By Dr. Elias Akleh
During the last two weeks people were faced with a propaganda campaign trying to convince them that there developed a crisis in the American Israeli relationships due to Israel’s announcement of approving the building of 1600 Jewish only housing units in occupied east Jerusalem Palestinian suburb of Shu’fat on the day of Joe Biden’s visit to Israel March 9th.
Major media sources and many politicians declared this announcement as an Israeli slap on Biden’s face, especially after the Palestinian Authority, backed by Arab leaders, had just accepted American mediation in indirect talks (proximity talks as per Hillary’s description).
The announcement, in reality, was an Israeli gift to Biden that also included a framed document announcing the planting of several trees in Jerusalem in memory of Biden’s mother; a loyal supporter of Israel. This was an excellent gift, rather than a slap, for the ardent self-proclaimed Zionist Biden. During his visit Biden went to Tel Aviv University to tell his audience that he is a Zionist. He proclaimed: “Throughout my career, Israel has not only remained close to my heart but it has been the center of my work as a United States Senator and now as vice president of the United States.” Israel, rather than the United States, seems to be closer to Biden’s heart. Biden is a living proof that one does not have to be Jewish in order to be a Zionist, as he stated in a televised interview on Shalom TV.
Zionist’s main tenets are the genocide of Palestinians, the confiscation of their land, the building of more Jewish only residents, especially in Jerusalem, and the erection of the third temple in place of Al-Aqsa mosque.
The announcement also confirms the Zionist plan for the region that had been adopted by every successive Israeli leader. Every time the Palestinians and Arab leaders make another step towards peace with Israel, its leaders take a more aggressive step such as driving their tanks into Palestinian cities, confiscating more land, or building more colonies. Netanyahu’s government had destroyed the Salman Al-Farisi mosque in the Palestinian village of Burin, had added the Islamic Ibrahimi and Bilal Mosques to Israel’s heritage list, and besides the 60 synagogues surrounding the Islamic Al-Aqsa Mosque had announced the completion of the Hurva Synagogue (The Ruin Synagogue) few meters away from Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is seen by Moslems as another closer step towards the destruction of their Mosque.
The American/Israeli relationship has never been stronger than what it is today. The United States had supported Israel since her birth in 1948 in the midst of the Arab World as an expansionist colonial state. It took the then American President, Harry Truman, only eleven minutes to recognize Israel as a state, and he did it even without consulting the Congress.
Israel constituted an important military base and a military mercenary army for the West, especially for France, UK and US. Joe Biden, in his interview on Shalom TV, had explained this fact very clearly. In 1956 Israel was a mercenary army for United Kingdom and for France against Egypt after Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser had nationalized Suez Canal taking it away from British control, and had supported the Algerian revolution against the French occupation. For this service Israel received French technological help to build its nuclear reactor in Dimona, and received heavy water to contain nuclear rods from United Kingdom.
For the United States Israel served as a military base for testing new American weapons against the Palestinians. Palestine is used by Israel as the testing ground, and Palestinians as the test subjects for the new American made weapons. Many NGOs has documented the use of biological, chemical and nuclear weapons against Palestinians and Arabs during Israel’s wars against Lebanon and against Gaza Strip.
Israel was also used by the successive American administrations as an existential threat to Arab countries especially the oil rich Gulf States. This threat has facilitated the sale of large amounts of American weapons, although ineffectual and obsolete, to the Gulf States. Such sale helped American weapon manufacturers to thrive, and also helped to siphon the oil money into the American banks. The Israeli threat to the Gulf States helped justify the building of American military bases in the Gulf States under the pretense of protecting these states.
Israel was also considered the Western frontal defense line against Communist expansion in the Middle East. Yet after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Israel lost this usefulness. Israel, though, had regained its usefulness as an American partner in war against terror after the attacks of 911. Many investigations had pointed the finger towards special Mossad demolition squad as the possible planner and executor of this attack.
Bush’s alleged “global war on terror” had flipped the American/Israeli military equation upside down. The United States had become Israel’s free mercenary army fighting Israel’s wars in proxy. The invasion of Iraq is one clear example. The two major Iraqi oil pipe lines, one from northern Kurdish Iraq to Turkey’s coast through Syria and the other from southern Iraq to the Persian Gulf, were cut off. They both were directed to Israel’s Haifa ports through Jordan.
The cold war against Iran and the graduating pressure to subdue the Iranian regime through economic sanctions and incitement of internal conflict and terror attacks serve only Israel. To keep Israel the strongest military power in the region this cold war is waged under the pretense of Iran’s nuclear program aimed at developing a nuclear bomb, a pretense refuted several times by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and by Iran’s willingness to exchange its rich uranium. Meanwhile the Western countries are ignoring the very well established fact of Israel’s stockpiling at least 200 nuclear bombs, and that France and US had signed agreements with some Arab countries, such as Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and UAE to build nuclear reactors similar to that in Iran.
Thanks to AIPAC the American administration has become zionized. Israel’s interests and welfare had gained higher priority than American interests and welfare. At the expense of the American tax payers the US had supported Israel with technology and most sophisticated weapons to attack Lebanon and Gaza Strip. Israel’s terrorists and war criminals are protected and shielded by American political support and intimidation of other countries at the UN. The Congress had backed Israel’s 2008 war crimes against Gaza and condemned Goldstone’s Report by a vote of 334 to 36.
The Congress had approved the $3 billion annual military assistance to Israel. Using American tax money the administration is paying for free complete medical coverage for every Israeli citizen, and is subsidizing Israeli residential projects while those American tax payers lack necessary medical coverage and are losing their homes.
The Zionized American administration had ignored General Petraeus’s warnings to the US Senate Armed Services Committee that the unconditional biased American support to Israel foments anti-American sentiments, and endangers the lives of American soldiers in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and in the Moslem World in general.
In a sign of support to Israel by the States Senate and under the initiative of Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) a letter was sent to Secretary Clinton urging her to do what she can to undermine the effects of what they call “the untimely announcement of housing construction in East Jerusalem”. They also blame the Palestinian intransigence for failure to restart the peace negotiation, and asking that the administration should not publicly criticize Israel even when Israel does things to publicly embarrass the administration.
On the other hand at the Congress more than 250 members have signed onto a declaration sent to Hillary Clinton reaffirming their commitment to “the unbreakable bond that exists between the U.S. and the State of Israel … we believe, as President Obama said, that Israel’s security is paramount in our Middle East policy and that it is in U. S. national security interests to assure that Israel’s security as an independent Jewish state is maintained.”
In her speech at AIPAC’s March 22nd Conference Hillary Clinton gave an enthusiastic speech praising what she alleged Israel’s commitment to peace and pledging America’s perpetual support to Israel. “The future of both countries (US & Israel) are bound together … our commitment to Israel’s security and to Israel’s future is rock solid” Hillary affirmed.
Obama’s approach to Israel is reflected in his speech to AIPAC on June 3rd 2008, while still a presidential candidate, when he stated: “Jerusalem will remain the capital of Israel, and it must remain undivided … I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Everything in my power. Everything and I mean everything.”
So, what is the fuss about this so-called US/Israeli crisis? This is a double stick-and-carrot approach to the Arab leaders, who just concluded their summit (March 27 & 28). It is meant as a face saving for the US and giving the illusion that the administration might pressure Israel providing the Arab leaders do not come up with any strong resolutions and give the administration the time to deal with Israel. The stick comes in the Congress’s commitment to Israel’s security.
The ball is now in the Arab’s court. What will they decide: the usual empty condemnations or real action this time?
– Dr. Elias Akleh is an Arab writer of Palestinian descent, born in the town of Beit-Jala. Currently he lives in the US. He contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.