For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
(The overall issue should be what we've learned from this for the future, alliances, reliances, etc. Y.)
As my readers know, I have often defended the Obama Administration against excessive criticism, conspiracy theory charges, and claims that it wants to destroy or at least damage Israel as some ideological goal. And I've also been willing to criticize it for its foreign policy mistakes when, unfortunately, all too often that's been necessary.
But when David Remnick writes in the New Yorker that Israelis inexplicably have this strange mistaken, paranoid perception that President Barack Obama doesn't really love them, that crosses the line. The president, he explains, has Jewish friends and they think he is quite warm toward Israel.
Not only is it inaccurate and insulting to claim Israelis are just imagining that a real problem exists here but it misunderstands a very simple point that we daily observe: Israel's elite, academics, and journlaists understand the United States far better than current U.S. leaders, academics, journalists, and members of the policy elite understand Israel. Of course, Remnick's approach is also just one more way that opinionmakers and journalists have been avoiding the need to deal with the very real problems and shortcomings that do exist.
Here's the bottom line: It is hard to argue (honestly, at least) that Obama isn't the least-warm president to Israel while in office since the country was established in 1948. The "while in office" phrase is meant to include Jimmy Carter whose great hostility came mostly after he left the White House.
This doesn't mean the Obama Administration cannot be worked with. From about April 2009 to early March 2010, U.S.-Israel relations were going pretty well. Two groups in particular deserve credit for this:
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"