Under Obama, Another Betrayal of Israel
As an American citizen living in Jerusalem, I recently received two notifications from the U.S. State Department warning of “potential for violence in the Old City,” restricting U.S. government employees from entering the Old City from Sunday, Oct. 4 through Tuesday, Oct. 13 “without prior approval from the U.S. Consulate,” and recommending that “private U.S. citizens take into consideration these restrictions and the additional guidance contained in the Department of State’s travel warning for Israel, Jerusalem and the West Bank when making decisions regarding their travel in the Old City and in Jerusalem.”
My initial reaction was laughter. The messages were casually sent as if we don’t know there is “potential for violence in the Old City.” Dozens of Jews have been attacked in the last week, many in the Old City. The tension is obvious to anyone here — we go to sleep listening to the helicopters explore the skies and we wake up to a climbing death toll at the hands of Arab terrorists in Jerusalem.
But then, I realized how truly sad this message is that I received. We are all painfully aware of what’s happening here; but up until now, we weren’t actually sure that the U.S. government knew what was happening. There have been at best tepid public condemnations of the attacks and murders, with barely a mention of the victims being Jews. But now that the United States is indeed aware that terrorists are targeting Jews in Israel like myself, the sad fact is that there is nothing being done about it. Moreover, when we defend ourselves, media outlets and theU.S. government are touting the terrorists as the victims.
On Oct. 1, President Obama pulled John Kerry and Samantha Power from Prime Minister Netanyahu’s U.N. speech to the General Assembly. As reported by Reuters, “During Netanyahu’s speech, Washington was represented by U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power’s deputy, David Pressman, and U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro.” Hard to read this as not a slap in the face of the Jewish State.
In addition to signing a nuclear deal with Iran and boycotting the Israeli prime minister’s speech, the Palestinian flag was raised in New York City at the U.N. just the day before. This is the same flag being raised in the streets of Ramallah when Palestinians murdered two Jewish parents in front of their four children. Evan Cohen, in the Jerusalem Post, points out this fact: “The kind of celebration one might have expected earlier this week [was] the kind of celebration they reserve only for the happiest of events — dead Jews.”
Why is the Palestinian flag being raised in New York City at the U.N. headquarters, while on the other side of the world, Palestinians are raising the same flag in celebration of the slaughter of innocent people? The America that I know would not support this. Aren’t we supposed to stand for justice, religious freedom, and the simple right to life? As a Jewish American, I am choosing to live in the Jewish State, not in Nazi Germany where we needed to fear being attacked on the basis of our peoplehood. Even still, the U.S. government seems silent instead of supporting the Jewish people and even their own citizens in Israel.
Sadly, the media is even worse than silent, it is hilariously biased. On Oct. 3, a 19-year-old Palestinian terrorist stabbed and killed two Jewish men and wounded several others (including a toddler) in the Old City, as they were on their way to the Western Wall. Police shot the terrorist during the stabbing, and Al Jazeera reported the terrorist attack as “Palestinian shot dead after fatal stabbing in Jerusalem; 2 Israeli victims also killed.” Likewise, Students for Justice in Palestine, an anti-Israel student group on campuses across North America, said that the Palestinian was “brutally murdered while heading to work.” Little did they mention his work was killing Jews and he was killed as he murdered the so-called “Jewish colonialists”.
Unfortunately it is quite common for noise to be made only when Israel is the one to strike someone dead, even if it is a terrorist caught in the act. Such is true for the media, and perhaps now even for the U.S. government.
Eliana Rudee is a fellow with the Salomon Center for American Jewish Thought and the author of the “Aliyah Annotated” column for JNS.org.
This article was originally published by the Washington Times.