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Ahren writes: "For the first time since he managed to restart the talks in July, Kerry dropped his statesman-like public impartiality, and clearly spoke from the heart - and what emerged were a series of accusations that amounted to a forceful slap in the face for Netanyahu."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Jerusalem. (photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry in Jerusalem. (photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90)

Frustrated Kerry's Peace Critique a Heavy Slap in Netanyahu's Face

By Raphael Ahren, The Times of Israel

09 November 13


A patently bitter secretary of state asks why Israel keeps taking Palestinian land, and why the Israeli public doesn't seem to care about it

n Wednesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his old friend John Kerry in Jerusalem that he was concerned about the peace process, and asked the visiting US secretary of state to "steer [the Palestinians] back to a place where we could achieve the historical peace that we seek." John Kerry quickly responded by lauding both sides' "good faith," and said he was "very confident" the negotiations would succeed.

But on Thursday, he loosened the diplomatic straitjacket, and we all got a much better look at what John Kerry really thinks about progress - and blame - in the new peace effort he worked so strenuously to revive a little over three months ago. He turned directly to the Israeli and Palestinian peoples and showed them rather more of his true colors. To the prime minister, it is safe to assume, they did not look particularly blue-and-white.

For the first time since he managed to restart the talks in July, Kerry dropped his statesman-like public impartiality, and clearly spoke from the heart - and what emerged were a series of accusations that amounted to a forceful slap in the face for Netanyahu. It was a rhetorical onslaught that the prime minister cannot have expected and one he will not quickly forget.

In an extremely unusual joint interview with Israel's Channel 2 and the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation, a very frustrated Kerry basically blamed the Israeli government for stealing the Palestinians' land and the Israeli public for living in bubble that prevents them from caring much about it. If that wasn't enough, he railed against the untenability of the Israel Defense Forces staying "perpetually" in the West Bank. In warning that a violent Palestinian leadership might supplant Mahmoud Abbas if there was not sufficient progress at the peace table, he appeared to come perilously close to empathizing with potential Palestinian aggression against Israel.

"If we do not resolve the issues between Palestinians and Israelis," Kerry warned early in the interview, "if we do not find a way to find peace, there will be an increasing isolation of Israel [and an] increasing campaign of delegitimization of Israel.

"If we do not resolve the question of settlements," he continued more dramatically, "and the question of who lives where and how and what rights they have; if we don't end the presence of Israeli soldiers perpetually within the West Bank, then there will be an increasing feeling that if we cannot get peace with a leadership that is committed to non-violence, you may wind up with leadership that is committed to violence."

He later elaborated, expressing apparently growing dismay over continued Israeli settlement expansion: "How, if you say you're working for peace and you want peace, and a Palestine that is a whole Palestine that belongs to the people who live there, how can you say we're planning to build in a place that will eventually be Palestine? So it sends a message that perhaps you're not really serious." That was a critique that will have resonated widely among those many Israelis, and critics from outside, who have long argued that Israel should limit any settlement building to areas it envisages seeking to retain in a permanent accord.

Kerry seemed to place the blame for the failure to make rapid and major progress in negotiations overwhelmingly on Israel, with no acknowledgment - in his statements as broadcast Thursday - of two intifadas, relentless anti-Israel incitement in the Palestinian territories, the Hamas takeover of Gaza and the constant rocket fire from the Strip. (It is important to note that Channel 2 aired only part of the full interview on Thursday. More is set to air Friday evening.)

In lamenting the IDF's presence in the West Bank, Kerry positioned himself directly opposite Netanyahu, for whom an ongoing Israeli security presence in the Jordan Valley is a stated crucial condition for an agreement. Perhaps more surprisingly, he showed no evident concern over the danger of a Hamas takeover in the West Bank were the IDF to withdraw, disregarding a widely held concern - borne of the rapid ease with which Hamas swept Abbas's forces aside in Gaza in 2007 - that the official Palestinian Authority forces alone would not be able to hold sway.

His comments, which indicated an assessment that Israelis are unrealistic about where the region is heading, seemed particularly bitter. "The alternative to getting back to the talks is the potential of chaos. I mean, does Israel want a Third Intifada?" Kerry asked rhetorically, before lashing out at ordinary Israelis. "I know there are people who have grown used to this," he said, referring to the current relatively peaceful stalemate. "And particularly in Israel. Israel says, 'Oh, we feel safe today. We have the wall, we're not in a day-to-day conflict, we're doing pretty well economically.'

"Well, I've got news for you," he said, apparently addressing the Israeli public. "Today's status quo will not be tomorrow's or next year's. Because if we don't resolve this issue, the Arab world, the Palestinians, neighbors, others, are going to begin again to push in a different way."

That line of thinking reflects much international conventional wisdom on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict - the assumption that Israel could attain peace with the Palestinians if only it wanted to, but that it just doesn't want to enough. Many Israelis, Netanyahu most certainly among them, would counter that Israel cannot impose terms on a Palestinian leadership that, among numerous other problematic negotiating positions, still demands a "right of return" that would constitute suicide for the Jewish state. Many Israelis, their prime minister among them, too, would note that Israel is only too aware of how easily the relative calm could deteriorate, and thus are wary of relinquishing territory to a Palestinian leadership that, relatively moderate though it may be, might not be in a position to retain power and honor any accord amid sweeping regional instability.

For Netanyahu, watching Kerry's from-the-heart interview must have topped what was already a pretty lousy day. In Geneva, the six world powers were inching toward a deal with the Iranians that the prime minister fears would leave Tehran with an enrichment capability even as the sanctions are eased - something Netanyahu considers a "historic error."

Kerry weighed in on that, too, in the interview. Ultimately, if Iran doesn't "meet the standards of the international community," said the secretary unhappily, "there may be no option but the military option." But, he quickly insisted, "we hope to avoid that."

Just the sort of message Netanyahu has been urging the US not to deliver to Tehran. your social media marketing partner


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-71 # slocan 2013-11-09 10:07
What a slanted article. Once again the rational reasonable government of Israel-read Jewish peoples of the Holocaust, lest everybody in the world forget how badly Jews were treated- and the barbaric,savage , irrational, uneducated Palestinians who when given back their lands so that they can grow their own food, travel as they like and raise families without fear will kill as many Jews as possible, and destroy the homeland of the Jewish peoples once Israel actually treats them as HUMAN BEINGS. Here is a situation of the most classic psychological immaturity I have ever witnessed and in both sides it is true. However, Israel has never really attempted to treat the Palestinian people as HUMAN BEINGS and the Palestinian people are therefore never given the opening to treat Israelis as HUMAN BEINGS. Oh and by the way climate and ecological collapse is going to make all of this violent childishness mute within a decade.
+12 # brux 2013-11-09 10:49
and the word is "moot" not mute.
+11 # Douglas Jack 2013-11-09 14:11
Brux, Thanks for caring about our use of words like 'moot'. I believe you are at least partially a team player, trying to make us all stronger. Then again in your slight to Slocan, it does not seem that you are familiar with Miko Peled in his book 'The Generals Son' (of Matti Peled) inside story for what actually happened, Palestine & Apartheid Israel.

Part 1. & 2. Miko a 3rd generation Israeli is not only brought up by an Israeli General who led in Israeli wars & in the process is privy to the inside stories of Israel's aggression in dozens of important films.
Part 1. Palestine & Israel Apartheid Spring 2013
Part 2. Miko Peled Palestine & Israeli Apartheid Vancouver BC
You will as well benefit from Neturei Karta Orthodox true Judaism. http://www.nkusa.orgperspectives

All of us, as "human beings", have opportunity to engage with those whom we agree & disagree in formal both-sided equal-time recorded & published dialogues. There are many details to every human relationship. When we engage & place our perspectives side-by-side with our fellows, then the deeper logics of our lives & our relationships are empowered in our political, social & economic lives. Aggression & war are the paths of intellectual cowards. Lets get details out into the open.
-26 # Marieke 2013-11-09 17:07
And you know that because you spent how much time in Israel....?
+11 # mozartssister 2013-11-09 18:02
@ slocan: I think you are being sarcastic here, as in, how dare anyone demand the Palestinians be treated as human beings? If so, I think most of the red-clickers have misread you?
+34 # pbbrodie 2013-11-09 20:09
What a completely slanted response.
What amazes me is that the people of the Holocaust would treat anyone as badly as the Israelis treat the Palestinians.
Yeah, yeah, I know, this makes me antisemitic, wrong.
What it really means is that I simply can not understand how people who were treated so absolutely horribly could ever turn around and treat another group of people badly in any way. I'm certainly not equating the two but the Israeli government is without doubt treating the Palestinians very badly indeed and it is horrifying to witness.
+8 # Nominae 2013-11-09 21:13
Quoting pbbrodie:
....What amazes me is that the people of the Holocaust would treat anyone as badly as the Israelis treat the Palestinians.

In the realm of human psychology, it is not at all unusual for the abused human being to later become the abuser.

The most often cited cases are the large number of humans who were abused as children, and who then themselves grow up to be child abusers.

Decades back, I was as surprised as you to wonder how one set of previously abused people could possibly later perpetrate that same abuse upon others, but later, more was discovered about the tendency of abused and traumatized human beings to mimic and repeat the roles of their own abusers when they get the chance.

As it stands, survivors of childhood abuse have a tendency to either themselves become abusers, or to so franticly "smother" their own children in protection *from* abuse, that the very extreme overprotection causes the child to grow up psychologically traumatized by the perception that they live in a world where there seems to be a potential physical danger lurking around every corner.

The psychological focus these days is the attempt to understand those people who have been abused, but
who do *not* eventually act that abuse out on others, on *either* extreme end of the emotional reaction scale.

The unrecognized phenomenon (to the public) is that
abuse creates psychological patterns that become generational in expression.
+5 # Granny Weatherwax 2013-11-10 20:33
However this "excuse" fades with the generations that were the actual victims of the holocaust.

And before anyone brands me antisemitic, my grandfather was deported by the nazis too.
+4 # Douglas Jack 2013-11-10 22:38
Granny, given that Palestinians both as a servant class to the European Jew privileged government & economy of Israel & as refugees driven from their homes, are more Semitic (historic inhabitants from the Arabian peninsula to Palestine) than the dominant European-Jews in Palestine-Israel,
Israeli Jews are the most anti-Semitic of any peoples in the world.

Creating a religious-based nation ie a forced-belief system founded in apartheid is a massive crime against Judaism as well contrary to every real Jewish tenet & practice oppressing every individual. 100s of 1000s of Orthodox Jews reject Israel's forced conception by Caesarian-secti on rather than natural birth as prophesized. Neturei Karta International Jews Against Zionism
+1 # Billy Bob 2013-11-10 07:43
You're agreeing with slocan 100%. Go back and re-read the comment you're responding to.
+3 # Billy Bob 2013-11-10 07:40
I think people misunderstood your comment. I can't believe 56 people would defend Israel's treatment of Palestinians as sub-human. This happens a lot when commenters use even a tinge of sarcasm (like you did in your second sentence). Unless you dumb everything down, there will be many readers who just don't comprehend it.
-90 # brux 2013-11-09 10:45
It's very simple why Israel hit on the strategy of taking Palestinian land ... if that is how you want to spin it.

1) Before Israel, it was all Palestinian/Mus lim land. The Jews and any other non-Muslims had no other choice but to be subject to the majority Muslim intolerant rule which included theft and murder.

2) After Israel, the Palestinians/Mu slims could not bear to have anyone get out from under their intolerant rule, so they declared war several times on the new state.

3) Israel tried to say let us be, and the Muslims would not.

4) The Palestinians are stuck, pushed to fight to the death apparently by the larger system of Islam. Rather than being resettled by the neighboring Arab/Islamic countries.

5) Prosecuting the war militarily has not been good PR for Israel - despite being attacked, when they respond they are the villains - at least to the Muslims. This has led the Palestinians to the realization that time is on their side and all they have to do is wait.

6) The one strategy Israel has is to slowly and steadily build settlements to put a price on Palestinian obstinacy and resistance to peace - yet even now some think that is too much.

Guess Israel is just supposed to give up an die. I think they are right to build settlements, it's preferable to war, preferable to tearing down houses too.
+73 # tedrey 2013-11-09 11:25
You do realize that your stated position has been rejected by the vast majority of the nations of the world, as shown in numerous votes in the General Assembly, to which only Israel and the United States have objected, don't you? Just asking.
+7 # Phlippinout 2013-11-09 14:55
In your dreams!
+3 # Archie1954 2013-11-10 16:05
If this is the prevailing belief in Israel or amongst Zionists then the state of Israelis doomed! There can be no peace for that unhappy political entity and no rest either. It will be beset within and without for the foreseeable future, certainly not a place to bring up little children unless you are simply replacing dead warriors.
+3 # Granny Weatherwax 2013-11-10 20:43
This has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with vying for land and access to water.

How would you react if England, supported by the UN, were to give back the state where you live to the Native Americans under the pretext that they lived there before you?

How would you react if the new government, backed by the mightiest armies and economies in the world history imposed martial law on you, bulldozed your house and installed Native American colons in your stead?

Would you react out of your faith, or outraged by the sheer injustice?

Get real!
+69 # dwhaley 2013-11-09 11:43
This article surprises me about John Kerry, who has, in the past, defended Israel. However, I am concerned by what is missing: particularly that although Israel demands that the rest of the Middle East sign the non-proliferati on treaty and requires those nations to accede to UN Arms inspectors, they themselves have refused both. Additionally, it has recently come to light that there are significant oil deposits beneath the West Bank--a region Israel continues to settle illegally.

I am also distressed that any attempts to bring balance between Israel and Palestine are generally met with cries of Anti-semitism. Yes, the Holocaust and other examples of diaspora are very real. But we are dealing with the very imminent threats of the present. Almost all Israelis have not experienced the horrors of the Holocaust or any other diaspora, yet they are adamant that those past experiences give them carte blanche. I cannot countenance this and neither should our foreign policy leaders, the UN and our Secretary of State. We need a pragmatic and fair resolution of the situation in the Middle East.
+45 # reiverpacific 2013-11-09 12:18
Well, whaddya know??
J.K. finally recognizing the warmongering, de-humanizing LIKUD-based git that Nutyy-Yahoo is.
After all, (he) gets to come to the USA and strut around giving speeches to his many allies in the Eastern States and the US Jewish lobby, spreading lies, fomenting hate and urging the bombing of Iran and already carrying out an air strike on Syria, once the occupiers (if badly and corruptly run) of the Golan heights and even I believe Gaza although I'm open to correction on that.
It reminds me of the time when Obama and Sarkozy were caught on-mic' when they thought they were off, discussing Bibi during one of his many visits, which came out something like: Sarkozy (hardly a "Leftie") "I hate that guy -he's such a disgusting liar"! Obama "YOU hate him? I have to deal with him every day!" -or words to that effect.
But the warmongers prefer to keep supplying li'l jewish Bro' with weapons of mass and immediate destruction after all, it's good for the fucked-up economy, innit!?
And BTW, as a Brit', I'm sad to acknowledge it but you can thank the UK for carving up the middle East post WW11 and creating an aggressive Israel, the only winners from the Suez debacle.
-13 # Marieke 2013-11-09 17:13
You're so correct that Britain should bear much of the guilt for creating this insane situation in the first place. You banked on your racism, thinking the Jews couldn't hack it, didn't you? And you went and created a monster situation, with not much of any kind of a good outcome.
+13 # reiverpacific 2013-11-09 20:31
Quoting Marieke:
You're so correct that Britain should bear much of the guilt for creating this insane situation in the first place. You banked on your racism, thinking the Jews couldn't hack it, didn't you? And you went and created a monster situation, with not much of any kind of a good outcome.

I suppose by "You" you mean my country -don't ask me about rhyme nor reason; I had nothing to do with it but know the history and consequences well beyond what we were taught in our schools then, as I chose to dig deeper for myself and my heavy involvement in left activism from an early age.
It's done a lot I'm not proud of in the name of "Empah" and it's subsequent role as the US lap-dog, including egging on the CIA to pull off the 1953 Iranian usurpation of Mossadegh (sp?) -but at least the Labor movement and some progressive legislation post WW11 brought about a decent safety net, public education and transport, which still survive in spite of all attempts by the Tories, most notably the 'Bitch for the Rich', Thatcher, unlike the Fragmented States.
Now if we could just get rid of Cameron and his goons!
+5 # Nominae 2013-11-09 22:06
Quoting Marieke:
You're so correct that Britain should bear much of the guilt for creating this insane situation in the first place. You banked on your racism, thinking the Jews couldn't hack it, didn't you? And you went and created a monster situation, with not much of any kind of a good outcome.

Well, now, there it is. Gratitude for help in WWII. Yeah, really - you're welcome. Those damned Brits. And Americans too.

There is no people (other than perhaps Germany) who owe you a damned thing, and we're just damp-eyed in the face of your gratitude for what you got.

Take a moment to allow this to sink in, but neither Brits nor Americans, as a people, are as easily manipulated by cheap, whining, guilt trips as are many of our Jewish brethren.

We do owe you an apology, however, for so conscientiously *concealing* that fact since about ..... let's say, 1948.

So all of the screaming, squawking, yells of "racism", and "anti-semitism" , for what others easily identify simply as political analysis that does not meet with your personal approval, has been growing less effective since, let's say, 1948.

Not, I see, from lack of being employed loud and long, but simply as a result of the laws of diminishing returns inherent in attempting to flog a dead horse forever.

Given the remunerations that the tactic has produced over the decades, I can certainly understand the reluctance to let it go ..... but it's "punch" is really beginning to dwindle.
+4 # Nominae 2013-11-09 23:31
@ Marieke -

BTW, get some kid from Temple to explain to you the fact that Jews are in no way a "race", rendering charges of "racism" indicative of nothing more than the ignorance of the person hurling the charge.

And tho you do not mention it, I would like to point out that charges of "anti-Semitism" can also stand on shaky ground, given that many Arabs are now more genetically "Semitic" than are many Jews, especially after the introduction of all the people of European stock to Israel after 1945 who cannot trace their ancestry directly back to the Original Tribes of Israel.

I know that some Israelis like to indulge in the fantasy that they all trace directly back to the Twelve Tribes, and were only on a European Vacation for fifteen hundred years or so, but that would be to pretend that they never intermarried with any European "gentiles" over all that time, which is obviously a joke.

So, simply a suggestion here, that, if one must engage in name calling and charges of "racism", etc., at least take the time to get the slightest idea of what you are talking about.
+51 # A Different Drummer 2013-11-09 12:39
Secretary Kerry should be applauded for his candor. It's long past time for the Israelis to be called on their despicable terror campaign and land theft against the Palestinians.

This may be apocryphal, but when the Saudi king was told the state of Israel was about to be established in Palestine he said why don't you give the Jews Bavaria. Now that would have been justice,but what happened was a massive war crime that continues to this day.

Take your best shot, trolls. I couldn't care less what you think. This post is intended for thinking people.
+13 # Nominae 2013-11-09 21:32
Quoting A Different Drummer:
Secretary Kerry should be applauded for his candor. It's long past time for the Israelis to be called on their despicable terror campaign and land theft against the Palestinians.

This may be apocryphal, but when the Saudi king was told the state of Israel was about to be established in Palestine he said why don't you give the Jews Bavaria. Now that would have been justice,but what happened was a massive war crime that continues to this day.

Take your best shot, trolls. I couldn't care less what you think. This post is intended for thinking people.

Extremely well stated ! Israel in general, and right winger Bibi in particular, have been *long* overdue for a trip "out behind the woodshed" administered by the U.S.!

I'm just shocked that it was Kerry who finally got fed up to the point of actually *doing* what has long needed to be done.
+20 # jwb110 2013-11-09 12:48
Maybe the way to end this dispute is to dump money into Palestine and give them a strong economic base. This whole thing might be about poverty and growing a nation that will have borders that can't be crossed for no other reason than it affects business.
None of this has to be about bullets and guns. In today's world nations are defined by their economic standing. We should be investing and urging other nations to make the kinds of investments that will make Palestine grow. It's do-able.
+43 # Texas Aggie 2013-11-09 13:22
You realize that Israel has in essence put in a blockade of Palestine and Gaza. They are collecting tariffs that are owed the Palestinians for goods shipped into and out of Palestine, but that money is being held in an Israeli account instead of being given to the Palestinians. Also, the Israelis stand idly by while the Jewish settlers destroy Palestinian olive orchards and shoot their sheep. The Israelis fence off Palestinian farmland and refuse to let the owners into it because of "terrorist" fears. Then since the Palestinians can't farm it anymore, they are deemed to have abandoned it and the land is given to the settlers.

The way the Israelis are treating the Palestinians is a lot worse than the way Paul Bremer's viceroyship treated Iraqis.
+19 # Glen 2013-11-09 13:28
It's doable, but Israel would put a stop to those investments, or steal them, just as settlers have burned olive trees and bulldozed Palestinian towns.

You cannot trust Israel.
-17 # Marieke 2013-11-09 17:15
You have no idea how MUCH money has already been dumped into Palestine -- and stuck to the higher-ups as in any third world nation. It certainly did not "trickle down" (does it ever, anywhere?)
+14 # Merschrod 2013-11-09 19:43
The worst part, Marieka, is that our ally, Israel, has destroyed the infrastructue that USAID has built over the years and stiffled the Palistinian economic development projects that we hoped would lead to peace; and the Israelis destroyed the hopes for peaceful governance by stiffling Abbas and then loosing the whole of Gaza by not recognizing the elections. We do not have a partner in Israelfor the resolution of the conflict.
0 # tgemberl 2013-11-10 18:53
I think possibly the best thing we could do is offer Israelis and Palestinians a chance to immigrate to the United States. There are now about 12 million people in Israel and the Palestinian territories, probably three times as many as there were 40 years ago. I realize that's partly because both peoples are trying to lay claim to the land. But I think that is just too many people if many of them want to farm.

It seems the effort to assign blame isn't going anywhere. Maybe if we could bring down population pressures, the tensions might lessen.

While the Israelis are more comfortable than the Palestinians, I understand living in Israel is no picnic. It's a high-stress environment.
-41 # brux 2013-11-09 13:23
If the Palestinians want to see an end to Israeli settlements ... better make peace mf-ers.
+37 # janie1893 2013-11-09 14:39
First, Israel does not mean Jewish and Zionism does not mean Judaism. The misuse of these words have confused the whole issue for many years. Zionism is a political idea, based on mythical beliefs!
Netanyahu and his ilk are wannabe conquerors, expansionists who will never stop taking other people's land and assets including the oil and gas deposits around the Sinai area.

Since it is plain that not all Jews wish to live in Israel, the country doesn't need to be any larger. How many Israelis are actually holocaust survivors? That would be an interesting figure.

A fact that few people are aware of is that there are more non-Jewish Zionists than Jewish. Zionism is not really about establishing a country for Judaism. It is about setting the scene for the 'second coming' as described in the Christian Bible.
Ergo--Jewish Zionists are expansionists and they use ignorant fundamental Christian Zionists to support them in their insidious encroachment on land that never was theirs.

My respect for John Kerry has gone up by 100%. He is the first American official to say to Israel that it needs to stop it`s terror tactics on the Palestinian people. Now we must all speak out, loud and clear!
+4 # Glen 2013-11-09 15:49
Never believe what you read that has come from the U.S. government. These reports are most often a lie. Standing up to Israel is a stage show.

John Kerry is a game player as they all are.
+4 # Douglas Jack 2013-11-09 17:53
Glen, You are right that the whole system is bought & paid for by the Finance-Media-M ilitary-Industr ial-Complex. Just getting such a statement out of Secretary of State, Kerry is a miracle when his real election-financ ier masters have been building arms, planning for war, financing mercenaries, betraying us with false-flags, supplying Sarin Gas, Depleted Uranium & much worse. USA, Canada, NATO & Israel being the worst perpetrators. This film is an inside look at some of the money-making machines who treat us all to perpetual war. Money Trail Rothschild Conspiracy for their long ownership of the International Banking Cartel & The Federal Reserve.

Inside each of is an optimist, who doesn't learn from a 1000 betrayals. As a hopeless optimist, I couldn't give you a thumbs up because just maybe (I won't bet on my maybe) Kerry & Obama have completely transformed. When I wake up tomorrow, the truth will be more obvious.
+4 # Glen 2013-11-10 06:43
No need for thumbs at all.
You contributed to the discussion, with additional information, and that is what counts. I will check into your recommendations.

Even comedians have commented on the duplicity of the U.S. One, referring to the president speaking to an ally, stated the prez gave a nod to the ally saying - now, I'm going to go out there and say some things you aren't going to like, but don't pay any attention. That's just what I have to say.
+3 # Granny Weatherwax 2013-11-10 20:56
Actually Kerry is in the highest post he is likely to ever get (Secretary of State) and his political career is nearing its end. The price for him saying what he did is not as high as for a younger, hopeful US politician.

Nonetheless it takes guts to say it as it is.
+15 # Kootenay Coyote 2013-11-09 15:14
Credible, because also at least mildly hostile. As for the closing comment, there’s two other nations that aren’t meeting ‘meet the standards of the international community’: the USA & Israel; but nobody’s suggesting ‘the military option’ for them....
+27 # professor 2013-11-09 16:06
If you tell a lie long enough and often enough, people will believe it. This is true of Theodore Herzl's often-quoted lie about 100 years, of "A land without people for a people without land" At that time, the Palestine area was settled with a coexisting mix of Muslim, Christian, and Jewish families and communities side-by-side. It was predominantly Muslim but the Jewish presence was (if I remember correctly) between 10 and 20%.
Have any of you read the book by Jordan's King Abdullah, in which he states clearly that he assembled all the leaders of the various Muslim sects and they unanimously endorsed a document that condemned terrorism as an invalid expression of the purpose of Jihad? In it he also wrote about a meeting of about 50 heads of state in the Muslim world who ALL endorsed an offer of peace with Israel; one that has never been acknowledged by the Israeli government? Read another book, "The Lemon Tree". I condemn terrorism. We hear much about the rocket attacks on Israel, but very little about the nearly 10:1 deaths that occur (10 Palestinians for 1 Israeli). If area Palestinian and you want to build in the occupied territories, you can't get a building permit at all, not even with 5-10 years of patient applications, etc. However, settlements get them very quickly.
Water availability is over 80% to Israel, from diversions of the Jordan river and wells, with Palestinian farmers usually denied the use of wells on their own land.
That's just part of it.
+10 # Fight Back 2013-11-09 16:24
Neither side in the Israeli/Palesti nian conflicts is free of serious blame. Any resolution will have to look to the future and not just the past. Those who seriously care about all of the people who live there and want to support better lives for them all will not participate in hate-mongering that precludes achieving a better future.
-3 # Marieke 2013-11-09 17:19
Goodness, a voice of reason! Yes, we can rehash the old stuff over and over again, but it's like a rocking chair: keeps us busy, but doesn't get us anywhere new.
+12 # Nominae 2013-11-09 22:39
Quoting Marieke:
Goodness, a voice of reason! Yes, we can rehash the old stuff over and over again, but it's like a rocking chair: keeps us busy, but doesn't get us anywhere new.

How sweet. But the violence against Palestinian people is being carried out with gusto RIGHT NOW. Pretty lame attempt to re-direct attention there.

I am guessing that the Palestinian children we see on televised news docs getting their hands smashed against large rocks with Israeli rifle butts, really do not consider such an experience to be "rehash[ing] the old stuff" OR to be "sitting in a rocking chair".

However, that naughty kid *may* have thrown a rock, we don't know, but either way, no *wonder* it warranted a full-on commando response. Yup, that's "cuttin' it", alright.

Yeah, I get it ...... I can see why Israel wants to "move on.. move on.... nothin' to see here!"

My goodness, indeedy, what an *ODD* "voice of reason" :

"Didn't happen, y'all, you did *NOT* see what you just saw. That IDF Soldier was simply giving that nice little boy a hand massage using the butt of his rifle....... you know .....'deep tissue' massage..... move on now."

If that kid actually spits at a soldier, I'm certain you can get the U.S. to send a SEAL Team backup for Israeli commandos.
Keep us on speed dial.
+17 # tomo 2013-11-09 20:18
Kerry is simply saying in public what every dispassionate observer of the Middle East--a category including many an Israeli and a considerable number of American Jewish intellectuals-- has been saying in less prominent forums for years now. Still, I don't want to minimize the significance that it is Kerry, the American Secretary of State, who is saying it. It is precisely what I thought Kerry would never say, and for lack of which I expected this renewal of the peace process to be stillborn. Let's just hope there are no muddying "clarifications " issued by Kerry-handlers that retract its substance while the echoes are still resonating.
+15 # sdraymond 2013-11-09 22:02
Before Netanyahu became Prime Minister, I read many reports from the mainstream press about his extreme right wing radical philosophy. Since becoming Prime Minister, most of the media treats him as a moderate. What has changed? It isn't Netanyahu. His bellicose war mongering and unhampered construction of settlements on Palestinian land are testament to that. It is the Israeli public that has moved away from the rational enlightened policies of David Ben Gurion, Golda Meir and Yitzhak Rabin and embraced a war-mongering radical philosophy. This new normal would be right at home with America's Tea Party and George Bush.
+6 # Pikewich 2013-11-10 15:00
This break with supporting Israel no matter what is telling. It is a major shift in policy. The fact Kerry did this outside the talks is probably more significant than if he voiced these opinions, which are the opinions of the US state department, in them.

This backs Nentanyahu into a corner. He is loosing ground against his Iranian problem, and on his illegal settlement problem.

Does he now have no option but to attack Iran and start a terrible middle east war? One that the US will have to support?
+8 # Activista 2013-11-10 22:33
This is risky switch but necessary. American and Israeli public needs to wake up - especially US congress. Otherwise the USA will finish as did Soviet Union - self-destroyed by military spending.
+5 # RMDC 2013-11-11 07:51
"Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his old friend John Kerry in Jerusalem that he was concerned about the peace process, and asked the visiting US secretary of state to "steer [the Palestinians] back to a place where we could achieve the historical peace that we seek.""

This is the most patronizing and offensive opening I've ever read. Kerry and Netanyahoo as Old Friends!!!! Rather they are co-conspirators in great crimes against humanity. In fact, Kerry was there as Netanyahoo's pawn, ready to get his marching orders for the meetings in Geneva with Iranians.

No one can be friends with Netanyahoo. He is a psychopath and megalomanaic. He cares only about his hatred for Palestinians and his desire to make them suffer until they all leave Israel. A person like this is not capable of "friendship." He seeks only pawn he can manipulate. He treats Obama the same way. the fact that Obama or Kerry even speak to this asshole is humiliating.

Israel is a criminal state. to be friends with the criminal in chief is an insult to Kerry. But maybe Kerry likes it that way.
+1 # Activista 2013-11-12 21:33
I am also sceptical ... all the attack military hardware against Iran (including nuclear warheads) are in the Persian Gulf - it would be unacceptable when there was substantial political change in Iran.
Diplomacy could be just pretension - putting more and more sanctions and conditions on Iran till some "accident" made in Tel Aviv happens - and then bombing starts.
+2 # Nick Reynolds 2013-11-11 11:30
Sounds good, but I wouldn't take this talk too seriously. This is like Obama's State of the Union message, fine words but no action. Like Obama, Kerry knows what to say and what the people want to hear. Let's see if they walk the walk. The comments are more encouraging than Kerry's speech.
+1 # Activista 2013-11-12 21:39
excellent factual article - written by Buchanan - do not kill messenger - read the facts:
"Iran today has no atom bomb. Has never tested a bomb. Has never exploded a nuclear device. Possesses not a single known ounce of 90 percent enriched uranium, which is essential for a uranium bomb."
....To abort Obama's Iran initiative, Bibi is moving on four tracks.
First, get Congress to accept Israel's non negotiable demand ” Iran must give up all enrichment, shut down all nuclear facilities and ship all enriched uranium abroad before any sanctions are lifted.
This is an ultimatum masquerading as a negotiating position..... read more
Bibi wants War With Iran!

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