In Praise of Benjamin Netanyahu
In case you non-Jews haven't noticed, we Jews bicker a lot. Some of us even have bad things to say about Albert Einstein. A fair number of us have bad things to say about Karl Marx. Or about Milton Friedman -- to go the other way. (Yes, I think Friedman was a lot smarter than Marx.)
So it should be no surprise that Benjamin Netanyahu is only intermittently popular in his home country. At the height of the recent Gaza war, he was a hero on the level of King Solomon, but then, after things quieted down with a relatively indeterminate conclusion, he was, well, just another pol.
But he's not.
This man, whatever his failings, is better able to articulate the global situation than any political leader currently in a position of power in any country by yards. In fact, virtually no one else is even attempting to do it. (Tony Blair did for a while before he turned, but he's not in Bibi's league.) Netanyahu may not be Churchill when it comes to courage, but he is Churchill, or close, when it comes to a precise mastery of the English language, ironic since he is the prime minister of a Hebrew-speaking nation. He is able to tell the truth about the important issues, when all others, including, notably, our president and secretary of State, are prevaricating or spinning, trying desperately not to offend the reprehensible, and he did it again the other day at the United Nations. (Full text here.) He told the truth about radical Islam to a half-empty house whose Moslem delegates had left and whose remaining attendees sat there terrified of agreeing publicly with the Israeli prime minister lest some imam or dopey liberal NGO accuse of them of Islamophobia. He made that speech at an institution that has institutionalized anti-Semitism, not world peace or even basic common sense, as its modus operandi, as its very raison d'être.
What would the UN do if it were unable to bash Israel? How would it spend its time? Over half the initiatives proposed by its ludicrous Orwellian arm known as the UN Human Rights Council are in opposition to the behavior or existence of the Jewish state. Forget Boko Haram, ISIS or the Iranian government assassinating dissidents on a regular basis. Forget that not a single country in the UNHRC has made a contribution to humanity in years even vaguely equal to what appears daily on Israel21C. No, it's the Jews who are the problem.
So Netanyahu had the temerity to state the obvious about the UNHRC, calling it a "terrorist rights council."
Not surprisingly, our "progressive" State Department demurred:
"We would not agree with that,” Jen Psaki, the State Department spokeswoman, told reporters Monday when asked about what Netanyahu said in his address that day to the U.N. General Assembly.
“We have obviously voiced concerns when we have them about actions that are taken,” she said, referring to the council, “but no, we would certainly not agree with that characterization.”
Oh, really? Then what is it? Here's what Netanyahu said in context: “By granting international legitimacy to the use of human shields, the U.N.’s Human Rights Council has thus become a terrorist rights council, and it will have repercussions."
Of course, that's true and Psaki knows it. She doesn't have the courage to be honest or her handlers won't let her be. She and her cohort Marie Harf have become the mealy-mouthed faces of a prevaricating State Department. They are paid to lie. Since Benghazi, who can take them seriously? When Psaki speaks nonsense like that, I am reminded of Joseph Welch's famous line "Have you no shame?" Of course, Welch was talking to McCarthy. These people are worse. At least McCarthy was a militant, perhaps excessive (although recent history seems to exonerate him) anti-communist. Our State Department stands for nothing, except perhaps bureaucratic self-preservation. They would do well to learn from Netanyahu. At least he seems to be able to talk the talk for freedom and democracy. They seem to have given it up.