Middle East studies in the News
Obamabuyer's Remorse? You Helped Him Get Elected, Mayor Koch [incl. Rashid Khalidi]
by Ann Green
Mayor Koch, in 2008 you said, "I have concluded that the country is safer in the hands of Barack Obama." You ran around Florida making sure all the bubbes and zadyes voted Democrat. Just like that great political activist Sarah Silverman. You made the rounds in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, too. You didn't have to bother; how else were Jews going to vote? But now Mr. Mayor, you're disillusioned.
"President Obama's abysmal attitude toward the State of Israel and his humiliating treatment of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is shocking," you said. "It is unimaginable that the president would treat any of our NATO allies, large or small, in such a degrading fashion." Hmmm. Oh, sorry Mr. Mayor, I was busy stifling an "I told you so."
I'm just a citizen. Unlike you, I'm not an attorney, former member of Congress, and ex-mayor of one of the great cities of the world. I don't have the access to policy experts and insiders that you have. The fact that Obama's friends, mentors, advisors and admirers include Jeremiah Wright, Rashid Khalidi, Ali Abunimah, William Ayers, Samantha Powers, Robert Malley and Zbigniew Brzezinski didn't raise even a teeny red flag? Obama worshipped for 20 years with a man who gave Louis Farrakhan an award because he "truly epitomized greatness," who yelled "G-d damn America!" and who preached that "Ethnic cleansing is going on in Gaza." When the bleep hit the fan before the election, Wright blamed "them Jews" for keeping him away from his protégé.
Unlike you, Mr. Mayor, I was able to put two and two together and understand that Obama would be bad news for Israel. I took some crap for that, too, and still do. But I know you did your homework. At the time you wrote, "I do not personally really know the Democratic presidential candidate, Barack Obama, having spoken to him only once and briefly."
Tell the truth, was the idea that Democrats would be in power again just too tempting? Having been out of the loop for eight years, perhaps Jewish Democrats like you were willing to suspend their suspicions for a piece of the power pie, an ambassadorship here, a judicial appointment there? Besides, it doesn't take much to get our brethren to avoid Republicans like the plague and let Democrats take us for granted. So what if support for Israel polls higher among Republicans than Democrats? As an Independent, I judge candidates by their stand on the issues, not which animal represents them on a bumper sticker. Silly me.
You said some awful things about Sarah Palin, everyone's whipping girl, back then. That was brave. You called her "scarey," and repeated the falsehood about her trying to ban books in Alaska. I call Jeremiah Wright, Rashid Khalidi, Ali Abunimah, William Ayers, Samantha Powers, Robert Malley and Zbigniew Brzezinski "scarey." Palin might not be ready for the oval office, but, I ask you, was the present resident, with his brief term in state office and in the Senate? Palin is a staunch supporter of Israel, and Jews hate her. After all, she didn't go to an Ivy League school. Imagine!
"I am shocked by the lack of outrage on the part of Israel's supporters," you said, in print and on YouTube. "Members of both the House and Senate have made pitifully weak statements against Obama's mistreatment of Israel, if they made any at all. The Democratic members, in particular, are simply afraid to criticize him. What bothers me most is the shameful silence by community leaders - Jew and Christian. Where are they?" I'll tell you where the Jews are, they're reading their Torah, The N.Y. Times. You know, the paper that parrots everything the administration says. The Times agrees that Israel is the problem in the Middle East, not the Arabs and Palestinians calling for Israel's extinction.
"In portraying Israel as the cause of the lack of progress in the peace process, President Obama ignores the numerous offers and concessions that Israel has made over the years for the sake of peace, and the Palestinians' repeated rejections of those offers," you wrote with passion. "Not only have Israel's peace proposals, which include ceding virtually the entire West Bank and parts of Jerusalem to the Palestinians, been rejected, but each Israeli concession has been met with even greater demands, no reciprocity, and frequently horrific violence directed at Israeli civilians." Guess what, Mr. Mayor, he likes them better! Did you not listen to that Cairo speech? Obama agrees that Jews are making the Palestinians pay for the Holocaust, just as Khalidi's homeboys have been saying for 62 years.
"The members of AIPAC, the chief pro-Israel lobbying organization in Washington, gave Secretary of State Hillary Clinton a standing ovation after she had carried out Obama's instructions," you said, as the new Secretary of Outrage. I was there, Mr. Mayor, were you? Everybody got a standing O at AIPAC, it was almost a courtesy. Trust me, Hillary did not bring the house down. Bibi brought the house down. Don't dismiss 8000 AIPAC delegates out of hand; there were many intense conversations after that speech. And I'm willing to bet an "I love N.Y." tee shirt that if George Bush was still in office, and the AIPAC Policy Conference was going on in Washington, the president would have made an appearance. Poor AIPAC, if it's not being accused of being too left-wing, it's being accused of being too right-wing. I've heard it from both sides.
You wrote that "there is going to be a tsunami in November and...the Democratic Party is going to suffer enormous defeat." Adding that "Jewish support - according to the polls here in America - for President Obama has gone down about 20 percent, from 78 to 58," you announce, "I'm going to try to make it lower." Good luck with that, Mr. Mayor. Start by looking in the mirror and asking how we got to this point in the first place.Note: Articles listed under "Middle East studies in the News" provide information on current developments concerning Middle East studies on North American campuses. These reports do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch and do not necessarily correspond to Campus Watch's critique.
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