We’ve noted before Barack Obama’s alarming bellicose tendencies. They were out in profligate display at his notorious address to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) annual conference in Washington June 4. Here’s the most ominous one from the Washington Post‘s transcript:
The danger from Iran is grave, it is real, and my goal will be to eliminate this threat… We will…use all elements of American power to pressure Iran. I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, everything.
He immediately followed this up with “That starts with aggressive, principled, tough diplomacy,” but it was pretty clear what he meant by “everything.” The WP transcript did not use italics, but if you listen to the sound clip, Obama sure spoke the word (three times) with a disturbingly knowing emphasis.
There was also the requisite betrayal of a particularly contentious piece of Israeli-occupied real estate which is a no-compromise issue for the Palestinians: East Jerusalem.
The Palestinians need a state — the Palestinians need a state that is contiguous and cohesive and that allows them to prosper. But any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve Israel’s identity as a Jewish state, with secure, recognized, defensible borders.
And Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided.
Both Israel’s rulers and US defense contractors were certainly heartened by this:
Our alliance is based on shared interests and shared values. Those who threaten Israel threaten us. Israel always faced these threats on the front lines.
And I will bring to the White House an unshakable commitment to Israel’s security. That starts with ensuring Israel’s qualitative military advantage.
I will ensure that Israel can defend itself from any threat from Gaza to Tehran. Defense cooperation…
Defense cooperation between the United States and Israel is a model of success and it must be deepened. As president, I will implement a memorandum of understanding that provides $30 billion in assistance to Israel over the next decade, investments to Israel’s security that will not be tied to any other nation.
For all that, as we have noted before, Obama is bending over backwards like this precisely because his militarist and pro-Israel creds are suspect for the zio-wonks. There is, thank goodness, a certain whiff of “methinks he doth protest too much” here… It is sad and dangerous that these ritual betrayals and humiliations are extracted from him. We can only hope that it is precisely because his true instincts lie elsewhere…