Sen. Barack Obama isn't quite sure how he feels
about the lopsided situation between Israel and Palestine. Less than two weeks
after Obama gloated to AIPAC about his love for Israel, he unexpectedly admitted
the truth while campaigning in Iowa recently. "[N]obody is suffering more
than the Palestinian people..." said Obama, "the Israeli government
must make difficult concessions for the peace process to restart..." The
truth hurts indeed, and Obama has been feeling the wrath of the pro-Israel activists
since his statement last week.
Nonetheless, Obama shouldn't be trusted on the issue. While Rep. Dennis Kucinich
hired avid pro-Palestine advocate Noura Erakat to sit on the Oversight and Government
Reform Committee, Obama has been backpedaling assuring AIPAC and others that
he is unwavering in his support for Israel's continued bullying of Iran and
occupation of Palestine.
"[Iran] is a genuine threat" to the United States and Israel, expressed
Obama at a forum sponsored by AIPAC on March 12 in Washington D.C., only one
day after his lucid remarks in Iowa. At the event Obama also reiterated that
he would not rule out the use of force in disarming Iran, a position shared
by the other leading Democratic presidential contenders, Hillary Clinton and
Earlier this month on March 2, Obama spoke at an AIPAC Policy Forum in Chicago
where he clearly laid out his full stance on Israel, promising he would not
alter the U.S./Israeli relationship. "[W]e must preserve our total commitment
to our unique defense relationship with Israel by fully funding military assistance
and continuing work on the Arrow and related missile defense programs,"
he said. "This would help Israel maintain its military edge and deter and
repel attacks from as far as Tehran and as close as Gaza."
So while Obama admits that Palestinians suffer more than Israelis, he still
won't do a damn thing to balance out the asymmetrical relationship. In fact,
Obama has made it clear that U.S. taxpayers will continue to foot the bill for
Israel's ever-growing arsenal of weapons and missiles if he is indeed elected
president in 2008.
In Obama's March 2 speech, he even had the audacity to declare that "we
have to press for enforcement of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701, which
demands the cessation of arms shipments to Hezbollah, a resolution which Syria
and Iran continue to disregard. Their support and shipment of weapons to Hezbollah
and Hamas, which threatens the peace and security in the region, must end."
If Obama is truly interested in invoking U.N. Resolutions to prop up his case
for a military assault on Iran, we may as well note the some 65 Resolutions
the senator has blatantly ignored that condemn Israel's actions past and
present including Resolution 242 which calls for the withdraw of "Israeli
armed forces from territories occupied" during the Six-Day War of 1967.
Sen. Obama, despite his acknowledgment of Palestinian suffering, has little
to offer those who recognize that lasting peace in the Middle East will only
begin when the U.S. radically alters its relationship with Israel. Continued
funding of Israel's illegal occupation won't end the violence it'll only