Monday, June 8, 2009

Time to hear from a seasoned leader

Netanyahu to give major speech next week...

I'm looking forward to actually hearing from a tested leader. Like him or not, there is no denying Benjamin Netanyahu has faced the fire of adversity in his personal and professional life. He understands what's at stake and is not wasting his time engaging in silly and naive politics. Over the course of his career in fighting terrorism, Netanyahu served in the IDF, wrote books to on the subject, and lost a brother in the fight against. On the other hand, our inspiring leader has chosen the course of Neville Chamberlain/Lord Londonderry - which is peace at all costs. The entire blue print of the Nazi movement was written in Mein Kampf. It was ignored. Austria was absorbed - ignored. Czechoslovakia forcibly dissolved and occupied - ignored, and Poland was invaded - finally not ignored. Since appeasement and capitulation are the name of the day, I recommend reading Making Friends with Hitler by Ian Kershaw. The FT has a very nice write up on it from 2004. Here is the link. One of the chilling aspects of the book is the picture of SS figurine sitting on Lord Londonderry's mantel. The porcelain statue was made at the infamous Allach Porcelain works at Dachau which used slave labour to make objects to adorn the Nazi home. Run by Himmler's SS, this factory turned out a range of figures as well as tableware and other ornaments designed to demonstrate an attachment to the Nazi regime. The Mount Stewart figure was a gift from one of Lord Londonderry's house guests during June 1936, the Nazi diplomat Joachim von Ribbentrop, who played such an important role in bringing about the Second World War. Ribbentrop was convicted as a war criminal at Nuremberg and hanged. Makes me wonder if the White House will soon have porcelain statue an Iranian Revolutionary Guard sitting on the mantle.

Unlike America and The One, Israel does not have the luxury of pandering to a nuclear Iran, nor does he miss the reality that a nuclear Iran can and will proliferate nuclear weapons to groups like Hezbollah, Hams, and Al-Qaeda. Iran has already been implicated in helping Iraqi insurgents kill American soldiers in Iraq through training and material support. Why should we think they will act any differently with nukes. I find it so hard to believe that President Obama, the Commander in Chief of the United States Military, observed the 65th anniversary of the D-Day landing at Normandy and yet seems to have completely missed the significance of the entire invasion and what it meant for the free world. The same evil that drove the United States to take such a large gamble on the shores of France has manifested itself in North Korea and Iran. This time, it is armed with two very frightening characteristics - Nuclear weapons and the will to use them.

Netanyahu wants "maximum understanding" with U.S

Sun Jun 7, 2009 11:15am EDT

By Jeffrey Heller

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday he would strive for "maximum understanding" with Washington on peace issues but gave no sign he intends to bow to its demand to halt settlement expansion.

Under pressure from U.S. President Barack Obama over settlements in the occupied West Bank and Palestinian statehood, which Netanyahu has not endorsed, the Israeli leader said he would set out his policies in a major speech later this month.

"I want to make clear, it is our intention to achieve peace with the Palestinians and with the countries of the Arab world while attempting to reach maximum understanding with the United States and our friends in the world," Netanyahu said.

"I aspire to a stable peace based on the solid foundations of the security of the state of Israel and its citizens," he told his right-wing cabinet at its weekly meeting.

By mentioning security, Netanyahu again highlighted an issue he has called paramount to Israel's approach to peace with the Palestinians, whom he has said should have self-government but only limited powers of sovereignty.

In a speech on Thursday to Muslims in which he reaffirmed a U.S. commitment to the creation of a Palestinian state, Obama said Washington "does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements."

Despite the rare rift with the United States, Israel's main ally, Israeli officials said Netanyahu has no intention of risking the collapse of his coalition by ceasing all settlement activity in the West Bank.

Nabil Abu Rdainah, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, urged Netanyahu to announce his acceptance of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, a settlement freeze and "a return to serious negotiations."

Half a million Jews live in settlement blocks built in the West Bank and Arab East Jerusalem, areas where, with the Gaza Strip, Palestinians want to establish a state.


Obama's Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, is to begin a visit to Israel and the West Bank on Monday. Western and Israeli officials said the White House was formulating a blueprint for a renewed peace process that could be presented early next month.

Without giving a date, Netanyahu said "Next week, I will make a major diplomatic speech in which I will present to the citizens of Israel our principles for achieving peace and security."

Israel Radio said he would deliver the address on June 14. A Netanyahu spokesman said he could not confirm the date.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak, head of the center-left Labour Party in Netanyahu's government, held out the possibility of a softening in Israel's position on Palestinian statehood in return for an easing of U.S. pressure over settlements.

Referring to a 2003, U.S.-endorsed peace plan, Barak told reporters the government should declare it is "committed to all previous agreements signed by previous governments, including the 'road map', whose goal is two states for two peoples."

"I believe such a position will bring the differences over settlements back to normal proportions," he said.

(Editing by Tim Pearce)

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