As noted on Tuesday’s Crosstalk, last Friday the Obama administration was working behind the scenes, orchestrating non-opposition to a U.N. Security Council resolution in condemnation of Israel. Adding to this was a 70 minute speech yesterday by Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry had strong words of condemnation for Israel over the issue of settlements, casting the tiny nation as a villain.
Returning to Crosstalk to discuss this issue was David Rubin. David is the former mayor of Shiloh, Israel. He’s the founder and president of Shiloh Israel Children’s Fund, established to heal the trauma of terror victim children after he and his three year old son were seriously wounded in a terror attack. He is the author of several books including ‘The Islamic Tsunami’ and his latest, ‘More Sparks from Zion’.
According to David, the rumor was going around that President Obama might try to sneak in something like the resolution that has come forth. The Palestinian Authority has been talking about it for a couple of months. So basically we have a situation where President Obama is ending his tenure as president like he started it. Beginning with his first meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he communicated that the settlements must be stopped and the resolution shows he feels the same way today.
What are ‘settlements’? It depends upon who you talk to. David explained that those who disagree with Israel use the term ‘settlements’ to refer to communities that don’t belong there. On the other hand, David described the building that’s taking place as a rebuilding of Jewish communities that were destroyed many years ago.
Between 1948 and 1967, the Jordanians occupied Judea and Samaria. Any remnant of Jewish life was destroyed. During the Six-Day War of 1967, Israel recaptured Judea, Samaria, as well as East Jerusalem and began rebuilding, a process that continues today. There are currently about 800,000 Jews living in this area that David refers to as the biblical heartland.
Are these settlements an obstacle to peace as was communicated by John Kerry? David responded that they are certainly an obstacle to a Palestinian state, an Islamic terrorist state in the heartland of Israel. In that he described himself as, ‘a very proud obstacle’.
David explained why Kerry’s speech was deceptive; that Israel believes they have evidence that the U.S. colluded with the Palestinian Authority in making the resolution happen; and why he feels a bill should be introduced in Israel’s parliament stating that Israel is going to begin the process of declaring sovereignty over Judea and Samaria.