Israel Intransigence Threatens U.S. with Ruin
Writing in the New Republic
(June 7), [Face
Reality ]former National Security Advisor
Zbigniew Brzezinski characterizes the Bush
administration`s invasion and occupation of Iraq as
“justified by falsehoods, pursued with unilateral
arrogance, blinded by self-delusion, and stained by
sadistic excesses.” [Face
Brzezinski condemns Bush`s failed
Iraq policy for aiding and abetting terrorism and for
generating hardcore hatred of the US. Brzezinski points
firmly to the real problem: “The Israeli-Palestinian
conflict is the single most combustible and galvanizing
issue in the Arab world.”
If any headway is to be made
against terror, Brzezinski says, the Bush administration
must cease supporting the Likud Party`s goal of a
greater Israel while ignoring Palestinian rights.
As the US has learned in Iraq, mere
force cannot defeat terrorism. However, an equitable
Israeli-Palestinian settlement can.
No progress can be made in
resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as long as
neoconservatives continue to control the Bush
presidency. A number of top military officers and
foreign policy experts have called for the resignation
of the neoconservative contingent.
Gen. Anthony Zinni recently
accused top Pentagon officials of “dereliction of
duty” and called for their heads to roll.
Marine Gen. William Whitlow wrote
recently [May 30 204) in the
Washington Post that “it is time for the
president to ask those responsible for the flawed Iraqi
policy to resign from public service.”
Neoconservatives are opposed to any
resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on any
terms other than Israel`s terms.
Until Bush cleans his own house of
the principal opponents to an Israeli-Palestinian
solution, there is no prospect of the US making headway
in the war against terror.
We know who the failed policymakers
are: Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Pentagon
officials Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith and their
advisor Richard Perle, Vice President Richard Cheney and
his chief-of-staff “Scooter” Libby.
There are others, but cleaning out
these notorious incompetents would permit Bush to make
the course correction that Brzezinski says is urgently
Many Americans believe that a
Middle East course correction is impossible, because
Israel controls US Middle Eastern policy and Israelis
are of one mind. Americans mistakenly believe Israelis
are of one mind, because the US media does not report on
the fierce Israeli opposition to the Likud Party`s
aggressive policy toward the Palestinians.
Most thoughtful Israelis oppose the
Likud Party`s strategy, because they understand that it
is suicidal for 5 million Israelis to make themselves
hated by hundreds of millions of Muslims.
Israelis have written that Ariel
Sharon`s mistreatment of Palestinians means their
country will not exist in 25 years and that their
children are already planning to emigrate. Prominent
Israeli newspapers, writers, politicians, and peace
groups continuously lambaste the Likud Party for its
policy toward the Palestinians, comparing it to the
treatment of Jews by German National Socialists.
Here is what Shulamit Aloni has to
say about Israel in an
interview on the Web site of Israel`s largest
circulating daily, Yediot Acharonot. Shulamit
Aloni was a member of the Knesset during 1974-96. During
this period she held three cabinet posts and was a
member of the National Security Council during 1992-96.
the violent ones; we are the cheats. Our very
foundations have been undermined by our adulation of
force, and all this is called a democracy. There cannot
be democracy when we rule over three million people who
have no voice. We do not even try to understand that
what the Palestinians want is sovereignty and human
is an absolute moral thoughtlessness . . . The moral
disintegration of our society is the direct consequence
of what is happening in the [occupied] Territories. . .
. For the past 37 years, our Jewish paranoia has been
stoked by brainwashing. We get told that they want to
exterminate us. Who are `they`? We are at peace with
Egypt and Jordan, and these two countries do not
threaten us anymore. So who is going to throw us into
the sea–the Palestinians? The present war is not a war
of survival, but a colonial war.”
Shulamit Aloni says that the Likud
Party encourages Palestinian terrorism in order to
cement national consensus with Jewish blood”:
terrorism is on the wane, then people feel free to ask
questions, critics can be heard and the spirit of
defiance grows. . . . I cannot live with the way we
continually wail that we are the victim, and do not
examine our own morality. We are busy destroying the
vital infrastructure of three million people, and then
pretend that we are the victims.”
“It`s time,” Aloni says, “to
tell the truth to the people, straight to their faces!”
Americans could use a lot more
truth as well, not only about the deceit the US
government used to justify invading Iraq but also about
the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Policies based on lies, arrogance,
delusion, and sadistic excesses will bring ruin to the
US and to Israel.
Craig Roberts was Associate Editor of the WSJ editorial
page, 1978-80, and columnist for “Political Economy.”
During 1981-82 he was Assistant Secretary of the
Treasury for Economic Policy. He is the author of
Supply-Side Revolution: An Insider`s Account of
Policymaking in Washington.