This president moves slowly when he needs to act decisively and hastily when caution is called for.
Thus he refuses to approve Bobby Jindal’s plan to build berms that was filed on May 11, but his U.N. team rushes to judge Israel in the Security Council on Monday.
The U.S. should have vetoed the U.N. Security Council Resolution, and should be making a strong case for why the blockade of Gaza is a necessity.
Instead, because of the U.S. weakness at the U.N., more convoys will no doubt be dispatched from Islamists eager to provoke another incident since this one has gone so well for Hamas thanks to MSM and President Obama.
That which gets rewarded gets repeated. Do Islamists desire more condemnations of Israel and more media barrages directed at the only reliable U.S. ally in the region? Then send more ships and make sure they challenge the blockade. This time arm them with more than bars and bricks.
The only way to head off such potentially even more deadly confrontations is for the president to make explicit that Israel is acting within its rights in enforcing the embargo and the U.S. stands with it. Israel can no more allow unsearched ships to arrive in Gaza than the U.S. can allow overland convoys to the heart of Taliban resistance in the borderlands between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Jeffrey Goldberg is in Israel and his reports on the incident should be bookmarked and forwarded. “[M]ost Israelis are aware unlike much of the rest of the world,” he writes, “that these ships were not on a humanitarian mission, but a political mission, one meant to lend support to Hamas, which seeks Israel’s destruction, so you might have to excuse Israelis for not sympathizing overly much.”
He adds an observation not seen anywhere else yet:
I just met with the son of a friend who serves in an elite Israeli army unit, one very much similar to Flotilla 13, the Naval commando unit deployed so disastrously against the anti-Israel flotilla, and he explained the shame this way: “These soldiers are the best we have. We are Israel’s deterrent. People in the Middle East need to think we are the best, and we are the best, except that when we’re sent into situations without any intelligence, without any direction, with paintball guns instead of sufficient weapons, with no understanding of who we’re fighting. Then we’re going to have a disaster. These commandos were beaten with pipes! They came onto the deck (of the ship) one by one down a rope and they were beaten by a mob! Commandos! It’s amazing that they didn’t kill everyone on the ship, once they regrouped. Just amazing. The whole story is amazing.”
Read the whole dispatch and keep checking back for more.
Back at home the president is running as fast as he can from the U.N. vote, but it is too late, no matter how many or few buy the spin that it was the best the U.S. could do. We should have threatened a veto, used it if necessary, and waited for the facts. The president’s reflexive anti-Israel instincts now have launched a thousand ships.