Why not say what it is?

“The U.S.’s dysfunctional patron-client relationship with Israel yields a predictable result: Once again, Israel disses Washington and does what it wants.” wrote Daniel Larison at The Week. AIPAC of course immediately skewered the president in defense of Israel and all is slowly returning back to the normal status quo, America loves Israel, Iran sanctions, no need to look further.

March 16, 2010

….ever since the Obama administration climbed down from its call for a settlement freeze last year, the Netanyahu government has understood that it can ride out rough patches with Washington while continuing to pursue its objectives.


Despite dire warnings that the embarrassment of a visiting U.S. vice president will damage U.S.-Israel relations, nothing substantive will follow recent displays of indignation by Biden and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The combination of blunt words and inaction invites the worst of all consequences for the Obama administration, which will be attacked by hawks for “undermining” an ally, mocked by foreign policy realists for ineptitude, and derided by doves for caving in the face of Israeli intransigence. As for the Israelis, the only thing Netanyahu’s ministers will likely do differently next time is to exercise more discretion when thumbing their noses at President Obama.

Washington created the conditions for its own embarrassment by creating a bilateral relationship defined by dependence and warped by unaccountability. If it is unwilling to place conditions on the support it provides to Israel, and unwilling to enforce them when it does, Washington will continue to find its pronouncements ignored and its efforts in the Near East frustrated.

That nothing was expected to change is supported by Netanyahu’s first reaction to the row: that Israel will continue colonizing Palestine including East Jerusalem no matter what. Not skipping a beat, in spite of the Biden incident and Hillary’s admonishment, Netanyahu vowed that the colonialism of what remains of Palestine “would continue unabated.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday said that Israel would continue to build in Jerusalem in the same way that it has over the last 42 years.

“The building in Jerusalem – and in all other places – will continue in the same way as has been customary over the last 42 years,” said Netanyahu at a Likud party meeting. In his speech, Netanyahu gave no indication he would cancel the project or limit construction in East Jerusalem.

….asked by MK Tzipi Hotovely what would happen in September, when the 10-month settlement freeze ends, Netanyahu responded that construction would continue unabated.

After successive announcements, in which Netanyahu claimed all of Jerusalem, the Jordan Valley, lands along the border of the Jordan River, and lands upon which over 120 Jewish-only villages, towns, and cities are built, some estimates indicating control of 60% of the West Bank, we are informed that settlement expansion will continue in several months.

Netanyahu, with his Likud-religious party coalition behind him, is not backing down.

In Europe, Shimon Peres told visiting European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton on Thursday that Israel reserved the right to build in Jerusalem, adding that its construction policy in the capital has not changed in 40 years.

Peres told Ashton that Israel allowed construction in Jewish areas of the capital, but not in neighborhoods heavily populated by Arabs ? a policy held by all previous governments, he said,

Notice the question mark in the Haaretz report. Before 1967, East Jerusalem was only populated by “Arabs,” meaning Palestinians. Apart from the religious sites important to Jews,  there were no Israeli or Jewish neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.

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