Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Obama on Hamas & Israel

We have long maintained the opinion that Senator Obama is far outside the mainstream of America's political thought process. His ideas are radical in ways that will significantly damage this nation if he is elected to the highest office in the land. This is not alarmist. This is not fear-mongering. His foreign policy ideas worry a good number of people.

When it comes to Israel, which is one of America's strongest allies, he is not making friends, nor is he influencing people. Well, actually, that is not true. He is influencing people. The problem is he is influencing the wrong people; people we do not wish to be friends with especially given their proclivity in wishing Israel destroyed:

The Hamas leader Ahmed Yousef did Barack Obama no favor recently when he said: “We like Mr. Obama and we hope that he will win the election.” John McCain jumped on this statement, calling it a “legitimate point of discussion,” and tied it to Obama’s putative softness on Iran, whose ever-charming president last week called Israel a “stinking corpse” and predicted its “annihilation.”

The Hamas episode won’t help Obama’s attempts to win over Jewish voters, particularly those in such places as –- to pull an example from the air –- Palm Beach County, Florida, whose Jewish residents tend to appreciate robust American support for Israel, and worry about whether presidential candidates feel the importance of Israel in their kishkes, or guts.

Obama and I spoke over the weekend about Hamas, about Jimmy Carter, and about the future of Jewish settlements on the West Bank. He seemed eager to talk about his ties to the Jewish community, and about the influence Jews have had on his life. Among other things, he told me that he learned the art of moral anguish from Jews. We spoke as well about my Atlantic
cover story on Israel’s future. He mentioned his interest in the opinions of the writer David Grossman, who is featured in the article. “I remember reading The Yellow Wind when it came out, and reading about Grossman now is powerful, painful stuff.” And, speaking in a kind of code Jews readily understand, Obama also made sure to mention that he was fond of the writer Leon Uris, the author of Exodus. ...

JG: Why do you think Ahmed Yousef of Hamas said what he said about you?

BO: My position on Hamas is indistinguishable from the position of Hillary Clinton or John McCain. I said they are a terrorist organization and I’ve repeatedly condemned them. I’ve repeatedly said, and I mean what I say: since they are a terrorist organization, we should not be dealing with them until they recognize Israel, renounce terrorism, and abide by previous agreements.

This statement by Senator Obama was probably meant to soothe the worries of Jewish voters. He is a politician, after all, and the answer seems correct: Hamas is a terrorist group, and he refuses to recognize them unless they do this, and that, and blah, blah, blah. It is the same talking points we hear out of any politician. For the record, and not to put too fine a point on it, his position is indistinguishable from President Bush on this matter. But, right after he makes this statement to Jeffrey Goldberg, he follows this up with:

JG: Were you flummoxed by it?

BO: I wasn’t flummoxed. I think what is going on there is the same reason why there are some suspicions of me in the Jewish community. Look, we don’t do nuance well in politics and especially don’t do it well on Middle East policy. We look at things as black and white, and not gray. It’s conceivable that there are those in the Arab world who say to themselves, “This is a guy who spent some time in the Muslim world, has a middle name of Hussein, and appears more worldly and has called for talks with people, and so he’s not going to be engaging in the same sort of cowboy diplomacy as George Bush,” and that’s something they’re hopeful about. I think that’s a perfectly legitimate perception as long as they’re not confused about my unyielding support for Israel’s security.

What is "gray" about our Middle East policy when it comes to Israel? There is no gray in it at all, and it appalls us to hear him say such a thing. What is so disgusting about this is the fact he almost finds it exciting that Hamas finds him "worldly" enough to throw their support behind this man, especially given the fact that Hamas is receiving assistance from Iran; Frank Gaffney alluded to this yesterday i an interview conducted by Hugh Hewitt. So we have Hamas, which is slowly becoming a proxy of Iran, and they are looking forward to an Obama presidency. But that is not the end of it. He steps on a land mine just a couple of questions later:

JG: Do you think that Israel is a drag on America’s reputation overseas?

BO: No, no, no. But what I think is that this constant wound, that this constant sore, does infect all of our foreign policy. The lack of a resolution to this problem provides an excuse for anti-American militant jihadists to engage in inexcusable actions, and so we have a national-security interest in solving this, and I also believe that Israel has a security interest in solving this because I believe that the status quo is unsustainable. I am absolutely convinced of that, and some of the tensions that might arise between me and some of the more hawkish elements in the Jewish community in the United States might stem from the fact that I’m not going to blindly adhere to whatever the most hawkish position is just because that’s the safest ground politically.

Approaching this one will take some mental gymnastics, notably whether he means that Israel is the "constant sore" or not. But regardless, if anyone thinks this puts Jewish voter's minds at ease think again. Radical Islamicists will swoon over this. In Barack Obama they see a potential ally as much as they saw Bill Clinton an ally, or at the very least, a rube. They will be looking forward to having discussions with Barack Obama, or whomever he chooses as a Middle East envoy (Jimmy Carter, anyone?).

In short, they will see in him someone who will listen to their plights and complaints, and they will expect him to apply pressure to Israel to lift their "heavy-handed" tactics towards the Palestinians. In short, make Israel give in to Hamas and the PA so that they might continue their jihad within Israel's borders. And as for the "hawkish" ones that he alludes to in closing are likely those that do not want him speaking with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Ahmadinejad, we will recall, denies that the Holocaust happened, and has constantly reminded the world that he will "wipe Israel off the map." Hamas is very much looking forward to a "President" Obama because they know that when it comes to Israel proper, Senator Obama is, for lack of a better way of putting it, in their corner.



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