"Just another tidbit of Easter European reaction to President Obama's missile defense decision, to drop Bush-era plans for a missile shield with radar based in the Czech Republic and missiles based in Poland: a news headline (not an op-ed) on page 1 of major Czech newspaper Mlada Fronta Dnes today read 'There Will Not Be Radar. Russia Won.'"
Quotes on America and Israel
"In other words, the founders of the modern Jewish State built their nation on the same basis as the founders of the United States—with generations of building, toil, business development, land reclamation, settlement, and sacrifice in battle. Tel Aviv – by far the largest city in today’s Israel, and the nation’s financial center– was founded in 1909 and built from nothing, mostly on reclaimed sand dunes. In Jerusalem, Israel’s capital and second largest city, some two-thirds of the population lives in new neighborhoods built on empty land after Jewish immigrants began moving outside the Old City walls in the nineteenth century. Apparently, those who make the idiotic (but occasionally well-meaning) suggestion that the Jews of Israel should save the world some trouble and relocate in Florida, or Australia, or the moon, remain unaware of this history. The idea that literally millions of people would uproot their homes -- along with their businesses, parks, universities, museums, freeways and so forth – makes no more sense than expecting residents of New York or Los Angeles to dismantle and abandon the cities that they (and their ancestors) built."
"For a hundred years scholars have stressed the principles that come from the Enlightenment and from John Locke in particular. But there are also first principles that come to us from Judaism and Christianity, especially from Judaism. Indeed, it is important to recognize that most of what our Founders talked about (when they talked politically) came from the Jewish Testament, not the Christian. The Protestant Christians who led the way in establishing the principles of this country were uncommonly attached to the Jewish Testament."
Israel, an 'undeclared nuclear state,' has obtained an estimate of 200 nuclear devices and has the Middle East’s largest and most advanced chemical and biological warfare facilities. Its refusal to sign the 189-nation NNPT enables it to easily threaten its neighbours. El-Baradei stated at a press conference in October 2009 that, 'Israel is the number one threat to the Middle East given the nuclear arms it possesses.' Israel has refused to allow inspections into its nuclear program for 30 years, while Iran is complying with its obligations and allowing inspectors into its nuclear sites."
"It is true that Israel's many friends on Capitol Hill, and many leading figures in the Democratic Party, would work tirelessly to protect Israel's relationship with America in case of a collision between the U.S. president and the Israeli prime minister, but it is also true that Israel may one day soon find itself with fewer friends in America -- in particular on the coasts and among the elites -- than it previously had. Already, the Netanyahu government seems to have acquiesced to a Republican scheme to turn support for Israel in America into a partisan issue, which has obvious dangers for Israel. Particularly among liberals, Israel's reputation is waning dramatically, and the Arab Spring will only accelerate this trend. The Arab revolts have inspired many Americans who will soon look at the West Bank and see unfree Arabs. Then they will look at who is suppressing these Arabs and see Israel; and then they will become confused by this because they have heard many times that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East. And then they will ask, why is this so?"
"It is true that America and Israel are close allies. It is also true that America does not need Israel to get by in the world. But Israel, more than ever, needs America. Israeli leaders believe it would be impossible for Israel to lose the affection of America. They are wrong."
"The fact is, a growing number of Palestinians live west of the Jordan River. Technology will make it harder for Israel to defend itself. A region undergoing profound change will lead to populism in which millions of people -– not just one or two leaders -- must believe peace is possible. The international community is tired of an endless process that never produces an outcome. The dream of a Jewish and democratic state cannot be fulfilled with permanent occupation.
Now, ultimately, it is up to the Israelis and Palestinians to take action. No peace can be imposed upon them -- not by the United States; not by anybody else. But endless delay won't make the problem go away. What America and the international community can do is to state frankly what everyone knows -- a lasting peace will involve two states for two peoples: Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people, each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace.
So while the core issues of the conflict must be negotiated, the basis of those negotiations is clear: a viable Palestine, a secure Israel. The United States believes that negotiations should result in two states, with permanent Palestinian borders with Israel, Jordan, and Egypt, and permanent Israeli borders with Palestine. 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. The Palestinian people must have the right to govern themselves, and reach their full potential, in a sovereign and contiguous state."
"Obviously, no ally is more important than the state of Israel,
This administration – I try not to pat myself too much on the back – but this administration has done more in terms of the security of the state of Israel than any previous administration.
Whether it’s making sure that our intelligence cooperation is effective, to making sure that we’re able to construct something like an iron dome so that we don’t have missiles raining down on Tel Aviv, we have been consistent in insisting that we don’t compromise when it comes to Israel’s security."
"(Israel's) prominence on the eastern Mediterranean littoral, at the nexus of North Africa and Southwest Asia, has enabled the United States to minimize its military deployments in the area. In the Persian Gulf, by contrast, the absence of a dependable and sturdy ally like Israel has impelled the United States to commit hundreds of thousands of troops and trillions of dollars. Secretary of State Alexander M. Haig's observation 30 years ago still resonates today: 'Israel is the largest American aircraft carrier in the world that cannot be sunk, does not carry even one American soldier, and is located in a critical region for American national security.'"