FP: Read this in the context on my earlier comments on Martin Sherman’s and Aaron David Miller’s articles. And see also Greenfield’s Obama Funds Terrorists.
In 2008, President Obama said, and I quote, “Israel’s security is sacrosanct. It is nonnegotiable.”
He has never wavered from that conviction.
That's from a speech given by Jack Lew, the Chief of Staff, one of them anyway. Sadly Lew does not understand the meaning of the word "non-negotiable".
It would be understandable if Lew didn't understand the meaning of "sacrosanct", that's a hard word. Go ahead try to say it ten times fast. But "non-negotiable" is kind of obvious. It means something that you do not negotiate over.
If Israel's security was "non-negotiable" then it would not be pressured to negotiate away its security with terrorists. The whole premise of the "Peace Process" is that Israel enters into negotiations to give up territory and security in exchange for the eventual someday over the rainbow promise of peace.
Now even given the most optimistic view of the process possible, the one that everyone in the media and official life is expected to take, it is still negotiable. The very negotiations in which Israel gives up control over security within the territories is proof that its security is non-negotiable.
Lew doesn't get the full blame for this. He's quoting Obama who just says things he doesn't mean or understand, particularly when it comes to Israel. Obama also said that he supports a "United Jerusalem" which he explained really means a "Divided Jerusalem". So when he said that Israel's security is non-negotiable, he clearly meant that it is completely negotiable [FP: Correction: if one side is supposed to make all concessions without any reciprocation, is that negotiation?] .
It might be helpful to rewrite Obama's speeches that way so they start making sense. For example his 2008 speech to AIPAC originally sounded like this...
I want you to know that today I'll be speaking from my heart, and as a true friend of Israel. And I know that when I visit with AIPAC, I am among friends. Good friends. Friends who share my strong commitment to make sure that the bond between the United States and Israel is unbreakable today, tomorrow and forever.
But if we run it through the ObamaTranslatatron2000, then it suddenly starts making a frightening amount of sense.
I want you to know that today I'll be lying my ass off as an enemy of Israel. And i know that when I visit AIPAC I am surrounded by my enemies. My worst enemies. Enemies who don't share my commitment to breaking the bond between the United States and Israel, tomorrow and forever.
Just looking at administration policy, which version of the speech seems more plausible?
To understand just how senseless Obama's "Non-negotiable" statement was, let's give it some context.
Let me be clear. Israel's security is sacrosanct. It is nonnegotiable. The Palestinians need a state that is contiguous and cohesive, and that allows them to prosper," Obama said.
Now the "Palestinian state" happens to consist of pieces of territory that Egypt and Jordan captured in 1948. This is not contiguous territory. Not unless you carve a whole other sizable chunk out of Israel to create a state that has no contiguous territory because it was never a contiguous state.
So Israel's security is non-negotiable, but the negotiations over it have to carve Israel in two.