The PJ Tatler

Both Romney and Gingrich Call For Firing of Gutman

In one of the most egregious and stupid declarations by an American so-called “diplomat” in the history of American diplomacy, as reported yesterday on PJM by Ron Radosh, our own ambassador to Belgium (as of this writing), one Howard Gutman, a major donor to Obama’s coffers (but then, how else are ambassadors to lesser countries chosen?) blamed Israel for the increasing Muslim  hostility to the Jewish state.

Both Romney and Gingrich were up and at ’em with their calls for the firing of Gutman.  As a fine editorial in The New York Sun stated:

For a glimpse of the savvy that is propelling Newt Gingrich to the front of the Republican pack, feature the speed with which he called for the resignation of President Obama’s ambassador to Belgium. The envoy, one Howard Gutman, told a conference hosted by the European Jewish Union that, as his remarks were characterized by the Weekly Standard, Israel is to blame for the fact that anti-Semitism is growing among Muslims.

What the ambassador said, according to the report in the Standard, is that a “distinction should be made” between “traditional” anti-Semitism, “which should be condemned,” and “Muslim hatred for Jews,” which “stems from the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians” and which, presumably, the ambassador thinks should not be condemned. It has got to be one of the dumbest demarches we’ve ever heard from an American envoy, and the former speaker was out front in condemning it.

“Pres Obama should fire his ambassador to Brussels for being so wrong about anti-Semitism,” Mr. Gingrich tweeted on Saturday. Mitt Romney put out a statement to the same effect on Sunday. They’re both right. We would add only that it is important to comprehend the nature of the Ambassador Gutman’s blunder, which is his supposition that anti-Semitism is about Jewish behavior. Anti-Semitism is not a hatred of Jewish behavior but a hatred of Jews, a point we made in the first issue of The New York Sun, in an editorial called “The War Against the Jews.”

And the Romney campaign’s excellent statement is here:

Boston, MA – Mitt Romney made the following statement on comments made by the U.S. Ambassador to Belgium about Israel:
“President Obama must fire his ambassador to Belgium for rationalizing and downplaying anti-Semitism and linking it to Israeli policy toward the Palestinians. The ambassador’s comments demonstrate the Obama administration’s failure to understand the worldwide campaign to delegitimize Israel and its appalling penchant for undermining our close ally.”

I have heard nothing yet from the Ron (“my foreign policy is no foreign policy”) Paul campaign.  If I do, I’ll be sure to post an update.  Don’t hold your breath.

Good for Gingrich and Romney! UPDATE: And good for Perry, too!


According to PJM’s Scuttlebutt, the Perry campaign issued a strong call for Gutman’s firing:

AUSTIN – Gov. Rick Perry today issued the following statement:

“Ambassador Gutman’s troubling statement is part of a pattern of hostility on the part of the Obama administration toward Israel. In the same week that Ambassador Gutman excused anti-Semitism because of Israel’s refusal to accommodate Palestinian demands, President Obama’s Secretary of Defense ranted that the Israelis must get back to the ‘d*** table’ for negotiations, and his Secretary of State insinuated that Israel’s democracy is less than viable because of gender-related debates between religious and secular segments of Israeli society.

“The long and ugly history of anti-Semitism has seen all too many episodes of apologists justifying hatred of the Jews. Given the gathering threat posed by the brutal regime in Iran, now is the time to strengthen ties with Israel to achieve our mutual security interests.

“President Obama must send a clear signal to the world by relieving Ambassador Gutman of his post, stopping his administration’s Israel bashing and recognizing that a two-state solution requires good-faith discussion and negotiation from the Palestinians as well as Israelis.”

Posted at 3:37 pm on December 5th, 2011
FURTHER UPDATE: See, too, PJ’s Ron Radosh’s devastating post of the pitiful performance on Monday, December 5, 2011, of the State Department spokesman, Mark Toner, well over his head, in the Q & A period with the reporters who cover his press briefings.  If Hillary has any mercy, she’ll relieve Toner of his duties, inasmuch as he is unable to perform them.

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