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.
There is a crucial divide between PR and straight talk, between red lines, bottom lines and spin. Last week we cautioned against mistaking Israel's bad PR for bad policy, and faulted people who respond to Israel based on how things look in the media rather than for what they are. We were irritated with those who demand better polish. This week, we are worried about people who mistake good PR - smiles, handshakes, mild jokes and a kosher lunch - for good substance.
President Obama looked fairly relaxed during the short press meeting and told reporters, "Our commitment to Israel's security has been unwavering. And, in fact, there aren't any concrete policies that you could point to that would contradict that."
That was a good PR move, sliding over the fact you don't need "concrete policies" to embolden Israel's enemies and objectively weaken its security. U.S. support of the biased Goldstone process and providing only very weak support for Israel when it was attacked by blockade-busters trying to sail to Gaza, and hinting that there is a mixed opinion in the U.S. government about the role of Hamas and Hezbollah in future negotiations all embolden Israel's enemies. The President's comment that the Israel-Palestinian conflict costs the United States in "blood and treasure" may not have been a policy, but it was close to a blood-libel on top of being untrue.
Over Israel's objection, the U.S. allowed the UN Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty Review to single out Israel's presumed nuclear capability for concern while it took a pass on Iran, North Korea and what U.S. intelligence believes is a secret Syrian program. This is the first administration to put Israel on that international "hot seat" paving the way for future meetings, including the IAEA meeting in September, to pressure Israel.
But the President put a good PR gloss on that one, saying, "We discussed issues that arose out of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Conference. And I reiterated to the Prime Minister that there is no change in U.S. policy when it comes to these issues... the United States will never ask Israel to take any steps that would undermine their security interests."
The difference between the President "asking" Israel to take steps that would undermine its security and the President throwing Israel under the bus of Arab demands himself is too thin to measure and a craven abdication to those who would destroy America's only democratic ally in the Middle East.
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!"