March 22, 2013
Right now, Obama is visiting Yad Vashem, the Holocaust museum. For those of you who have not been to Israel, this is a must for every visitor. It is the raison d’être for Israel. It explains just about everything, putting it all into perspective.
If you have been reading/watching the news from here, you will perhaps know that Obama’s visit caused gridlock in Jerusalem. Two of you in particular, Gus and Lydia Millner, will have experienced that in person, as, among others, we were not able to attend their daughter, Kim’s wedding at the Citadel Hotel, which is only 5 mins’ walk from Obama’s King David.
They came all the way from South Africa for this, greeting friends from USA, Hungary (Lydia’s mother country) and of course, from S. Africa. And they booked their party first. Not fair. Now not so sure we’ll even see our friends during their stay.
Was it worth it? Any concrete results? Well, when you balance the visit against the costs – and the possible negative repercussions from false hopes, it’s debatable.
In my last Letter, only 2-3 days ago, I implied I might have moved somewhat to the right. Thanks to Obama, that swing continues. Our wonderful Rita, singing ‘Jerusalem of Gold’ at the President’s residence, was not the only one surprisingly out of tune. Yes, Obama got names right, dropping hints that he’d done his homework like a good boy.
But his cries for a 2-state solution were pies in the sky. And the trouble for the Palestinians is that Israel can survive far better on the status quo than they. Let’s hit you with a few random observations –
Why didn’t Obama visit Gaza? The leader there would win the next ‘democratic election’ among all Palestinians.
He sits there with Abbas in Ramallah, knowing full well that even Abbas has made enough ant-Israel statements to fill another ‘Mein Kampf’.
Yes, this re-affirmed the Israel-US bond – strong whoever’s in charge and for the foreseeable future. Why? Because, for that foreseeable future, the Middle East remains an area of instability and importance. Europe realises it less for some reason, but the Americans know that they need at least 1 dependable partner in the region. And whoever’s in power in Israel, Left, Right, wherever, they will be dependable partners with USA. They’re not stupid here.
Settlements – Obama has fallen hook, line and sinker for this joke, fuelling the Palestinians desperate hold on the only political argument that appears to work.
They’ve had their chances
The original rights the Jews had for the land was given up with the UN resolution in 1947. The Arabs’ refusal to respect that resolution – till today – really does nullify it.
I keep on hinting that in a decent democracy, what’s wrong with having a Jewish minority? There continues to be no mention of that prospect. Why? Because many of the Arab countries, such as Saudi and Jordan and Gaza are happy not having 1 single Jew on their land.
New idea…As you all know, and/or have forgotten, Jordan is the problem here – the mistake. The country was handed to the Hashemites by UK and France as a prize for their support against the Turks after the WWI. It is still the country in the World with the largest ‘foreign population’. Upwards of 65% are Palestinians. Another country in the Middle East where the elite minority rule the masses.
Jordan (the East Bank of the Jordan river) should have been Palestine. That might have worked, geo-politically and geographically. One of the many reasons why Hussein and the current Abdullah are/were such fence-sitters. But come the push and shove, the Jordanians will be ruthless against the Palestinians (Many thousands killed during Black September in 1970).
The powerful international community forces the Hashemites to make Jordan the new Palestinian home. That kind of pressure might work.
The ‘Arab Spring’ has been threatening the stability of Jordan. There have been occasional violent protests there. What we need now is for Jordan to become the next Syria (I know…I am sorry) and the Palestinians, after a year of internal horror, will find themselves with a ‘conquered land’ (like Israel in 1967). But they will have no thought of giving it back. Then, the clever Israel negotiators will back the international community to persuade the Palestinians to accept the new status quo, with plenty of land, and ….live in peace for ever and ever!!
And, to end with a smile, note that while Michelle was not accompanying here husband, he was flirting with our 2013 beauty queen, Yityish Aynaw. She, like the Palestinians, is from one of the many communities, in this case Ethiopian, that claim to be 2nd class citizens. Every country has them, but not every country crowns them a queen.