Friday, March 31, 2006

Hamas and withdrawal 3/31/06

I came across an interview with a left wing Meretz voter who felt that following an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank,it is inevitable that Hamas will be weakened and the battle will be over.
Alas history teaches us differently.Hitler did not stop his aggression after Chamberlains surrender.The Japanese did not stop fighting after we evacuated the Phillipines and Mainland China would attack Taiwan tomorrow if they did not fear the US despite conquering the mainland..
Hamas is a religious and not a secular group.They have avoided corruption and sacrificed their lives for a principle they believe in-Israel has no place in the middle-east and that Palestine is theirs. They are not afraid of international condemnation and believe their economic needs will be met by Iran and other arab countries.
To withdraw no matter how the Israelis make rationalizations is, in the hearts and minds of the Palestinians total Israeli surrender to the heroic Hamas efforts.What is needed in their warped opinions is greater terror and pressure on Israel who do not have the stomach for prolonged pressure.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Olmert and the 70,000 3/30/06

However , when you consider that almost half did not vote, and Kadimah received less than 1/4 of the seats (29 of 120 ) this is certainly less than a vote of confidence in Ehud Olmert.(1/4 of 1/2)
There is no doubt that Israel needs electoral reform-31 or so parties is ridiculous.But basically as I pointed out before the elections,the people are tired of war and of the threats of the sorrounding Arabs.Perhaps if Sharon had been on the ballot, the people would have responded by giving him a real mandate for " seperation or convergence".
The in-fighting between the potential leaders of the Olmert Cabinet has already started.It is possible that there will not be a religious party in the group.Question? How long can such a cabinet and government last?Does Olmert have the power and political skills to keep his potential partners in line ? Stay Tuned!
Ehud Olmert until proven otherwise has not exhibited the great national leadership that Israel needs in this critical moment.
It is clear that the new government will proceed with the evacuation of 70,000 Jews over a two to three year period. My question is- HOW WILL THEY ACCOMPLISH THIS given the trauma and cost of the Gaza withdrawal which was only 8,000 settlers.?
Even if they do it piece-meal will they have to mobilize the entire police force and army? Where are the hotel rooms,schools,jobs and homes for such a group? What will be the cost ? Do they believe that the US Congresss will appropriate billions for it? HIGHLY UNLIKELY!
OR, do they expect American Jewry to pay for it by buying ISRAEL BONDS that will be repaid in the future?
Should not American Jews who normally buy Bonds know if their money will be used to relocate JEWS in order to make the designated areas JUDENREIN?


The news that US officials smuggled material for two dirty bombs with forged documents,again brings up the scary issue of border and port security.
The current debate over illegal immigrants highlights the fact of how easy it would be for a terrorist to enter our country.
Talk of amnesty for 11 million people is outrageous.We are a country of laws without which our democracy is a joke.
There is no question in my mind that English and ENGLISH alone should be our official language.Bi-lingual education should only be as a transition for full English.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Tomorrows elections 3/27/06

Over the past few days I have had the opportunity to take part in tele-conferences with a number of sophisticated political pundits in Israel.Some of the salient points that impressed me the most include;
1.The election appears to be a defeat for both the left and right.Both the proponents of a "greater Israel" and Peace now" have been unsuccessful in selling their policies to the public or to make it work in reality.Indeed Likud,Labor and Meretz have avoided mention of these concepts during the campaign.The election seems to be a move to the center.
2.Kadimah is more of a national unity govt,with left and right represented than a classical political party with members, etc.
If they get above 34 seats, they will be in the drivers seat.
3.The people are not thrilled with the level of leadership-trusted Sharon,and feel cheated by his inability to compete.Nevertheless they are prepared to support unilateral disengagement, even if 70,000 people will be affected ( over 2-3 years ) because they are tired of battle.
4.The election of Hamas brings Iran's influence via Syria and Hizbollah closer than ever.
5.The problem with Iran and the nuclear program, will not be solved unilaterally by Israel at this time,unless we come to the 11th hour.
6.The election of Hamas has placed Israeli-Palestinian relations back 50 years.
7.The polls if correct speak to a malaise especially on the part of the young people.
8.The Iranians and Hamas are prepared to wait 20 or 50 years to keep the pressure on the Israelis.Can the Israelis unite and remain steadfast ? Imagine the cost of Israeli submarines,satellites and anti-missile programs that will be needed to keep the Iranianians from a first strike ( if possible). Remember it was the Star War program that caused the Soviet Union to cry Uncle.Israel has no such ability to surrender her strength

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Kudos to the WSJ /More Rice pressure 3/25/06

Kudos to the Wall St Journal editorial today on "THE ISRAEL CONSPIRACY" by Bret Stephens.His last line sums up the "power" of the pro-Israel lobby.
He discusses Robert Bartley ,former WSJ editor who supported democracies all over the world."In this respect ,and like so many of us who are friends of the Jewish State, he was not privy to an Israeli conspiracy but part of an American consensus."
This follows a similar great editorial in the NY Sun on Thurs.

Once again Sec Rice has applied pressure on the Israeli Govt. to re-open the Karni Gaza crossing despite security threats.The Israelis have offered alternative crossings,but the PA for political reasons have rejected them.One reason is the huge amount of graft and kickbacks to PA politicians at the Karni crossing.
Sec Rice should apply the pressure on the palestinians and not the Israelis.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The new Harvard attack on Israel 3/19/06

Practically all of my adult life,I have witnessed both broad and very specific attacks on the pro-Israel community.Indeed it was Saudia Arabia through the efforts of Prince Bandar ,that brought us the AIWAC fiasco in 1989.Their successful attempt to bring about that sale regardless of cost was documented by Steve Emerson in his book"The American House of Saud" .It was that battle that motivated me to become involved in AIPAC and of course to susequently start and build HUVPAC.
Normally,thiswould not be the time or place to document the continued attacks on the political activity of the pro-Israel community, were it not for the report that came out this weekend from the Harvard Univ. JFK School of Govt. and the University of Chicago entitled "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy"
Written by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt,this 81 page (including footnotes)paper, can be summed up with the conclusion that Israel is a strategic liability not asset to the US,and were there no Israel lobby, Iran would not be a danger to the US or the world.
It is a typical European-type liberal attack of Israel as a Democracy.It questions Israel's role and rationale for existence,and questions whether Israel is a loyal ally at all.Is there a moral basis for "privileging " it over the Palestinians ? ask the authors.
It presents a straight forward anti-zionist revisionist history.
Two examples
The authors describe 1300 years of continued Arab control of Palestine as the majority population.
Secondly it states that 1947-8 gave the Jews the opportunity to drive 700,000 Palestinians into exile -.They note that Arab leaders urged them to stay, but the Zionists forced them out.(Thus the need for a right of return)
The report then seeks to relive (from 1982-when the pro-Israel Pac movement began its vibrancy) all of the lies and attacks on AIPAC and the loyal American citizens whose only crime was to be activists with their time,money,votes and committments on behalf of a cause they believe in-the survival of a fellow democracy-Israel,
The authors seek to avoid the entire concept of " Participatory Democracy" where every citizen has the same opportunity to organize and lobby.
Are we to blame if the pro-arab community has tried to emulate us but has failed?
Should we be ashamed when the pro-arab community tried in 1989 to dimantle our infrastructure by taking AIPAC and HUVPAC and others to the FEC, but failed?
Should we be blamed if the American public in state after state after state has supported candidates who are proud of their pro-Israel voting records?.
Should we be ashamed of Christian and other non-Jewish groups who come to visit Israel and see not occupiers, but peace loving hard working individuals,who live by the rule of law,with funtioning courts in a vibrant democracy.Their only crime is that they seek to defend themselves.They see a free press ,womens rights,a citizen army, growing industry and tehnology,unions and a love of their relationship with a fellow democracy-the US.They did not dance in the streets on 9/11 when the WTC and Pentagon were hit.Americans who visit or study Israel don't see suicide bombers in the name of religion.They do see Ethiopian Jews being integtated into society at every level.
This report is so extensive that a true review requires more than a few paragraphs.Although over the last 35 years as the pro_Israel community has grown in numbers and political strength. almost each one of these charges and lies have been answered .Were it not the academic source of these charge the paper would be considered a rehash of old and discredited charges and innuendoes..
This paper is an attack on neo-conservatism and their supporters (code for Jews). Whether the war on Iraq, pressure on Syria,the Iranian controversy, and even the Presidents push for Democracy in the middle East can all be somehow blamed on the" lobby".
This paper is too extensive for me to do a line by line review at this early stage, but I hope those with the time and resources will undertake the effort-It is critical that the charges and half-truths not go unanswered.In addition a closer look at who the authors are is certainly indicated.They are no friends of President Bush.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006



In the aftermath of the Dubai port contoversy it was irritating to me to listen to the talking heads on TV belittle the sophistication and knowledge of the American public.
The public it seems was carried away with the false slogan of "security" when in fact security was provided for by the Coast Guard.In addition,Dubai is our closest ally and defeating this deal would be a mortal blow against investments in the US etc.In a condescending manner the pundits who normally bash Bush,now turned on public opinion.
While Americans can invest in Dubai,outside of the free-trade zone all businesses must be majority owned be Arab Emirate citizens.
Dubai did recognize the Taliban,and had the distinct honor of hosting 2 of the 9/11 terrorists.To my knowledge they still maintain the official boycott against Israel.
The Congress a number of years ago prevented a Chinese company from taking over a west coast port,so that preventing Dubai from the ports is not unprecedented.
There are adequate investment opportunities in the US for foreign companies, outside of those that deal with our strategic infrastrucure.
I find it incredulous that we do not have the technology to inspect each of the millions of containers that enter our ports annually.
In fact with the report coming out that less than 5% of containers are examined , it is time to insist that at a time certain point 100% will be examined.
The authors of the report emphasize that we should not confuse "vulnerability " with threat.True enough- however if on 9/10 we had a report on commercial aircraft safety and security ,and proclaimed vulnerability is only theoretical, would that have helped us,or prevented anything on 9/11.
We are on a war footing and its time we acted thusly in regard to port security.
It is crazy not to place our ports under the same security precations that we use at airports.That includes a total American ownership of these facilities.I have no fear that foreign companies will run away from the US.We are still the economic capitol of the world with the greatest financial and political stability.
Of course without us ,who will protect Dubai? Kuwait? THE SAUDIS?
One last thought-if G-d forbid a nuclear weapon delivered by container exploded in one of our cities,how many hundreds of millions or billions of dollars would we have to spend for the cleanup etc.Why not spend a fraction of that for prevention?

Thursday, March 09, 2006

An American Entity 3/9/06

What is the meaning of an "AMERICAN ENTITY?"
I have been informed that I erred in claiming that the Dubai Port Corp was actually involved in providing security-which in fact would be handled by the US Coast Guard. In addition most people do not realize that the majority of US ports are run by foreign companies.
Nevertheless. without knowing the inner workings of port administration,I would rather err on the side of caution and suspicion when our security is even remotely involved.
So now that the Dubai Govt/Corp is transferring their US ports to an American entity-What does this really mean?

An American Entity 3/9/06

What is the meaning of an "AMERICAN ENTITY?"
I have been informed that I erred in claiming that the Dubai Port Corp was actually involved in providing security-which in fact would be handled by the US Coast Guard. In addition most people do not realize that the majority of US ports are run by foreign companies.
Nevertheless. without knowing the inner workings of port administration,I would rather err on the side of caution and suspicion when our security is even remotely involved.
So now that the Dubai Govt/Corp is transferring their US ports to an American entity-What does this really mean?

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

No more rooms for PACS / the Dubai Port Controversy 3/8/06

One of the unfortunate byproducts of the lobbying scandals is the fact that the Senate Ethics Committee will not allow Political Action Committees to use Senate rooms for luncheons or meetings with Senators.
For years our PAC has gone to Washingtom for a day of meetings and briefings on our issues.To those who have gone on these day events,it was a great lesson in participatory democracy.PAC's will have to go back to the drawing boards.


The Dubai port issue is a perfect example of politicians scrambling to show who is stronger on security issues.Putting aside the credentials of the company.and that it is an Arab one at that, the underlying issue is whether any industry associated with our security should be controlled by foreigners,especially when that corporatiion is government owned.Even more so when Dubai supports the boycott of Israel.
Our sensitivity in this regard was seen only a few months ago when public opinion killed the attempted takeover of a major oil company( unical) by a Chinese company,GOVT OWNED.
The President seems to have lost his political antennae on this and other post- election issues.
He wasted good political capital on his Social Security reform which went nowhere- while he failed to tackle the more popular tax cuts that should be made permanent.
He was saved from a faulty Supreme Court nominee by recouping with a terrific judicial nominee also a solid conservative.
It would be a shame and mistake for the President to use his first veto on the port issue.The Congress is to be blamed for not passing legislation banning "earmarks" which allows billions of dollars to be wasted.Toward that end the line-item veto that The President requested should be passed and used.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Hitler and extremism / Unilateral steps-3/07/06

I have today returned from a three week trip to Israel and S Africa.The former was primarily to attend the Jewish Agency Gov Board.Following that , we left for holiday in S. Africa, Zambia and Botswana.Seventeen years ago I was part of a small fact-finding mission to S. Africa to examine the effects of apartheid,However then ,I did not have time for a safari or other enjoyable tasks that my wife and I were able to undertake this time.
While visitng the small but moving Holocaust Center in Capetown,I noted the following words on the wall describing Hitler' s rise to power."Many assumed that Hitler's extremism would be tempered by the responsibility of government".
Sadly it describes Hamas today, and well meaning individuals around the world, JUST DON'T GET IT!
When Hamas says that they will destroy Israel, which they do not recognize in the first place,believe that they are sincere-BECAUSE-this is their basic religious belief,and they are prepared to to die for it.


The announcement by acting PM Ehud Olmert of a further extensive withdrawal from much the settlements should he win,cannot be anything but a happy move for Hamas.
For while the Israelis will feel a sense of accomplishment, the U.S. will not grant the Israelis the full recognition they desire regarding a final border.Therefore, the withdrawal line will become the starting point for PA-Israel negotiations.Absent an iron-clad American written agreement a unilateral withdrawal makes no sense and will only lead to greater loss of Israeli life in the future. Surely on Jerusalem the U.S. will revert to the Clinton concept of division.
As I predicted a few weeks ago the polls are starting to shift away from Kadimah's path.Whether this shift will contue is too early to tell,but Hamas will be Netanyahu's best campaigner-in the sense that people will not trust Olmert to stand up to HAMAS .The rocket attack on a critical area in Port Ashkelon, IS EXACTLY WHAT I WROTE ABOUT A FEW WEEKS AGO,as a cause for serious concern.