Beware of Serial White House Middle East Blunders!

Yoram Ettinger, News1, Sept. 4, 2009

Israeli policy-makers and public opinion molders tend to accept US Administrations as top authorities on the Middle East. They have sometimes chosen to depart sharply from their own ideology/strategy – under US Administration pressure – in spite of systematic and dramatic US policy blunders, which have undermined US interests in the Middle East and have jeopardized Israel's existence.

For instance, in 1948, the US State Department, the Pentagon and the CIA were convinced that establishment of the Jewish State would trigger a war, producing a second Jewish Holocaust in less than a decade, that a Jewish State would be a strategic burden upon the US, that Arab oil producers would boycott the US and that Israel would join the Communist Bloc. In order to dissuade Ben Gurion from declaration of independence, they imposed a military embargo on the region (while Britain supplied arms to the Arabs) and threatened Ben Gurion with economic sanctions.

During the 1950s, President Eisenhower courted Egyptian dictator, Nasser, in an attempt to snatch him out of Soviet influence. However, accepting Nasser as the Arab leader and as a key Non-Aligned statesman, offering financial aid to construct the Aswan Dam and leaning on Israel to "end occupation of the Negev," evacuate the entire Sinai Peninsula and internationalize parts of Jerusalem did not moderate Nasser's subversion of pro-US Arab regimes, support of Palestinian terrorism, recognition of Communist China and moving closer to Moscow.

During the 1970s and 1980s, until the day of the invasion of Kuwait, the US Administration supported Saddam Hussein. It concluded an intelligence-sharing accord with Baghdad, authorized the transfer of sensitive dual use US technologies to Saddam and approved five billion dollars in loan guarantees to "The Butcher from Baghdad." President Bush – and his National Security Advisor, Brent Scowcroft, who is a role model for National Security Advisor Jim Jones and Defense Secretary Gates and has the ear of President Obama –   assumed that "the enemy of my enemy (Iraq VS Iran) is my friend."  However, the "enemy of my enemy" proved to be "my enemy."

In 1977, President Carter – who is admired by President Obama – opposed the Begin-Sadat peace initiative. He lobbied for an international conference and focused on the Palestinian issue and Jerusalem. However, the determination of Begin and Sadat forced Carter to join their peace bandwagon, which reached its destination by bypassing the Palestinian and the Jerusalem issues.

In 1979, President Carter abandoned the Shah of Iran, the bulwark of US interests in the Persian Gulf.  Carter and his National Security Advisor, Brzezinski – an informal advisor to Obama – facilitated the rise of Khomeini to power, thus triggering a strategic volcano, which is still haunting vital US concerns in the Middle East.

During 1993-2000, President Clinton and his advisor, Rahm Emanuel – President Obama's Chief-of-Staff – embraced the Oslo Process and Arafat as harbingers of peace and democracy. They anointed Arafat to the Most Frequent Visitor to the White House. However, never has a peace process produced as much bloodshed, terrorism, hate-education and non-compliance as has the Oslo Process. Clinton – just like Obama – contended that terrorism should be fought, primarily, through diplomatic and legal means. Hence Clinton's meek response to a series of assaults by Islamic terrorism from 1993 (First "Twin Towers") to 2000 (USS Cole), which led to 9/11.

President Bush's "Two State Vision" – which has been adopted by President Obama – constitutes an extension of the severely-flawed White House track record in the Middle East.

The nature of the leadership of the proposed Palestinian state can be deduced from the profile of its potential leaders, who have become role models of inter-Arab treachery, subversion and terrorism.  The "Good Cop," Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas) – a graduate of KGB training and of Moscow University and the engineer of hate education – was expelled from Egypt (1955), Syria (1966) and Jordan (1970) for subversion. He played a key role in the PLO violent attempts to topple the government in Beirut and PLO collaboration with Saddam's invasion of Kuwait.  

A Palestinian state would doom the Hashemite regime to oblivion, would constitute a tailwind to pro-Saddam terrorists in Iraq and to Islamic terrorists in Egypt, Lebanon and the Persian Gulf and would provide a foothold in the eastern flank of the Mediterranean to Iran, Russia, China and North Korea. A substantial annual net-emigration/flight, by moderate Palestinians, attests to the Palestinians' own expectations of the proposed Palestinian state.

The proposed Palestinian state on one hand, and Middle East stability and US and Israel national security on the other hand, constitute a classic oxymoron. A Palestinian state would add fuel – and not water – to the fire of terrorism and Middle East turbulence. The promotion of "The Two State Solution" proves that the US and Israeli policy-makers are determined to learn from history by repeating – rather than by avoiding – past dramatic blunders.

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