“Carl Bernstein on Morning Joe: Stop Confusing the Likud Party with Israel”
Earlier this month Carl Bernstein took part in a discussion on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that addressed the nomination of Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense. Many have opposed this nomination because of his “anti-Semitic” views towards Israel. Personally, I have difficulty with the phrase “anti-Semitic” because it has become defined as “anti-Israel” when “Semitic” is not a descriptive word for Israel. “Semitic” is a descriptive word of the Hebrew language as Hebrew is a, well, a Semitic language, originating from the Sumerian cuneiform. Arabic is also a Semitic language. Therefore, the phrase “anti-Semitic” does not mean “anti-Israel” but “anti-any-language-that-is-of-Sumerian-origin-and-I-guess-then-therefore-the-people-who-speak-it,” which is on the upside of 300 million people. But I digress. Anyway, so people are concerned about the nomination of Hagel because he is “anti-Semitic.” Carl Bernstein who is an American-Jew said:
“It’s time….that the American Jewish community and the U.S. Congress has got to stop confusing the Likud party with Israel. The Likud party and Netanyahu are not Israel. The so-called American Jewish lobby is not Israel. Israel is a great democracy, it’s divided down the middle the same way we are… It’s time to have a truth-based conversation and policy about Israel, about the Palestinians, about the division in the Islamic world, and Hagel and this team, and Kerry and Obama, can carry it forward. But it’s time to stop cow-towing to Netanyahu and the Likud party.”
For decades now, the U.S. government has been allowing Israel to commit grave infractions against international law regarding human rights, among other things, and has let Israel off with a slap on the wrist. Obama has expressed his dislike, or frustrations, with Benjamin Netanyahu before but couldn’t reprimand Netanyahu as much as he wished he could (or so I imagine) if he wanted to be reelected for a second term. Now that he has been elected for a second term, he doesn’t need to please any electoral factions any longer. I’m hoping that with the nomination of Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense, who has a harder-line opinion of Israel, Obama and his administration this second time around will be able to put Netanyahu in his place and begin discussing the pressing issues regarding Israel that have been ignored for so long.