bravo45
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Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:21 am

Is this true?

Obama Wants Israel Back to 1967 Borders

President-elect Barack Obama intends to pursue a Mideast peace policy that calls on Israel to revert to its pre-1967 borders in return for official diplomatic recognition by the Arab world.

http://www.newsmax.com/insidecover/i...obama_peace/2008/11/15/151708.html

The only thing I remember Obama saying on this topic was his appearance at an AIPAC conference with Hillary and McCain where he basically pandered to the far reaches of Zionism and said things like the entire Jerusalem should be Israeli capital. A statement which went even beyond Bush's policy. Was he being a 'politician' then or what?
 
bravo45
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:25 am

Found a more detailed article from a more familiar name. Even though the statements by Obama are not new (the previous article gives no clue about that), the article itself is recent. I wonder if he means it.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...rld/middle_east/article5162537.ece
 
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stasisLAX
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:31 am

Well, Obama's outlook on the Middle East is a LOT more nuanced than "bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran".......
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Dreadnought
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:39 am



Quoting Bravo45 (Thread starter):
Was he being a 'politician' then or what?

Of course he was.

I am in principle ok with the proposal. But what happens if Israel does pull back, but the terrorist attacks continue? What if recognition of Israel is not given? There should be strong language in the agreement if these things happen.
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mariner
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 12:45 am



Quoting Bravo45 (Thread starter):
Obama Wants Israel Back to 1967 Borders

It seems to be in sync with Prime Minister Olmert:

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1036118.html

Haaretz: "Olmert: Israel must return to 1967 borders"

mariner
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cptkrell
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 1:25 am

Hmm...I watched his news conference today and I'll be damned if I can tell one difference between his policy and that of President Bush. Regards...jack
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Falcon84
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:58 am



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 3):
I am in principle ok with the proposal. But what happens if Israel does pull back, but the terrorist attacks continue? What if recognition of Israel is not given? There should be strong language in the agreement if these things happen.

Agree 100%. In any agreement, the U.S. should tell the Arab world that if they break the agreement, or if terrorists attacks on Israel continue unabated, and they do nothing about it, they'll have to deal not only with Israeli forces, but American troops as well.

The U.S., in the end, is going to have to be the guarantor of any deal. Might as well put some teeth into it.
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bravo45
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:10 am



Quoting Mariner (Reply 4):
It seems to be in sync with Prime Minister Olmert:

No Palestinian is stopping Olmert from doing it, the problem is Israel's own extremists.

Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 6):
Agree 100%. In any agreement, the U.S. should tell the Arab world that if they break the agreement, or if terrorists attacks on Israel continue unabated, and they do nothing about it, they'll have to deal not only with Israeli forces, but American troops as well.

The U.S., in the end, is going to have to be the guarantor of any deal. Might as well put some teeth into it.

If the US also warns Israel that IT will face US troops alongside stone throwing children should it breaks/stalls after it commits to the deal, I am all for it. Lets not forget how 'easy' it was for Israel to remove the 'peaceloving' settlers from Gaza, even though many went straight into the West Bank.

Quoting Cptkrell (Reply 5):

Yeah, didn't see the one you are talking about, but I know what you mean and its confusing. I have no high expectation unlike most from Obama, but I'd love to be wrong.

P.S Does anyone know if Iran backed the Saudi initiative?
 
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mariner
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:27 am



Quoting Bravo45 (Reply 7):
No Palestinian is stopping Olmert from doing it, the problem is Israel's own extremists.

I don't think I said that any Palestinian would stop him.  confused 

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bravo45
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:38 am



Quoting Mariner (Reply 8):
I don't think I said that any Palestinian would stop him. confused

I meant to imply that Olmert's words don't mean a thing coz nothing is stopping him. And it gives the wrong impression about his intentions when he says this and does what is going on in Gaza.
 
cedars747
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:42 am



Quoting Bravo45 (Reply 7):
the problem is Israel's own extremists

Come on Bravo45 ! Israel is the only democracy and tolerant country in the region  Wink
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mariner
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 5:44 am



Quoting Bravo45 (Reply 9):
I meant to imply that Olmert's words don't mean a thing coz nothing is stopping him. And it gives the wrong impression about his intentions when he says this and does what is going on in Gaza.

Ah, I see. But you also said that something is stopping him, and you may be right.

I was more interested in what Mr. Obama said, and what reactions it might provoke.

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DocLightning
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:59 am

The problem is that won't be good enough.

Hamas, Hezbollah and the others will continue to attack Israel no matter how much they give back.

I'm not saying Israel shouldn't budge, but there needs to be some movement from the other side to show that they can control the attacks and stop them, first.
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UH60FtRucker
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 2:22 pm



Quoting Falcon84 (Reply 6):
Agree 100%. In any agreement, the U.S. should tell the Arab world that if they break the agreement, or if terrorists attacks on Israel continue unabated, and they do nothing about it, they'll have to deal not only with Israeli forces, but American troops as well.

I'm sorry, but what a bunch of crap.

Committing US troops to the protection of Israel would be one of the worse moves the United States could ever make.

Don't get me wrong, I am a strong Israeli supporter, having a lot of family living there. But I am also a US citizen, and a member of the US military, and I would dread the day we were committed to defending Israel. It amazes me how some people are so quick, and willing, to shed American blood. At some point, Americans - and yes, even you Falcon - are going to have to realize that using the military should be a last resort. Sending us off to die for ill conceived plans needs to stop.

I've seen too many good people die, because some guy back in the US thought it would be swell to send in the boys.  Yeah sure

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 12):
Hamas, Hezbollah and the others will continue to attack Israel no matter how much they give back.

Personally I think too many people are willing to make judgments on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, without having any kind of personal reference. Sometimes it seems like people make the issue far to black and white: one side is right/innocent, the other side is wrong/to blame. Whereas, the reality is far more gray.

In any case, I do not agree that Israel should consider relinquishing the Golan Heights. It is of strategic importance, and relations with Syria have not improved to the point that a future conflict could be ruled out. Returning to the Paulet Newcombe Line (or even worse, the 1967 line) would be a major mistake.

But Israel should, once and for all, stop all expansion of West Bank settlements. They keep saying they will/are... but settlements are still popping up. This must stop. And Israel needs to start moving towards dramatically reducing the number of overall settlements, using this move to broker for concessions by the Palestinians.

And at the end of the day, Syria and Iran are going to have to be brought to the table, and convinced to stop funding terrorists organizations with cash and weapons. There can be no lasting peace, so long as these groups continue to seek the destruction of Israel.

For the most part, Israelis want lasting peace. And they're willing to give up a lot to obtain that (look at the aborted 2000 peace talks with President Clinton, Barak was willing to sell the farm, for the sake of peace!). And I believe the majority of Israelis would be willing to put a lot on the table, but that will only happen when they finally FEEL SAFE.

So long as the average citizen feels threatened by these terrorists, they're going to be far less willing to offer up significant concessions at the bargaining table.

-UH60
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DocLightning
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 3:52 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 13):
Personally I think too many people are willing to make judgments on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, without having any kind of personal reference.

It has nothing to do with that. The problem with terrorism is that it is completely uncontrollable, even by the terrorists. Who is Israel to negotiate with? Terrorists operate as independent cells so that even if you lop off the head of the monster, another one grows back in its place and the monster is unscathed.

So no matter what Israel does, they will continue to suffer terrorist attacks because terrorists are extremists and will not rest until Israel is gone. Israel is not helping matters with their behavior. Israel has to commit to softening their stance and understanding that it will result in a couple of decades of increased bloodshed before it peters out. But if they can improve the lives of the citizens of the surrounding countries AND Palestinians, then there will be no terrorism.

As long as both sides insist on a solution no later than tomorrow at lunchtime, there will be no solution.
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n229nw
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:50 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 13):
I'm sorry, but what a bunch of crap.

Committing US troops to the protection of Israel would be one of the worse moves the United States could ever make.

Don't get me wrong, I am a strong Israeli supporter, having a lot of family living there. But I am also a US citizen, and a member of the US military, and I would dread the day we were committed to defending Israel. It amazes me how some people are so quick, and willing, to shed American blood. At some point, Americans - and yes, even you Falcon - are going to have to realize that using the military should be a last resort. Sending us off to die for ill conceived plans needs to stop.

I've seen too many good people die, because some guy back in the US thought it would be swell to send in the boys.

That's a great post. Especially coming from someone with combat experience.

I disagree about the later part of your post a bit. I don't think there is much strategic significance to most of Israel's occupied territory, the West bank in particular.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 14):
t has nothing to do with that. The problem with terrorism is that it is completely uncontrollable, even by the terrorists. Who is Israel to negotiate with? Terrorists operate as independent cells so that even if you lop off the head of the monster, another one grows back in its place and the monster is unscathed.

So no matter what Israel does, they will continue to suffer terrorist attacks because terrorists are extremists and will not rest until Israel is gone.

This is true. But as you say yourself, the solution is also not to go around killing innocent civilians in return. We've seen where that gets you (for both Israel and the US). Since you can't kill off terrorism you have to weed it out by marginalizing it and letting it die.

If Israel pulls back to 1967 borders, I think no one is naive enough to believe that splinter elements of extremist Palestinian groups will immediately stop attempting to wipe Israel out. HOWEVER, if Israel allows a just peace under these conditions, those groups will cease to have the widespread support they currently have. They will no longer appear as breave "freedom fighters" to their fellow Arabs but will increasingly be marginalized as nut-cases and will have trouble recruiting. Just like most Israelis, most Palestinians just want to live their lives.

As you say, patience and great restraint will be necessary for a time. But the terrorist attacks will diminish, and there will be increasing support and ability from Arab forces in reining those militias in. Right now, Israel demands that Arab governments stop terrorism, but they castrate those same governments by ensuring they have no public support to do so. 1967 borders will allow Arab authorities to do their own intelligence and rooting out of extremist militias (in time) without being seen as traitors...

_____________

As for Obama, I think his hands will be tied from doing anything too radical, especially during his first term. He is a canny politician and he knows that attempting to completely overturn the apple cart will not work right away.

However, I do believe that while he won't openly put a great deal of sudden pressure on Israel, and will be very careful not to be seen as "betraying" Israel, he IS a lot more competent, a lot more empathetic and a lot more intelligent that anyone involved in the Bush administration's Middle East policy and negotiations. I think he will see the middle east a little less through the lens of American spheres of influence and neo-con misjudged realpolitik. He will understand the plight of Palestinians and take it into account even if he can't immediately solve it. Thus, I think behind the scenes he will be able to work toward more realistic and fair early compromises, which might, just might, pave the way toward more goodwill and cooperation later. That's my hope.
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baroque
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 3:18 pm



Quoting N229NW (Reply 15):
If Israel pulls back to 1967 borders, I think no one is naive enough to believe that splinter elements of extremist Palestinian groups will immediately stop attempting to wipe Israel out. HOWEVER, if Israel allows a just peace under these conditions, those groups will cease to have the widespread support they currently have. They will no longer appear as breave "freedom fighters" to their fellow Arabs but will increasingly be marginalized as nut-cases and will have trouble recruiting. Just like most Israelis, most Palestinians just want to live their lives.

 checkmark  I don't think you know the long term effects of even the start of a reasonable settlement of the issue. Further down the line, compensation for the right to return offers a chance of more progress. Once there is REAL progress, pressure will start to come on the extremists very quickly. The present mess is just going to get more extremist organizations elected. You think Hamas is bad, "keep going the Bush way and see what you get" will be ringing in Obama's ears I suspect.

Quoting N229NW (Reply 15):
As for Obama, I think his hands will be tied from doing anything too radical, especially during his first term. He is a canny politician and he knows that attempting to completely overturn the apple cart will not work right away.

Except he is bright enough to realise that anything short of upsetting a few applecarts is going to make things worse. For the past 8 years it has been Palestinian applecarts going a over t, time for a change????

The rocketeers are a pain in the tail, but the blockade of Gaza will go down as a very inglorious episode.
 
rjpieces
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 4:25 pm



Quoting Bravo45 (Reply 7):
Lets not forget how 'easy' it was for Israel to remove the 'peaceloving' settlers from Gaza, even though many went straight into the West Bank.

And look what happened in Gaza! People conveniently forget what has happened in Gaza since 2005. If what occured in Gaza happens in the West Bank after Israel pulls out, it will only be days until a permanent IDF presence returns to the West Bank.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 13):
Committing US troops to the protection of Israel would be one of the worse moves the United States could ever make.

Agreed. But thankfully Israel has never had to ask the United States to fight its wars for them (unlike many other countries). As you well know, Israel has its own military that is more than capable of defending their own country. American troops have never died defending Israel and will never have to...

Quoting N229NW (Reply 15):
HOWEVER, if Israel allows a just peace under these conditions, those groups will cease to have the widespread support they currently have.

Uh huh. How do you explain Gaza then? Better question--how do you go about pulling out of the West Bank without having what happened in the Gaza Strip happen again?
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baroque
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 4:30 pm



Quoting RJpieces (Reply 17):
Uh huh. How do you explain Gaza then? Better question--how do you go about pulling out of the West Bank without having what happened in the Gaza Strip happen again?

I wonder what your list of pros and cons would be.

I am reasonably certain you are going to be fulsome on the cons for Israel.

Do let us know what you think the advantages and disadvantages are for the residents of Gaza. Once you work out the disadvantages for Gaza residents you get an idea about how to avoid the Gaza story happening again.

I thought ghettos went out of fashion in Israel a while ago, but it seems not.
 
Beaucaire
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 5:04 pm

The Middle East peace will require to deal with many important issues-as to say :
-recognition of an economically viable and interconnected Palestine
-Palestian,Syrian and Iranian recognition of Israel in it's 1967 borders
-the conversion of Hamas and Hizbullah into political parties
-Iranian civil-nuclear deal under supervision of the Vienna Atomic organization
-a solution for the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon
-An agreement about the water-rights in Palestine/Jordania/Israel
-It would be ideal to have an independant Kurdish state-but that's LT future
-Cyprus should be re-united !
-Lebanon ,Syria,Israel and Jordania should establish a free-trade zone
-Turkey and Israel/Palestine should build a aquaduct (water-pipeline) from Anatolia to
the region,easing the tnesions tied to water-shortage

[Edited 2008-12-03 09:23:13]
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comorin
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 5:32 pm

For whatever reason, Muslim youth in many parts of the world, especially but not only the poorer ones feel humiliated and enraged by what is happening to them. They become prey to those that offer a way out either through Intifada or Jihad. If you add to this the feeling of dispossession, then we have a combustible mix. I think the violence will continue regardless of a peace plan, as some Palestinians will always feel that Israel took away their land.

Pragmatism, thankfully, is replacing Ideology as a problem solving tool at the White House. Instead of blaming any one side, a livable solution has to be created for all. The two main issues for Palestinians today are wealth creation and self-respect. The main issue for Israel is security.

If the Palestinians become a comfortable middle-class people with Israel's help, then that may be seen as a fair trade off for loss of country (like the Indian casinos in the US!). It would also help the Palestinians if they never saw another IDF soldier, plane or missile humiliate them again.

In return, Israel would need a guarantee that cross-border terrorism comes an end. This is not enforceable IMO and becomes the deal-killer.

I think Obama will go a long way in being perceived as an honest broker in that part of the world, and perhaps inspire local leaders to step up and solve the problem themselves.

Meanwhile, why not just send $5K/mo to every family in the West Bank and Gaza and everybody will live happily ever after.
 
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n229nw
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RE: Obama's Mid-East Policy

Wed Dec 03, 2008 6:21 pm



Quoting RJpieces (Reply 17):

Uh huh. How do you explain Gaza then? Better question--how do you go about pulling out of the West Bank without having what happened in the Gaza Strip happen again?

 rotfl 

You are kidding right? Gaza has turned out the way it did BECAUSE the West Bank was not only still occupied but more settlements were built and solifdified as the Gaza pullout occurred, and because the Palestinians were never allowed control over their commerce and supplies even in Gaza. It is basically a giant prison. Your question would be a little like asking "Well we gave the Blacks two more rows at the back of the bus so they have more seats! Why are they still pissed off?"
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