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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Barack Obama to Israel: Put Terrorism into Context

According to a press release from the Republican Jewish Coalition, here is part of a statement released from Barack Obama today in Jordan.

"Senator Obama in Jordan today said that terrorism makes 'Israelis want to dig in and simply think about their own security regardless of what's going on beyond their borders.'
Or as the Republican Jewish Coalition points out...

In essence, Senator Obama is asking Israelis and the American Jewish community to put terrorism in context. Senator Obama continues his rhetoric of moral equivalence by implying that measures taken by Israel to protect its citizens are on par with the Palestinians' frustration at border checkpoints. Senator Obama's attempt at even-handed diplomacy fails to hold Palestinians accountable for using terrorist tactics against innocent Israeli citizens as a means to achieve their ends."

Now, as a staunch defender of Israel, this is not the first time I have heard such a demand of Israel. I will reply to Senator Obama the way I always do. In a perfect world, Israel would be able to look at each decision and measure the global effect. Unfortunately, Israel is strategically located so that anywhere she turns she finds mortal enemies. It is of course easy to say that each country be concerned with global geopolitical decisions when making national security decisions. Unfortunately, that is not so easy in practice for the country of Israel.

This Jewish state in the Middle of Islamic states, most of which are ruled by tyrants and monarchs has its security threatened at all times. For Israel, its own security is always the most important thing, and in the words of Vince Lombardi, the only thing.

The sort of moral relativism that Senator Obama just engaged in simply refuses to recognize the reality of what Israel deals with on a daily basis. Just today a terrorist attempted to ram his vehicle into a crowd in Israel. Furthermore, Barack Obama asks of Israel something he would never demand of himself and his nation. The same person that asks Israel to take a worldview before making national security decisions, also is attempting to cut off free trade in order to save domestic jobs. Certainly, Barack Obama's protectionist free trade policy doesn't pass the test of the world view that he asks of Israel.

Every country in the world does and should take a self interest view when making national security decisions. The idea that a country should put the world view ahead of its own national interests is naive and ridiculous. That view is even more absurd given the geographic position of Israel. It is one thing to say that a country should respect the world view when making national security decisions. It is quite another when that same country is under constant threat of attack.

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