Hamas to receive $400 million in U.S. taxpayer rocket money

President Obama on June 9 called for sharply limiting Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip, following the May 31 deaths of nine Turkish blockade runners when Israeli forces blocked an uninspected shipment from Cyprus to Gaza, as they repeatedly warned they would.

The White House also announced a $400 million aid package for Gaza and the West Bank.

“The situation in Gaza is unsustainable,” Mr. Obama declared as he met with West Bank Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the Oval Office. He said the attention of the world is on the problem because of the “tragedy” that resulted when the Israelis enforced their blockade against Turks and other activists attempting to bring supplies into Gaza, uninspected.

Had the Israelis allowed the shipments to proceed uninspected, of course, their blockade would have been at an end, no longer subject to any of the “fine-tuning” Mr. Obama now urges. They would then have had only the “word” of the Palestinian Arabs that they do not intend to re-arm.

The Israelis did offer to deliver to Gaza any food, medicine, or other humanitarian supplies the ships were carrying.

Not satisfied, Mr, Obama, whose familiarity with the situation in the Middle East remains a cipher, now calls for narrowly tailoring Israel’s broad blockade on goods entering the Gaza Strip so that arms are kept out, but not food, building materials or other items needed for Palestinian economic development.

“The key here is making sure that Israel’s security needs are met but that the needs of people in Gaza are also met,” said Mr. Obama, channeling Solomon the wise. “So if we can get a new conceptual framework … it seems to me that we should be able to take what has been a tragedy and turn it into an opportunity to create a situation where lives in Gaza are actually, directly improved.”

This is the classic notion of the “balancing test,” sometimes called “cutting the baby in half.” It assumes no one is really right and no one is really wrong, and therefore everything will be hunky-dorry if the aggressor is just made to settle for half of what he wants.

In 1938, Hitler said he’d forego conquering Poland if the British would just give him Czechoslovakia. That Solomon of the twentieth century, Neville Chamberlain, took the deal. Hitler ended up with both.

In 1945, should we have “balanced” our resultant war against Germany by allowing the Nazis to continue ruling a smaller “Grossdeutschland” in Bavaria, providing “Marshall Plan” aid to Hitler and Borman in their rump Nazi state, from which their tank armies would have been free to re-emerge after a couple years of “rebuilding”? Should our submarines blockading Japan in 1945 have allowed food, fuel oil, and building materials to get through, so the Japanese home islands and their warlike rulers could have held out indefinitely?

Hamas, which now rules Gaza, having routed the forces of Mr. Abbas several years back, is at war with Israel. The Palestinian Arabs, unwilling to allow the Israelis to keep the smaller portion of the old British protectorate allocated to them in the partition of 1948, attacked the far weaker Israeli state immediately and repeatedly over a period of 25 years. The only reason Israel still exists is that the Arabs always lost, despite their vastly superior numbers. So the Arab forces, not renouncing their goal but only because their brute force efforts have proven so pathetically ineffective, turned to new tactics.

The Palestinians in Gaza continue to rain deadly rockets on Israeli civilian population centers, and declare they will not stop till the Jews are driven into the sea. Again and again for more than 40 years the Israelis have been urged to trade “land for peace.” Yet every time they pull back the Arab aggressors simply move their active rocket launchers further forward, closer to Israeli civilian towns and cities.

So now Mr. Obama’s answer is to urge Israel to relax their embargo — in which the Egyptians are also cooperating, by the way, though for some reason we don’t hear any similar criticism of the Egyptians — while meantime handing the Palestinians nearly half a billion American taxpayer dollars with which to re-arm.

(Money is fungible. Even if some of this aid goers to “improve access to clean drinking water, create jobs, build schools, and address health, housing and other needs,” as promised, that still frees up funds from other sources to buy more arms. If the list above represented the priorities of Hamas, why haven’t they spent the billions in aid they’ve already received for these purposes? Where do all the new missiles keep coming from?)

“Negotiations” are pointless until after the Palestinians announce, in public, in Arabic, that they recognize the right of Israel to exist indefinitely within its current borders, that they are calling off their war, and that any Arab who attacks Israel, or aids such an attack, will be prosecuted for murder or attempted murder.

Of course, after such a declaration (providing it proved believable), the need for “negotiations” would immediately shift to a different front, which is just what the Arab powers don’t want. Namely: Do the Palestinian Arabs want to stay where they are, or do they want to return to the 60-year-old Palestinian Arab state from which they were expelled 40 years ago — the one called “Jordan”?

How inconvenient for those touting a “two-state solution,” having to acknowledge that there have been two states in the former Palestine — one of them with an Arab majority — for more than 60 years, and that one of them is named “Jordan.”

So they really want “three states.” Or is it four?

The shockingly limited experience in foreign affairs of Mr. Obama and his cabinet do not inspire much confidence in their ability to micro-manage the survival of Israel. Should Israel follow Mr. Obama’s demands, and perish, what will (by then ex-)President Obama say? Something along the lines of the way he’s explained that no-emergency-plan-needed drilling permit his administration gave BP for the Deepwater Horizon back in May of 2009, perhaps? Something like: “Whoops! I never expected THIS to happen. See, I thought my Arab friends had their acts together”?

2 Comments to “Hamas to receive $400 million in U.S. taxpayer rocket money”

  1. Bruce D Says:

    Dang, Vin. You just keep hitting that nail on the head. Anyone unsure of whether Israel is being reasonable or not should look up “list of palestinian missile attacks” on wikipedia. Obama just keeps throwing meat to the lions in hopes they will turn vegitarian.

  2. Rightwing Links (July 4, 2010) Says:

    […] Hamas to receive $400 million in U.S. taxpayer rocket money The economic miracle that has been the United States was not produced by socialized enterprises, by government-union-industry cartels or by centralized economic planning. It was produced by private enterprises in a profit-and-loss system. And losses were at least as important in weeding out failures as profits in fostering successes. Let government succor failures, and we shall be headed for stagnation and decline. — Milton Friedman […]