Sunday, April 04, 2010

Salim Mansur on bo's anti Israel policy

Prof Mansur writes about bo's attempts to bring down the Netanyahu government.

Some 40 centuries of history are recalled when Jews celebrate Passover in their calendar and what this history of exile, persecution and the flight to freedom from Egypt to Canaan (Palestine) means for each passing generation of Jews.

Passover this year coincided with an ominous chill in relationship between the Obama administration and Israel.

There have been, in the past, difficult moments between American presidents and Israeli leaders when the two countries’ interests appeared at odds. President Eisenhower, for instance, leaned heavily on Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion after the 1956 Suez War to withdraw Israeli forces from Sinai.

It was, however, President Truman — when he supported the partition of Palestine and, soon after Ben-Gurion announced Israel’s independence in May 1948, extended diplomatic recognition to the new country over his State Department’s objection — who set the tone and substance of what is meant by America’s embrace of the Jewish state.

When the survival of Israel, surrounded by Arab enemies, hung in precarious balance and there was no glimmer of how this little patch of earth squeezed between the Mediterranean and the Dead Sea could be of strategic importance to the United States, what mattered to Truman was the moral imperative in affirming the right of Jews to have sovereignty over a part of Palestine that was their ancestral home.

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