Sunday, September 4, 2011

Think of the Palestinian Statehood Bid in the UN as a Hurricane; Think of U.S. Policy as New Orleans

At the very last moment, the U.S. government begs the Palestinian Authority not to wreck U.S. Middle East policy. And even now its own proposal shows exactly why the Obama Administration got into this mess. 

"You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before." --Rahm Emanuel

By Barry Rubin

One of the amazing things about the amazing incompetence of the Obama Administration is that we’ve become so accustomed to it that we take for granted things that would have made opinionmakers during past presidencies clutch the upper left side of their chests and collapse, writhing in agony.  .

Or to put it another way, if an Obama policy falls in the public arena and the mass media acts deaf will anyone say: “OMG! Can this really be happening?” Well, I will follow Rahm Emanuel’s advice and hope that this serious crisis could be for this administration an “opportunity…to do things you think you could not do before” or to start looking for a new policymaker.

Consider that the United States is on the verge of a foreign policy disaster that could easily have been averted by proper statecraft. The Palestinian Authority (PA, technically speaking, along with its Hamas partner) is about to demand that the United Nations break every Israel-Palestinian agreement over almost twenty years, destroy any possibility of serious future negotiation, reward Palestinian intransigence, and generally make a mess of the Middle East.

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