What's wrong with Dean's statements on Israel?

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by Manolo, Sep 15, 2003.

  1. Manolo

    Manolo Moderator
    Staff Member

    May 14, 1997
    Queens, NY
    So Dean said that the U.S. should "not takes sides" in the Israeli - Palestinian conflict.

    I would like to understand what about that statement is so controversial.

    The opposite of that statement is that the U.S. should take sides, presumably Israel's. Thus, anyone who had a problem with his statement (which apparently was a lot of people) feels that the U.S. should take Israel's side in the matter. I find that statement a lot more absurd.

    My take on this situation is that the politicians criticizing Dean's statement are pandering to the Jewish constituency, for no other reason than that it is a large and powerful constituency. They cannot possibly believe that taking Israel's side in the matter will result in peace for the U.S., let alone Israel. I can understand this coming from Jewish politicians like Lieberman, who clearly have an emotional tie to the matter, but any others who have criticized must merely be desperate to bring down Dean's momentum.

    Unfortunately, it seems that Dean's status as frontrunner is forcing him to tone down his intelligent and sound stances, in order to avoid offending any important groups. This is unfortunate because much of Dean's appeal has come from his tendency to make bold and daring assertions that make sense, however contrary they are to the traditional policies of Washington insiders.
  2. mannyfreshstunna

    mannyfreshstunna New Member

    Feb 7, 2003
    Naperville, no less
    Here's your problem: Dean didn't say we shouldn't take sides. He said we should take a more "even handed" approach with the crisis on the same day when 14 Israelis were murdered by Hamas.
  3. BenReilly

    BenReilly New Member

    Apr 8, 2002
    ...unless you expect to win.

    You've stumbled on to the truth. People were attracted to Dean because they didn't think Bush would lose in the first place.

    To dream the impossible dream
    To fight the unbeatable foe
    To bear with unbearable sorrow
    To run where the brave dare not go

    To right the unrightable wrong
    To love pure and chaste from afat
    To try when your arms are too weary
    To reach the unreachable star

    Is that Mahoney singing again?
  4. JPhurst

    JPhurst New Member

    Jul 30, 2001
    Jersey City, NJ
    Israel is an ally. Of course we should "take sides."

    The question is does "taking sides" mean that we give carte blanche for Israel to do whatever it wants, or do we say, as an ally and recipient of aid, that they are going to have to work for peace.

    If one of our NATO allies was attacked, would we say that we should be an "honest broker?" No, we would be bound by Article V to assist them in any way possible. Our relation with Israel is not quite as strong as that of our NATO allies in that we are not treaty bound to protect them, but it's the next closest thing.

    When the Arab League and EU try to be an "honest broker" in the affair, I would consider re-evaluating U.S. relations toward Israel. But make no mistake, they are our ally.
  5. Dan Loney

    Dan Loney BigSoccer Supporter

    Mar 10, 2000
    Los Angeles Sol
    Nat'l Team:
    How can Dean say things like this!

    Between Lieberman trying to make this an issue, and the Fox News cabal yapping about him calling Hamas "soldiers," there's a lot of deliberate dishonesty going on about Dean's foreign policy positions.

    But why not? Transparent lies worked against Al Gore, they worked to get us mired in Iraq, so why would they stop working now?

    EDIT - both Dean's press release and JPhurst talk about the US being an "honest broker." COINCIDENCE?!

    I don't think this is a particularly controversial position. It isn't as if anyone in any party is saying "nuke the West Bank."

    MLSNHTOWN Member+

    Oct 27, 1999
    Houston, TX
    Why this is an issue is obvious. It is an election. As a result, every one is prone to take any statement by any person seeking office via election and making a mountain out of it. There are really no real issues in elections. Just a bunch of made up crap.

    So the question is, did Dean say something that was so terrible?

    In my mind he didn't, unless you are vehemently pro-Israel (see Lieberman). He said that it is in the US's best interest to be an honest broker. Althought I disagree with that assesment, it is a valid position one can take.

    Truth, right now we are Israel's best friend in the world.

    Truth, without our military and economic support, it is possible the terrorists would overthrow Israel over time.

    Truth, Israel has been our lone true ally in the region for decades. (Saudi Arabia, with friends like that who needs enemies)

    Truth, we are not winning much favor with Palestinians despite our President's call for two states for the first time, despite our attempts to restrain Sharon etc.

    So, in the end I disagree with Dean. It doesn't mean what he has said is horrible though. In my opinion we should stop attempting to be an honest broker. Any courtship provided to the Palestinians has courted us no favor with their people. As a result, we should move further away from being an honest broker and more towards, giving Israel whatever military or financial assistance they need. We should do our best to curtail, however, there use of the military or financial assistance we provide. In other words, if we put a rider on financial assistance that they shouldn't expel Arafat, then they shouldn't expel Arafat. If they do, we are completely justified in withdrawing funding/aid. So although my opinion is different, I have no problem with what he said.
  7. argentine soccer fan

    Staff Member

    Jan 18, 2001
    San Francisco Bay Area
    CA Boca Juniors
    Nat'l Team:
    We may dissagree with Israel's policy of targeting Hamas leaders and even possibly Arafat. Nevertheless there is a difference between targeting terrorists and targeting innocent civilians. There is also a difference between a country that has always been a friend of the US and a country (or potential country) which joyously celebrated in the streets the tragedy of 9/11.

    If a candidate for president does not understand that, then he should not be running for the highest office.
  8. Finnegan

    Finnegan Member

    Sep 5, 2001
    Portland Oregon
    The myth of Palestinians "joyuously celebrating in the streets post 9/11" is one that has been perpertrated to justify all manner of actions.

    As has been pointed out ad nasuem a FEW Palestinians (mostly kids IIRC) of extreme viewpoints briefly celebrated for a television crew while the vast majority (99%) decried the attacks and pledged to stand in solidarity.

    Arafat gave blood (a PR stunt but it is important to point out).

    Whatever you think about the Palestinian/Israel conflict invoking 9/11 as a rationale for action against Palestinians is just plain wrong.
  9. edcrocker

    edcrocker Member+

    May 11, 1999
    Re: Re: What's wrong with Dean's statements on Israel?

    Probably some people were attracted to Dean for that reason. However, I know a number of people who plan to vote for Dean. I think all of them think that President Bush is vulnerable and that Dean has at least as good a chance of beating Bush as does any of the other announced candidates. For example, a friend of mine plans to vote for Dean for essentially the following reasons:

    1. He prefers Dean's positions to Bush's on almost all of the key issues.

    2. He thinks Dean would wage an exciting, interesting campaign that might move the country in a more progressive direction.

    3. He thinks Dean might get some people interested in the political process that have become disillusioned with it and/or dropped out of it.

    4. He thinks that if Dean were to win the Democratic nomination, he would have at least as a good a chance of beating Bush as would any of the other announced candidates if they were to win the nomination.
  10. DoctorJones24

    DoctorJones24 Member

    Aug 26, 1999
    Wow, I'd say that going after known terrorists is the LEAST disagreeable thing Israel does. Of course, your second sentence exposes your ignorance of the basic facts of the crisis, since Israel "targets innocent civilians" on a daily basis. Unless you don't consider destroying someone's home "targeting."

    Please name a "country" that celebrated in the streets after 9/11. Moron.
  11. dfb547490

    dfb547490 New Member

    Feb 9, 2000
    The Heights
    Does Israel have a policy of intentionally murdering innocent Palestinian children, without provocation, becaues and only because those children are Palestinians?

    Of course no countries celebrated in the streets after 9/11, that's because the Palestinians don't have a country and won't as long as they keep doing idiotic crap like celebrating in the streets after 9/11.
  12. BenReilly

    BenReilly New Member

    Apr 8, 2002
    LOL. 99%. Isn't it fun taking figures out of your butt?


    It it were only a few, why did the Palestinian Authority confiscate dozens of videos?

    Also, around 10,000 cheered in Gaza alone after the bin Laden attacks in Kenya.

    For every person protesting, there are dozens who share those views (isn't that what liberal protesters always say???).
  13. zverskiy yobar

    zverskiy yobar BigSoccer Yellow Card

    Mar 10, 2002
    You know...

    As someone who is pretty damn conservative....

    As someone who gets sick at the idea of voting democrat....

    Dean seems to be the only guy with brains (and honesty)running in 2004.And yes i am talking both parties.
  14. mannyfreshstunna

    mannyfreshstunna New Member

    Feb 7, 2003
    Naperville, no less

    99%? Decried the attacks?Stand in solidarity? Boy, i don't even need to go on. Did you hit yourself in the head with a hammer and then post this??
  15. Finnegan

    Finnegan Member

    Sep 5, 2001
    Portland Oregon
    I based 99% on the following:There are three million Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip and West Bank including Jerusalem, one million Palestinians living inside the borders of Israel, and another four million Palestinian refugees living elsewhere in the world, including the United States. The footage in question depicted between 20 and 40 individuals.

    So do the math.

    Over my original point stands that the Palestinian people were not en masse celebrating in the streets.

    BenReilly where do you get your information that 10,000 Palestinians were celebrating in the streets after the Kenya attacks? I have never heard of this before. Link please.

    As for your statement:

    It it were only a few, why did the Palestinian Authority confiscate dozens of videos?

    Link/evidence please?

    As for a different take on the footage take a look at this:

  16. mannyfreshstunna

    mannyfreshstunna New Member

    Feb 7, 2003
    Naperville, no less
    I am more upset about your "solidarity" claim. The palestinians didn't celebrate en masse, but they sure as hell WEREN'T expressing sympathy.
  17. SoFla Metro

    SoFla Metro Member

    Jul 21, 2000
    Ft. Lauderdale, FL
    First of all, prove it.

    Second of all, assuming you're right, you also think their leader should be assassinated, so why exactly do you think, in your version of the way things should unfold, they would have sympathy for us?
  18. BenReilly

    BenReilly New Member

    Apr 8, 2002
    Finnegan, did you even look at the Salon article which mentioned thousands celebrating 9-11. There are only a few thousand marching for Arafat right now in Ramallah. In your words, "do the math"

    You're giving me some guy's Tripod site as proof the Palestinians didn't celebrate 9-11?! What's next, compelling geocities sites?

    The Foreign Press Association in Israel complained, "The FPA expresses deep concern over the harassment of journalists by the Palestinian Authority as police forces and armed gunmen tried to prevent photo and video coverage of Tuesday's rally in Nablus where hundreds of Palestinians celebrated the terror attacks in N.Y"

    That's just one rally.

    I don't have a link, sorry.
  19. BenReilly

    BenReilly New Member

    Apr 8, 2002
    More time wasting...

    Here's an article from the Washington Post:

    and see your favorite news provider ( :) ) :

  20. Finnegan

    Finnegan Member

    Sep 5, 2001
    Portland Oregon
    Well that is certainly disturbing to hear that they did try to supress the footage.

    In the P.A.'s defense they knew that it was going to play exactly like it did - converting 40 Palestinians acting like idiots into "the Palestinian people cheer 9/11".

    As for the Salon article - there has never been any other account substaniating this author's account of 1000's of protestors. All video and picture footgae showed a handful in different areas. The same article had this quote also:

    The loud rejoicing, however, was far from universal. Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat expressed his condolences to President Bush and condemned the crime as "dangerous and unacceptable." Palestinian legislator and spokeswoman for the Arab League Hanan Ashrawi called it "a horrible act of absolute immorality, viciousness and evil."

    That site I linked you to was based on an article from Der Spiegel which unfortunately wanted me to buy the article in order for me to link you to it!

    As for support for Arafat - I genuinely believe that the Palestinian people would support a different leader if it meant peace plus a Palestinian state. Right now, he is all they got and he has some very selfish motives for things staying the way they are.

    On the flip side the absolute stupidest thing Israel could do were to make him a Martyr.

    Finally, short of a comprehensive poll neither side will win the argument of whether the Palestinian people were or were not expressing sympathy in regards to 9/11.

    Be honest - if you were Joe Blow Palestinian would you have all that much love for our country these days?
  21. Cascarino's Pizzeria

    Apr 29, 2001
    New Jersey, USA
    Isn't it necessary to have a heart to give blood? Just checking.

    If he donated blood for all of the terrorist attacks he's unleashed on Israel over the years, he would be left looking like a stick figure. Damn Egyptian rabblerouser.
  22. champmanager

    champmanager Member

    Dec 13, 2001
    Alexandria, VA
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    If terrorism is the number 1 issue facing this country at the moment, and we're willing to outrage most of the rest of the universe in order to invade Iraq, doesn't it make sense that we should be willing to reevaluate our relations vis a vis Isreal?
    I'm not suggesting that we hang them out to dry, but a private, yet firm, conversation, explaining that their hard-headedness is harming the security of the United States, might do wonders. At the moment, its looking like they don't give a flying f--k what we think. If thats the case, if we can live without freedom fries, we can live without bagels.
  23. BenReilly

    BenReilly New Member

    Apr 8, 2002

    Israel doesn't sneeze without the USA's permission.
  24. tcmahoney

    tcmahoney New Member

    Feb 14, 1999
    Re: Re: What's wrong with Dean's statements on Israel?


    You don't want to hear me singing. Ever. :p


    edcrocker, I didn't know I was your friend. Out of smilies for that one.
  25. champmanager

    champmanager Member

    Dec 13, 2001
    Alexandria, VA
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    That is completely untrue, and I must think you're being dishonest in saying such.
    In the last few months, the United States government has explained very clearly that they believe the security fence is a bad idea.
    Isreal: No can do.
    In the last few days the united States has explained quite clearly that expelling Arafat is a bad idea.
    Isreal: No can do.

    Its time for us to have a long, hard talk with Isreal, and its time for them to start listening.

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