Israel: Rhetoric v Reality

June 12, 2015 by Ron Weiser
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When discussing matters pertaining to Israel one of the challenges is how to differentiate between rhetoric and reality…writes Ron Weiser.

Dr Ron Weiser

Dr Ron Weiser

In a nutshell, broad-based opinion in Israel, from Tzippi to Buji to Lapid to Bibi see the immediate establishment of a Palestinian State, as an existential threat to Israel – for reasons of security and safety. This is reality.

However, President Obama, Hollande of France, much of United States Jewry and even some of our own community here – see the non-establishment of a Palestinian State immediately, as an existential threat to Israel. This is rhetoric.

This is for reasons of optics, of how they want to look and hope to be received by others.

It is certainly not for the safety and security of the people of Israel.

And Tzippi and Buji and Lapid and Bibi all have pretty much plus/minus, the same view on how the borders should look, when/if at all it can be done safely.

True – and now here is the difference – Tzippi, Buji and Lapid appear to look keener to want to do the deal, ergo President Obama likes them better.

Not because they can make a deal.

They cannot.

But again because of the optics. Rhetoric.

In the real world it is generally so-called ‘right wing’ governments that can make a deal as only they can carry the majority of the people with them on these sort of issues.

If the ‘right’ make significant concessions, who will object?

And think back, who made the deal of territory for peace with Egypt? Menachem Begin.

Who took Israel out of Gaza? Ariel Sharon.

Prime Minister Netanyahu’s position bears closer scrutiny.

Notwithstanding Bibi’s one solitary heat of the moment election eve comment, he has been remarkably consistent and frequent in his statements and policy in favour of a Palestinian State since his landmark speech at Bar Ilan in 2009 where he crossed his own Rubicon.

Of course he has also insisted on some very reasonable and cross-political conditions. Mainly that the Palestinian quid pro quo is that Israel be recognised as the Jewish State and that any so-called Palestinian refugees go, if they so choose, to a future Palestinian State and not to Israel.

Just last Sunday in his phone call with President Hollande, Bibi reiterated his commitment to the Two States for Two Peoples formula.

And on Tuesday this week, at the Herzliya Conference Netanyahu said as follows:

“I remain committed to a solution of two states for two peoples as I said at Bar-Ilan”

The problem is that the Palestinians do not want negotiations.

To negotiate means to compromise, to give something up.

Well Netanyahu has outlined what he is willing to give up, the land for the establishment of a Palestinian State on most of the West Bank/Judea and Samaria.

The Palestinians however, are not willing to agree to a Jewish State of any size.

Indeed the supposedly moderate Fatah insist that all of Palestine will be free – “from the river to the sea”

Mahmoud Abbas has not crossed his own personal Rubicon.

Let alone would he dare tell his people even if he did.

The very people who he has educated to believe that the ‘Zionist Entity’ is but temporary and will disappear.

Netanyahu expanded further on this theme in his Herzliya Conference speech this week:

“I again call on President Abbas to return to negotiations without preconditions. But I also know he has very little reason to talk. Why should he talk? He can get by without talking. He can get by with an international community that blames Israel for not having talks. In other words, the Palestinians run from the table. They ran away from Prime Minister Barak. They ran away from Prime Minister Olmert. They ran away from, before that, from Prime Minister Sharon. And they ran away from me.”

So all of this international action by the Palestinians whether it be at FIFA, the International Criminal Court or where ever, is simply designed to be a political weapon in their attempts to distract the world from the Palestinian failure to enter face to face negotiations, which for them, as they see it, would mean a lose lose situation because of the need for compromise.

At Herzliya Bibi expressed it perfectly:

“But the Palestinians have a nifty trick up their sleeve – they refuse to negotiate and then get international pressure, sanctions, boycotts on Israel for there not being negotiations. It’s a perfect Catch-22. And there are those who attempt to impose terms on Israel in the Security Council because there are no talks and some of them pretend that the dangers we face are not real dangers at all.”

I have written and spoken many times before about what the Palestinians want, which is 2 States but effectively for 1 People – and how that is so different from what Israel seeks, which is 2 States for 2 Peoples.

Our issues with President Obama are multiple and complex, but there is no doubt that he does set a moral tone for large numbers of people around the world for reasons that often defy any logic.

But that is the reality.

On one issue in particular though, Israel as the Jewish State, his support is strong and we should encourage all people who oppose the concept of Israel as the Jewish State, people like Di Natale for instance, the new leader of the Greens here in Australia, to listen to Obama.

In Obama’s State of the Union address in January 2014 he said:

“As we speak, American diplomacy is supporting Israelis and Palestinians as they engage in difficult but necessary talks to end the conflict there; to achieve dignity and an independent state for Palestinians, and lasting peace and security for the State of Israel – a Jewish state that knows America will always be at their side.” 

And just a couple of weeks ago on the 21st of May:

“There’s a direct line between supporting the right of the Jewish people to have a homeland and to feel safe and free of discrimination and persecution, and the right of African-Americans to vote and have equal protection under the law,” Obama said. “These things are indivisible in my mind.”

Powerful words.

Rhetoric, yes.

But also cause for at least some optimism.

Ron Weiser is the Immediate Past President of the Zionist Federation of Australia and Hon Life President of the Zionist Council of NSW.


4 Responses to “Israel: Rhetoric v Reality”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    You surprise me Ron; I didn’t know that you had such wicked sense of humour. Obama’s words a cause of optimism? For Jews? Oh, how deliciously comic! And cruelly grotesque.

    Obama’s words are not powerful rhetoric. They are tekkiya, for gullible US Jews for whom he has contempt. The biggest problem is not merely that Obama, the supporter of revolutionary Islam, is an enemy of the Jews, but that he is an enemy of Western values.

    Try reading Obama’s words as a person who relates them to reality, the actions that he has taken or refuses to take. Ignoring the disaster Obama is on the home front, he allowed US troops to die in Afghanistan by ordering a semi-surge that was bound to fail, he sacrificed US citizens in Tripoli, he drove Egypt into Russia’s arms by opposing the Moslem Brotherhood’s overthrow, he opposes established mohammmedan regimes and sucks up to Erdogan.

    Now he prattles on about supporting Israelis and Palestinians in difficult talks. He is lying! The USA is negotiating and pressuring Israel on behalf the “Palestinian”; the US is not a facilitator but a partisan participant. And Jewish leaders think that Obama is wonderful because he is the realisation of their dream of a fair go for oppressed people, except that Barrack Hussein was never oppressed. And he treats as equal, Jews a genuine people and one “Palestinians” a people concocted to challenge and deny Jews the right of self-determination.

    Obama also yabbers about the links between African-Americans and Jews, except that the slaver holders and the enforcers of Jim Crow laws never subjected the oppressed “darkies” to mass extermination. That was imposed by the mohammedan enslavers and the shippers in days past and the Sudanese more recently. Afro-Americans face no existential threat, by his cutting a deal with revolutionary Islamist in Iran, Obama is exposing the Jews in Israel to a renewal of the Holocaust.

    The only thing optimistic about Obama is that he only has a limited time to further undermine Israel, the US and Western civilisation. The only thing funny is the current Jewish leadership which, like a pack of whipped curs, lick the hand that flogs them.

  2. danny kid says:

    this is just more rhetoric. The reality is that Aza, Shomron and Yehuda are Muslim occupied Jewish lands. Reality. This does not mean that there is no room for another dysfunctionàl arab state between 1948 israel and the jordan river – stupid as that consideration is – but it is Jewish Land that the Jews are willing to gift – that is Jewish Land that Jews are willing to surrender to dysfunctional Arab barbarians for the sake of peace. This is reality, not dreamtime wishful thinking.

  3. Gil Solomon says:


    Here is some reality for you.
    For you to even compare the accord signed by Menachem Begin with the late Egyptian leader Anwar Sadat in the same vein as the so called “negotiations” being attempted with the terrorist group known as the Palestinian Authority is absolutely absurd and misleading.

    The negotiations with the PA are an impossibility. The PA by their actions have made it abundantly clear that the only peace with Israel they want is the peace of the grave. You appear to have no concept of this. How many more times is Israel going to go down that same ludicrous road before calling it a day? The only thing the PA understands is force and Israel should unleash this once and for all. It will be criticized for whatever it does anyway.

    On Obama you say: “On one issue in particular though, Israel as the Jewish State, his support is strong” and then when he compares the African-American situation to the fictional Palestinian rhetoric you say it is a “cause for at least some optimism”.

    A bit of reality for you to digest.
    Obama’s latest charm offensive to American Jews is to counter any resolve that may be left in their spines to the deal he is making with Iran.
    After all, if he can silence American Jewish opposition to the Iran deal, by making out he is a good guy and has Israel’s back, why would any Republican senator go out of his way to try to block the deal? If American Jews and a great many other Jews like you can be convinced that Obama has Israel’s best interests at heart, opposition to anything he does dissipates. He is counting on ignorant Jews to be unable to see the wood from the trees. This way, he gets a free ride and that is exactly what he is counting on.

    Another bit of reality.
    Time for you Ron and also Jews worldwide to cease giving Obama the benefit of the doubt. When has this President ever once seriously criticized the PA or Hamas?
    He has members of the Muslim Brotherhood in the White House appointed under executive privilege to by-pass senate confirmation hearings as to their appointment.
    He disclosed the Israeli secret air base in Azerbaijan for fear of an Israeli military attack on Iran right before his second term re-election.
    He has subsequently threatened Netanyahu that any attempted strike on Iran’s nuclear facilities by the IAF would result in Israeli fighters being shot down by US fighters if they entered Iraqi air space.
    He has disallowed Israel from doing what it does best by upgrading its fighters to their specifications, thus making sure that the IAF will have no advantages to other fighters supplied to Israel’s adversaries.

    It is a pity that Netanyahu doesn’t seem to have the wherewithal to come out directly and say what we all know to be reality, that is the so called two state solution has no hope and should be formally declared dead and buried. His silence on the false so called “Palestinian” narrative has given credibility to their historical re-writing of history currently going on (that Obama endorses when he refer to these people). He has forsaken the Temple Mount.

    There are major problems with Israeli leadership, but when you compound this with the nonsense of having cause for optimism from the mutterings of Barack Hussein Obama, that to me is beyond belief.

    • Eleonora Mostert says:

      Dear Gil,
      I agree with you but find it very strange that Israel is not permitted to modify/upgrade it’s fighters to suite there specifications/needs. After all, if I purchase a house and don’t like the colors of the walls or even the position of the wall I change it. It’s my house now, not theirs! Crazy mixed up world seems to be getting crazier by the second. God is watching.

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