Deja Vu: Netanyahu’s Congressional Speech Follows in Rabin’s Footsteps

By Rafael Medoff

JNS.org – The supposedly unprecedented step taken by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his plan to speak directly before Congress about the Iranian nuclear threat on March 3, rather than working exclusively with the White House on the issue, actually has an interesting precedent—established in 1975 by none other than Yitzhak Rabin and America’s Democratic Party.

That spring, Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger undertook a round of shuttle diplomacy aimed at reaching a peace agreement between Israel and Egypt. The negotiations quickly ran into trouble, when Egypt refused to offer anything more than a brief a period of “non-belligerency” in exchange for an Israeli retreat from strategic mountain passes and oil fields in the Sinai desert.

In an attempt to force Israel’s hand, Kissinger arranged for President Gerald Ford to send Rabin a message expressing “profound disappointment” that Israel had not agreed to Egypt’s terms, and threatening a “reassessment” of U.S.-Israel relations unless Jerusalem gave in.

Rabin confronted Kissinger directly and accused him of orchestrating the message from Ford in order to pressure Israel. Kissinger responded by storming out of the meeting, claiming that “never, never had he been spoken to in a diplomatic meeting in such insulting terms,” according to Matti Golan, chief diplomatic correspondent for the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.

The claim to have been insulted—which has featured prominently in recent Obama administration criticism of Netanyahu—became one of the themes in Kissinger’s arsenal as the crisis gathered steam, according to Prof. Arlene Lazarowitz of California State University-Long Beach, who recently examined Ford’s papers on this topic and wrote about the subject in the scholarly journal American Jewish History. When Rabin and his cabinet declined to give in to Ford’s threat, Kissinger told the president, “To have received a letter from you and not to change one iota is an indignity to the United States.”

“Reassessment,” Rabin later wrote in his memoirs, “was an innocent-sounding term that heralded one of the worst periods in American-Israeli relations.” U.S. arms transfers to Israel were halted, negotiations with Israel over future weapons purchases were suspended, and visits to the U.S. by Israeli diplomats were canceled.

Rabin had recently spent five years in Washington as Israel’s ambassador. He knew the American political system well enough to understand that those who found themselves at odds with the White House sometimes turned to Congress—especially if the president’s opponents enjoyed a majority there.

In 1975, the Democrats held 61 of the Senate’s 100 seats. Rabin took his case to them. In just three weeks, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) persuaded 76 senators to sign a letter urging Ford to “stand firmly with Israel” and to be “responsive to Israel’s urgent military and economic needs.” Taking direct aim at the administration’s “reassessment,” the senators emphasized that “withholding military equipment from Israel would be dangerous, discouraging accommodation by Israel’s neighbors and encouraging a resort to force.” The letter also asserted that the U.S. should not seek any Israeli withdrawals without “meaningful steps toward peace by its Arab neighbors.”

Among the 76 signatories to the letter, 51 were Democrats and 25 were Republicans. It sent a strong message to the White House about the breadth of support for Israel on Capitol Hill. Naturally, Ford and Kissinger were furious. The president complained directly to Rabin that the letter was “very bad.” Ford assured Egypt’s leaders that “half of [the senators who signed] didn’t read it and a quarter didn’t understand the letter.”

The senators’ letters would have strengthened Rabin’s position in the negotiations, had he chosen to stand his ground. But Rabin, who had been prime minister for barely nine months, was not well prepared for the crisis. He had no experience dealing with an angry president or troubles in U.S.-Israel relations. Most of all, he was no match for Kissinger.

Through a series of orchestrated leaks and carefully planted news stories, the secretary of state manufactured an atmosphere of tension which left Rabin feeling bewildered and isolated. Rumblings from Rabin’s arch-rivals, Foreign Minister Yigal Allon and Defense Minister Shimon Peres, coupled with warnings from his finance minister about the need for U.S. economic aid, increased the pressure on the prime minister. By mid-summer, Rabin “simply caved in,” as Matti Golan of Haaretz put it. Israel accepted the Egyptian demands that it previously resisted.

There are similarities between Netanyahu’s situation today and what Rabin faced in 1975, most notably the depth of Congressional support for Israel. But there are also differences, the most important of which has to do with the two men themselves. Rabin, who was then a rookie in the prime minister’s office, was not well-schooled in the interplay between diplomacy, politics, and the news media. Netanyahu, now serving his third term as Israel’s leader, was raised in America and has a keen understanding of how American political culture and the media help shape U.S. foreign policy. The current crisis is not likely to end the way Rabin’s did.

Dr. Rafael Medoff is the author of 15 books about Jewish history, including the “Historical Dictionary of Zionism” (coauthored with Chaim I. Waxman).

February 11, 2015 | 19 Comments »

Subscribe to Israpundit Daily Digest

Leave a Reply

19 Comments / 19 Comments

  1. There is a reason huge amounts of Jews have fled Russia from the 1800s until today. They have been horribly treated and murdered. Anti-Semitism is part of Russian culture. This does not mean all Russians are anti-Semites as neither are all Germans.

    Russians as an ally to be trusted is an absurd proposition, no matter how imperfect other Israelis allies such as the USA are.

    Israel has been in wars with Arabs using Russians weapons for decades. Russia is now going to sell Egypt a nuclear plant and perhaps also Turkey.

    Bye the way it sold Iran its reactors and many other weapons.

  2. ArnoldHarris Said:

    The foundation of my approach to arguing is that I never accept anybody else’s premises at face value. I am truly my own man.


    The Soviet Union and Nazi Germany

    Victors write history, and so the Soviet Union did in relation to Germany. It’s not only that the Soviets displaced the blame for their own crimes, such as the Katyn massacre, onto the Germans. The Soviet Union is also largely responsible for the Holocaust.

    After visiting Moscow, German Foreign Minister Ribbentrop issued a communiqué, which Soviet newspapers published on September 20, 1939. “Soviet-German friendship is established forever. … Both countries wish for peace to prevail, and for England and France to stop their fruitless struggle against Germany. If, however, the inciters of war get an upper hand in those countries, then Germany and the USSR will know how to react.” In German parlance, “the inciters of war” were Jews.

    Curiously, Nazi leaders, as we know now from their diaries and meetings, were convinced that Jews had pushed Britain and the United States into war with Germany. The Western court Jews fueled that sentiment by calling for boycotts against Germany; they wanted Germany to accommodate its Jews, though Zionists meant to use the occasion to push for Jewish emigration to Land of Israel.

    Stalin apparently subscribed to the same world view—namely that an international Jewish cabal opposed communist expansion. The Russian tyrant was oddly concerned with world opinion, which was why he split Poland with Germany instead of conquering the entire country. Only a couple of weeks after the Germans ended the Polish state did the Soviets invade their part. The worldwide Jewish lobby was thus a considerable hindrance for Stalin. Jews were an obstacle to him on yet another issue: Stalin believed that a worldwide crisis and resulting communist revolution were near, and Jews—generally capitalists, not proletarians—were his actual enemies. In the time of the Great Depression, the communist paradise seemed eerily close, and its opponents didn’t deserve human treatment.

    Stalin’s pre-war attitude toward Jews was exemplified by his purging of Soviet ministries and high-level government institutions of them, especially the Foreign Ministry in the spring of 1939. He rendered to the Nazis the German communist refugees who lived in the USSR and were overwhelmingly Jewish. Nazis equated German Jews with communists—their original arch-enemies—despite the fact that most local Jews leaned toward capitalist enterprise.

    In a self-reinforcing spiral, Germans thought the Russian threat to them was fanned by Jewish Bolsheviks. And there was quite a threat: the Soviet army dwarfed the German one, exceeding it by several times in manpower, tanks, aircraft, and artillery. There was also the marked qualitative superiority of Russian weapons. From 1939 to 1941, Nazi leadership went full circle, from hoping to win in a coalition with Soviets to seeing them as a fatal threat.

    Nazi army was very weak. The Versailles treaty had forced demilitarization on Germany, and an entire generation of troops lacked proper training. German industry, crippled by sanctions, produced mostly second-grade weaponry. Even a minor military campaign in Poland took the Germans four weeks. Germany lost the air war against Britain despite a great advantage in aircraft numbers. The African campaign was eventually lost. They prevailed against France by pure strategy rather than by brute military force. Germans well understood their weaknesses and didn’t even try conquering France, which remained formally independent and entered into a ceasefire agreement with Germany.

    Even so, strained achievements were made possible by massive Soviet aid to the Nazis. Since about 1920, the Soviet Union had aided Germany in just about every way, from oil, grain, and metal shipments to hosting German military factories and training facilities in circumvention of the Versailles treaty. Soviet and German training and rearmament programs went concurrently. Soviet assistance was indispensable to Germany, which had been devastated by WWI and the Versailles treaty. Austria and occupied France had little to share with Germany, and the Swedes and the Swiss were selling for hard currency, which Germany lacked.

    Stalin collaborated not just with Germany generally, but specifically with the Nazis. For years, he covered the loyal German communist party in dirt and derailed their struggle with the Nazis. Ideology aside, Stalin had no interest in losers.

    The USSR was Germany’s major political partner.</strong

    Their cooperation was consistent: the partitioning of Poland had been discussed since the early 1920s. During Germany’s war with Britain, the Soviets hosted the German fleet in Murmansk and provided oil, which eventually fueled German aircraft. The Soviet-German correlation was remarkable: Germany annexed Austria and Czechoslovakia while the USSR took Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. Germany fought France to a ceasefire, as did the USSR against Finland. They divided Poland, and the Soviets materially aided Germany in its war with Britain.

    The Soviet collusion in partitioning Poland was indispensable to the Germans.

    In 1939, Germany wouldn’t dare to invade the well-known Russian sphere of influence. Neither could Germany do it in 1941: the Barbarossa succeeded only because Russian and German troops were positioned just across from each other, so close that a few German bombers were able to conduct a large number of short missions. With Poland as a buffer, Germany could not hope for a devastating first strike against the Red Army. A German invasion of Poland would have triggered war with a fully mobilized and incredibly strong Soviet Army.

    Germany’s war on the Soviet Union was an apocalyptic endeavor, which the Nazis undertook only to prevent a Russian first-strike. The Barbarossa plan was outright silly: it presumed an advance of 1,500 miles to Archangelsk in four months, often through hardly passable terrain. The Soviet campaign should have been won before the British one, despite the incomparable scope of operations. The planners should have realized that no amount of surprise could enable them to prevail over the much larger and stronger Red Army. German attempts to encircle them were carried out with a ridiculously small number of tanks, and their bombing campaigns were carried out by almost irrelevant numbers of aircraft. German staff understood all the limitations, but had no options, faced with mammoth Soviet forces positioned for invasion of the German sphere of influence. Their evaluation was correct, as Soviet documents show. Thus, in May 1941, the Soviet General Command circulated Considerations on the Plan for Strategic Deployment in Case of War with Germany and its Allies, which was clearly offensive in nature. The concentration of the best Soviet tanks at the border, tips deeply inside German-controlled territory, on the eve of war, left no doubt about the communists’ intentions.

    Only the near-total lack of tactical and strategic command in the Red Army, the near-absence of qualified commanders, and wholesale hatred of communists and Jews allowed the Germans their early victories. It wasn’t that the Wehrmacht won, but that the Red Army disintegrated when the totalitarian pressure on it was temporarily removed during the first months of disorganized fighting.

  3. @ yamit82:

    Yamit:

    I understand that after Stalin completed his big purges of what remained of Lenin’s politburo, which had resisted the pace of his massive industrialization under the 5-year plans, he turned his attention to the leadership ranks of the Red Army, which he learned had been foolishly cooking up trouble. As could be expected from him by then, they all wound up in the cemetery.

    In any case, when war came shortly after the military purges, the way was clear for promotion of the crowd of young officers who clearly understood the potentials for mechanized warfare supported by ground-attack aircraft and vast numbers of heavy and medium artillery, plus the self-propelled artillery which became a Soviet military specialty in World War II.

    Those officers, from Georgi Zhukov on down, became the victorious leaders of the greatest land armies ever assembled, who fought fighting retreats back to the gates of Leningrad and Moscow in 1941, then counter-attacked on December 5, 1941, and in the following year, stopped the attack of Hitler’s southern army group at Stalingrad in September 1941, then encircled and destroyed the German 6th Army and part of the German 4th Army in their great winter offensive. By the time Stalin met with Roosevelt and Churchill at Teheran in November 1943, Stalin’s vast new armies had broken the back of the German armies at Kursk, then liberated Ukraine and chased the German armies back from Leningrad.

    Say what you want about Stalin. But without the Soviet armies doing most of the work of destroying Hitler’s ground armies, the western allies might have been able to get ashore at Normandy on the French coast, but they would have been facing far stronger German defenses capable of fighting the western armies to a standstill. That’s the impression I got from reading about it in General Dwight David Eisenhower’s own history of the campaign.

    Was Stalin surprised by Hitler’s blitzkrieg in Barbarossa in June 1941? Undoubtedly. The Red Army was all lined up along the border, possibly with a Soviet attack against Hitler in mind. Maybe there’s some truth to that. By summer 1941, Stalin had been turning out vast quantities of high quality tanks, medium and heavy artillery, self-propelled guns, and modern aircraft of all types. All of that was in numbers greater than the Germans possessed.

    But the mad dog of Berlin beat the sly fox in the Kremlin in landing the first punches. In any case, he learned better tactics in time to save Moscow, mobilize vast new armies, and he was the man who took the victory salutes from atop Lenin’s tomb in 1945, when the Nazi battle flags were tossed down onto the street by selected young officers of the victorious Red armies which had saved their country, and possibly European civilization as well.

    By the way: More than 500,000 Jews fought in those vast and victorious Red armies, and I understand that more than 100 of them rose to general officer rank — and many of them in the combat armies, not in services of supply and other non-combat roles. In the US Army that fought across France and Germany, Maurice Rose, who led one of America’s best armored divisions as part of Jew-hating George Patton’s 3rd Army, thought he had to convert to drop his Jewish religion and convert to Christianity in order to achieve high status in the officer corps. Stalin never hinted to his Jewish generals that they ought to convert to Eastern Orthodox Christianity. Most likely, he didn’t give a shit what they believed, and was only interested in how well they could command their units. You can’t say that he wasn’t capable of flexible thinking whenever the situation called for it.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  4. Felix Quigley Said:

    In fact Israel should be joining in full measure with exactly this Alliance between Egypt and Russia

    Didn’t know anyone asked us to join.

    Do you know something on this subject I don’t????

  5. ArnoldHarris Said:

    As for Stalin’s military leadership, he had enough common sense to pick the right military leaders, and he learned to listen to them carefully before tossing around field orders for great armies. In contrast, Hitler, a corporal in the Kaiser’s World War 1 army, imagined himself to be a military genius, right up to about a couple of days before he married Eva in his bunker in time for their joint suicide.

    Here I disagree. Stalin had purged (murdered) his best military generals before and during the war. He even trusted Hitler till the invasion. By splitting Poland he eviscerated a traditional and necessary buffer zone between Germany and Russia, which allowed the Germans to surpise the Russians and gain an important initiative which cost Russia millions of her soldiers civilians and important valuable infrastructure so painstakingly built in the decades leading to the war. Hitler was stupid Stalin as or more.

  6. Felix Quigley Said:

    Only a pro American Imperialist which Yamit (when push comes to shove) (was born there is not a native of Israel!) always is would diss this historical agreement between these two ancient civilizations

    What a piece work you are, Darlin. Yamit82 has put his life on the line for the USA and Israel. Besides insulting people who disagree with your political views, what noble have you ever accomplished. But Bless yore li’tle ol heart anyway Sugar.

  7. Felix Quigley Said:

    You will not get an honest answer from Yamit

    Yes you do, just because you are uneducated or just plain stupid to understand doesn’t mean it’s isn’t honest.

  8. @ Felix Quigley:
    FQ:

    I have learned over time to limit criticism of Yamit, who, unlike me, resides close to the Jewish national line of fire and therefore has a much more personal stake in the outcomes of the never-to-end wars of the Middle East. In addition, his knowledge of the Authentic Jewish Idea is much more thorough than I can claim, inasmuch as most of what I know about formal Judaism is what I picked up from the great and martyred Rav Meir Kahane when I helped him edit and publish his magazine in 1987-1990. My own interest in Judaism focuses directly on Jewish nationalism.

    About the Russian-Egyptian connection about which you commented: I think it would be an excellent idea for Israel and Egypt to work together with solid connections to Russia. Moreover, I think that is a matter that Netanyahu ought to take up with Putin when they meet following the Knesset election that will set the stage for a new government. I am sure that government will be led by Netanyahu, based on the solid and consistent lead shown in the Knesset polls which indicate that Likud and its likely coalition partners have had a solid lead over Labor+Lapid and their likely coalition partners. I also think that, assuming Netanyahu does not cave in to the anti-Zionist cabals and their whispered threats campaign over his address to the US Congress, Netanyahu will gain a possibly sustantial lead in the polls from among likely but not yet decided voters.

    About communism: I always have admired Russia as a great empire, but I thought and still think that the main useful results of more than 70 years of communist dictatorship in that country were two-fold. First, it gave Stalin the power he needed to rapidly industrialize Russia. Second, it also gave him the power to oversee Russia’s military response to the German invasion in June 1941.

    Without the military industries that he created starting in 1928, and which he had to move eastward out of German reach in late 1941, Russia never would have had the tanks, artillery, self-propelled guns, fighter and bomber aircraft and ammunition for all military needs, without which he never could have stopped the German advance before Moscow and Leningrad, or fought the stupendous battle of Stalingrad that proved to be the Gettysburg of the Eastern front in late 1942.

    This all the more important considering that most of the US lend-lease aid to Russia did not arrive in great quantities until after the Teheran conference in November 1943 in which Stalin. Roosevelt and Churchill laid out the course of the rest of the war. My own research shows that most of the lend-lease aid to Russia arrived through the Persian Gulf ports, which required the US Army to rebuild the vital railway connection from the Persian Gulf to the Caucasus. That was not a project that could be accomplished overnight. Britain played a vital role in World War 2, but railroad and airfield construction were activities largely requiring the resources of the US Army Corps of Engineers.

    As for Stalin’s military leadership, he had enough common sense to pick the right military leaders, and he learned to listen to them carefully before tossing around field orders for great armies. In contrast, Hitler, a corporal in the Kaiser’s World War 1 army, imagined himself to be a military genius, right up to about a couple of days before he married Eva in his bunker in time for their joint suicide.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  9. Or sit around and wait for Uncle Sam to do something gallant and decent for the Jewish nation and the Jewish state. The problem is, Uncle Sam died a long time ago, and this country is now being run by his homOsexual grandchildren. And most of them favor the Arabs.

    You have an obviously better game plan in mind, Yamit? I would be interested in reading it.

    The fact that Yamit and Dove claim to be Zionists but when push comes to shove will put their anti communism in front of saving the Jewish people means…

    You will not get an honest answer from Yamit

    In fact Israel should be joining in full measure with exactly this Alliance between Egypt and Russia

    Only a pro American Imperialist which Yamit (when push comes to shove) (was born there is not a native of Israel!) always is would diss this historical agreement between these two ancient civilizations

    More power to Putin!

    More power to el Sisi!

  10. @ yamit82:

    NOW ARNOLD WHAT DID YOU SAY ABOUT ISRAEL AND RUSSIA?????????
    ———————————————————————-

    What I have to say about Israel and Russia, Yamit, is what I have been saying on Israpundit for all the years I have been commenting here; namely, that Russia makes a more consistent and therefore more reliable ally than the USA. Unlike most of the dummies whose stuff I read anywhere and everywhere, I regard democracy as a mode of governance that, in most countries, drains the societal lifeblood and decays its underlying culture.

    That is happening all across the face of the USA now, whereas, in non-democratic Russia, that society, under leadership of one of their more clever tsars, is rebounding and rebuilding the military, industrial, and policy-based tools that won them their great land empire. This particular tsar, Putin, always has an endgame in mind before he starts moving any pawns on the chess boards of the nations. I think it is exactly that approach that will win back for Russia control over all the eastern and southern districts of Ukraine, and later, perhaps the rest of it as well. In the process of all that, he will render NATO useless and help cause the breakup of the European Union. That’s precisely the kind of tsar I wish we had in power here, and on a smaller scale, in Eretz-Yisrael as well. But of course, we have no such thing, and neither do you.

    You live in a real tough neighborhood, Yamit, and you will have to get used to the likelihood that in one country after another, all across the face of that neighborhood, Russia is in the process of winning out over the USA. The time has come for all of you to realize that the time has come for Israel to come to an understanding not with Washington, but with Moscow. Maybe — just maybe — if you can do something useful for them, they will treat you like one of their rooks and not one of their pawns.

    Or sit around and wait for Uncle Sam to do something gallant and decent for the Jewish nation and the Jewish state. The problem is, Uncle Sam died a long time ago, and this country is now being run by his homOsexual grandchildren. And most of them favor the Arabs.

    You have an obviously better game plan in mind, Yamit? I would be interested in reading it.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  11. yamit82 Said:

    Now Arnold what did you say about Israel and Russia?????????

    Ties with Washington have been strained since Mursi’s ouster, however, and
    Egypt has signaled that it is keen to renew its relationship with Moscow.
    Sisi visited Russia twice in 2014, once as defense minister and chief of the
    army in February, and then again as president in August.

    Putin’s trip is his second official visit to Egypt, after a 2005 visit
    during the rule of president Hosni Mubarak.

    In scenes reminiscent of US President Richard Nixon’s visit to Egypt in
    1974, Cairo’s streets were lined with signs and billboards welcoming the
    Russian leader.

    Following a greeting ceremony at the Cairo Opera House, both leaders met at
    the Presidential Palace and then had dinner at the famous Cairo Tower. Putin
    also presented Sisi with a Kalashnikov rifle as a gift.

  12. Russian exports to Egypt to be exempted from fees
    Wed, 11/02/2015 – 17:17
    Mohamed Mostafa – Reuters
    http://www.egyptindependent.com//news/russian-exports-egypt-be-exempted-fees

    Egypt’s Ministry of Trade and Industry has unveiled an agreement with Russia
    that would exempt it from export fees to Egypt.

    Minister Mounir Fakhry Abdel Nour said in a statement on Wednesday that
    Russia had agreed to receive a delegation of Egyptian experts in Moscow
    within the coming few weeks to negotiate a trade deal by which certain
    amounts of Russian wheat could be exported to Egypt free of export fees.

    The new measure is applicable starting next June, the minister said, noting
    that the deal is scheduled for signing in April.

  13. Teleseker Poll: 45%:36% Israelis support Netanyahu Congress address
    Dr. Aaron Lerner – IMRA 11 February 2015

    Do you support Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s decision to address
    Congress?
    Support 45% Oppose 36% Don’t know 19%

  14. Russia signs deal to build new Egyptian nuclear plant
    Sawsan Abu-Husain Asharq Al-Awsat Wednesday, 11 Feb, 2015
    http://www.aawsat.net/2015/02/article55341374/russia-signs-deal-build-new-egyptian-nuclear-plant

    Cairo, Asharq Al-Awsat—Russia will help Egypt build its first nuclear power
    plant, the leaders of both countries said on Tuesday, as Russian President
    Vladimir Putin wrapped up a two-day official visit to the Egyptian capital.

    At a joint press conference, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi said
    both countries signed a memorandum of understanding to build the plant,
    along with other agreements signed to boost Russian gas sales and investment
    in Egypt.

    “If final decisions are made, it will mean not just building a nuclear power
    plant, it means the creation of the entire new atomic industry in Egypt,”
    Putin told reporters at the conference.

    The new plant will be built in El-Dabaa, 104 miles (168 kilometers) west of
    Alexandria, on the site of an existing research reactor built by the Soviets
    during the 1950s.


    Now Arnold what did you say about Israel and Russia?????????

  15. One more thing: About the Iran business. Unless you are some sort of pack of fools, you must know by now that the USA, under Obama or more or less any other leader, will never bomb Iran to destroy the nuclear stockpiles or any rocketry they may have deployed to deliver nuclear weapons on any target.

    If you think I am wrong about this, ask yourselves why this government here has not destroyed the known nuclear weapons of North Korea, which, if anything, is a rogue power that threatens the United States, with a hardened leadership that is crazy enough to try it.

    What this means is that, when push comes to shove, Israel alone, or possibly in some joint operation with one of more of the conservative Sun’a Arab states that are scared shitless of militant Shi’a Iran in general and of their nuclear weapons potential in particular, will be compelled either to physically neutralize that threat or be destroyed by that threat.

    Tell me if you imagine I am wrong about that assessment.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  16. Politically-related flapping of diplomatic wings are mostly feel-goods. But the main event is seizure and holding of the high ground, which in this case is represented — literally as well as figuratively — by Shomron and Yehuda — and the key to which is Area C.

    That patch of land, which is only slightly larger than Dane County, Wisconsin, where I live, absolutely, positively, and permanently must be held by the Jewish state if that state is to be defensible enough to survive the Middle East wars which in fact never have ended and never shall end. And fulfilling that vital need can be accomplished solely by it being home to a large and continually increasing population of the Jewish nation. Because the larger the population, the more difficult it is to pry them loose from their homes.

    Nothing else matters other than the imperative which I have spelled out here. Whether or not Israel is a democratic state, or has ostensibly friendly relations with the United States — until one of our presidents follows the antisemitic US State Department in selling you out, or whether the EU and UNO pass anti-Israeli manifestos, or the liberal American Jewish leadership accuses you of apartheid tactics — all that is nothing in comparison to holding on to that precious 1500 square miles of ground fronted on the east by the Jordan River. And then, using that land as base for the next step, extending Jewish control over the rest of Shomron and Yehuda.

    One step at a time.

    Arnold Harris
    Mount Horeb WI

  17. @ SHmuel HaLevi 2:

    I completely agree with you although Obama says ‘What’s the rush?’

    The Times of Israel addressed these issues in its new survey, conducted last week among a representative sample of 824 Israeli adults who indicated that they were very likely or somewhat likely to vote in the upcoming Knesset elections. The survey found Israeli voters have an increasingly negative perception of Obama, and decreasing faith in him to prevent Iran from attaining nuclear weapons.

    Asked whether they trust the US president to ensure Iran not get the bomb, an overwhelming 72% do not, compared to 64% in our January 2014 survey.

  18. I was not here full time in 1965 and regardless I remember well the novice PM Rabin being badgered by Peres of course and also Allon to accept the Kissinger and Ford virulent attacks, blackmail, leading to the loses of record.
    Rabin went to Congress to no avail.
    Today Israel is not defenseless if the PM holds on to the plans he appears to have.
    The present administration led by V. Jarrett and fronted by Mr. Obama is decidedly Islamic or as a minimum pro Islamic. Mr. Netanyahu must not change direction nor the content of our basic rights.
    Mr. Netanyahu must be supported on this instance as long as his plans regarding the address to Congress remain unchanged.