I am not surprised at President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry's parting insults to Israel, but they are nonetheless unconscionable. Thank goodness Obama is on the way out and the restoration of our relationship will soon begin.
It wasn't enough for Obama to betray Israel by abstaining from voting on, rather than vetoing, a Dec. 23 United Nations Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem as illegal. Kerry delivered an extraordinarily condescending speech maligning Israel for the settlements, saying they have jeopardized peace in the Middle East.
Amazingly, people still blindly deny this administration's antipathy toward Israel, and they will probably remain in denial even after these unprecedented affronts.
Almost as troubling is Obama's deceit about his prejudices and his intentions. The Israelis claim to have irrefutable evidence that the administration did more than merely abstain from voting on the abominable U.N. resolution. It led the charge.
"What is outrageous is that the United States was actually behind that gang-up," said Israeli Ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer. "I think it was a very sad day and really a shameful chapter in U.S.-Israel relations. ... We have clear evidence of it."
Dermer announced that Israel eagerly awaits the Trump administration, as he indicated he would be presenting evidence of U.S. collusion to Donald Trump rather than to Obama.
When Fox News asked Dermer whether he would also be sharing this evidence with the Obama administration, he pointedly replied that there is no need to share the information because those in the administration already possess it, seeing as they were the instigators of the resolution.
It was bad enough that Obama and Kerry, as usual, drew moral equivalence between Israel's construction and overt Palestinian terrorism, but they went further, clearly casting Israel as the aggressor in the ongoing conflict with the Palestinians. This is more than moral inversion; it is perverse.
Israel is a democratic nation surrounded by undemocratic nations dedicated to its destruction. It is forever the target of terrorist attacks. It has repeatedly sued for peace in the region, even offering to cede lands critical for its national defense. The Palestinians have rejected every overture and responded with horrendous acts of terror.
Assuming you have access to Google, I won't bother you with a laundry list of the Palestinians' one-sided aggression and their persistent bad-faith refusals to compromise. Israel's vigorous defensive actions against Palestinian terrorist attacks are not terrorism, nor are they in any sense immoral. It's the duty of any nation to protect its sovereignty and its citizens.
As Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remarked in a statement, Kerry's speech "was almost as unbalanced as the anti-Israel resolution passed at the UN last week. In a speech ostensibly about peace between Israelis and Palestinians, Secretary Kerry paid lip service to the unremitting campaign of terrorism that has been waged by the Palestinians against the Jewish state for nearly a century. What he did was to spend most of his speech blaming Israel for the lack of peace by passionately condemning a policy of enabling Jews to live in their historic homeland and in their eternal capital, Jerusalem. Hundreds of suicide bombings ... tens of thousands of rockets, millions of Israelis in bomb shelters are not throwaway lines in a speech; they're the realities that the people of Israel had to endure because of mistaken policies."
In a sane world, these issues wouldn't be debated. There is no debate. The Palestinians have consistently denied Israel's legitimacy and its right to exist. They indoctrinate their citizens, especially their children, against the Jews.
It is not Jewish settlements on their own land that impede the peace process, any more than it is insufficient American groveling to Islamic extremists that causes them to attack us. The Palestinians attack Israelis because they hate them; it is what they do. Only one side in this perennial conflict seeks peaceful coexistence, and it is not the Palestinians. As Netanyahu said, Israel has extended its hand in peace to its neighbors from day one.
The Obama administration's heinous reversal of decades of American policy in siding with the Palestinians is stunning, as is its joinder in their propaganda war against the Israelis in endorsing the treacherous lie that Israel is illegally occupying Palestinian territory beyond the lines established in the 1949 Armistice Agreements, including the Western Wall, and even in Jewish sections of Jerusalem.
It is pathetically disingenuous for the administration to suggest that Israeli settlement restraint will lead to peace in the region. It will just embolden the Palestinians toward further aggression, as will the U.N.'s resolution and the United States' disgraceful involvement in it.
Obama and Kerry have indefensibly stained our relations with Israel, but this stain will be fleeting, as President Obama and his minions are on the way out the White House door — and none too soon.