A post by Maynard.
I was flashing back to the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, the hatemonger who was so inspirational in so many ways to President Obama, and to whom Obama dedicated so much of his time and money as an adult. For some reason, our nation didn’t want to acknowledge what was obvious prior to the election. Maybe it’s time to revisit the obvious.
In early 2008, when Obama was an ascending candidate, I visited the United Church of Christ website and retrieved a pamphlet entitled, “A Message From our Pastor, Rev. Dr. Jeremiah A. Wright, Jr., Senior Pastor”. This document was shortly thereafter removed (I wonder why?), but I’ve got my copy here. It’s mostly a political diatribe and a call for the impeachment of George Bush (please don’t tell the IRS about the politicking, or Barry’s church might lose its tax-free status). Midway through, it weighs in on Israel. Here’s what it says:
The Israelis have illegally occupied Palestinian territories for almost 40 years now. It took a divestment campaign to wake the business community up concerning the South Africa issue. Divestment has now hit the table again as a strategy to wake the business community up and to wake Americans up concerning the injustice and the racism under which the Palestinians have lived because of Zionism.
The Divestment issue will hit the floor during this month’s General Synod. Divesting dollars from businesses and banks that do business with Israel is the new strategy being proposed to wake the world up concerning the racism of Zionism. That Divestment issue won’t make the press either, however.
So Obama stood in the leadership hierarchy of an organization that equated Zionism with racism and aggressively promoted disinvestment from Israel. We knew it, and the nation yawned. We made excuses. “That’s the pathway to power in Chicago,” we said. “Obama doesn’t believe in that stuff.”
Ignoring the inflammatory rhetoric, what’s the expressed goal of Rev. Wright? We’re working to, he says, to end Israel’s “illegal occupation” of the Palestinian territories.
And now Obama announces, “We believe the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps, so that secure and recognized borders are established for both states.” Is this not a sugarcoated translation of Rev. Wright’s call to arms?
Obama and his defenders rushed back to assure us that Obama’s speech was “misunderstood”. “Let me reaffirm what ’1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps’ means,” Obama told us.
This is a Herman Cain moment. Yes, we all understand that “mutually agreed swaps” means a negotiation to the satisfaction of both parties. But the phase “1967 lines” is a loaded phrase, just as “right of return” is. These may sound like innocent words to a naïve speaker or listener, but they convey heavy meaning to the savvy. Cain blithely assented to the “right of return”, presumably because he didn’t know what it meant. It sounded like a reasonable point to negotiate, rather than a call for the destruction of Israel. Likewise, the demand for the “1967 lines” as a basis for negotiations conveys a similar expectation that Israel, first and foremost, abandon a defensible border. The 1967 lines were not secure; that’s why war came.
So both Obama and Cain returned to clear up a “misunderstanding”. The problem is, Cain probably didn’t realize the implications of his words (and this indicates he lacks the background to be president), whereas Obama certainly knew what his statement meant. Cain acknowledged that the misunderstanding was on his part. Obama, however, transfers the onus from his mouth to our ears. This is a naked exercise in deception.
Some Democrats aren’t buying Obama’s excuses. I earlier mentioned Alan Dershowitz’s editorial, “President Obama’s Mistake”. Former New York Mayor Koch has weighed in; from the Jerusalem Post, “President Obama’s Hostility to Israel Continues” (and this same editorial is carried by the Huffington Post with a different title, “The Difference Between Obama’s and Bush’s Positions on Israel”). Koch, having digested Obama’s reassurances to AIPAC, calls for Americans to stand united with Israel and against the president:
President Obama’s remarks have lifted up the spirits of Palestinians, who now believe he has given them the upper hand. Supporters of Israel, Jews and Christians, Democrats and Republicans, now is the time to make your positions known. Members of Congress, you are not potted plants. Let the president know you disagree with him. We must stand strong for Israel in this time of great danger.