Friday, March 22, 2013

If Obama Advises Containment Against Hamas, What Does That Say About Iran?

In Remarks by President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel in Joint Press Conference, Obama said:
But the truth of the matter is trying to bring this to some sort of clear settlement, a solution that would allow Israelis to feel as if they've broken out of the current isolation that they're in, in this region, that would allow the incredible economic growth that's taking place inside this country to be a model for trade and commerce and development throughout the region at a time when all these other countries need technology and commerce and jobs for their young people, for Palestinians to feel a sense that they, too, are masters of their own fate, for Israel to feel that the possibilities of rockets raining down on their families has diminished -- that kind of solution we have not yet seen. [emphasis added]
Obama did not talk about possibility of peace with Hamas nor that the firing of rockets upon Israeli citizens would be stopped -- merely that there may be fewer rockets.

Aaron Lerner of IMRA writes about the important implications of what Obama said -- Critical sober words from President Obamas – not to be ignored

This remark may very well be the most important thing that President Obama has made relating to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the last five years.

And it should be emphasized that when the President of the United States of America says something at a formal press conference that his words are carefully crafted and chosen, well in advance.

What we have here is a clear message from President Obama: a "settlement" of the Palestinian Israeli conflict, in the assessment of Mr. Obama and his team, will not bring about an end to Palestinian rocket attacks. It will only "diminish" the odds that the attacks will take place.

This position has profound ramifications with regard not just for the security requirements for a "settlement" but also the geographical contours of a "settlement."

Consider Jerusalem.

The "Clinton parameters", with a patchwork quilt of Arab and Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem under a variety of sovereignties, is profoundly absurd and irrelevant given Mr. Obama's sober warning that a "settlement" will not be "rocket attack free".

President Obama is to be applauded for apparently breaking away from the policy advocates who insist on assessing the Palestinian-Israeli conflict impaired by the filter of rose colored glasses.
Considering the rose colored glasses that Obama has been wearing during this trip to Israel, especially playing up the willingness -- let alone the ability -- of the Abbas regime to pursue peace, I assume Prof. Lerner is writing tongue in cheek.

But even taking Obama's words at face value -- why does Obama recommend containment against Hamas?

After all, unlike the situation with Iran:
  • Obama does not advise pursuing diplomatic negotiations with Hamas
  • Obama does not applaud the Israeli embargo against Gaza and recommend stricter measures in order to bring an end to those rockets
Instead, Obama describes a situation where the Hamas rockets coming out of Gaza are merely diminished and contained.

And this he calls a "solution."

If this is how Obama feels about rockets from nearby Gaza, what does Obama really feel about the threat from Iran -- where peace talks have consistently been turned by Iran into excuses to stall and sanctions have failed to stop, nor even slow down, Iran from pursuing nuclear capability.


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1 comment:

Empress Trudy said...

It should surprise no one that what Obama is suggesting is an unending 'war on Hamas' which is shorthand for seeking a new water lever in the quantity and flavor of periodic atrocities the Israelis should be happy to submit to. This is, for lack of a better word, what containment is. But, to be fair, Ariel Sharon had to be thinking along the same lines when he expelled all the Jews from Gaza. He could say "See? This is what we did and what we have to live with, forever." In order to underscore the futility of haggling with Nazis who want you dead.