On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves. (Zechariah 12:3)
Amid escalating fallout from the UN Security Council vote Friday that condemned Israel’s settlement activities, a furious Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was reported on Sunday night to be attempting to “recruit” the incoming Trump administration and the US Congress to block a feared bid by the outgoing Obama administration to have the Security Council approve principles for a Palestinian state.
“They are spitting at us,” Netanyahu has told colleagues behind closed doors, Channel 2 news reported. “We will respond forcefully.”
Netanyahu held a 40-minute meeting with US Ambassador Dan Shapiro on Sunday evening, having summoned the envoy to explain why the US abstained in the vote on Resolution 2334, enabling it to pass 14-0, rather than vetoing it. He had earlier summoned the envoys of the 12 nations with representatives in Israel that voted for the resolution for a dressing-down at the Foreign Ministry.
Underlining Israel’s determination to press ahead with building beyond the pre-1967 lines, the Jerusalem municipality will this week approve some new homes in Ramat Shlomo and Ramot, neighborhoods captured in 1967 and subsequently annexed by Israel as part of Jerusalem, Channel 2 news reported.
Netanyahu is now reaching out to the incoming Trump administration, which takes office on January 20, and to friends in Congress, in the hope of “deterring” what he sees as further potential Obama administration-led diplomatic action against Israel, the Channel 2 report said. His aim is for the Trump team to make plain that his administration will “economically hurt” those countries that voted against Israel in the UN and that do so in the future.
Netanyahu’s fear is that Secretary of State John Kerry will set out principles or parameters for a Palestinian state in a speech that he has said he will deliver in the next few days on his Middle East vision. The prime minister fears that, in its final days, the Obama administration will seek to have a resolution enshrining those parameters adopted by the UN Security Council, the report said.
France is to hold a conference on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on January 15, and Netanyahu expects that Kerry will attend, that the Middle East Quartet — the US, UN, Russia and EU — will coordinate their positions at that summit, and that they will then turn to the Security Council in the very last days of the Obama presidency, a Channel 10 report further suggested.
Such speculation was not confirmed by the Prime Minister’s Office, but Netanyahu has made public his outrage at the Obama administration several times since Resolution 2334 was passed, claiming that the president initiated and helped draft the resolution “behind Israel’s back.” He has variously called the resolution skewed, shameful and ridiculous — in part because it brands Jerusalem’s Old City, including the Temple Mount and Western Wall, “occupied Palestinian territory.”
Lighting festive Hanukkah candles at the Western Wall on Sunday night, Netanyahu stressed that Israel “cannot accept” the UN resolution, and asked: “How could they vote that [the Western Wall] is occupied territory? We were here much earlier.”
Netanyahu also reportedly told his cabinet ministers at a meeting on Sunday morning to reduce to a minimum their engagement with all the countries that voted for the resolution and with which Israel has ties — China, Russia, France, the UK, Spain, Egypt, Angola, Ukraine, Uruguay, Japan, New Zealand and Senegal. They were told to minimize any visits to those countries, and that he would not receive visits from their foreign ministers.
On Saturday, Netanyahu canceled this week’s scheduled visit to Israel of Ukraine’s prime minister.
Addressing the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem Sunday, Netanyahu reiterated his staunch opposition to Resolution 2334.
“We have no doubt that the Obama administration initiated it, stood behind it, coordinated its versions and insisted upon its passage,” he said.
Samantha Power Watched Half Million Arabs Die Then Slammed Israel
All our Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, is missing is a fiddle. For the duration of the seemingly endless Syrian civil war, she has figuratively fiddled while that country burns. Now, with one foot out the door from a tenure that has all but obliterated her once formidable reputation as an anti-genocide activist, she’s decided to kick Israel in the teeth.
What most amazes me about this past Friday’s anti-Israel resolution that was cooked up by Barack Obama, John Kerry, Susan Rice, and Power is not that it took place. We have long known that the quartet had this in the works, and my organization, The World Values Network, even took out a full page ad against the proposed UN resolution a few months back.
Rather, the truly shocking part is that the most senior members of the American foreign policy team were pushing this resolution through while Aleppo burned.
Just imagine — there is a genocide going on for years in the Middle East in general and Syria in particular. It involves ISIS targeting Yazidis and Christians for extermination, and, in Syria, Shia Muslims joining Alawites to exterminate Sunnis. This is the classic definition of genocide where an ethnic group is target for annihilation.
The genocide reaches fever pitch in December 2016, just as the Obama administration, which hasn’t lifted a finger to protect 500,000 Arabs from being slaughtered, is winding down. Aleppo is in the news daily, as the world watches the horrors of bombings of civilians amid incalculable loss of life.
And what was Samantha Power, the great anti-genocide campaigner, doing while Aleppo and its residents were being reduced to rubble? Why, scheming against Israel, of course!
Power should have resigned over Syria long ago. She decided instead to embrace the hypocrisy of having written a Pulitzer-prize winning book condemning previous American administrations who were bystanders to genocide, while becoming one herself.
That was bad enough. What we know now is far worse. She ignored Aleppo as she focused instead on the condemning the Jewish state.
Earth to Samantha: 500,000 Arabs died in Syria. Do you really think the problem in the Middle East is Jews building extra bedrooms in communities in Beit-El?
You couldn’t pass even one United Nations Security Council Resolution condemning Russia, Syria, and Iran for the slaughter in Syria. But you passed this motion condemning peace-loving Jews who live in the ancient Biblical lands of Judea and Samaria?
Power holds her unique position for speaking truth to the world’s powers, but once in power herself, she held her tongue while people are being murdered every day in the Middle East and North Africa. Shiites and Sunnis kill each other on a daily basis throughout the Middle East while thousands die in Sudan, Nigeria, Libya and Yemen. Under Samantha’s watchful eye, hundreds of thousands of Syrians have died and become refugees.
Samantha could have followed the demands she made of members of earlier Administrations that were bystanders to genocide and resigned from this morally bankrupt administration long ago, and perhaps escaped with some semblance of her reputation intact. Alas, it is far too late now. As a former administration official, she will reap the financial benefits as a lecturer, pontificator and perhaps academic.
But no serious person will take Samantha Power seriously again when she speaks about human rights. Her conduct has disqualified her from any such discussion, unless it is to explain how someone can be a bystander to genocide.
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