Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Reactions to Bibi's Speech: Israelis Approve; Arabs, on the Other Hand...

Clockwise from top: Israeli PM Bibi Netanyahu, Hamas Boss Khaled Mashaal, PA President Mahmoud Abbas, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and Ann B. Davis as Alice
What's that saying about 2 Jews and 3 opinions? However it goes, it didn't apply to Bibi's June 14 speech at Bar Ilan University (covered HERE).

Haaretz poll: Netanyahu approval rating leaps after policy speech

"For example, in only a month, Netanyahu's approval rating has jumped 16 percentage points from a low of 28 percent the day after the cabinet debate over the budget on May 14. The 44 percent achieved yesterday comes a day after the speech...

The Israeli public overwhelmingly supports Netanyahu's speech - 71 percent. According to the poll, the prime minister said the right things and the television event Sunday night will help Israel in the international arena."

In this case, at least, we can put to bed the myth of the schizophrenic nature of Jewish opinions.

The Arabs, too, were consistent in their opinions, but that's where the similarity ended.

The Palestinian Authority fired the opening salvos:
PA: Speech dealt deadly blow to peace process

First, they attacked Bibi's conditions for peace:

"Netanyahu's speech was a right-wing speech that destroyed the basis for negotiations when it talked of a unified Jerusalem, removing the refugee issue from the talks and recognizing a Jewish state. This is a speech that is about setting terms"

Then they called the peace process 'paralyzed':

"Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rdainah was also critical of the address. "Netanyahu's remarks have sabotaged all initiatives, paralyzed all efforts being made and challenges the Palestinian, Arab and American positions,"

The Syrians went a step further: Syrian state paper: Netanyahu wants apartheid

Comparing Israel to apartheid South Africa or Nazi Germany is a favorite tactic of the Jewish State's detractors, and the Syrians chose the former:

"'Zionist government agrees to set up Palestinian cantons reminiscent of blacks' cantons in racist South Africa'.

Hamas, not to be ignored, also got in on the action: Netanyahu accepts a disarmed Palestinian state

"This speech reflects the racist and extremist ideology of Netanyahu and denies all the rights of the Palestinian people,' Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum told AFP"

Racist and extremist? One need only take a look at Hamas's charter to see some real racist and extremist language:

"Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it."

"The Day of Judgement will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Muslims, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him. Only the Gharkad tree, would not do that because it is one of the trees of the Jews."

What makes a tree Jewish? Does a mohel have to trim the branches? Only Hamas knows...

In conclusion, the speech played well with the Israelis, and not so well with the Arabs. What was it that Bibi said in his speech about the root of the conflict? Oh yes, this:
"The simple truth is that the root of the conflict has been and remains the refusal to recognize the right of the Jewish People to its own state in its historical homeland."
When he's right, he's right.

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