Editor's Note: Mr. Blackwell is an advisor to the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs.
When the Germans moved their capital from Bonn to Berlin, the U.S. Embassy in Germany moved to Berlin, too. When the Brazilians moved their capital from Rio de Janeiro to Brasilia, the U.S. Embassy followed suit. When Jimmy Carter extended diplomatic recognition in 1979 to the People’s Republic of China, the U.S. Embassy on Taiwan shut down and our diplomats obediently opened up shop in Beijing. So where is the U.S. Embassy in Israel?
It’s in Tel Aviv. It’s probably the only case of a U.S. Embassy not being in the city that the host country claims as its capital. And there’s a reason our embassy is not in Jerusalem: We don’t want to antagonize Israel’s Arab enemies.
This point gains special significance now that President Obama has sent former Sen. George Mitchell to Jerusalem. Mitchell is Obama’s enforcer. Mitchell’s task is to pressure Israel to “freeze” settlements in Judea and Samaria, on the West Bank of the River Jordan.
In his speech in Cairo earlier this month, President Obama essentially bought into the Arab position on Israel—that the creation of the Jewish state in the Middle East was a result of European guilt for the Holocaust. This position ignores the historical fact that Jews have lived in Judea and Samaria—and in their capital of Jerusalem—since long before their Roman conquerors dispersed thousands of Jews throughout the known world. Zionism—the political movement that holds that Jews have a right to return to their ancient homeland—began seriously in the 1890s. That was long decades before Adolf Hitler’s rise to power.
Obama’s bad history is now leading to even worse diplomacy. Jimmy Carter, perhaps panting for another Nobel peace prize, is in the Mid-East, planning to meet with others who want to de-stabilize Israel. Hamas—the terrorist gang that controls the Gaza Strip—will roll out the red carpet for the former U.S. President.
Carter calls all Jewish settlement on the West Bank “illegal and [an] obstacle to peace. The Israelis took Carter’s advice on Gaza. They dismantled all their settlements there. They handed over the land to the Palestinians. They followed Carter’s formula of land for peace. And what did they get? Hamas control of Gaza and 6,000 Hamas missiles raining down on Israel. Some deal. Some peace. It might better be called Carter’s “Piece Plan”—handing over territory to Israel’s sworn enemies—piece by piece.
Jimmy Carter has published books and articles likening Israel’s position in the West Bank to that of the apartheid regime in South Africa. He use of apartheid is intended to de-legitimize Israel and bring its downfall—just like the anti-apartheid campaign in the `90s brought an end to the white supremacist regime in South Africa.
Yet what is Carter advocating by freezing the natural growth of Jewish settlement on the West Bank? What Carter is saying, in effect, is that Arabs should be able to continue to live in peace in Tel Aviv, but Jews—and Christians—cannot live in Jericho and Bethlehem. Who’s the real supporter of apartheid?
Carter predicts that President Obama will take the next logical step after he succeeds in freezing Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria: “In the future, I am sure, [Obama] will call for the dismantling of the settlements that exist.”
Since President Obama refuses to talk about moving our embassy to Jerusalem, isn’t it ironic that George Mitchell and his wrecking crew are operating out of their hotel headquarters in—where else?—Jerusalem. Mitchell’s deputy, Mara Rudman, a George Soros follower, is there. So is Gen. Keith Dayton, who is busily training an army for Fatah in the West Bank. Fatah is the name of the “political organization” that formed the core of Yasser Arafat’s Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Arafat, who personally ordered the murder of U.S. Ambassador Cleo Noel and his aide, virtually invented airline hijacking for purposes of terror.
President Obama’s national security advisor, Marine Gen. Jim Jones, is on record rejecting all Israeli claims to natural growth of their settlements in Judea and Samaria.
Question: If Jews cannot live in Judea and Samaria—where Jews have lived since before the Roman Empire—why should they be allowed to live in Tel Aviv? Tel Aviv was founded only in the early 1900s.
The plan to create a Judenrein—a Jew-free zone on the West Bank of the Jordan—is ultimately a plan to de-stabilize and then dismantle the Jewish state. This is not just a change from George W. Bush; it’s a change from Harry Truman!
That’s how far back U.S. support for Israel goes—right to the beginning of the Jewish state in 1948. But no more. The Obama administration will press and push, prod and peck away at Israel’s basic security needs. If Obama succeeds, Israel may not be destroyed, but she will be much weaker, much more vulnerable, much more in danger from enemies pledged to destroy her. Is that the change America wants? Is that the kind of change Americans voted for?