Israel: Obama’s Wedge Issue


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Foreign Policy’s David Rothkopf condemned Romney’s statement as racist.

The New York Times’ Thomas Friedman accused Romney of “not knowing what he was talking about.”

Both Rothkopf and Friedman – and a chorus of their colleagues on the even more hysterical Left – laced their broadsides against Romney with frontal assaults against top Republican donor Sheldon Adelson and other Jewish American supporters of Romney. These denunciations were – at a minimum – infused with anti-Semitic innuendo.

Rothkopf wrote that in embracing Israel, “at a fund-raiser to pander to big donors – including Sheldon Adelson,” Romney displayed “a willingness to sacrifice US interests in exchange for political cash.”

Friedman’s entire column was a screed against pro-Israel American Jews who contribute to the campaigns of candidates that support Israel. He argued that in pursuit of these American Jewish dollars, Republican politicians have abandoned America’s national interest. In other words, Friedman alleged that American Jewish money is causing Republicans to betray their country.

Friedman wrote, “the main Israel lobby, AIPAC, has made itself the feared arbiter of which lawmakers are ‘pro’ and which are ‘anti-Israel,’ and therefore who should get donations and who should not.”

On their face, Obama’s repeated assaults on Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem, and his surrogates’ attacks on pro-Israel politicians, make no sense. For the past two years, Democratic leaders have insisted that support for Israel is bipartisan.

Last year, Democratic National Committee chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz demanded that her Republican colleagues avoid making Israel a “wedge issue,” that would distinguish Democrats from Republicans.

But again, Romney’s statements in Jerusalem did nothing of the sort. They were the embodiment of the bipartisan consensus. It is Obama who is distinguishing between the parties’ positions on Israel.

Obama is making his hostility to Israel a wedge issue.

As Republicans repeat traditional positions, the Democrats are rendering conventional statements of amity with the Jewish state controversial. It is the Obama White House and its surrogates who are attacking those who recognize Israel’s capital as diplomatic flamethrowers. It is the Democrats who are demonizing American supporters of Israel as disloyal.

Obama’s assault on Romney is an extension and amplification of his Jewish proxy J Street’s campaign against Congressmen Allen West of Florida and Joe Walsh of Illinois. Last month, J Street released ads attacking West and Walsh for being even more pro-Israel than most of their pro-Israel congressional colleagues. After Romney returned from Israel, J Street released a new ad attacking Romney for being nearly as pro-Israel as West and Walsh.

What has changed? Why are Obama and his surrogates now highlighting Obama’s hostility? Why are they making opposition to Israel a partisan issue and attacking Republicans for being pro-Israel?

Much of the answer was provided by by J Street president Jeremy Ben-Ami last week. In an interview with The New York Times, Ben-Ami explained, “Every single number indicates that there is simply no such thing as a Jewish problem for the president. The people who only vote on Israel didn’t vote for Obama last time and know who they are voting for already.”

In other words, Obama has given up on the pro- Israel vote. He’s going for the anti-Israel vote and the indifferent-to-Israel vote. True, Obama outrageously markets his anti-Israel platform as pro- Israel. For instance, J Street attack ads on pro-Israel Congressmen West and Walsh present them preposterously as “anti-Israel.”

So, too, Friedman and Rothkopf write that by supporting Israel, Romney is harming Israel, because it is Israel’s vital interest to be diplomatically coerced into surrendering to its Palestinian enemies.

Although this seems merely ridiculous, it is actually insidious. These arguments are implicit messages to three groups. For out-and-out anti-Semites, they reinforce the paranoid belief that Jews and Israel are so powerful that even the president is afraid to openly say what he thinks about us.

For socially conscious Israel-haters, the messaging enables them to continue bashing Israel without fear that they will be accused of being anti-Semites.

And for American Jews who are indifferent to Israel, the messages give them cover to vote for Obama without having to admit that they couldn’t care less about Israel.

Obama’s reelection campaign strategy has mystified many observers. Why, they wonder, is he playing to his base instead of moving to the Center? Like his attacks on free enterprise and Catholics, his attacks on Israel seem to indicate that he doesn’t care about getting reelected.

But this is not the case. Evidently, Obama’s campaign strategy is to conduct multiple micro-campaigns rather than one national campaign. Apparently his data indicate that he will win or lose the election depending on how a few key districts in swing states vote. Based on these data, his campaign strategists have plainly concluded that some of these decisive districts are populated by anti- Semites, Israel-haters and indifferent Jews for whom his absurdly marketed anti-Israel positions resonate.

Aside from that, these positions clearly resonate with him. Consequently, they will certainly form the basis for his policy towards Israel if he wins a second term in office.

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  • https://www.facebook.com/matt.mclaughlin.7545 Matt McLaughlin

    If the GOP desired a Zionist for its nomination for President, it screwed up. Mitt's not Zionist. Check his credentials. The Mormon church's most used phrase for the Israeli/non-Israeli conflict is, '…we don't take sides'. Catholics, many Muslims and Ronn Paul want Jerusalem international. Its obvious Bibi needs to get this Iran existential threat going or Israel will be plum out of the victim business. Then what will all the GOP jr executives and FOX NEWS do then?

  • Schlomotion

    Note to self: It is now "anti-semitic" to object to politicians pandering to big donors and who are are willing to sacrifice US interests in exchange for political cash.

    • Kufar Dawg

      I agree the way in which Carter and the Clintonistas have sold out human rights and liberty to appease their islamofascist masters for petrodollars is disgusting.

      • rulieg

        "like"!

        • SCREW SOCIALISM

          Bowing to saudi kings, blocking the Keystone pipeline to keep the US dependent on Saudi/ME oil.

  • IsraelFirster

    Note to self. Stop reading Shlomotion's drivel first thing in the morning,

    • intrcptr2

      Or last thing at night, yes?

  • alwaysisforever

    Great writing and exactly spot on truthful by Caroline. We always know when a position is truthful and correct when idiots like McLauglin et al. above protest with silly little comments.

  • kafir4life

    Cheesy Chuck (you) Schumer wouldn't answer the question either.

  • Michael Garfinkel

    Caroline Glick's analysis is absolutely correct, as usual. She truly is a lioness, isn't she?

    I am heartened by her courage and her eloquence, as I am by other writers whose insights into this and related issues appear on Frontpagemagazine.

    However, I do marvel at Caroline's perseverance, given the problems she so brilliantly highlights:
    a Tsunami of Jew hatred in the Muslim world and on the Left, (including the Democrat party), and the endless Fifth Column of Jews, like Tom Friedman and Rothkopf, who carry water for the anti-semites.

    Henry Kissinger wrote that as a young German Jew, he watched a military parade so vast, he could not imagine a war that Germany could lose.

    I can hardly imagine a struggle the Jewish people can win, given the magnitude of this Fifth Column.

    • Kufar Dawg

      The islamonazis and their useful tools said the same things in '48'. Maybe there's more to Israel's repeated
      success at defeating islamonazis than mere boots on the ground.

  • Michael Garfinkel

    Moreover, as Carolyn notes – "… for American Jews who are indifferent to Israel, the messages give them cover to vote for Obama without having to admit that they couldn’t care less about Israel." is equally disturbing, given that this attitude holds sway for most of the Jewish electorate.

    These are becoming the worst of times.

    • Kufar Dawg

      I wonder if the rising tide of anti-semitism concomitant w/that of islamofascism in Europe/Eurabia might not change their mind? A rising tide that will be coming to the US, if not already here.

  • Flowerknife_us

    Someone is just remembering the fond memories of their Islamic upbringing at those tender-formative years in ones life. They are just in the position to make memories a reality.

    • rulieg

      yes…one of the reasons that Rashid Khalidi videotape would be so instructive. you know the one: the farewell dinner for Rashid and Mona, close friends of Barack and Michelle, at which Barack apparently told the friendly crowd how he REALLY felt about the Jews.

      yeah…I'd give a lot of money to see that one on the nightly news.

  • Kufar Dawg

    The PA wants "the expulsion of 600,000 Jews from Judea and Samaria"? I think there's been enough muslo-fascist ethnic cleansing of Jews from the Mid-East and N. Africa over the last 65 years, to say nothing of Christians, Bahais and Druze. Oops, but I just did, I'm bad.

  • Michael

    I was confused over the September invite for Muhammad Mursi, but now I think I get it. Obama won't lose votes and if he can get some white folks to act scary, he can motivate the left who so far, are unenthusiastic over this election.