Tuesday, December 27, 2016
With Friends Like Obama, Israel Won't Need Enemies
By Clarence V. McKee
Barack Obama speaks at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, in 2012. At the time, he was focused on ratcheting up the Jewish vote. (Lynn Sladky/AP)
President Barack Obama couldn’t resist sticking it to Israel just one more time!
Other than blacks, Jews have been among the most loyal supporters of Democrats and Obama. While blacks gave Obama over 90 plus percent of their votes in 2008 and 2012, Jews provided him with 78 and 68 percent respectively.
In November, Clinton garnered 68 percent of the Jewish vote.
Although it's common knowledge that blacks got virtually nothing from Obama but platitudes and pandering, at least Jews thought they could count on him to be a loyal friend to Israel.
It turns out that in the last days of his administration, Obama is showing his true colors — with friends like him, Israel does not need enemies.
As if giving away gains and sacrifices of U.S. troops in Iraq allowing the rise of ISIS and being a bystander to a Syrian holocaust in Aleppo was not enough of a sad legacy, Obama added a final chapter of betrayal by plunging a dagger deep into the back of Israel and much of the world’s Jewish community by failing to veto a U.N. Security Council Resolution that criticized Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory.
Jewish leaders, unlike most black leaders who remained silent for eight years of Obama inaction and silence on the urban killing fields, did not take what they considered to be an Obama betrayal lightly.
There was rightful universal and bi-partisan condemnation of the resolution which said that Israel settlements in Palestinian territory, occupied since 1967, had no legal validity and were a violation of international law.
So why should the Palestinians negotiate with Israel when the U.N. — thanks to Obama — has now sided with the Palestinians? They don’t have to!
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lashed out against those supporting the Resolution saying that the "Obama administration . . . failed to protect Israel against this gang-up at the U.N."
One of the strongest condemnations came from former democratic National Committee Chair, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, D-Fla., who said, "I condemn in the strongest of terms the United Nations Security Council's passage of this one-sided, anti-Israel resolution, as well as the United States' reckless abstention."
She went on to call the abstention "baffling" and an "irresponsible action," moving the U.S. "further away from peace and hastens the likelihood that we lose the trust of our allies around the world."
Writing in The Weekly Standard, former Reagan Assistant Secretary of State Elliott Abrams said that Obama "could not resist the opportunity to take one more swipe at Israel — and to do real harm . . . will leave with his record on Israel in ruins, and he will leave Democrats even worse off."
From the political standpoint, Abrams believes that Obama’s U.N. action will damage the Democratic Party by "driving some Jews if not toward the Republicans then at least away from the Democrats and toward neutrality."
One group that has remained strangely silent on this issue are those Jewish members of the New York and Hollywood entertainment industry who threw millions of dollars at Obama’s feet over eight years and fawned over Hillary’s candidacy all the while professing staunch loyalty and love for Israel.
You can bet your boots that if it were Donald Trump who stabbed Israel in the back they would be in full attack mode. In fact, they have not even had the courage to commend Trump for his support of Israel and opposition to the Obama, U.N. action.
So much for integrity.
It seems that everything Obama has touched in the Mideast has turned to dust.
The U.N. fiasco being just the latest example.
The main beneficiary of this and other Obama missteps will be Donald Trump whom the world certainly does not see as a weak and unreliable pushover. The country will once again be respected on the world stage as a trustworthy ally. One that can be counted on.
Clarence V. McKee is president of McKee Communications, Inc., a government, political, and media relations consulting firm in Florida. He held several positions in the Reagan administration as well as in the Reagan presidential campaigns. He is a former co-owner of WTVT-TV in Tampa and former president of the Florida Association of Broadcasters.