Filed under: politics | Tags: Ahmadinejad, diplomacy, iran, netanyahu, Obama, posted by elan
This is going to be short and sweet, since I’m dealing with finals right now. Almost done though!
President Obama made a short statement today about the controversial Iranian presidential election. Obama was careful to say that US will not consider, and thinks it innappropriate, to intervene in or even weigh in on, the disputed results. As the Volokh Conspiracy points out this policy stands in direct opposition to Obama’s blatant attempts to change Israeli policy regarding West Bank settlements. Some even accuse Obama of trying to topple the Netanyahu government.
What do you think? Is US putting too much pressure on Israel? (Oznia writer Ron Shapiro thinks so.) What should Obama do and say about the Iranian election incident? Is it right for Obama to apply different methods and philosophies to his diplomatic interactions with Israel and Iran?
Filed under: opinion | Tags: america, blockade, diplomacy, Elections, fatah, gaza, Hamas, Israel, posted by zionismlives, tunnels
Ok, so the battle for the safety of Israel’s citizens is over—for the moment. But the war between Israel and its enemies continues and will continue if respect for human dignity and diplomacy is not undertaken by both sides of the conflict.
In the most recent war, we can all (hopefully) agree that Hamas did many awful things including continuing rocket fire on Israeli civilians, using Palestinian civilians as shields, and keeping the war going despite the heavy casualties in their population.
But, I will claim (and many reading this will no doubt disagree with me) that Israel has acted in ways that I am ashamed of. It continued the complete blockade of the Gaza Strip, despite the fact that the blockade is a major excuse by Hamas for its shameful rocket attacks. This complete blockade, having been in place for more than 18 months (since Hamas’ violent takeover of the Strip in June of 2007), is a big reason why there are so many tunnels from Egypt to Gaza. With the normal ways to get goods out of the question for Gazans, they searched for a means to get basic goods to their people and thus make a living. The solution came in the tunnels that Hamas soon utilized to smuggle rockets and arms into their land.
Israel also created a complicated travel system in Gaza during the War that prevented many humanitarian supplies from getting to their intended targets. I cannot and will not deny the fact that Israel and other countries and organizations pledged lots of supplies to the civilians of Gaza, but I will maintain that the vast majority of those who needed the help were unable to get it. This is because of the active military actions in the Strip and the lack of communication between IDF forces and humanitarian suppliers. This pushed Gazans to blame Israel, not Hamas for their troubles because to them, Israel both destroyed their homes and denied them access to medicine and such. Israel, I know, was not out to hurt the civilian population of Gaza, but it did not justly deal with the realities on the ground that civilians were going to be hurt because of Hamas’ despicable tactics.