And Speaking in Praise of America: Netanyahu

 

369px-Benjamin_Netanyahu_2012When you shoot at the king, you better kill him. And when you try to silence a book, movie, or speech, you better succeed. Otherwise you’re just helping their PR.

It would be political suicide for Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu to cancel his speech to Congress. And President Obama’s words and actions have set the Prime Minister up to give exactly the speech the western world needs to hear.

The United States has done more than any other nation in history to increase life, liberty, happiness, and prosperity around the world. She has done more than any other nation to defeat totalitarian regimes. And she has done more than any other nation to help people of different religions work together.

As a Jew, I am particularly thankful to the United States for not only working with her allies to defeat Hitler, but for working to provide a home to so many Jews who otherwise would have perished in Europe, or who had survived Nazi and Communist atrocities.

I remind Americans of this because the United States has one great weakness. The United States is often embarrassed of its own greatness, and even more so, of its own goodness. American television shows are written mocking the idea of American exceptionalism. And while individuals and countries should always be looking for ways to improve themselves, obsessing over one’s flaws while ignoring one’s goodness can be toxic. I think you may have gotten some of your toxic self-criticism from us Jews. Sorry.

Many Americans have also become too convinced that it is self-evident that all people are born with God-given, inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is not self-evident. It is a truth that we must teach every new generation. It is a truth that many around the world do not believe. Not all people are driven by these goals, or believe that God wants us to pursue these goals. Certainly many people of all religions, including Christians, Muslims, and Jews, are driven by a desire to experience and spread life, liberty, and happiness.

But many other people believe that God’s primary interest is that we submit to His will, and that we make others do the same. That we make non-believers fear and suffer. That we torture and kill gay people. That we spill acid in the face of girls who try to get an education. That we take non-submitting girls and women as sex slaves.

The good news is that many countries are stepping up to stop the spread of tyranny. Canada, Australia, India, and Japan, for example, are standing up on the side of life and liberty. Middle Eastern countries like Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia have been standing up too. Nobody suffers from the tyranny of Islamic totalitarians more than innocent Muslims and the besieged Christians of the Middle East.

As Jews, whenever human rights are under attack, so are we. We’re in the middle of it whether we want to be or not. Iran, which is sworn to our destruction, is currently sponsoring a competition of Holocaust-denial cartoons. Somehow French cartoonists mock Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, and Iran thinks that Jews should pay the price.

Iran is sworn to our destruction, and it is developing nuclear weapons. And western negotiators at Munich are learning what they learned, too late, after the Munich pact of 1938: The more we give in to tyrants, the more powerful they become, and the more they demand. And they never stop at the Jews.

The United States Congress had spirited discussions about the president’s Middle East policies a decade ago, and I expect it will be having them again now. The challenges are not easy. But the United States has always proven herself greater than those who threaten her, her values, and good people everywhere.

God bless you all. And God bless the United States of America.

Those are the words that Americans need to hear. And Prime Minister Netanyahu may be just the man to deliver them.

There are 15 comments.

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  1. Zafar Member
    Zafar
    @Zafar

    He could totally broadside Obama and the Arab World and Herzog & Livni by proposing actual borders for that two state solution.  If he does that, remember, you saw it first here.

    • #1
  2. Ricochet Inactive
    Ricochet
    @GilReich

    There’s no way that’s a winning play. Any borders that he proposes would either generate overwhelming international criticism, cost him half his voters, or both.

    • #2
  3. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Zafar:He could totally broadside Obama and the Arab World and Herzog & Livni by proposing actual borders for that two state solution. If he does that, remember, you saw it first here.

    I have a one-state solution in mind.  Oh, and that dome has to go.  Or maybe we could just stay on topic.

    • #3
  4. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    I am printing out this post and hanging it on my office wall.

    Thank you.

    I think you are describing an America of the past and of the not-too-distant future, if we can just survive the present.

    • #4
  5. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    Excellent post. I’m reposting it to my FB page.

    • #5
  6. Ricochet Inactive
    Ricochet
    @GilReich

    Thank you!!

    • #6
  7. DocJay Inactive
    DocJay
    @DocJay

    Nice!

    • #7
  8. Podkayne of Israel Member
    Podkayne of Israel
    @PodkayneofIsrael

    Well done!

    • #8
  9. EThompson Inactive
    EThompson
    @EThompson

    The United States is often embarrassed of its own greatness, and even more so, of its own goodness.

    Awesome and inspiring. I needed to hear this.

    • #9
  10. Ricochet Inactive
    Ricochet
    @GilReich

    Thank you everybody, I really appreciate your comments.

    • #10
  11. user_891102 Member
    user_891102
    @DannyAlexander

    #1 Zafar and #2 Gil

    Herzog & Livni aren’t *really* running on border-proposals themselves; they’d lose just about as many voters as Bibi would in such a scenario.

    In other words, the cumulative effect of the behavior of both Abu Mazen and (of course) Hamas has been to solidify a clear majority view among the Israeli Jewish public (and no doubt among Israeli Druze as well) that there is no partner for peace at this juncture.

    The same majority also tends to poll in favor of a two-state solution, actually — they don’t buy the so-called “Nakba” narrative, but in principle they subscribe to a worldview of live-and-let-live, a corollary of which is neighborly arrangements enabling/upholding self-determination.

    I was in Israel throughout last July, from just before Hamas loosed its first rocket-barrage (beyond Sderot, that is) through just after Obama lifted his FAA siege on Ben-Gurion Airport. The sense among the majority of Israelis per my description above is one that was widely palpable — no one took any joy from the conclusion that Abu Mazen and Hamas (and their cheerleaders in Qatar, Tehran, Ankara, and 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue) were rendering inescapable, but this majority has faced up pragmatically to the reality nevertheless.

    In brass-tacks Israeli electoral terms, then, this leaves Herzog & Livni chiefly only two cards by which to demagogue and tighten the polling: 1) Netanyahu’s personality (so yes, this is a retrogression to junior-high-school values-scales); 2) severe cost-of-living strains over the past few years, especially but not only in the housing market (something that arguably was messed up by now-ousted Finance Minister Yair Lapid — himself cut from much the same cloth as Herzog and to some extent Livni).

    So, altogether impracticable whichever side and whatever spectrum-end one inspects.

    And yes, totally off-topic into the bargain anyway.

    Hell, if the Palestinians themselves want to live, they ought to support Israel’s prioritizing elimination of the Khomeinist nuclear threat ahead of everything.

    Unless that is if they’re fine with being Shahid sacrifices en masse collaterally to an Iranian device detonation for purposes of Shi’a doctrinal realization.

    • #11
  12. Kay of MT Member
    Kay of MT
    @KayofMT

    EThompson:Awesome and inspiring. I needed to hear this.

    You youngsters are so deficient in American history. <grin> We are the greatest, we are the best! Even tho we have acted as the world’s policemen since WWII, we haven’t once colonized a country, raped it for it’s resources, sold off it’s population in slavery, nor slaughtered most of it’s civilization population. Don’t think the same can be said of those countries who call us the “little satan” or the “big satan” and would like to nuke us.

    Don’t forget as well, we are the only country in the history of the world that fought a civil war, to end slavery within our boundaries.

    I think it is time for us to get a president who believes we are the greatest, restore our standing in the world community, restore the trust of our allies, and turn our big guns on our enemies. I think Bibi’s speech to congress just might inspire that.

    • #12
  13. Nanda Panjandrum Member
    Nanda Panjandrum
    @

    Hear, hear!

    • #13
  14. Boomerang Inactive
    Boomerang
    @Boomerang

    Great post, thank you!!

    • #14
  15. Barfly Member
    Barfly
    @Barfly

    Well said, Gil.

    • #15

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