In the waning days of his presidency, and thanks to his vendetta against Israel exemplified in the betrayal at the UN on December 23 (Resolution 2334), 2017 will become the year of the Obama Intifada.
If you’re not familiar with it, intifada is Arabic for the act of “shaking off.” It’s become commonly used in context of an armed uprising of Palestinians against Israel. The First Intifada began in December of 1987. It consisted of widespread throwing of stones and Molotov cocktails at Israeli soldiers and civilians. The Second Intifada began in September of 2000, and consisted largely of suicide bombings by Palestinian Arabs on buses and in other public places, killing over a thousand Israelis. Arabs dubbed this the "Al Aksa Intifada," implying that it was orchestrated to protect the Al Aksa Mosque. The most recent wave of terror, beginning in September 2015, has been dubbed the "Stabbing Intifada" because of the proclivity for Palestinians, including women and children, to use their own kitchen knives to kill and maim dozens of Israelis.
Today, we are facing a new wave of threats, and incitement that will be known as the "Obama Intifada." This latest incarnation will be marked by three elements, and is no less dangerous to Israel in the present, and possibly even more so in the long term.
People across the political spectrum throughout the United States and Israel have called out Obama for his unprecedented, lame-duck abstention allowing for a harshly biased anti-Israel resolution to pass. It is clear that his hands are pulling the strings to make this happen are clear, as is his vindictiveness.
The outcome of this will not be a greater likelihood for peace, but rather it will prevent peace breaking out any time soon. Obama has emboldened and played into the hands of--even provided the road map for--terrorists and others who vilify and de-legitimize Israel at every turn. They have internalized that they do not have to negotiate with Israel to score diplomatic victories. All they have to do is whine incessantly and threaten endlessly, and Obama and others will give them what they want.
Previous intifadas have been marked by what appeared to be a popular uprising, of sorts. However, it’s clear they were either unleashed and/or orchestrated by terrorist leaders of the Palestinian Authority. The first element of the Obama Intifada is its’ premeditation. It’s clear that Obama was involved in concocting the spiteful UN resolution, and the follow-up punch of John Kerry’s petulant and imbalanced tirade days later. That alone harms Israel and causes long-term damage, and is reason enough for calling out his vindictive 11th-hour betrayal.
The second element of the Obama Intifada is that it provides a foundation upon which the BDS movement can gain momentum. That’s bad enough. But with the BDS' goal to undermine and de-legitimize Israel’s very existence, and the ignorance of the majority of people to whom they peddle their venom, the thin line between boycotting “settlement” products and all Israeli products will become invisible.
Adding fuel to this fire, the UN resolution takes a step further and opens doors for a boycott of anyone having anything to do with people or businesses over the 1967 Green Line. That means banks, energy companies, hotels, light and heavy industry, grocery stores, and those who supply those doing anything in this area will be blacklisted. The harm to Israel is obvious, but the Palestinian Arabs who earn a living in these businesses, or patronize them themselves, will be harmed as well. The long-term and profound negative ripple effect of this element of the Obama Intifada will be profound.
Third, the Obama Intifada will, sadly, be the cause for loss of human life--potentially thousands of people. Emboldened by the support they perceive at the injustice of the so-called “occupation,” and inspired by the Palestinian Authority’s direct and indirect incitement of violence toward Israelis, a new wave of terror is almost inevitable. Compounded by the internal competition between the PLO (Fatah) and Hamas, the violence will likely be energized by each striving to make political gain of the death of Israelis and Palestinian Arabs. The latter is not new. But the outcome will be dangerous, bloody, and sad nonetheless.
It’s too early to tell whether the coming wave of violence that will project the Obama Intifada to a TV near you will consist of stonings, car rammings, stabbings, suicide bombings, or some new incarnation devised by people who are taught and inspired to hate and kill Israelis throughout their society. However, it’s coming.
The violence is coming because Palestinian Arabs have been led to believe throughout Obama's tenure (with the icing on the cake being the UN Resolution and Kerry’s attack on “settlements”) as what’s preventing their achieving independence. It’s coming because Obama has barely recognized that it’s in fact Palestinian terror that’s the obstacle to peace, never mind holding them accountable or calling them out. It’s coming because once again, Obama has offered Palestinian Arabs false hope that if only by seeing the U.S. not support Israel, that their cause is righteous. It’s coming because Palestinian “culture” inspires, supports, and funds terrorism and violence.
The day after Christmas, I was driving with my family past the Palestinian town Husan. Drivers are taught to look out for kids playing by the side of the road, lest they run into the street chasing a ball or something else. Almost as if they were out having a catch, I spotted three teenage Arab boys on the side of the road, throwing rocks at passing cars. In broad daylight, they threw rocks at us, as if it were as common and normal as tossing a baseball.
The lesson they and others have learned from Obama’s lame-duck duplicity is that violence pays, and it is okay to do it in the open. Just like he stabbed Israel in the back in a global forum in broad daylight.