It was 3 a.m. in India. While most people there were asleep, the American secretary of State, John F. Kerry, was up all night announcing yet another cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war.
— Marie Harf (@marieharf) July 31, 2014
Kerry’s tirelessness came to nothing. Hamas violated the 72-hour ceasefire in less than two hours, and kidnapped an Israeli soldier to boot, as anyone who knows anything Hamas should have expected. Breaking cease-fires and kidnapping (and killing) Jews is what Hamas does. Kerry’s response: More words.
.@JohnKerry: Today’s attack was an outrageous violation of ceasefire negotiated over past several days, and of assurances given to UN & US
— Marie Harf (@marieharf) August 1, 2014
As any sentient being knows by now, trusting Hamas is a fool’s game. The terrorist organization is one of the world’s leading taqiyya practitioners. They lie in the service of their Islam.
Perhaps Secretary Kerry doesn’t watch Hamas TV. Hamas says nice things to him, and preaches genocide to its own faithful.
Before Secretary Kerry flew off to Israel uninvited, before he wound up in India, he could have achieved far more for Israel and for the peace of the world by staying put and saying just a few clear words. Charles Krauthammer picks up the story.
Kerry seems not to understand that the Arab League backed the Egyptian ceasefire-in-place, which would have left Hamas weak and isolated, to ensure that Hamas didn’t emerge from this war strengthened and enhanced.
Why didn’t Kerry just stay home and declare unequivocal U.S. support for the Egyptian/Arab League plan? Instead, he flies off to Paris and sends Jerusalem a package of victories for Hamas: lifting the blockade from Egypt, opening the border with Israel, showering millions in foreign cash to pay the salaries of the 43,000 (!) government workers that the near-insolvent Hamas cannot.
Forget about Israeli interests. Forget about Arab interests. The American interest is to endorse and solidify this emerging axis of moderate pro-American partners (Israel, Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and other Gulf states, and the Palestinian Authority) intent on seeing Islamist radicalism blunted and ultimately defanged.
Indeed, but as Krauthammer notes, Kerry doesn’t see it. His slavishly devoted staff, like Marie Harf in the tweenish tweet above, don’t see it. Does anyone in the State Department see it?
Some of their joy over cease-fires that fail to cease any actual fire springs from the “everyone gets a trophy” culture. They keep playing up “engagement” in this and that as if merely talking equals getting something done. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki keeps talking up “engagement” while Putin keeps waging war in Ukraine.
But John Kerry isn’t from that millennial culture. What explains his wretched handling of the current Israel-Hamas war? What explains his acting as Hamas’ lead advocate, and isolating the United States when he could achieve something good by isolating Hamas?