Netanyahu is still offering territorial concessions for “rock solid security”

By Arlene Kushner

My critique of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech at the UN stands.
Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu speaks to the UNGA, Sept. 29, 2014.

In particular, I was distressed that he spoke about a readiness to make territorial concessions for an agreement with “rock solid security.”

This seems to me a very poor time to talk about such a thing – when Abbas is in bed with Hamas and the world is upside down.  It feels like a sort of super-eagerness to demonstrate readiness for concessions.  And it primes the world, not least the Arab world, to demand such concessions.

Yes, there are those who have pointed out to me that he almost certainly said it knowing it will never happen.  That may be true, but I confess to a distinct weariness with this sort of diplomatic game-playing.  I am looking for a bit more candor: we cannot negotiate with a unity government that enfolds a terrorist organization. Nor do we consider Abbas a legitimate partner for peace when he can libel Israel as he has just done, throwing all truth to the wind.  But then, this expectation may be why I am a writer/analyst and not a politician.

What is being said is that his talk about a new template for peace that involves Arab states – who today see Israel differently – effectively threw out the “two-state solution,” as he had espoused it in his 2009 Bar Ilan talk.

It would be nice to think so, but it seems to me a bit of stretch.  There are many in the international community who could well have interpreted his words as simply meaning that he needs Arab help in crafting a “two-state solution” that works.  Precisely because Netanyahu spoke in free-wheeling and amorphous terms that lacked specificity, they may still believe that in the end the “two-state” paradigm is the solution.

>In point of fact, this may be precisely what Netanyahu did mean in his UN speech. For in preliminary remarks for the press today in Washington, before he met with President Obama, Netanyahu said,

I remain committed to the vision of peace of two states for two peoples, based on mutual recognition and rock solid security arrangements.”  So there it is and too much should not be read into what he said at the UN.  His clarification is that the path to two states might be different from what has been tried until now: “we should make use of the new opportunities [in the Middle East], think outside of the box, and see how we can include the Arab countries to advance this very hopeful agenda.”

“Very hopeful agenda.”  Let us hope he means the new relationship with Arab states, and not the “two state solution.”

One thing he was clear about at the UN – and is to be applauded for – is saying that ISIS and Hamas, in their ideology and their intentions, are one and the same.  This is not going over well with the Obama administration.

Yesterday, I had cited Ben Shapiro, whose remarks on Obama’s UN speech I had hoped to run, but which I passed on because of the size of my posting.  Today I will return to just one thing he discussed (all emphasis was his in the original):

Referring to ISIS, Obama said: “No God condones this terror. No grievance justifies these actions. There can be no reasoning – no negotiation – with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force….

Then, speaking of Hamas, the president said: “the violence engulfing the region today has made too many Israelis ready to abandon the hard work of peace. But let’s be clear: the status quo in the West Bank and Gaza is not sustainable.”
Observed Shapiro: “Self-defense for America, but not for the Jews, according to the President. The Jews must continue to pursue the ‘hard work of peace,’ even if they’re experiencing rocket fire every day; America, however, can bomb the hell out of ISIS even if ISIS is located thousands of miles away and largely threatens other Muslims. The hypocrisy is rank, and [the] moral equivocation repulsive.” (Here it is my emphasis.)

This position was put forth by Obama before Netanyahu spoke, and what the prime minister subsequently said directly countered the president’s stand on the matter.  Needless to say, this is not being well received at the White House or the State Department.  Because Obama is bombing ISIS. And Obama also wants Israel to negotiate with the unity government that includes Hamas.

What we are seeing here is a serious difference of opinion between the two governments.   It was reflected in comments made by Jen Psaki, State Department spokesperson, yesterday:  “Certainly we see differences. We would not agree with that characterization.”

And indeed, we see this echoed by Obama today as well, in his statement prior to his meeting with Netanyahu.  Referring to Gaza, he said:

…ways have to be found to “change the status quo” so that Israelis are safe in their homes and schools and “also so you don’t have the tragedy of Palestinian children being killed as well.”

He indicated that he wants to extensively discuss the situation in Gaza, and finding a more sustainable peace between Israelis and Palestinian Arabs.

This is exceedingly bothersome.  No, infuriating.  There is a moral equivalency reflected in the president’s statement – between Israelis being threatened by rockets flying while they are in their schools and homes, and Palestinian Arab children being killed.  He choses not to perceive, or acknowledge, that if Israelis aren’t threatened with rockets flying, Palestinian Arab children, used as human shields by Hamas, will not be inadvertently killed as Israel takes on a necessary self-defense.  That is, he does not acknowledge that Hamas behavior generates this entire situation.

What is more, in speaking about a “sustainable peace,” Obama is making assumptions that are untenable and unreasonable.  How does Israel forge a “sustainable peace” with an entity that is sworn to destroy it?  Why should anyone assume that such a “peace” would bring the end of genocidal intentions Hamas has towards Jews?  And what right does the president have to ask us to try to reach such a “peace,” which would clearly entail suicidal concessions on our part?~~~~~~~~~~

Ben Shapiro had it exactly right:  Obama’s “There can be no reasoning – no negotiation – with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force…” does not apply to Israel’s confrontation with Hamas.
But the really big bone of contention here – the one with the heaviest implications – is with regard to Iran and ISIS.  There have various suggestions, various rumors, about the US going easier on Iran in return for help in taking on ISIS.
Said Netanyahu, going into his meeting with the president:

“Iran seeks a deal that would lift the tough sanctions that you worked so hard to put in place and leave it as a threshold nuclear power. And I firmly hope under your leadership that would not happen.”

Yet there are signs that this may be happening.  In coming days, I will be tracking this.  Netanyahu is correct that concern about the threat of a nuclear Iran trumps the other concerns in this area, as considerable as they are.

October 2, 2014 | 9 Comments »

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  1. @ dove:

    At the end of Kohelet 3 it reads:

    All go to one place; all came from the dust, and all return to the dust.

    Who knows that the spirit of the children of men is that which ascends on high and the spirit of the beast is that which descends below to the earth?

    And I saw that there is nothing better than that man rejoice in his deeds, for that is his portion, for who will bring him to see what will be after him?

  2. the phoenix Said:

    But like it says, to everything there is a time…

    “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven… a time for war and a time for peace… He has made everything beautiful in its time.”

    G-d “made everything beautiful – in its time.” To apply a trait in an inappropriate time or place is a foul deed. It is just so with war and peace. Each has a time, and that time is learned from the laws of war and peace scattered throughout the Torah. Since peace is limited to its own time, it follows that in wartime all traits associated with love, kindness and mercy are redefined. It is then kind and merciful to go to war against the wicked. Our sages teach (Kohelet Rabbah 3:[8]1):

    “There is ‘a time to kill’ – during war; ‘and a time to heal’ – during peace. There is ‘a time to break down’ – during war; ‘and a time to build up’ – during peace… There is ‘a time to seek’ – during peace; ‘and a time to lose’ – during war. There is ‘a time to rend’ – during war; ‘and a time to sew’ – during peace… There is ‘a time to love’ – during peace; ‘and a time to hate’ – during war. There is ‘a time for war’ – during war; ‘and a time for peace’ – during peace.”

    There is much more to this lesson but once you understand the principle other things become clearer.

  3. @ yamit82:
    Funny that you should send this my way now….
    I’ve been reading it a week or so ago….
    I am seeing it (every time) through a different lens, as more insights are gathered (both on the macro as well as the micro level…)
    I admit to totally embrace this scripture, but on a cerebral level (for now, anyway)
    It obviously takes a bit more time to internalize it and truly own it emotionally…
    But like it says, to everything there is a time…

  4. @ yamit82:
    @ SHmuel HaLevi 2:
    My main concern is about irreversible actions. A fait accompli whereby TANGIBLE items are being lost to the Jewish nation by traitorous action spun as diplomacy, quiet for quiet , and whatever other bs title one has the audacity to spin.

    Gush katif was given away.
    The decision was practically shoved down the throat of the population.
    But the people of Israel did NOT stand up for it, ( with torches and pitchforks, if need be, )and they just let it happen….

    The dimmest person sees today the result (not that it was soooo difficult to figure out even then) and ??? … All is well???…. Like most people in the world the concerns are of a day today nature (let’s go on a shopping spree) and as you have commented in the past , yamit, ‘there are no more idealists in Israel’… Which would be the only ones, methinks, that would wish to hold on to the heritage land and ensure that it is Jewish land where only Jews live. And PROUDLY. Not, having to dodge rocks and Molotov thrown by musloid shposes with IMPUNITY, knowing that the so called police and army, will not touch them…..

    Recently, the speechster, as you say shmuel, is still offering territorial concessions for “rock solid security” … And no sign of any impeding ‘uprising’, ‘stirring’, ‘Jewish spring’ or even a modest protest???????

    As hard as I try, I just don’t seem to understand the casual/ nonchalant attitude that I seem to infer .

    Wouldn’t the future generations be wondering how was this allowed to happen?

  5. Presently reported on ARutz #7.
    Netanyahu ate for Shabbat lunch at a Pork Palace. For supper he ate sea food…
    Naturally such item will betray Jews in every situation. Including again abandoning Heritage and Jews.
    Now, what else do we need to know about that specimen to act to remove the stain?

  6. …ways have to be found to “change the status quo” so that Israelis are safe in their homes and schools and “also so you don’t have the tragedy of Palestinian children being killed as well.”

    Ben Shapiro had it exactly right: Obama’s “There can be no reasoning – no negotiation – with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force…” does not apply to Israel’s confrontation with Hamas.

    Obama’s double standard. Is the classic definition of antisemitism

    Unsustainable Situation? Why and for whom?

    It’s OK to kill Jews but not Palis Arab Kids.

    Our Kids are expendable. Palis kids Not.

    Iron clad security? Meaningless “Doublespeak” Jargon.

    “…ways have to be found to “change the status quo””

    That’s reassuring. Especially coming from the same Cretan who is most responsible for the chaos in the region and the murder of hundreds of thousands along with the displacement of millions.

    Obama is the caricature of one who cannot admit to error nor have the ability to say I’m sorry. He is the ultimate narcissist. With him it seems to be pathological beyond that of most politicians. With Obama the pathology is intertwined with ideology. He really believes he is right and infallible and consequently he inflexible, thus compounding error with more error.

    Obama’s six years in office have demonstrated that both the “Peter principle” and the “Bradbury Butterfly effect” are valid.

    BB is worse because he knows the truth and plays along, adding substance and credence to what the enemies of the Jews both West and East have chosen to believe about us…

    I look at it this way. What would have happened if the First Jews in Europe and Greece rounded up by the Nazis had resisted with everything they had exacting some price of their executioners? Yes they would have all been killed but they were anyway.

    Would the Germans subsequently had thought twice knowing that their Jewish victims would resist with all they could muster and take a lot of Germans with them? Maybe. I think yes, the Germans were monsters but rational monsters. Here the principle is sacrifice some today to save many more in another place and time. The way we choose to die is also important and will cause historic ripples of change.

    BB and those before him refuse to sacrifice today to save our children in the future thereby placing our future and the future of the state in jeopardy in-order to preserve some in the present. That kind of faux myopic reasoning seems to be how BB thinks and operates.

    “To pass another winter to live another summer.”