Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Barry Rubin: Democratic Platform A Slap At Israel -- And At The Arab World

Yet this is a party dominated by a top-down group far more to the left, less friendly to Israel, run more by the Progressive Caucus types in Congress, and using “experts” who are often openly hostile to Israel. They put in the boilerplate to keep the suckers–and party moderates–happy but also subtly signal that they don’t mean it.
Barry Rubin on the Democratic party and its 2012 platform


Barry Rubin analyzes The Democratic Party Platform and Israel: What It Really Tells Us, addressing the Democratic denial of the change in policy represented by their 2012 platform:

Moreover, this is not some case of working with the left-of-center in Israeli politics. The key issues with this platform go against the Israeli consensus, not just Likud preferences. Finally, while more amusing than damaging, there’s a lot of bragging about things attributed to Obama that are either standard U.S. policy under his predecessors or due to bipartisan action in Congress.
Oddly enough, Israel appears in the section of the Democratic platform labeled:

STRENGTHENING ALLIANCES, EXPANDING PARTNERSHIPS, AND REINVIGORATING INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONS

There, under Middle East, you will find 2 good-sized paragraphs dedicated to Israel -- followed by this paragraph, covering the rest of the US Middle East allies:
Elsewhere in the region, President Obama is committed to maintaining robust security cooperation with Gulf Cooperation Council states and our other partners aimed at deterring aggression, checking Iran's destabilizing activities, ensuring the free flow of commerce essential to the global economy, and building a regional security architecture to counter terrorism, proliferation, ballistic missiles, piracy, and other common threats.
This is supposed to sum up the Democratic view of the Middle East and the US allies in the area? Rubin notes the problem of this odd formulation of the Democratic platform:
There is only one sentence about all the Middle Eastern countries other than Israel! It is of vital importance for U.S. interests, and for Israel, too, that the United States continues to maintain good cooperation with a dozen specific Arab states. The platform is an insult to America’s Arab allies, who have been dissed by Obama as he has tended to help or support their enemies.
Gee, would have thought that the Democratic Party -- and the Obama administration -- would want to create daylight between the US and the Arab world.

Democratic National Convention 1872 Credit: Wiki Commons

As for the rest of Rubin's analysis about the problematic formulation of Israel policy in the Democratic platform -- Read the whole thing.

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