53 thoughts on “Obama’s Cluelessness on Israel in Indonesia Speech – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. I couldn’t agree with you more on this one, Richard. My comment on reading Clinton’s piece in the NYT was: “Disingenuous, if not downright hypocritical.”

    The problem with Obama is not that he has no guts, it’s just that he’s a bought and paid-for tool of the Lobby. All the hand wringing is just hot air in both camps.

  2. You know, as much as I would love (give an arm) to have a beer with Bill Clinton, I never viewed him or his wife as the paradigms of morality or integrity. Indeed, they were quite transparent in that regard, having been caught in all of those scandals. Although both Bill and Hillary have been in the spotlight for a long time, they have never really tried to depict themselves as humanitarian minded leaders either. And as far as loyalty goes, Bill and Hillary’s bread was quite visibly buttered by pro-IPAC contributions, and in fact, Rahm Emmanuel provided the butter knife. It was Rahm’s fundraising within the Democratic party that made him such a “shoe-in” for the Chief of Staff position, according to Bill Clinton.
    So, I never saw Bill Clinton or Hillary Clinton as individuals personally affected by the Palestinian cause or motivated in anyway (well, besides that which motivates the rest of us like humanity and morality) to fix the wound. Maybe for legacy’s sake, but none otherwise.

    As for the Indonesia speech, it’s time the United States stopped acting like the rest of the world was as stupid as some of its electorate.

    1. As for the Indonesia speech, it’s time the United States stopped acting like the rest of the world was as stupid as some of its electorate.

      My reaction exactly. That speech would sell well if delivered to an American audience since they would be as clueless as the speech shows Obama to be. To the far more sophisticated Muslim or Arab audience it reads as more of the same old standard-issue BS, which is, in fact, exactly what it is.

      1. …the far more sophisticated Muslim or Arab audience…

        That would sell well if delivered to any clueless audience. To everyone else it reads as more of the same old religion/race superiority BS, which is, in fact, exactly what it is.

        Oops! That came off as much more racist than intended. You couldn’t have made more eye-roll-inducing generalizations if you tried.

      2. Rather than comment on whether or not Muslims or Arabs are sophisticated, even more or less so than Americans, I was actually making the point that Obama is too busy pandering to his own voters and keeping a mind’s eye already on 2012 rather than assuaging the relations problem at hand between America and the Muslim world.

        To be perfectly honest, Americans were never given a fair chance to see the truth. The reality is spliced, spun and delivered to them in one, neat anti-Islam Fox News clip, followed by several biased pundits who wax over falsities as if they were true and continue to live in some weird, alternate universe.

        There’s a serious dichotomy at hand where the typical American and the typical Israeli either don’t know what America and it’s allies REALLY do or somehow have justified it with their “America: World Police” or “Israel: Never Again” mindset. This is the result of media programming and a constant influence on the press to make fiction into fact, and fact into fiction all for the betterment of Israel’s image (at least according to the eyes of those purporting to improve it). It’s become such that when one raises criticism of Israel, they are assumed to be attacking a defenseless, little victim State, instead of the belligerent, occupying, nuclear arsenal holding regional bully that it really is. The truth has been successfully inverted before the public. But the same does not hold true in actuality on the world level. How so?

        During the last NPT Review Conference, 189 countries, including a reluctant America, declared that Israel must sign into the NPT and come clean about Dimona, etc. Israel was furious. Why was no one so much as frowning at the Iranian delegation and why was the US agreeing to such a deal? Unequivocally? Because the world is well aware and tired of the blatant double standard the US has used in its approach with Iran regarding Iran’s RIGHT to legal civil enrichment under the NPT. There is no way the US could get 188 countries to agree with it the way it was able to pull off some political maneuvering in the UNSC.

        BTW, China and Russia have enjoyed strengthened relationships with Iran and its rich petroleum sector and more thanks to the sanctions they encouraged the US to pass.

        So, what exists are two realities: (1) the make believe one that is generally projected towards Israeli and American audiences and (2) the truth. Obama in this speech was pandering to the former when really he should have tailored himself to going with what’s easy: the truth. What better time?

        1. ” Shaï)
          I don’t see Shirins’s statement on “the far more sophisticated Muslim or Arab audience” as some kind of “old religious/race superiority” as you seem to think.

          The Djakarta-speech as the Cairo-speech last year was adressed to the Arab/Muslim world, and I guess that was what Shirin was pointing to.

          Well, I’m not in her head but I could very well have written the same thing, as I would point to the same difference if Obama had adressed à French, Argentinian, Italian or whatever audience you like.

          My experience is that absolutely no litterate population comes even close to the “average American” in their lack of knowledge concerning international politics. My impression is that there’s an ‘insular’ and American-centric approach to the world, but maybe you can relate to that from an Israeli point of view.

  3. when before have you ever heard a U.S. president with the moxie to end a speech with the words ‘Asalaam Aleikum?’

    Too bad he mangled the pronunciation. On the other hand, it’s kind of appropriate.

    1. He also spoke some Indonesian, which impressed me. It sounded awfully halting to me but the crowd ate it up.

      I know you’re focussing on the deficiencies but imagine how the far right will crucify him for speaking any words in Arabic. In that sense, it took some courage. I hope a day will come when a president will actually speak Arabic or any other non European foreign language. That will be something.

      1. Actually I recall hearing Dubya attempt a couple of words in Arabic, mangling them almost beyond recognition. I seem to remember hearing him say an unreasonable facsimile of “marhaba” once, and he may also have attempted to say As Salamu Aleikum, although that is way too many syllables for him to manage even in English.

      2. He was at school there at some point.
        You mean Javanese, there is no such language as “Indonesian”, which came into existence as a country when Java grabbed control of every former Dutch colony adjacent to it, hence the ongoing separatist movements on:
        West Papua
        East Timor (until the Australian Army helped and the problem ran away, but not without setting fire to every usable building first and after more than 250,000 Timorese had been bumped off.)
        -and I just don’t know about the (many) smaller islands.

        Not the most auspicious place to talk about illegal occupation and settlements, as Suharto’s forced movement of thousands of Javanese settlers to West Papua differs from the West Bank mainly in that the settlers sent weren’t fanatics, or even volunteers, they were simply rounded up and told they were going to have a new life, if they managed to get rid of the native Papuans, of course. If they didn’t, they’d be left to starve, so they’d better get on with it.

        Obama’s advisors let him live in a world where the only bad things are Osama bin Laden and BP.

        1. Indonesia is different now,Indonesian rather than Javanese language.Indonesia does not need a king like that happen in the Arab.we just need a leader who we choose directly by popular vote.that is why we dropped the tyrannical regime of Suharto in 1998,Our tribe consists of 265, 512 languages, and 6 major religions

          I am a Muslim and we know how democracy.and Islam does not require a king whose throne hereditary.we needed only a leader.and I am not a javanese, but a malay

          1. and I am proud to be Indonesian, where Islam and democracy can build a better Indonesia
            and we the people of Indonesia will fight against the injustices that have occurred in Indonesia

  4. “I’m reminded of how brilliant he is as a strategist, theorist, and speechmaker … and how woeful he is as a tactician. ”

    Oh, blessed we are that even though the American president is such a woeful tactician we have this great American Richard Silverstein, who knows where Obama is wrong.

    And obviously, Obama is wrong in not crushing those obstinate Israeli Zionists who, even though they’re not brilliant as strategists, still they annoyingly succeed in making the Wrong in the Eyes of The All-Knowing(-it-all) Richard and his blog’s Entourage.

    Humility. There’s an entry in Wikipedia. Do check it out.

    1. Richard Silverstein, who knows where Obama is wrong.

      You ought to spend some time outside that so-called democracy called Israel and live in a real one like here. Here we’re allowed to & even encouraged to criticize our leaders. We’re allowed to say when we think they’re for s(&t. No one scoffs at you for it. Only in Israel & other semi authoritarian regimes would a citizen believe that the leader necessarily knows what’s best for the country & that any common citizen criticizing is an idiot.

      This is a snark warning. You’ve passed yr quota for the day, week & yr. You’re not funny, not witty, not nuthin’. So speak yr mind & cut the snark.

      Bibi is not merely an “Israeli Zionist.” He’s a hard right ultra nationalist. I don’t think Obama can crush anyone. But he has MANY weapons up his sleeve which he’s refused to use so far & should.

      1. First, I apologize for the sarcastic tone. It was a disservice to my message, causing it to lose focus. I will try to avoid it.

        Someone doesn’t get to be president of the U.S. if he’s “woeful as a tactician”. Moreover, once he gets there, he has such unimaginable planning and executing resources that knowing “where we need to go”, having “a vision of what the future should look” and yet having no “clue how to get there” is not a matter of personal capabilities.

        Some problems, however, are just not solvable. Tiko (will be solved only when the Messiah arrives). Even people as capable as a long series of American, Israeli and European leaders, each of them much more capable than at least me, having vast resources at their material, could not solve it. “All the king’s horses”…

        So (and this is not intended as a “snark) I think you may be well intentioned but you are woefully and totally wrong. Your whole blog has just one message: “There is a solution and it’s not reached because Israel behaves wrongly”. I’m sorry, but I don’t agree. This is not the case. And repeating this again and again just causes harm.

        1. Someone doesn’t get to be president of the U.S. if he’s “woeful as a tactician”

          Oh, Lord, our presidential history is full of ’em. I suggest you look at the Wikipedia presidential rankings & the ones at the bottom were all pretty bad tacticians. More recently we have Jimmy Carter as a pretty good example of that. Good strategist, bad tactician. Couldn’t get anything done domestically.

  5. It would appear that not even the most powerful individual in the world, politically speaking, can signal any major course corrections to the rocky road these two diametrically opposed sides seem destined to follow.

    To my way of thinking, it may not be the politicians, the statesmen, the military, the weak, the strong, the movers and shakers of this world that count in this matter.
    It could be that only the dilemma itself holds the key that will provide any remedy for whatever ails it.

    As an example, take the Judgement of Solomon.
    Tricky one to deal with. Which woman is the real child’s mother? No way of telling, not unless you’re prepared to turn the situation on its head, work it to your own advantage and realise that there within it lies its own solution.

    See also the Caucasian Chalk Circle. Just a variant on the first but none the less effective for that.

    Sometimes we see too much complexity in these matters.
    This clouds our judgement and diverts our purpose.

    Perhaps, Mr. Obama would do very well indeed if he were to get down there in ‘the trenches.’ As, indeed, might we all.

  6. Richard your sense of reality is a bit skewed.
    Mind you about 8 days ago, in the biggest turnover of powers since the 30’s the democrats lost their majority in the congress, and were very close to loosing it in the house (they will during the next elections)
    The American people voted against Obama, they voted against Obama’s health care reform (which will soon be repealed) they voted against Obama’s non intervention in the NY mosque issue, they voted against his unbelivable spending which mortgage their grandchildren future and they voted against Obama’s middle east policies.
    Yet you and Nancy Pelosi are still refusing to see the reality as is, Nancy Pelosi by stating “no regrets” and you by pushing an agenda that obama can’t pursue. Obama lost his sit of power, the American people would like to see him concentrating on inner economical problems, the congress is an Israeli supportive congress, which means no money for obama’s policies in the middle east, Obama knows that, that is one of the reasons that suddenly a military option against Iran is back on the table as senator Lindsey Graham stated last Saturday (head of which committee is he ?)and if you think he didn’t coordinate his speech with the WH you are really naive…. in short welcome to a different American reality Richard.

    1. # JHornet)
      You write “In short welcome to a different American reality, Richard”

      Didn’t you accuse Richard of not knowing anything about Israel as he doesn’t live there ? Where do you live ? You seem to think you know more than everybody else about Israël AND the US.

      And how do you know why “the American people voted against Obama” ?
      “They voted against Obama’s non-intervention in the NY mosque issue”. Yeah, you had to look for something like that. Who knows, maybe they didn’t like Rambo Emmanuel and Axelrod.

      1. @ Yassin
        i am an israeli who’s living in the US, at the moment i am in England.

        how do i know why ? because i read more then the “progressive site” tikun olam, there were many polls regarding obama’s policies, from health-care, via the mosque to his middle east policies, you can Google them and find out, most Americans object his views and actions about the subjects.

        the link deals with what NYorkers think about it.

        Rambo and Axelrod ? why because they are Jews ? Obama is the president, if the policies these two recommended were accepted by him, from that moment on he’s the one responsible for it and they become his policies and not their policies. talking about it, when the the top crew around the president leaves, that shows there are disagreements with the president policies.

        1. @ JHornet
          “The link deals with what New Yorkers think about it”.

          The newly elections were national in case you don’t know, and I’m not as sure as you are that the Cordoba mosque in NY had any influence on how people voted in Minnesota or California.

          “Rambo and Axelrod ? Why because they are Jews ?” Because I was trying to show how biased you are.

          You maybe read more that Tikun Olam, but after having read you for the 3-4 days you’ve been around I suggest you read some books too. On Middel Eastern history, politics, Zionism and ethnopsychology would be a very good clue to understand the collective blindness that you’re sharing with the majority of your fellow Israeli citizens.

          1. ho i am sorry, i thought the elections were a NY elections only. this is how narrow minded who Israeli’s are.
            there is an old saying about assumption Mr. Yassin i suggest you’ll memorize it.
            1. you don’t know anything about me, wrong of you to assume i read only Right-Wing / Hasbarah central (as you guys call it – sic) published material.
            2. i told you you can find everything using google, you should have listened, it was a free advice from a Jewish guy, and we both know that doesn’t happen too often (self joke)

            just for you a national poll saying 70% of Americans oppose the Cordoba house initiative is available here:

            doe’s that falls under your category of a national opinion ?

            as for Rambo and Axelrod ? biased ? what makes me biased ? your lack of understanding on who’s behind the policies ?
            nice try.

            and last thing, you know nothing of my views, you think you know something about my views, you can simply ask i will let you know, and will not hide anything.

          2. i thought the elections were a NY elections only.

            You thought Democrats lost control of an election that happened only in NY? How much do you know about this country? How many states do you think there are?

            70% of Americans oppose the Cordoba house initiative is available here:

            In the Talmud, a rabbi proved that even the voice of God favored his ruling on the Law. But the fact that the rabbis saw it differently left God by the wayside. The point is that 70% of Americans don’t get to decide whether Cordoba House happens. The mayor & people of NYC do & they’ve already done so. And that’s a poll fr. the Daily News, not the most objective news source.

          3. @ Yassin
            talking about hasbarah central……
            3 years ago there was a research done by an Israeli student, a master candidate from the department of sociology at Hebrew U, who stated that the reason Israeli soldiers do not rape Palestinians women, like most other armies who occupy territory does, is because israeli soldiers are racist. it won the association of sociology prize for that year.
            “טענה חשובה העולה מן המחקר היא שבשל עמימותו של הגבול המרחבי בסכסוך הישראלי-פלשתיני, הגבולות האתנו לאומיים נחקקים בתוככי תוכם, בגופם של החיילים וחציית הגבולות נדחית באופן פיזי, כמעין מנגנון משמוע עצמי המלווה אותם לכל מקום אליו יפנו. ”
            Important argument arises from the study that the ethnics borders are engraved into the soldiers bodies, preventing them from committing rapes.


            you meant that i should read books like this ? or maybe i should read about the history of Rachel tomb as a mosque ?

          4. @ JHornet)
            There’s a good habit on Richard’s blog: You address people by the pen name they’ve chosen and mine is “Deïr Yassin” and not Yassin or Mr Yassin. ‘Yassin’ is a male name and I’m not.
            Oh yes, I know what you’re thinking. You’ve exposed your ‘thinking’ on this blog for the last days and honestly, in your shoes I would be a little more modest. There’s really nothing to boast about.

            I join Richard’s advice: you should ask someone to read your comments before posting. Your ideas are often very hard to capture – but that’s maybe because you haven’t any.
            What’s your point with the rape-story. That many Israelis are racist ? I know all too well.
            I get the impression that books are not your source of information, so I suggest the film ‘Diffamation’ by Yoav Shamir that you can ‘google’ on Youtube, and if you have the courage to continue, his “Checkpoint” is very good too.

          5. @ Deir Yassin
            first i do apologize for approaching you using the wrong name.
            it’s interesting that you claim that i exposed my way of thinking. to me, it shows that you categorize the world in rather simple manner: if you don’t support Richard views, if you dare oppose his statements, you must be an apologist of the state of israel, you must belong to hasbara central etc.
            this way you can convince yourself that you are the one who has monopoly on the truth, and you can block yourself from achieving any real results, if this is your goal you are on the right way.

            the point with the rape story is that you guys are twisting everything, you think Israeli soldiers are racist because they do not rape Palestinian women ? is there no limits to how far one would go in twisting everything ? i still don’t know if i should laugh or cry due to the fact that you didn’t object such a statement. the point is no winning with your manipulation, Israeli soldiers raping a Palestinian women would be criminals, but hey they are criminals when they don’t rape Palestinian women as well, aren’t they ?

            as for the impression you are getting, you didn’t memorize the world known assumption statement, i am so sorry , but you are wrong again.

            as for my English writing abilities, i am doing a good enough job, i think, in getting my idea across. I will read proof my posts, kind of hard doing so while being at work. if you want i can write in Arabic and Hebrew, Yiddish, Polish (I’m fluent in all) i don’t speak french.

          6. they are criminals when they don’t rape Palestinian women as well, aren’t they

            Not what the study said, it didn’t say they were criminal for not raping Palestinian women. It said they wouldn’t rape them because they had such a low opinion of Arabs in general instilled in them that they wouldn’t rape them. In other words it said they were racist, not criminals.

          7. # JHornet)
            “it show that you categorize the world in rather simple manner, if you don’t support Richard’s view, if you dare oppose his statements blablabla . . ”
            I for one do not share Richard’s view on the future of Israel/Palestine. I’ve exposed my personal preference here at various occasions and I haven’t received any kind of Fatwa.

            Maybe you shouldn’t work and blog in English simultaneously – if the quality of your work is as your comments here, you’ll be fired soon.

            Keep on talking . .

          8. 70% of Americans oppose the Cordoba house initiative

            1. 99% of Americans had and still have no clue what the Cordoba House initiative is. They think it is a giant mosque sitting smack in the middle of so-called “ground zero” when in fact it is a community center more on the order of the YMCA, and it is not even visible from “ground zero”.

            2. You need to take a remedial course in democracy. Civil and religious rights are not up for popular vote in a real democracy. Neither is the right to build what one wants on property one legally and legitimately owns. The former is a Constitutional matter. The latter is a matter for the municipality to decide, and as long as the planned building complies with code and zoning laws, the general public hasn’t got a damned thing to say about it.

            But then, I guess you wouldn’t know much about constitutional matters since your country refuses to put a constitution in place (not to mention that it refuses to declare borders as normal countries do).

          9. @ Deir Yassin
            i appreciate your concern for my financial well being, however as i own the company i do not think anyone can fire me.
            Fatwa ? from Richard ? you have the wrong address i assume.

            @ Shirin, how humble of you to state that 99.9% of the Americans are stupid, who knows nothing about the the issues surrounding them, can you prove you statement with any type of poll to back it up ? didn’t think so.
            the matter is not of constitutional right, the matter is of simple human decency, knowing that my action are offending such a huge crowd and simply don’t giving a hoot reflects badly on people, that’s the point most of us in America (I hold dual citizenship) made. so your little soliloquy has no base in reality.

          10. the matter is of simple human decency

            Nonsense, buildings are built according to rules & codes not moral considerations. That’s why Cordoba House/Park51 has been approved & will be built.

            I hold dual citizenship

            That is the saddest, sorriest statement I’ve read all day. You mean I have to share a nationality with this racist moron? Unless he was born here he had to get citizenship. But how did he do it when he doesn’t even know the difference between the House and Senate?? Must’ve cheated on the citizenship test.

          11. JHornet,

            Do yourself a favour and do not resort to the transparent cheap trick of misrepresenting what I say. If you think it makes your argument stronger, you are even more clueless than you initially appeared to be. In fact, if anything it does the opposite.

            I did not say anyone was stupid, nor did I say anything about 99.9% of any group. It is a simple fact that the overwhelming majority of Americans believe the “ground zero mosque” nonsense they have been fed nonstop. They have no idea that the building is not a mosque, but a community center open to all, and they think it is at so-called “ground zero”. If that causes you to see them as stupid, then fine, but that is not what I said, and you do not help yourself by pretending it is.

            As for “common human decency”, when and if you and your country decide to demonstrate even a little bit of common human decency toward Palestinians and others in your neighborhood, then you may have a right to use the phrase. Until then, you are not worth listening to on the subject.

          12. @ Shirin,
            you provide no evidence to back your statement.
            and yes you didn’t call Americans stupid you just stated we are unaware of our surroundings. you referred to 99% of us not 99.9%, not a big difference but it gave you the opportunity to throw enough words around to cloud the subject.
            You ignore the fact that i am an American citizen, and i am speaking in the name of American decency, and the right i had given by the constitution to state my mind. would you like to state that Americans do not have decency ?
            just FYI, regardless of your false statement, and regardless of knowledge or reason, most of the American citizens did not see eye to eye with the president on this subject, that is part of the reason why the dem. got thrown out of office. please do not turn this post to an argument about the Cordoba initiative it’s irrelevant to the subject.

          13. i am an American citizen

            Frankly, I don’t believe you.

            i am speaking in the name of American decency

            When it’s convenient you’re an Israeli hasbarist, but when conditions change you can morph into an American patriot. How touching!

            the right i had given by the constitution to state my mind. would you like to state that Americans do not have decency

            No, I’d like to say you don’t know shit from shinola about anything to do with America & I think you’re lying through your teeth.

            that is part of the reason why the dem. got thrown out of office

            I’d venture to say if there were ten American voters who voted Republican because of the Cordoba House controversy it would be a landslide & those votes came fr. people who were already Republican. Democrats lost absolutely NO votes over this issue. None. And the fact that you are claiming this nonsense means you’re just trumpeting yr absolute ignorance of American politics.

            please do not turn this post to an argument about the Cordoba initiative

            YOU!!! brought the subject up!!! You & no one else. And then you have the unmitigated chutzpah to tell Deir Yassin not to turn the thread into an argument about the very subject you injected?? What a total slimeball you are.

          14. I’m not as sure as you are that the Cordoba mosque in NY had any influence on how people voted in Minnesota or California.

            Republicans tried to make it a national issue but it had absolutely no resonance nationally. Not even in NY. The whole thing is a done deal. The Muslim community center will be built. The mayor supports it. It’s much ado about nothing.

            Telling JHOrnet to read a book is a waste of time I’m sorry to say. He’s far too invested in his own deep prejudices to allow a book to open his mind.

    2. the democrats lost their majority in the congress, and were very close to loosing it in the house (they will during the next elections)

      You’re really a hoot. You’ve proved earlier that you don’t know anything about Judaism, now that you know nothing about a U.S. election that occurred two weeks ago. You also don’t know anything about the U.S. Congress. So a mini primer for the ignoramuses like you out there. THere are two houses of Congress, the Senate and House. The Dems lost their majority in the House (not as you mistakenly claimed), but did not lose it in the Senate (which you mistakenly called “congress” & mistakeny claimed they did lose their majority there).

      They didn’t vote against Obama because he wasn’t on the ballot. He will be on the ballot in 2012 & he will whip the tar out of whichever lose the Republicans put up for their party. I can’t wait for that. You don’t know anything about the legislative process either. You can’t “repeal” legislation. No one voted for the Tea Party because of the Cordoba House controversy. But the fact that you believe they did tells me all I need to know about your Islamophobic right wing ass. And that money that our government spent kept us out of a Depressison & the spending was started under a previous president by the name of Bush. Since your knowledge of our politics is a bit spotty you might need to be reminded that George Bush was a Republican president.

      Obama lost his sit of power

      He did? There was a presidential election and I missed it? Who’s president now btw? I like to keep up on these things.

      the congress is an Israeli supportive congress

      You mean you Israelis want Obama to be a good little boy and focus on domestic issues & stop getting in your hair, right? And that Congress (that’s a capital “C” by the way, moron) is an “Israeli-captive” Congress, don’t you?

      suddenly a military option against Iran is back on the table as senator Lindsey Graham stated last Saturday

      Omigod, now you tell me there’s a new president and new secretary of defense? Geesh, I didn’t know Lindsay Graham was making U.S. defense policy decisions. Thanks for keeping me informed.

      head of which committee is he ?

      NONE, you idiot. He’s in the minority. The minority doesn’t head any committees.

      welcome to a different American reality Richard.

      Welcome to your own new reality vis a vis this blog: out in the cold.

      I’m glad I just banned you. You’re really getting on my nerves. I’m glad I only have to clean up after the comments you’ve written recently before I banned you but won’t have to face your droppings thereafter.

  7. Pandering to his own voters? I bet he thinks so. And of course pandering to the, ahem, sources of electoral funding for 2012.

    So, if he wants to get to peace (or, far, far better, to get Israel to comply with the law (by removing the settlers, settlements, wall, and siege)), he must FORGET RE-ELECTION, forget being involved with legislation (apart from use of the veto), leave politics to Congress, and start making speeches inviting the nations to strong-arm Israel by trade boycotts and other sanctions (in other words, by nation-state-level BDS). He controls the USA’s veto in UNSC. He could get a lot done, educationally by speech-making especially to knowledge-deprived Americans, and internationally by encouraging a roll-back of Israel to the green-line. If he explained why he is doing this and invited American Jews to support him (“I’m not injuring Israel, just making Israel obey the law”), I think he’d have a lot of support, especially among the young, who might even come out to vote for him in 2 years, if he runs again.

  8. You know, I used to be very hung up on the two-state solution; so much so, that when I first heard of the one-state solution, it made me angry because I really felt that Palestinians deserved to have a country they could call their own after such a long wait. Well, you know what? After being frustrated with the so-called peace plan year after year; I’ve decided not to buy into this game anymore.

    That’s what it is, a game, and the principle players are Israel and the U.S. and the puppet Palestinian leaders. The Palestinian people don’t even figure into the equation; they’re merely the pawns.

    I feel sad for Palestinians because they’re up against monumental obstacles and the greatest of them is the U.S. Congress that is so influenced by Israel’s proxies. Obama has disappointed me to the nth degree for the last time. I no longer take his comments on the ME seriously.

    We must move beyond this charade. Palestinians are suffering while this game is being played year after year. It’s time to put the rights of Palestinians above the two-state solution. To yearn for a two-state solution, when reality on the ground makes it so impossible and shenanigans in Washington keep aborting any change in policy towards Israel is to remain delusional and helpless.

    What we should be doing is empowering Palestinians by demanding that their rights be restored to them at once. There are powerful forces denying them these rights and it will take an activist movement like the one that helped end Apartheid in South Africa to free them from this oppressive occupation.

    Why should Palestinians continue to be denied their rights while the talk goes on in perpetuity and settlement expansion destroys their dream? What is left for them, really, if not at least the basic human rights that the rest of us enjoy?

    It’s time for all of us to push for this goal. Restoring the rights of Palestinians should be the departure point on the road to peace.

  9. “That’s what Israel does best. It has no overarching vision of how to get from Point A to Point B. In fact, it doesn’t want to get to Point B.”

    I must respectfully disagree. Israel knows exactly what it wants: a West Bank that has been emptied of Palestinians – that’s its “Point B”. The key to understanding the situation is to recognize that there’s nothing static about the so-called “status quo”. Israel is currently carrying out a deliberate, slow-motion plan to force the Palestinians into smaller and smaller areas of land. At some point, the Palestinians will be forced to seriously fight back, in the same way that a cornered animal must fight for its life, and then Israel will have the excuse it has been looking for to push the Palestinians into Jordan (or perhaps even kill them outright). At least this is my pessimistic take on the matter – I hope events prove me wrong.

  10. I think it speaks miles about the Jewish people that someone like the author attacks his own people’s country and defends that of its enemies. That is his right and I am not here to today to attack him despite my own strong disagreement with many of his stated views. I do find this behavior interesting however.

    1. Major comment rule violation. If you ever wish to comment again yr future comments will be moderated until you prove you’ve read the rules & followed them.

      And you’re an ignorant fool who lies about my views.

      I am not here to today to attack him

      You just did, you disingenuous moron.

  11. RE: “Obama’s Cluelessness on Israel in Indonesia Speech” – R.S.
    SEE: Obama’s Defeat ~ By Uri Avnery, Counterpunch, 11/08/10

    (excerpts)…When the pressure on Israel gets stronger, one has to evade, obstruct, cheat….The situation will change, the pressure will lessen, those who exert the pressure will disappear. A crisis somewhere else in the world will take people’s minds off us. We shall win another year or two, and then we shall see.
    This is Netanyahu’s strategy, too. To prevent any advance towards peace, since peace means the evacuation of settlements and the setting up of a Palestinian state.
    For two years now he has succeeded in thwarting every effort by Barack Obama to compel him to start a real peace process. He has defeated him at every turn, time after time. Now Obama has suffered a stinging setback at home, and a new chapter has begun…

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://www.counterpunch.org/avnery11092010.html

  12. We strive to develop our democracy.Indonesia is not like in the middle east.men and women equal rights in Indonesia

    not like in Kuwait, Oman and Qatar saudi arabia, where a woman is difficult to get equal rights with men.

    in Indonesia, all people, can express their opinions
    we can demonstration setap day, just do not interfere with the rights of others. we can criticize our government without fear of imprisonment

  13. It would appear that not even the most powerful individual in the world, politically speaking can signal any major course corrections to the rocky road these two diametrically opposed sides seem destined to follow. How can he think that we or especially his audience yesterday don’t know this and he can just ignore this and praise them for their unity? Mr. Obama would do very well indeed if he were to get down there in ‘the trenches.’ As, indeed, might we all.

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