Friday, June 13, 2008

Change, What Change?


"On Tuesday June 3 Barack Obama claimed the greatest prize the Democratic Party can offer, namely his nomination as its candidate for the presidency. The very next day the salesman of “change” raced from Minnesota back to Washington and publicly abased himself at the feet of an organization whose prime mission is to ensure that change unpalatable to the state of Israel will never be pressed by the United States government. The terms of Obama’s surrender exploded like rhetorical cluster bombs across the Middle East. To Israel and its Arab neighbors it surely signaled that whoever moves into the White House next January, there will be no swerve from Bush’s role as guarantor of Israeli intransigeance.

The conferences of the American Israel Public Committee have become showcases for the political clout of this lobbying group. The clout is real......

As Uri Avnery, the veteran Israeli writer and peace activist expostulated here furiously in the wake of this last sentence: “Along comes Obama and retrieves from the junkyard the outworn slogan ‘Undivided Jerusalem, the Capital of Israel for all Eternity’. Since Camp David, all Israeli governments have understood that this mantra constitutes an insurmountable obstacle to any peace process. It has disappeared - quietly, almost secretly - from the arsenal of official slogans. No Palestinian, no Arab, no Muslim will make peace with Israel if the Haram-al-Sharif compound (also called the Temple Mount), one of the three holiest places of Islam and the most outstanding symbol of Palestinian nationalism, is not transferred to Palestinian sovereignty. That is one of the core issues of the conflict. On that very issue, the Camp David conference of 2000 broke up.”....."

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