Obama’s confrontational stance toward Israel has given Israel-haters and critics cover to peddle their trollop. So, writing in the NYT yesterday, Celestine Bohlen writes an opinion piece masquerading as a “Letter From” which contains the following gems:
Neither the United States nor the rest of the world has ever recognized Israel’s claim to the territories — including East Jerusalem, which is mostly Arab — that it captured after its victory in the 1967 Middle East war. By international standards, that makes housing projects for Jewish residents in those areas “settlements.”
The Shepherd Hotel site is a case in point. The most important fact about this particular project is that the building permit was granted July 2, just weeks after the Obama administration first signaled that it would object to any new building in the captured territories.
Let’s look at Bohlen’s assumptions.
1. The United States nor the rest of the world has ever recognized Israel’s claim to the territories. First off, Israel has never “claimed” the territories. Israel has instead maintained that the West Bank is “disputed territory” and must be returned in the framework of 242.
2. Because East Jerusalem is “mostly Arab” Jews shouldn’t be allowed to live there. Would she say the same thing about a white neighborhood where a black family wanted to buy a house?
3. Yes, Israel and the Obama administration have a huge disagreement over past agreements regarding building in the West Bank. Like any other self-respecting country in the world, Israel does not always do EXACTLY what the United States wants it to do.
Polls show Americans view Israel less favorably since Obama took office. Opinionators like Ms. Bohlen know that and are going in for the kill.