The Middle East is falling apart. The United States have ceased even to resemble a world power and force for good. Domestically, the United States are torn apart. It’s time for President Obama to divide his remaining time in office between golfing and sleeping.
Here’s a link to a recent analysis of U.S. contributions to increasing instability in the Middle East. Even principals in the Obama Administration disagree substantively. Martin Indyk, special U.S. envoy for the Israeli – Palestinian “peace process” talks, was present at an Arab League summit in Kuwait to oppose passage of an extremely hard line Arab position on the peace talks — which the Obama Administration has managed to foist on Israel as necessary for peace in
our his time.
Indyk’s effort was in vain. He was also disappointed by the pointed lack of support he received from Anne Patterson, Assistant US Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs and former ambassador to Cairo, where she became a fervent supporter of an alliance with the Muslim Brotherhood – an organization which most Arab League leaders meeting in Kuwait view as a threat to their stability. For Patterson, Indyk is an outsider.
It is hard to fathom US policy in the Middle East. However what is beyond dispute is that America is disengaging itself from the Middle East while seemingly encouraging extremist forces. It is a well-known fact that nature abhors a vacuum. What happens next is anybody’s guess. [Emphasis added.]
The Obama Administration’s major foreign policy push has been to force Israel to yield to demands from Palestinians. Israeli concessions continue to be met with more demands from Mohamoud Abbas, leader of the Palestinian Authority. That does not satisfy another major Palestinian faction, Hamas.
U.S. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry may be able to force Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, under threats and pressure, to sign a “framework agreement” with Israel. But as this week’s rally of hatred in the Gaza Strip shows, even after the signing of a Palestinian-Israeli “peace” treaty, a large number of Palestinians will not abandon there dream of destroying Israel. [Emphasis added.]
Obama Administration threats and pressure against Abbas? I am unaware of any thus far.
“Jihad in Palestine is not terrorism. Jihad in Palestine is a sacred duty.” — Yusef Rizka, representative of Hamas.
A mass rally held in the Gaza Strip on March 23 showed that Hamas continues to enjoy popular support among Palestinians. Tens of thousands of Palestinians took to the streets to attend the rally commemorating the 10th anniversary of the assassination of Hamas founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin.
Hamas officials claim that nearly one million Palestinians attended the rally in the center of Gaza City.
It has been suggested, and I agree, that President Obama has been trying to set up Israel to take the fall when the “peace process” disintegrates.
He either chooses to misrepresent the facts or he is blinded by unremitting hostility to Israel. In any event, he indulges the PA’s intransigence despite replete evidence that this only worsens the divide between the parties. The inescapable takeaway is that Obama lacks real affection for the Jewish state and when things fail intends to blame Israel.
Iran? President Obama has been pushing the P5+1 “negotiations” with Iran even though as structured they will not, and cannot, result in an Iran with neither nukes nor the ability to make and deliver them. Perhaps with both the P5+1 and “peace process” frauds, the process and a remote possibility of good results are all that matter; bad results will be somebody else’s fault and problem.
Venezuela? That mess continues to fester with no more than a few conciliatory gestures from the Obama Administration. Here’s a short video that Maria Corina Machado, an opposition leader and (until a few days ago) a member of the Venezuelan legislature, wanted to show at an Organization of American States (OAS) meeting in Washington last week. On the vote of a majority of OAS members the meeting, if held at all, was conducted in closed session.
Here is an interview with an Al Jazeera reporter, recorded shortly before or after the OAS meeting. When last I heard, although posted at YouTube by Al Jazeera, it was not available on the internet in the United States.
What difference does any of that make now? To the Obama Administration? To the vast numbers of students and others in Venezuela who have been protesting for more than a month and many of whom have been killed? Why has media coverage by Al Jazeera English — “an international 24-hour English-language news and current affairs TV channel headquartered in Doha” Qatar — been more complete than that (permitted?) in the United States?
Maria Corina Machado’s twenty-five minute interview video is also embedded in the linked Al Jazeera article, as it has been embedded in other articles there; when last I heard it was not available in the United States either. Perhaps one or the other is available in the U.S. now. I don’t know. If the interview is available, please watch and listen; it’s in excellent English.
President Obama and His administration
The President of the United States should lead (not follow) in the best, or at least a good and responsible direction, consistent with the values I hope we still hold dear — freedom, democracy and justice. Some have done better than others, but President Obama has done worse than any in my lifetime, which dates back to a few months before the Second World War began with the attack on Pearl Harbor.
We should not be supporting terrorists such as the Muslim Brotherhood and other sworn enemies of the United States, of democracy and freedom. Neither should we be trying to force the only reasonably free and democratic nation in the Middle East to make concessions demanded by terrorists. The Obama Administration, largely through “decorated war hero” Secretary Kerry, has been pushing Israel to yield to all of the increasing Palestinian demands even though doing so would bring death, slowly or quickly, to Israel.
In contexts where arsonists and firemen are involved, President Obama generally supports the arsonists and chastises or ignores the firemen. Most articles I have found in the U.S. “legitimate” media that even try to present “balanced” perceptions treat both arsonists and firemen as warranting equal praise and blame.
Even though it would be unwise for the United States to take military action in Venezuela to promote regime change, mere use of the presidential bully pulpit should do much to change the perceptions at least of those in the United States, principally on the left, who still support the Chavista regime of Venezuelan el Presidente Maduro.
Jonathan Turley’s blog today included an article about the stripping of Maria Corina Machado of her legislative status.
Venezuela has continued to assault on civil liberties started by the late Hugo Chavez under his “mini-me” President Nicolas Maduro. That legacy took a particularly menacing turn when opposition congresswomen Maria Corina Machado was stripped of her office after speaking to the Organisation of American States (OAS) about the violence in her country. The Venezuelan government insists that she “acted as a Panamanian official” by accepting the invitation and that her speech constituted a crime of “inciting violence”.
The violence in Venezuela has claimed the lives of more than 30 people and injured some 460 others as the public grows angry over an economy ravished through mismanagement, government takeovers, and controls.
Mr. Turley is a liberal in the old-fashioned sense of the word, neither a librul nor a statist. Most of the comments at the bottom of the article, however, are pro-Chavista and anti-opposition. Here is one example:
This “uprising” is nothing more than an astro-turfed counter-revolution financed by Venezuela’s financial elite and Big Oil – both of whom are still upset at the loss of profit and control they possessed before the actual Bolivarian revolution.
Venezuelans as a whole are far better off now than before Chavez rose to power.
Might strong words from President Obama shift the attitudes of at least some in His base toward freedom, democracy and justice, alienate His base or be ignored? I don’t know and it is very unlikely that He will try. Instead, He will continue to oppose the anthropomorphic climate change demon, tout ObamaCare and encourage racism, as he has done throughout his terms in office. He will continue to do whatever He deems politically expedient.
The climate change demon may already have crippled our military’s ability to conduct amphibious landings. An article by Bryan Preston at PJ Tatler titled ‘Climate Change’ Admiral Says US Military Can No Longer Carry Out Amphibious Operations notes that a year ago,
Navy Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, in an interview at a Cambridge hotel Friday after he met with scholars at Harvard and Tufts universities, said significant upheaval related to the warming planet “is probably the most likely thing that is going to happen . . . that will cripple the security environment, probably more likely than the other scenarios we all often talk about.’’ [Emphasis added.]
“People are surprised sometimes,” he added, describing the reaction to his assessment. “You have the real potential here in the not-too-distant future of nations displaced by rising sea level. Certainly weather patterns are more severe than they have been in the past. We are on super typhoon 27 or 28 this year in the Western Pacific. The average is about 17.”
The sky is probably falling too. Will Chicken Little call the King to save us? Quick! President Obama needs, again, to walk on the water to make the seas cease their rise and fall. It worked once, so it should work again.
An article at Washington Free Beacon titled Experts: U.S. Adversaries Gaining Foothold in Latin America noted that
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu last month announced the Kremlin’s plans to establish new military bases in eight foreign countries, including Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. The sites could be used to refuel Russian long-range aircraft.
“There is a Russian adage that says that sacred space will not remain empty for long,” Berman said. “This is very much a throwback to what the Russians, what the Soviets at the time, used Latin America for.”
Iran’s Islamic government has cultivated both its commercial and ideological interests in Latin America, signing agreements to mine for uranium in Bolivia and Ecuador and erecting intelligence bases in multiple countries. The Iranian regime partially financed the construction of a “regional defense school” for the Venezuelan-led ALBA alliance in eastern Bolivia, which reportedly instructs left-wing paramilitaries similar to the basij militias in Iran and “colectivos” accused of killing Venezuelan protesters.
Vacuums can be dangerous toys.