. Just get to the table. The problem right now is we can’t get them to the damn table to at least sit down and begin to discuss their differences — you know, we all know what the pieces are here for a potential agreement.”
Gingrich issued a statement condemning Panetta’s remarks.
“Barack Obama must tell the American people today whether he condemns or condones the deeply wrong statements by his Secretary of Defense and Ambassador to Belgium,” Gingrich said.
The Zionist Organization of America and the Emergency Committee for Israel — both consistent critics of the Obama administration — also blasted Panetta’s remarks. The ADL, however, was the main centrist Jewish group to take public umbrage.
“The Defense Secretary emphasized the shared U.S. and Israeli interest in deepened strategic cooperation and in countering the Iranian threat,” the ADL said in its statement. “But he undermined the sense of assurance that this could have projected by using a prestigious public platform to focus disproportionate responsibility on Israel for the campaign of hostility against her.”
As to Hillary Clinton, there are many who want to create the illusion that the respected Hillary is on their side. These deceivers want to tie Hillary Clinton to the disaster which is Barack Obama on Middle East policy:
“Clinton’s remarks the next day at the Saban Forum were considered off the record and her session was closed to the media. According to news reports based on sources who attended, her speech went over familiar ground, such as the need to restart peace negotiations and the Iranian threat.
But in a question-and-answer session afterward, Clinton reportedly expressed concerns about some aspects of domestic Israeli politics. She was said to have criticized proposed Knesset legislation aimed at curbing foreign funding of Israeli NGOs and gender-segregated bus lines serving haredi Orthodox areas, among other domestic developments.
Israel’s finance minister, Yuval Steinitz, was quoted in the Israeli media calling Clinton’s remarks “totally exaggerated.”
“Israel is a living, breathing liberal democracy,” Steinitz said.
If reported accurately, Foxman said, Clinton’s comments were “out of line.”
Hillary Clinton reportedly speaking out against proposed gender restricted busing legislation before the Knesset is neither shocking nor inappropriate. Because the Hillary remarks are not direct quotes they are difficult to confirm, condemn or condone. But, women’s rights are a hallmark of Hillary’s life work. Abe Foxman of the ADL made some inaccurate assertions as to what Hillary “reportedly” said:
“This is a secretary of state who certainly doesn’t go out to the Arab Muslim world and criticize them for inequalities,” the ADL leader said. “Sure, Israel is not perfect, human rights could use improvement, but my God, in comparison, I think it’s inappropriate, it’s excessive.”
Clinton has spoken about abuses of women’s rights in the Islamic world. In an April address at the U.S.-Islamic World Forum in Washington, she cited progress on addressing abuses of women’s rights in some Muslim countries and condemned those “who are actually working to undermine this progress and export a virulently anti-woman ideology to other Muslim communities.”
Foxman and the Republican candidates tonight should condemn without hesitation or reservation – Barack Obama. Yeah, the guy who has never visited Israel not even when he spoke to “the Muslim world” in his Cairo abomination speech. Obama snubbed Israel when he spoke to the Muslim world and the Muslim world saw that snub as well as Obama bowing to Muslim kings and princes in Saudi Arabia.
The Republican candidates for president need to speak out on Obama’s Middle East mess. Already in “respected” foreign policy circles idiot suggestions are being made which contradict the clear lines Hillary Clinton drew in 2007. These so-called “experts” think being nice to Iran is the way to go, appearing to blink, spinelessness, weakness is their advice:
“The United States Takes the Military Option “off the Table” with Iran
For at least a decade, U.S. leaders have repeatedly insisted that all options are “on the table” with Iran. In one sense this is a truism: as long as you have certain capabilities, you always have the option of using them no matter what you’ve said in the past. But constantly harping on the possibility of military action is not a good way to build trust — especially when the opponent is already deeply suspicious.”
These same “experts” mainline Hopium and indulge themselves in delusions about terrorists:
“But imagine what could happen if Hamas announced it was dropping the most offensive (and stupid) clauses in its current charter? It could still adopt a hardline position on other matters, and still try to portray Fatah as corrupt, inept, or heavily compromised. But by providing an unmistakable signal that Hamas was willing to dump some of its most extreme claims, revising the Charter could open a path towards the organization’s participation in the peace process (which is probably necessary if it is ever to succeed), and thus be a potential game-changer.”
Read the Hamas Charter (HERE) and try to imagine that their actions will ever change just because of a change of words on a piece of paper.
Republicans need to discuss and clearly outline what they would do in the Middle East. After all, Ron Paul can win in Iowa and he might have some smart answers on domestic matters and constitutional issues, but on foreign policy, Ron Paul is nuts.
Ron Paul is nuts on foreign policy which is one sure reason for Andrew Sullivan to endorse Paul:
“We do not need to prevent China’s rise, but to accommodate it as prudently as possible. We do need to get out of the Middle East to the maximum extent and return our relationship with Israel to one between individual nations, with different interests and common ideals, not some divine compact between two Zions. We do need a lighter, more focused, more lethal war against Jihadism – but this cannot ever again mean occupying countries we do not understand and cannot control. I suspect every other Republican would launch a war against Iran. Paul wouldn’t. That alone makes a vote for him worthwhile.”
That’s the same Andrew Sullivan who praised “Obama’s face” as the way to get Muslims to love America among other foolishness. Sullivan hated Hillary and Israel but loved Obama in 2007/2008. Now Sullivan is up to the same tricks. There are reasons why “conservative” Sullivan joins the left kooks and why Sullivan hates Hillary and loves Obama:
“That America would even think of abandoning Israel is an Obamination. That anyone doubts Iranian intentions of another holocaust against American ally Israel as well as opposition to American ideals and values is madness. The Obama Dimocratic Left is crazed and dangerous [snip]
These people are crazed and dangerous. They were kept in a cage when Bill and Hillary Clinton were in the White House. Now, with Obama skewing the rudder, they are uncaged and wild.”
Rick Perry, if no question on the topic is asked tonight, should speak out as he has recently on Israel and the Middle East. As the Associated Press recently reported, Obama is in trouble with American Jews and supporters of Israel. Perry should speak out on these issues. All the Republican candidates should speak out on these issues.
Right now, Barack Obama appears to be a dead man walking. An American Crossroads ad shows the clear path to electoral victory for the GOP.
Even Obama supporters expect Obama to lose. The Obama campaign clowns continue to crow about “five
graves paths to victory” but there is only one Obama and Obama is the problem.
Obama is the problem and the first step is to get rid of him. But then what? Republicans tonight, on this last debate of the year 2011, need to provide the solutions to problems both at home and abroad. The Middle East is growing ever more dangerous. Israel might discipline Iran once that Iraqi air space is abandoned. What then?
Republicans tonight should tell Americans what they intend to do about the entire Middle East and take on “no preconditions” Obama directly. The problem is Obama not the other candidates. Obama must go.