Israel and US Politics

Something on the face of it that seems rather odd is the unreserved support Israel is given by the USA, it being the only country in the world to act in this way. Even presidents like Obama, frequently seen as NOT a friend of Israel, still continue to sanction large amounts of military and other aid to Israel, and one is left feeling whatever politicians private views are on Israel and the purported wrongs they inflict on the Palestinian people, they are not likely to rock the boat and risk not being elected, and nowhere is this better seen in the lead up to the US presidential election, where both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have affirmed their support for Israel. I have, some time back, come to a view that while, unlike most other countries in the world where anti Israel sentiments are widely and freely expressed, this is far less so in the USA because:

  1. In a turbulent Middle East, where the USA has widespread interests, Israel is the one ally it can rely on.
  2. Many of the powerful, especially those who control the money, are Israeli sympathizers, and are not to be upset.
  3. Christian fundamentalists in the USA tend to be overwhelmingly Zionist and have significant political influence.

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On my Facebook page today was posted a video by a 21 year old Palestinian woman living in Gaza, where she accuses Hillary Clinton of either being uninformed or heartless. This is in the light of a speech she delivered recently to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) where she expresses huge sympathy to the Jewish victims of the present troubles and makes no mention of the Palestinian victims, whose suffering is greater, and uses this as one of her main reasons for continuing to support Israel. I found this ironic given only a short time ago a Christian Zionist friend poured scorn on Clinton for being advised and swayed by one who was strongly anti Israel (as evidenced in the recent tape revelations).

Also on my Facebook today was a link by Israel Today  titled: “Is Donald Trump Israel’s Only Hope?” which begins: “Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump last week warned that if he is not elected America’s next president, it will spell doom for Israel. The Iran nuclear deal brokered by the Obama Administration “is going to destroy Israel — unless I get elected. Then Israel will be just fine,” Trump said at a campaign stop in Cleveland. Regarding the agreement that lifted sanctions on Iran in return for more openness regarding its nuclear program, a deal the Iranian leadership has since treated with great disdain, Trump called it “one of the worst negotiated deals I have ever seen.” Whether or not they believe Trump’s “messianic” prediction, a growing number of Israelis are urging locals who hold American citizenship to vote for the controversial real estate mogul”. It seems clear that Trump will go out of his way to keep his potential voters (more likely to be pro rather than anti Israel) sweet, helped by what he can milk from the recent Clinton health scare.

Regarding how I think we should respond I point to my response to the Palestinian lady’s speech: “Moving speech. I share for the sake of balance – sadly the issues raised here most are ignorant of or people take a prejudiced position. While I do not see a solution humanly speaking I do yearn to see people raised up who do not take sides and truly work for peace and justice, realising this is maybe the subject at the top of the list where opinions are divided” and “Of all the issues in the world today, how we come to terms with Israel and the Palestinian situation along with the world of Islam is there at the top on my list. I don’t have a solution and no-one has other than El Shaddai, but it must not be ignored.”

I have in my past writings discussed Israel, Palestine, “the Christian response” and the social justice and security implications at length, recognizing while I know and care a lot more about what is happening than most, my understanding of issues is still basic. These have lent themselves to polarized positions, rancor and prejudice, as well as acts of political expediency (reference above). I lay down a marker here that I will soon return to this subject that won’t go away, and do invite thinking, fair minded people to engage with me in my attempt to work out where the truth lies, what our governments should do and what should happen next.

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