Thursday, February 05, 2015

Obama, Netanyahu, and Iran's Split Promises

by Delta Vines

The ongoing debate over U.S. House Speaker John Boehner’s invitation to (and acceptance of) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to the U.S. Congress has gotten a surprisingly amount of criticism toward both men.  It appears the procedure of clearing the invitation with President Obama before actually issuing and accepting such was the first “strike”.  The timing of the proposed date for the speech is yet another issue. 

Granted, there is no love lost from President Obama toward PM Netanyahu.  Ever since his first term began, President Obama has dis-respected PM Netanyahu on numerous visits and occasions.  On their first meeting, P.M. Netanyahu was presented with a list of demands from President Obama; who then left him alone in a room for an hour.  There was no joint statement to the press, and no photo of the two together.  In May 2011, President Obama announced Israel would go back to the 1967 borders. The problem was, no one had told Israel.  Any country only 9 miles wide in extended places is not big enough for millions of people. The negotiations for peace continues – between Israel and the “Palestinians”. The negotiations for peace between President Obama and Israeli PM Netanyahu continues as well, right into 2015.

It seems simple enough to me.  The Speaker of the House contacted PM Netanyahu about addressing the U S Congress on the threat Iran poses to Israel and the rest of the world. The date(s) of the proposed visit is during the AIPAC convention, which would be a convenience as P.M. Netanyahu has many times addressed the AIPAC convention in person.

We have three branches of government.   The last I knew, the Supreme Court does not ask the President or the Congress permission to rule on certain cases, or who is or is not allowed to argue cases, as long as they are licensed litigators. The President doesn’t ask Congress’s permission to go to other countries to meet with heads of state.  Congress does not ask the Supreme Court’s permission to vote on a bill making it law.  A courtesy, at worse, was neglected.  However, PM Netanyahu’s people apparently were under the impression that President Obama had been informed of the invitation and had no opposition to it.

Over one week ago this issue was discussed on Fox News Sunday broadcast.  Ever the eloquent speaker, George Will had an excellent summation to a couple of questions posed by Chris Wallace:

HOST CHRIS WALLACE: George, was Boehner wrong to invite Netanyahu to Congress without consulting the White House? Was Netanyahu wrong to accept the invitation?

WILL: Neither were wrong. Congress is a collegial branch of government, with many responsibilities in foreign policy. Second, the president has gone out of his way to show disdain for both Congress in foreign and domestic policy, and for Mr. Netanyahu in particular. Steve Hayes makes the point in the Weekly Standard today, it is by no means good protocol to have the prime minister of another country, [UK Prime Minister David] Cameron, lobby our Congress about policy he favors.
WALLACE: Let me just quickly point out, Cameron called members of Congress to say don’t pass a sanctions bill threatening sanctions against Iran.
WILL: Correct. The president’s people were apologizing to members of Congress this week for not consulting them. We may be sure that if a deal is reached with Iran by June 30th, and if a climate deal is reached in Paris, the president will try to treat both of those as something other than a treaty and go around Congress. Israel lives in a tough neighborhood. In 726 days the president will be gone, they will still live in a tough neighborhood. And they’re not going to worry about showing manners to this man who has such bad manners.

Bad manners aside, I think Mr. Will hit the nail on the head:  it is all about Iran.  More to the point, it's all about placating Iran.  While U.S. President Obama, Great Britain, China, France, and Russia will be "re-negotiating" a deal with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani to do what?  They haven't stopped any advancement on their nuclear capabilities.  In fact, they've said one thing and done another, as usual.  President Obama refuses to impose sanctions upon the country.  Instead, he talks and talks while they build and build.

Enter P.M. Netanyahu and a dose of reality:  Iran threatens the existence of Israel.  Iran also threatens the existence of the U.S.   And Netanyahu's visit threatens President Obama's negotiations with Iran.  His speech would do more.

It makes one wonder even more if the reason President Obama is against P.M. Netanyahu speaking to the U.S. Congress is his plans for Iran will be thwarted.  What plans would that be?  To continue to do as he has done his entire presidency:  empower Islamic countries in order to try to boost his own ego.

The American people are no longer buying it.  WE THE PEOPLE want to hear what P.M. Netanyahu has to say.  WE are in charge of this country...not a dictatorial president sitting in his ivory tower.