Sunday, August 12, 2012

Romney comes up trumps


Romney comes up trumps

There’s just no limit to how common sense can be twisted with a few syrupy sentences.
Take for example Jibril Rajoub’s letter of thanks to International Olympics Committee president Jacques Rogge for nixing a minute’s silence to commemorate the Israeli athletes slain by Fatah terrorists 40 years ago at the Munich Olympics.
Thus wrote Fatah honcho Rajoub, chairman of the Palestinian Olympic Committee and the Palestinian Football Association: “Sport is a bridge for love, unification and for spreading peace among the nations, and it must not be a cause for divisiveness and for the spreading of racism.”
Rajoub cloyingly ticked all the de rigueur boxes of the sentimental claptrap that has become the hallmark of progressive prattle. He after all came out for “love” and “unification” and against “divisiveness” and “racism.”
Of course, if we take Rajoub’s reaffirmation of goodwill to all men to its logical conclusion, we’re bound to infer that the brutal massacre smack dab during the Olympics was praiseworthy. For those who forget, German neo-Nazis provided logistical support, while the bloodbath was bankrolled by Mahmoud Abbas, today’s supposedly moderate president of the Palestinian Authority.
Obviously the murder of the 11 Israelis (replete with the torture and mutilation so frequently practiced by Arab “freedom-fighters” under assorted monikers for the past century and half) underpinned the “bridge for love,” underscored “unification” and “spread peace among the nations.”
However, as per Rajoub’s lofty broadmindedness, remembering the victims of Arab atrocities is tantamount to “a cause for divisiveness and for the spreading of racism.”
Bottom line: Murder is good. Remembrance is bad.
The above assault on common sense is by no stretch of the imagination uncommon. Indeed some outrages against plain level-headedness can beggar even the most prolific of imaginations. For instance, presumptive Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s reference to Jerusalem as Israel’s capital sent shockwaves of horror reverberating around the world.
It sufficed for Rahm Emmanuel (Chicago mayor, President Barack Obama’s former White House chief of staff and an avid Peace Now propagandist) to announce that Romney “is not ready for the Oval Office.”
But that was mild compared to China’s warning that Romney’s statement could “reignite a war between Palestinians and Israelis.” No less. “Romney’s remarks totally neglect historical facts,” contended Xinhua, the official news agency of the dictatorship that backs both Syria and Iran.
Israel’s own leftist media hotshots fell over themselves in their alacrity to outdo one another’s disdain for Romney and, inter alia, also heap scorn on their bête noir, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. No opportunity to knock Bibi may be missed, and soHa’aretz’s Barak Ravid took issue with Romney’s comments on Jerusalem because his speech “sounded as if it could have been written by Netanyahu’s bureau.” That in itself constitutes an unpardonable sin.
In no time, Romney’s visit became a mere vehicle with which to sideswipe Netanyahu. Our newspapers and airwaves bristled with indignation at Netanyahu’s “interference in the American elections.” Compelling proof was supplied by the fact that Netanyahu referred to Romney as a friend, warmly shook his hand and had him over for dinner. Israel, warned the usual omniscients, will pay dearly for this.
Mind you, our ever-objective omniscients positively cheered each American interference in Israel’s own domestic politics. The most impudent and egregious was Bill Clinton’s.
In splendid sync with Israel’s own Left, America’s then-president couldn’t abide then-first term PM Netanyahu. Hence Clinton actively helped his then-darling, Laborite Ehud Barak, defeat Netanyahu. Clinton did for Barak what few American presidents ever dared openly do even for their most promising foreign protégés.
He pulled out all stops in his unabashed intervention in Israel’s domestic politics, boosting Barak in a fashion unseen since the CIA’s blatant interference in Italy’s post-World War II election. Brashly, Clinton didn’t even bother to cover up his tracks but dispatched his own spin doctors, private pollsters and campaign strategists to get Barak elected. Israel’s Left-dominated media cheered devotedly.
It did the same when two years later Barak waged an uphill reelection campaign. Again, Clinton pulled out all stops to butt into our domestic democratic processes. He committed the ultimate tactless faux pas by telling Israelis outright which ballot to cast. A vote for the protégé he endorses, he averred, “is a vote for peace.”
The talking heads who now scoff at Netanyahu failed to manage a murmur of protest when Clinton treated us like a no-account vassal state. Taking umbrage for inappropriate meddling is evidently selective, as is the very definition of what meddling is.
This perhaps is why our opinion-molders were deliriously thrilled when Obama appeared on our scene to campaign for Jewish votes during his first presidential run in 2008. At that time, taking America’s politics to our turf was perfectly legitimate.
In fact, Israel’s own leftist media hotshots fell over themselves in their alacrity to outdo one another’s fawning adoration of Obama. It all reached an enthusiastic crescendo during his visit to serially rocketed Sderot. Seasoned reporters swallowed Obama’s kitsch hook, line and sinker without any critical analysis. And there was plenty to be critical of.
Obama punctuated his carefully enunciated phrases with frequent throat-clearings, hemmed a lot and hawed even more, yet – among all the hems and haws- he let us know that “if someone was sending rockets into my house, where my two daughters sleep at night, I’m going to do everything in my power to stop that.”
There was no reason to suspect his sincerity. He doubtlessly would make sure that his little girls were safe. What our adulating left-wing, however, failed to ask was whether he’d be equally as resolute to look after the daughters of Israel.
It was a flawless ploy for Obama to inject his offspring into his message. This imparted the highest degree of folksy empathy: “Like you, I’m a dad. I too would feel impelled to take action.” And these sugary supportive sentiments crossed the ocean with satellite immediacy and appealed directly to the hearts of registered Jewish voters, whom they were foremost intended to sway.
Let’s face it: Obama didn’t spare us a day of his hectic schedule to demonstrate genuine identification with the suffering of the hard-luck residents of a small outlying battered Israeli town. Had their sad lot really touched him, he’d have said something way earlier about Sderot’s ongoing nightmare. But he only spoke when his campaign was switched into high gear and the votes of various less-knee-jerk-liberal Jewish sorts (yes, they exist) were judged significant enough to make a pitch for.
However, even they weren’t Obama’s primary target. The hop-and-skip to Israel was incorporated in the framework of a whirlwind grand tour taken to provide the freshman senator and erstwhile community organizer with an instant education in world affairs. Israel was just one more unavoidable destination with the added bonus of cajoling wary voters. The Sderot photo-op became a diploma in diplomatic savoir faire. Trainee-statesman Obama became an overnight expert who could reminisce about his half hour in Sderot.
His apparent compassion there was hardly surprising. What else would he say at that venue and on such an occasion? He after all came to garner campaign capital. Sderot’s inhabitants were all extras in his meticulously stage-managed extravaganza. They had to play the role of the grateful recipients of his beneficent commiseration with their travails.
The rest of us Israelis were cast as bit players in the rock star’s sideshow. We had to be gracious and perform the parts cynically assigned us – not necessarily for our own good. How else could we react when the trendy harbinger of change opined astutely that it’s “in Israel’s interest” to achieve peace with the Palestinians? We could do nothing but exclaim: “Aw shucks! No kidding! Bless you for showing us the light that evaded us for all these decades until your trailblazing persona graced us with its fleeting presence!”
Did Obama really suppose we hadn’t figured that one out on our own? Condescendingly, he must have assumed that Israel hardly deserved anything more original than regurgitated slogans. At best Obama’s catchphrases could be hollow lip service to mediocrity, feeding the masses with verbal junk food.
But something worse was uniquely apparent when he visited Yad Vashem and couldn’t bring himself to articulate the word “Jew.” He made do with meaningless universalist humbug about “man’s potential for great evil.”
Among his honeyed blandishments lurked an ill omen. It would emerge from the shadows at his 2009 obsequious outreach to Muslims in Cairo, where he unabashedly drew a slapdash equivalence between the Holocaust and the Palestinian “pain of dislocation,” and between ethnic extermination and settlement construction (much of Jerusalem included).
Nowhere did Obama deign note Jewish history in or rights to this country and foremost to Jerusalem. After nearly a full presidential term, this is no oversight.
Obama’s calculated agenda culminated in two farcical incidents this year. In March, his secretary of state’s spokeswoman, Victoria Nuland, was adamant that no Israeli capital exists, leastways not one she could name. More recently, White House spokesman Jay Carney stood discomfited on his podium, unable to identify Israel’s capital. The best he could muster were stock inanities like: “You know our policy,” and, “Our policy hasn’t changed.”
In comparison, Romney comes up trumps. No contest. But that’s only for folks whose common sense cannot be twisted with a few syrupy sentences, folks who still know that remembering isn’t divisive and racist, that murder isn’t loving and unifying.
Such an unyielding mind-set is judged untrendy and uncool, much as is Romney’s acknowledgment of the ancient ties of the Jewish people to the cradle of their nationhood. In our topsy-turvy existence, he dared to brazenly overstep the enlightened ones’ mark.

http://sarahhonig.com/2012/08/10/another-tack-romney-comes-up-trumps/