Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Yeah. But Is He Good For The Jews? -- Some Random Thoughts

Some Pennsylvania Jewish Republican group ran an ad/ did a mailing warning us Jews not to vote for Obama. "Beware of the errors of the 30s and 40s", the ad supposedly says. Similar less incendiary ads are all over the Jewish press. They outnumber the pro-Obama ads.

Ari Fleischer is campaigning in swing states and warning us that Barack Obama is little more than a 21st-century Jimmy Carter.

People who I know and respect are being told by other people I know and respect that Barack Obama is a Muslim. Their Rabbi stands up and says it, and nobody is going to ask the Rabbi for documented proof.

Barack Obama can hang around with William Ayres and Bernadette Dohrn all he'd like. A couple of old hippies don't scare me. Unfortunately, it seems that Obama has abandoned them for the likes of Zbigniew Brezinski. That scares me a lot. No good can come to Israel if Obama's ear is filled with that sort of misinformed, ineffective bile.

In 1980, after 4 years of Jimmy Carter, I voted for John Anderson. Reagan won New York State by less than the number of people who voted for John Anderson. I never regretted it.

4 years ago, John Kerry proposed a summit of all parties interested in the Middle East. The participants were supposed to take a vote on the future status of Israel. I said then, on this blog, that under the circumstances, though I could not vote for Bush, I could not blame a Jew who saw things some other way.

This time is different.

No American President has been a better friend to Israel than George W. Bush. Its almost like having a member of Likud in the White House.

Despite all the good intentions, what do we have to show for it?

a. The two-state solution, long the dream of anti-Zionists everywhere, now exists. Hamas is in Gaza, thanks to Bush's insistence on elections. I do not believe new elections are scheduled. Fatah is in Palestine. I am awaiting details of how these two states intend to absorb Israel.

b. The War against Hezbollah (and Syria) in Lebanon ended in a stalemate. Israel was shown not to be as strong, relatively speaking, as some of us thought. It would have made a difference perhaps, if Israel had a few more weeks. But the Americans were not in a position to help Israel with that.

c. Every day that Dick Cheney has been in power is a day that Iran has gotten stronger. Rumours abound that sometime after Election Day but before Inauguration Day, either Israel or the United States will take out/ damage Iran's nuclear capabilities. I have no idea how to sort out all the conflicting information.

d. Today we learn that the United States assassinated a top Al-Qaeda in Syria over the weekend. It was the first time the U.S. admitted (or allowed to leak) direct actions in Syria.

It goes without saying that Barack Obama is not going to tolerate Israel bombing Iran, or making prolonged incursions into Lebanon, or building walls to keep terrorists out.

However, there is really not much that says that John McCain is going to tolerate Israel doing that either.

The truth is that we are not likely to see George Bush's like again, at least in that respect. I have not followed the news as closely as I might, but hopefully Israel understood all along that Bush only represented a break-in-the-action, and not some sort of long-term change in human nature.

And even George Bush mentions final status negotiations for Jerusalem from time to time. And George Bush was behind the notion of making Tony Blair a sort of super-ambassador to Middle East peace. And Tony Blair sees himself as an honest broker. If there all these people on one side, and only a few on the other side, well don't you have to take that into account?

Sort of like John Kerry? And no, I don't think that John Kerry can polish Tony Blair's shoes. I am just saying that times change. Or maybe they go in circles.

But McCain continuing Bush's policies? Why would you think that?

Yeah, there is all that P.R. that McCain was going to nominate Joe Leiberman to be his Vice President. Except that he didn't. He didn't even nominate anyone like Joe Leiberman.

No. McCain nominated Sarah Palin.