*The following is an opinion column by R Muse*
It has been a long time coming, but under President Obama’s directions, Israel discovered there is a price to pay for aggression against Palestinians and lying to America to garner even more billions of dollars to support its belligerence, greed, and inhumanity.
Israel typically banks on its “close relationship” with America to wage war against Palestinians with impunity, and no pushback from the United Nations, but after lying to President Obama a couple of months ago, that “special relationship” was dealt a dose of reality about what happens when a “close friend” lies to get American taxpayers’ money.
Yesterday, Friday, despite laughable pressure from private citizen Trump, and “furious lobbying” by Israel, America did not stop the United Nations Security Council from officially condemning Israel for encroaching on Palestine land. Obviously, there was a little more involved than “just” the President’s frustration over Israel’s continued aggression into Palestine in refusing to “shield Israel” from a United Nations’ condemnation. And let’s be perfectly clear, the Security Council condemned Benjamin Netanyahu for illegally seizing Palestinian land to build “Israeli” settlements and nothing else; something the Israelis promised America would cease while they were begging for $38 billion.
Of course, a U.N condemnation doesn’t carry any punitive consequences, but America not stopping the Security Council from acting was significant. It was also punitive in that for the first time in history America did not condone Israel’s aggression by typically blocking the Security Council’s statement that Israel’s aggression into Palestine is illegal. At least for once, Israel did not get the friend treatment, and rubber-stamp, for its illegal annexation of Palestinian land or crimes against Palestinians.
The American abstention was no surprise to anyone paying attention to the tension between the Obama Administration and Israel that occurred a couple of months ago. In early October the White House strongly condemned Israel for lying to America in order to secure an additional $38 billion in military aid. The situation was a typical one where a close friend smiles and shakes your hand warmly while accepting a very generous gift, and then spits in your face; it is the kind of friend Israel really is to America.
The White House condemned its “good friend” Israel after the Netanyahu administration announced plans to create new settlements on the West Bank. At the time of the announcement in October, the Obama Administration “harshly condemned” Israel’s planned expansion for violating the Jewish state’s pledge not to construct any more “new settlements;” a pledge that was critical to “securing” the $38 billion military aid package. There is a reason Republicans revere Netanyahu; his word was only good until it was guaranteed the Americans would cut a “big” check to support more Israeli aggression.
At the time, Netanyahu’s announcement was a slap in America’s face because the President had just met with the Israeli during a United Nations meeting. The President expressed his, and the rest of the civilized world’s, concern and regret that Israel continued encroaching into Palestinian territory and undermining any hope or chance of a peaceful resolution to the long-simmering conflict.
It is a conflict that ends if Israel conceded that Palestinians deserve exactly what America provided for the Jews; a homeland. President Obama was particularly infuriated because he had just signed off on a $38 billion gift “amid assurances from Netanyahu that Israel wanted peace” and supported the fictional “two-state solution;” a solution they always support when they want tens-of-billions more of Americans’ money.
At the time of Israel’s announcement to expand its aggression in Palestine, a spokesman for the State Department, Mark Toner, said,
“It is disheartening that while Israel and the world mourned the passing of President Shimon Peres, and leaders from the U.S. and other nations prepared to honor one of the great champions of peace, plans were advanced that seriously undermine the prospects for a two-state solution that he [Peres] so passionately supported.”
Experts believed that the Obama Administration’s condemnation in October was a sign that the President would “lay down guidelines for a proposed peace agreement” before his tenure as President was over; “either in a speech, or less likely, by backing a resolution at the United Nations Security Council.”
The abstention on Friday allowing the United Nations’ resolution to condemn Israel was tantamount to “backing a resolution” and it was the least America could do; and likely the last time America will ever, ever again dare disobey the foreigner Benjamin Netanyahu.
Dirty Don Trump had been conspiring with the Republican senator from Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, to pressure the Obama Administration into giving its blessing to accelerated Israeli aggression against Palestinians; Trump told Obama to veto the U.N. resolution. After the U.N. vote, dumb Donnie took to his favorite media outlet, Twitter, to issue an important press release warning the United Nations that “things will be different after January 20.”
Trump wasn’t the only American angry that President Obama defied the Israeli who still believes he dictates American foreign policy, and activity on the United Nations Security Council. The incoming Senate Minority Leader representing Israel, Chuck Schumer (D-Netanyahu) said, “It is extremely frustrating, disappointing and confounding that the administration has failed to veto this resolution.”
Apparently, Schumer, like Trump and Netanyahu, believes that Israel lying to abscond with $38 billion of American taxpayers’ money should have been sufficient reason to give America’s blessing to continue aggressive annexation of Palestinian lands.
There was support for America’s humanity, though, and it naturally came from the rest of the world and organizations that comprehend Israeli aggression is contrary to Netanyahu’s lying claim he wants peace or supports a two-state solution.
A Washington-based organization, J Street, that advocates for a two-state solution and agrees with every nation except Israel said the resolution:
“Conveys the overwhelming support of the international community, including Israel’s closest friends and allies, for the two-state solution, and their deep concern over the deteriorating status quo between Israelis and Palestinians and the lack of meaningful progress toward peace.”
The United States ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power, portrayed the abstention as consistent with the rest of the world’s and Obama Administration’s disapproval of settlement-building. She also said that the United States remained committed to its “steadfast support” for Israel and was wise to remind the Security Council “that Israel received an enormous amount of American military aid;” she regrettably stopped short of reiterating that Netanyahu lied two months ago to get the increase in military aid to the tune of $38 billion.
Ms. Power said the United States did not veto the resolution as it did “under President Obama in 2011” because Israel was accelerating its encroachment into Palestine and “put the two-state solution in jeopardy;” a ‘solution’ that Republicans completely abandoned in the RNC platform last summer because it is contrary to Benjamin Netanyahu’s warmongering.
“Today the Security Council reaffirmed its established consensus that settlements have no legal validity. The United States has been sending a message that settlements must stop privately and publicly for nearly five decades.”
If America wants to stop Israel’s aggression into Palestine, it first has to stop giving Israel military aid they are using to wage war on innocent Palestinians. Of course, now that there is an incoming occupant of the White House, and Senate minority leader, willing to do Netanyahu’s bidding and continue giving him billions more in military aid, the concept of a two-state solution, or peace for Palestinians, is fundamentally over.
At least now the rest of the world will realize that for a little while there was a White House Administration that was unwilling to allow an Israeli foreigner to dictate American foreign policy in the Middle East or support and defend Israel’s aggression and illegal annexation of Palestinian lands. All that changes after January 20 when Benjamin Netanyahu, like Russian Vladimir Putin, will have an obedient and willing lap dog in the White House and a senate minority leader representing the interests of Israel and have access to American taxpayers’ money to fund more Israeli aggression toward Palestinians.