Barack Obama and Joe Biden have set-up a website called change.gov. This is the first step in “building an open and transparent government and seeking input from all Americans.” So, being the opinionated bastard that I am, I put in my own two cents:
I am a supporter of President-elect Barack Obama. I also support his call for change. However, I do not see change in your middle-east policy. You must understand that all the anger and resentment in the region stems from the failure to reconcile the Isareli-Palestinian conflict– it also stems from our unflinching and unconditional suuport for Israel. By resolving this long conflict, and bringing statehood to the Palestinians, we not only bring greater security to Israel, who will be in goodstanding with its neighbors, but it will also bring the US much greater security.
Your plan for the middle-east will fail even more miserably than President Bush’s– which is a sad, sad statement. You not only supported Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, but you also reject any notion that Jerusalem should be divided. I also have not heard you condemn the illegal settlements in the West Bank. You even went as far as to demand that Palestinians recognize Israel’s right to exist, even though the PLO have done just that many times over the last few decades. Israel has never recognized the Palestinians right to exist.
If you want change, as you so often say, start in the middle-east. Listen to your friend Rashid Khalidi, he knows what he’s talking about. Also, I would recommend not appointing Dennis Ross as your middle-east peace envoy. Not only is he very biased towards Israel, but he is also condescending towards the Palestinians, believing they suffer delusions of entitlement. He will not get the job done. You should appoint Dan Kurtzer. He knows the stakes and he understands that an evenhanded policy in the region will be successful.
In short, I would recommend an imposed two-state settlement. Its the only way to resolve this 60 year old conflict that threatens to send the world into even greater chaos. Every President before you has failed to be fair, and thus they have failed in bringing peace. You can change. You can bring peace and security to Israel, the middl-east, and America.
I doubt he’ll read it, or that anybody will show it to him, but it’s nice to be able to vent.
With Ariel Sharon
Dan Kurtzer was President Clinton’s ambassador to Egypt and he was George W. Bush’s ambassador to Israel between 2001 and 2005. He was instrumental in the U.S.’s recognition of the PLO and he is a leading proponent of “even-handedness” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, something that has been lacking in our efforts in the region. He also understands that there is unjustice on both sides of the issue: Israeli aggression and Palestinian terrorism. He is also an advocate for the creation of the Palestinian state. He, unlike Dennis Ross, has sympathy for the Palestinians and their aspirations. What really got me to appreciate Kurtzer was his recognition that Camp David 2 was more the failure of Ross, Clinton, Barak, than Arafat’s. He He blamed Ross for being too pro-Israel and he criticized Clinton “for acceding to Barak’s request to blame Arafat for the failure of Camp David“. Kurtzer isn’t perfect, but who in Washington is? But he’s the closest to perfect as we can get in these critical times.
Dennis Ross with Ehud Barak
I’ll be posting more on this later.
Happy Holiday’s everyone!