Presumptive Presidential nominee Barack Obama and his former rival Hillary Clinton made back to back appearances last week on June 4, 2008 before a large audience in DC at the AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) Convention.
The speakers’ policies agreed in many ways, but they were different in tone. Clinton had an interesting 3-point plan. (Incidentally, all speeches except her June 7 suspension/endorsement remarks were removed around noon today from HillaryClinton.com.) One part of Hillary’s plan outlined the use of education as a foundation to reverse the Jewish hatred that is currently institutionalized as curriculum in the madrasas. Otherwise, how can peace be tenable? Both candidates had agreed to keep Jerusalem undivided and under Israeli-control. However, Obama, is now backtracking on his definitive undivided stance.
It seems that Obama still has some explaining to do to those pesky, emailing Jews — Jews who worry that he will be sympathetic to the Palestinians and divide Jerusalem, removing it from Jewish control. This has been a sticky for years forever.
The internet was all abuzz over the weekend about the anti-Semitic blog that was hosted, linked and just yesterday erased at Obama’s community website. Can you see why Jews are suspicious and not so tempted to join the Barack Obama Party line?
Powerline Blog had a piece about it yesterday, June 8.
“How the Jewish Lobby Works”
It’s no surprise that Barack Obama’s campaign is attractive to anti-semites. Still, it’s a little shocking to find anti-semitic propaganda on Obama’s official web site. Little Green Footballs spotted this on the Obama ’08 site; click to enlarge:
Before these Anti-Semitic “gaffes” were revealed, on June 5, 2008 The Trail noted Obama’s backtrack after Abbas reacted to his undivided Jerusalem stance. The Arab world had been expressing high hopes for an Obama presidency, but Palestinian Authority President Abbas made a swift rebuke:
This statement is totally rejected,” Abbas told reporters in Ramallah. “The whole world knows that holy Jerusalem was occupied in 1967 and we will not accept a Palestinian state without having Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state.”
Obama quickly backtracked today in an interview with CNN.
“Well, obviously, it’s going to be up to the parties to negotiate a range of these issues. And Jerusalem will be part of those negotiations,” Obama said when asked whether Palestinians had no future claim to the city.
Obama said “as a practical matter, it would be very difficult to execute” a division of the city. “And I think that it is smart for us to — to work through a system in which everybody has access to the extraordinary religious sites in Old Jerusalem but that Israel has a legitimate claim on that city.”
But Rep. Robert Wexler (D-Fla.) later said on behalf of the Obama campaign that Obama’s comment to CNN should not be seen as backtracking or even an amendment. He said Obama was clarifying that he has long believed that it is up to the parties involved to determine the status of Jerusalem.
The Jewish Post noted on the following day that,
But a campaign adviser clarified Thursday that Obama believes “Jerusalem is a final status issue, which means it has to be negotiated between the two parties” as part of “an agreement that they both can live with.”
“Two principles should apply to any outcome,” which the adviser gave as: “Jerusalem remains Israel’s capital and it’s not going to be divided by barbed wire and checkpoints as it was in 1948-1967.”
He refused, however, to rule out other configurations, such as the city also serving as the capital of a Palestinian state or Palestinian sovereignty over Arab neighborhoods.
“Beyond those principles, all other aspects are for the two parties to agree at final status negotiations,” the Obama adviser said.
Well, gee, thanks, but don’t you think they might need a bit more help than that? If they could have figured things out by themselves between now and the last sixty to 5,000 years, don’t you think they would have? Isn’t aiding the parties to negotiate a peace settlement and some form of win-win situation what s-t-r-o-n-g U-S l-e-a-d-e-r-s-h-i-p can bring to the table, rather than, “let them decide?” Hmm, Howard Dean’s answer to FL and MI voters ring a bell? Sounds a little iffy to me. Haven’t we been doing that one for the last 7 years? Could Ireland, could South Africa have achieved what they did without just and positive participation by committed leaders who brought together and sustained a process with all parties?
I know that I’m expected to fall in line with “my Party” (still not sure what action I’m taking there), at least that’s the request. However, I am very concerned for Israel, and uneasy about wasting the timespan of another Presidency on another stalled Middle East road test.