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January 17, 2008: Read It and Weep

January 17, 2008

Jeff Jacoby writing on the "Death of the Bush Doctrine" in the Boston Globe:

"The Bush Doctrine – born on Sept. 20, 2001 , when President Bush bluntly warned the sponsors of violent jihad: "You are either with us, or you are with the terrorists" – is dead. Its demise was announced by Condoleezza Rice last Friday.

"The secretary of state was speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One en route with the president to Kuwait from Israel. She was explaining why the administration had abandoned the most fundamental condition of its support for Palestinian statehood – an end to Palestinian terror. Rice’s explanation, recounted here by The Washington Time, was as striking for its candor as for its moral blindness:

"’The "road map" for peace, conceived in 2002 by Mr. Bush, had become a hindrance to the peace process, because the first requirement was that the Palestinians stop terrorist attacks. As a result, every time there was a terrorist bombing, the peace process fell apart and went back to square one. Neither side ever began discussing the "core issues": the freezing of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the right of Palestinian refugees to return, the outline of Israel’s border, and the future of Jerusalem.

"’The reason that we haven’t really been able to move forward on the peace process for a number of years is that we were stuck in the sequentiality of the road map. So you had to do the first phase of the road map before you moved on to the third phase of the road map, which was the actual negotiations of final status,’ Rice said…What the US-hosted November peace summit in Annapolis did was ‘break that tight sequentiality…’

"Thus the president who once insisted that a ‘Palestinian state will never be created by terror’ now insists that a Palestinian state be created regardless of terror."


How does one comment on this? It makes the blood run cold.

I do thank the several people who brought this piece to my attention.


The Shas party is shameless. Many of us knew this already, but please consider what is happening now. Party leaders said they would not stay in the coalition if there were negotiations on Jerusalem. And, as we all know, those negotiations on "core issues," which include Jerusalem, have begun.

But wait! Shas leaders had a solution. They have asked Olmert to negotiate Jerusalem last. (I am not making this up.) So everything’s OK. We know Olmert wants to negotiate on Jerusalem and that he has committed to doing so. But as long as he’s not actually doing so at this time, it’s all peachy keen and Shas can stay in the government! Phew! That was a close one. Shas almost had to give up its perks. But see what a little creative thinking can accomplish.

This also makes the blood run cold.


So, what we need, more than ever , is to push Barak into resigning. He’s under a great deal of pressure. Lieberman is being lauded as a man of principle for keeping his word. This is no small matter, and it makes it harder for Barak, who also gave his word.


Word is that Meretz will support the coalition from outside, but not join it. Haven’t heard about UTJ.


Things have heated up seriously regarding the situation with Gaza, with some 50 rockets shot at Sderot and the western Negev a couple of days ago and a growing response on our part. The PA sent condolences to Zahar on the death of his son, and several members of Fatah went to pay a condolence call in Gaza. According to Khaled Abu Toameh, this actually caused divisiveness within Fatah — as Zahar was a leader in the coup that caused Fatah deaths.

But it seems in the main that Fatah is reacting with great anger at the Israeli action directed against Hamas terrorists. For Fatah leaders to act differently would make them seem complicit in the Israeli operations. This, my friends, is a no win situation in which we’re being told that we cannot defend our people.

Abbas is saying that he may resign if Israeli "escalation" doesn’t stop. But Abbas is always threatening to resign. Others close to Abbas said he was thinking of halting negotiations. Threats, threats. Let them carry out what they say!


For his part, Defense Minister Barak is saying that operations will increase until the Kassams stop. This should please be so, but I am not yet convinced. With Hamas’s military wing making threats, I fear that it will get worse before it gets better.


Tzachi Hanegbi, chair of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, says that while final decisions have not been made, an invasion of Gaza is inevitable, because otherwise Israel will eventually find itself "facing Iranian brigades" there.


A mark of the mixed-up world we live in: Noam Shalit, father of Gilad, who is held in custody by Hamas associated groups, has sent a letter of condolence to Zahar on the death of his son, one father to another.




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