Will the United States of America survive the last 23 days of the Obama administration? Yes, we will! Will Israel survive the administration’s “search for peace in the Middle East”? Yes, it will! Will the actions of the outgoing Obama administration make finding peace in the Middle East more difficult? Yes, it definitely will!
Secretary of State John Kerry proved today that he is just as anti-Israel, anti-Semitic, and evil as Barack Obama. Kerry spoke for approximately 70 minutes “with a clarity and harshness almost never heard from American diplomats when discussing one of their closest and strongest allies” as he too assaulted Israel. He claimed to be “driven by a desire to save Israel from `the most extreme elements’ in its own government.’ With his voice “animated,” Kerry said, “The status quo is leading toward one state and perpetual occupation.”
The Obama administration caused a great break in the relationship between Israel and the United States. This break is “a breach rarely seen since President Harry S. Truman recognized the fragile Israeli state in May 1948.” Mr. Kerry said, “Some seem to believe that the U.S. friendship means the U.S. must accept any policy, regardless of our own interests, our own positions, our own words, our own principles – even after urging again and again that the policy must change…. Friends need to tell each other the hard truths, and friendships require mutual respect.”
Most people expect President-elect Donald Trump to strengthen the relationship with Israel. As a starter, he plans to nominate David M. Friedman as the new U.S. Ambassador to Israel. Friedman “has broken with even the pretense of supporting a two-state negotiated agreement and has helped fund some of the settlements” denounced by Kerry.
Even though on vacation, Mr. Trump rejected Kerry’s speech even before it was delivered by posted two messages on Twitter. After the Security Council vote last week, he posted, “Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching!” This morning he posted, “We cannot continue to let Israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Kerry’s speech a “deep disappointment.” He later released a video message stating: “The entire Middle East is going up in flames, entire countries are toppling, terrorism is raging and for an entire hour the secretary of state attacks the only democracy in the Middle East…. Maybe Kerry did not notice that Israel is the only place in the Middle East where Christmas can be celebrated in peace and security. Sadly, none of this interests the secretary of state.”
Mr. Netanyahu was not the only one lambasting Kerry’s assault. Senator John McCain calls it a “pointless tirade” while Senator Charles Schumer, the incoming Senate Democrat leader, thinks that Kerry “emboldened extremists on both sides.”
Senator Ted Cruz also issued a statement condemning the speech. His statement begins, “Like bitter clingers, President Obama and Secretary Kerry are spending every last minute of this administration wreaking havoc domestically and abroad. With their last breath in office, they have struck at Israel, through the United Nations and through today’s disgraceful speech.
“These acts are shameful. They are designed to secure a legacy, and indeed they have: history will record and the world will fully understand Obama and Kerry as relentless enemies of Israel. Their actions were designed to weaken and marginalize Israel, and to embolden its enemies….
“Kerry’s speech drew a stunning moral equivalence between our great ally Israel and the Palestinian Authority, currently formed in a `unity’ government with the vicious terrorists of Hamas. Secretary Kerry declared the Hamas regime in Gaza `radical,’ in the same way he declared the duly-elected government of Israel `extreme.’ He declared vicious terrorism sponsored by Hamas equal to Israeli settlements in West Bank. And he equated Israel’s celebration of its birth with the Palestinian description of this event as the `disaster.’ …
“All Americans who understand the value of the U.S.-Israel alliance must immediately and unequivocally reject their [Obama’s and Kerry’s] false and dangerous narrative, and reassert our fundamental commitment to Israel’s security….”
Senator Marco Rubio issued his own statement on Kerry’s speech: “The greatest immediate threat to the future of Israel is not a stalled peace process, or settlements, but the abandonment of the Jewish state by the current U.S. administration at a time when it needs America’s support more than ever.”
There are only 23 days until there is a new President of the United States. I have no doubt that President Donald Trump will strength the U.S.-Israeli relationship, but I know that the Obama administration has made his job more difficult. With senators like Cruz and Rubio – and even Senators McCain and Schumer speaking out against the administration, President Trump should have no problem defunding the United Nations until a change is made.