Obama Rewrites U.S. Foreign Policy

June 24, 2008 · Filed Under Foreign Policy, Gaffe ·  

Barack Obama is already blazing a trail with his foreign policy efforts, as he proclaimed, “Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided.”

This was a blunder of multiple levels. As he promised U.S. support for Israel’s claims to all of Jerusalem, Obama not only offended the world’s 325 million Arabs and 1.5 billion Muslims, but he also changed U.S. foreign policy of six decades.

In promising U.S. support of Israel’s claims to all of Jerusalem, Obama couldn’t have picked a better way to offend the world’s 325 million Arabs and 1.5 billion Muslims. Israel’s 41-year stewardship of the Holy City has alarmed Muslims from Morocco to Malaysia. Upon seizing East Jerusalem in 1967, Israel razed the ancient Muslim Maghribi quarter to make room for Jewish worshipers at the Western Wall. Since 1991, Israel has steadily ratcheted down Palestinians’ access to Muslim and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem. Most West Bank Palestinians can no longer worship there.

Obama’s unnecessary promise deviates from nearly six decades of U.S. foreign policy that held Jerusalem to be occupied territory under international law. This long tradition was first broken in 2004 when President Bush acknowledged Israel’s demands to keep its illegal West Bank settlements in a final peace agreement, including those around Jerusalem. Thus Obama, a Harvard-trained lawyer, would both scorn the international legal system’s foundational principle - the inadmissibility of territorial acquisition by war - and echo President Bush, whose failed Middle East policies he has rightly deplored.

More details at http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/06/17/EDOQ11A1L3.DTL.

Does Jimmy Carter see Obama in the Mirror?

May 16, 2008 · Filed Under Foreign Policy, Jimmy Carter ·  

There is a post at TheAtlantic.com that the White House reports that President Bush was referencing Jimmy Carter and his meeting with Hamas when he said the following:

“Some seem to believe we should negotiate with terrorists and radicals, as if some ingenious argument will persuade them they have been wrong all along,” Bush told the Knesset in Jerusalem on May 15, 2008.”

“We have heard this foolish delusion before,” he said. “As Nazi tanks crossed into Poland in 1939, an American senator declared: ‘Lord, if only I could have talked to Hitler, all of this might have been avoided.’

We have an obligation to call this what it is — the false comfort of appeasement, which has been repeatedly discredited by history.”

Interesting that this comment put Obama on the defensive.