by Barry Rubin
When you barely scratch the surface of what's being said by the Obama Administration and supporters about its current one-way feud with
For example, here's Thomas Friedman producing a much-quoted statement where no one seems to see the glaring omission:
"This tiff actually reflects a tectonic shift that has taken place beneath the surface of Israel-U.S. relations. I'd summarize it like this: In the last decade, the Israeli-Palestinian peace process — for
Typically, of course, he leaves out the second main party: the Palestinians. Imagine, in a conflict between two sides, the attitude of one of them has been completely left out of this formula. So I would add: for the Palestinians (or, if you wish, Palestinian Authority) the peace process has gone from a necessity to a nuisance.
And by the way: can anyone make a serious argument that obtaining a quick peace agreement between
Moreover, as the
The nonsensical view of the situation being pushed by the White House and its supporters can only be maintained by massive censorship of the facts.
Now we have the first fruits of
Also censored out of history was the U.S.-Israel agreement last October to let
And how about speaking as if the only thing blocking a comprehensive peace was Israeli construction of apartments in
And no credit whatsoever is being given
The administration can twist the facts as it wishes but why should the mass media go along with these distortions?
It is starting to seem conceivable that the Obama Administration will back sanctions on
I know that people have come up with many reasons for this confrontation--ranging from visceral and ideological hatred of Israel, to a cover for failure over sanctions on Iran, to a way to justify sanctions on Iran, to a way (rather misguided!) to protect American troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. But here's the bottom line analysis:
From a rational national interests standpoint, from a political standpoint to win support for the administration, from a standpoint of getting the administration's first foreign policy victory, from the standpoint of trying to strengthen support for U.S. policies in the Muslim-majority and Arabic-speaking world, this tactic makes no sense.
And for a
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal.
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