Friday, September 20, 2013

COULD A 'TAKE IT OR LEAVE IT' MOMENT BE APPROACHING?

Very insightful article from Times of Israel and linked to on Bill Koenig's site.

When they become PM, they realize how utterly dependent Israel is on the US’

The article is an interview with Eitan Haber, who was an aid to Yitzhak Rabin in the early 1990s, when the Oslo Accords were signed. He offers his perspective of the current efforts coming from John Kerry and the U.S. to move the peace talks forward.  In the interview he makes this very telling statement about where he believes the U.S. may be headed with their demands. The whole article is worth the few minutes it takes to read it.

And now, today, with the current effort at negotiations, why do you think Kerry thinks there’s an opportunity…?

I think Kerry understands today, better than any of us, that if it will be dependent on the Israelis, nothing is going to happen, and if it is dependent on the Palestinians, nothing will happen. And so, in my opinion, he believes, that in another few months, he will strike the table and will say that, ‘Gentlemen, we, the Americans, say this and that and the other.’ He will set out what he thinks needs to be done, ‘take it or leave it.’

What are the implications of a demand like that?

You’re better off taking it and not leaving it. Both sides. I think that he believes that that is how it will be. It is also possible that he is mistaken in this.

I cannot forget for a moment that once, James Baker, the secretary of state, got very angry at Rabin over something, and extended his head over the table and said, ‘America is right even when it is wrong.’ (Laughs.) America is America. Nothing can change that.

Many people, very many people, ask me what happens to political leaders when they enter the Prime Minister’s Office. Is there something in the ventilation system? Is there a special odor that causes dizziness? And I say, no. The people who make it to the second floor of Rehov Kaplan 3 in Jerusalem — only there, only there and not a moment before — is it understood to what extent the State of Israel is dependent on America. For absolutely everything — in the realms of diplomacy, security, even economically — we are dependent on America.

Therefore, when Uncle Sam is angry, they [in the Prime Minister’s Office] understand that a lot better than the group of irresponsible people in the Knesset who engage in all kinds of irresponsible argument at America’s expense and give advice and instructions.

If we, the U.S., Obama, were to put a demand on the table, if John Kerry were to "strike the table" and tell Israel "take it or leave it," what could be the consequences for us?

In my Aug. 6 post, THE UNCANNY DATE CHOSEN FOR THE NEXT ROUND OF PEACE TALKS, I noted columnist Jeffrey Goldberg's 7 "delusional" expectations from John Kerry in the current peace talk efforts. One of the expectations was that 81,000 Israelis would be moved out of the West Bank and the land given to the Palestinians.

With this new round of peace talks and under the Obama plan, look at hurdles “2” and “4” that Goldberg outlines above. Wikipedia notes that between 500 and 850 Jewish “settlers” live in Hebron, so it looks like a MINIMUM OF 50,000, and upwards of 81,000, Israelis citizens would be forced from their homes.

Can you imagine what the consequences might be if President Obama and John Kerry force 50,000 to 81,000 from their homes in Israel? Bush pressured Israel to evict 9,000 citizens from their homes. If the number 81,000 holds true, then President Obama is willing to force 9 TIMES AS MANY ISRAELIS FROM THEIR HOMES AS WHAT BUSH FORCED.

Last night I watched DISASTER IN THE ROCKIES, a 1-hr special from the Weather Channel about the historic, once-in-a-thousand years flooding going on in Colorado. I was stunned, even after watching the terrible news stories for the past week, to learn the devastating impacts from this flood. Entire communities are gone. About 200 people are still missing. Over 19,000 homes damaged or destroyed. The largest airlift operation since Katrina. Area affected is as large as Connecticut. Hundreds of businesses and farms destroyed. Over a thousand oil wells and fracking sites damaged. I've been linking to many of the articles with the statistics on my sidebar.

But one thing the Weather Channel said really stood out -- no one saw this coming. None of their early data suggested that the flooding would be of this scope. When it started, it just started -- no warning. The 1-hr special concluded with this note: this historic, "biblical" flooding would go into the history books as one of the worst natural disasters to ever hit the U.S.

I cannot help but wonder, as we threaten so many Israelis with the loss of their homes and their livelihoods, what we will suffer here? What will go into the history books next?