Kerry’s Potemkin Villages

Gregory Potemkin was a favorite and lover of the Russian queen Catherine II. After [the] Russian conquest of modern Southern Ukraine and Crimea from the Ottoman Empire … Potemkin became governor of the region. The area had been totally devastated during the wars by the Russian army, and Potemkin’s major task consisted of rebuilding it and bringing in Russian settlers. As a new war was about to erupt between Russia and Ottoman empire, in 1787 Catherine II made an unprecedented six month trip to New Russia, with her court, several ambassadors, and (according to some sources) the Austrian emperor Joseph II, traveling incognito. The purpose of this trip was to impress Russia’s allies ahead of the new war. In fact, Potemkin assembled a few “mobile villages”, located on banks of Dnieper River. As soon as the barge carrying the queen arrived, Potemkin’s men dressed up as peasants would show up in the village. Once the barge left, the village had to be disassembled and rebuilt downstream overnight. — Wikipedia

A Potemkin Village is thus a false front, an illusion set up to fool observers into thinking there is substance where there is not. The Wikipedia article goes on to say that many historians think the Potemkin story has been exaggerated, fictionalized to make a good story.

The Obama/Kerry peace negotiations, unfortunately are not fictionalized. Kerry has built a Potemkin Village of wishful thinking that he would like to sell Israel. Here are some strong comments, attributed to Israel’s Defense Minister, Moshe Ya’alon, on the subject:

Speaking privately, Ya’alon said an American security plan that could ostensibly facilitate a safe withdrawal by Israel, and which calls for advanced electronic surveillance in the West Bank area instead of an Israeli military presence, would actually “ensure that Ben Gurion Airport and Netanya become a missile target,” which only “our continued presence in Judea, Samaria and the Jordan River” will prevent, according to the report.

“What are you talking about?” Ya’alon was said to have directly retorted to assertions by Kerry recently that his security proposal would render Israel’s eastern border more tranquil that the US-Canada border. “You’ve given us a plan based on advanced technologies — satellites, sensors, war rooms with TV screens — but with no presence in the field of our forces. How is that technology going to help when a Salafist or an Islamic Jihad terror cell tries to attack Israeli targets?” Ya’alon reportedly wondered. “How are satellites going to quash the rocket-building industry that’s developing in Nablus and that will launch rockets at Tel Aviv and the center of the country?”

He also hammered into Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, saying his continued rule of the West Bank was only thanks to Israel.

“The moment we leave Judea and Samaria he’s finished,” Ya’alon was quoted saying. “In practical terms for the last few months we’ve been holding talks not with the Palestinians, but with the Americans.”

Ya’alon points to the two Potemkin Villages created by Kerry: the security arrangements, and the false front that is the Palestinian Authority (PA).

You don’t need to be a former Chief of Staff like Ya’alon to understand that the most that high-tech surveillance devices can do is tell you that someone is firing rockets or infiltrating terrorists into your country. Israel’s small size means that by the time its borders are penetrated, it is too late to take effective action. Foreign troops would be even worse.

And then there is the PA. Ya’alon notes that only the IDF protects the PA from Hamas and other radical groups. Given that, how can Israeli withdrawal be consistent with a PLO-ruled state? I am sure that Mahmoud Abbas understands this, maintaining his maximal demands — particularly for a ‘right of return’ — that no Israeli government could possibly accept. In fact, the PA even passed a law, punishable by death, forbidding any Palestinian leader from abrogating this invented ‘right’!

The PA finds it convenient to continue ‘negotiating’ because that keeps the American money flowing and provides opportunities to make demands of Israel that it sometimes gets the Americans to enforce — like the prisoner releases. It is interesting how this trick seems to work over and over. Meanwhile, the Palestinians never move from their extreme positions.

Finally, there is Hamas. Either Hamas and Fatah (which controls the PLO and the PA) will reconcile or not. If so, then the PA/PLO will become even more hard-line; but if not, then the PA will continue to rule over only about 60% of the Palestinian Arabs, and Hamas will continue trying to overthrow it (and will succeed the moment the IDF leaves the territories).

So 1) no security arrangements are possible short of IDF presence in the territories that would permit the IDF to be absent from the territories, 2) the PA will not agree to anything short of the elimination of the Jewish state, and 3) the PA doesn’t represent the Palestinians anyway (not in Gaza, and not even in Judea and Samaria).

In light of this, we can understand Ya’alon’s remark that Israel is negotiating with the Americans, not the Palestinians!

It must be strange to be an Israeli negotiator and to have to listen to Kerry’s nonsense and pretend to take it seriously (this is probably why Ya’alon had a career in the army rather than as a diplomat). He also is reported to have called Kerry “inexplicably obsessive” and “messianic” — and given what is occurring throughout the Middle East, especially next door in Syria, it is inexplicable that Obama and Kerry are obsessed with screwing up one of the few peaceful spots (and the only democratic country) in the region.

Let me add one more thing: recent Palestinian insistence on the invented ‘right of return’ may lead to ‘compromise’ proposals of the form “we grant them the ‘symbolic’ right of return but they don’t actually return (or only a ‘symbolic’ number do).”

This would be a disaster. It would be like giving someone the deed to your house in return for a promise not to move in. There is no right of return either in principle or in fact. And it would be inconsistent to grant them the former without the latter, so let’s not go down that road at all.

Update [1619 PST]: Ya’alon was forced to apologize for his (true) remarks. In my opinion, any description of Kerry that doesn’t include the words ‘stupid’, ‘ignorant’, ‘dangerous’ and ‘ass’ is too kind.

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2 Responses to “Kerry’s Potemkin Villages”

  1. Robman says:

    I have said for years that this is the entire purpose of the Obama presidency.

    He is in the White House on a “screw Israel” scholarship, so to speak, courtesy of the Gulf Arabs. They supported his campaign, according to rumors I have heard, to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars in laundered campaign funds. It was publicly reported – this was documented – that Hamas (!) donated $30,000 to his first presidential run. Imagine what DIDN’T make it to our petrodollar prostitute media. They artificially spiked the price of oil in ’08 to force the timing of the crash, as their surefire, last-ditch maneuver to ensure that Obama would win no matter what. This was the only thing that would have worked; even though Obama outspent McCain at least two-to-one, McCain was still on track to win in the weeks leading up to the crash.

    The election of ’12 was plainly, flat-out rigged. I live in the swing state of Ohio. I saw what happened here. Had I been in charge of rigging the election for Obama, I would have tried to make it look less obvious. It was the crime of the century, which of course was not going to be pursued by our corrupt media.

    There were other forces behind Obama; the Bill Ayers/Rev. Wrong/Michael Moore set, the blacks who’d vote for ANY black who had a shot at the presidency, no matter how dangerous or unqualified. But these other forces, by themselves, could never have made it happen. They could not raise the capital, they could not garner the popular support. It was the Gulf Arabs, with their effectively limitless funds, their lock on the media, their tentacles deep in our academe, who were the critical factor.

    What was in it for them? Finally putting those uppity Zionists in their place, that’s what. Nothing else would work. They lost on the battlefield. They lost on the trade/economic front. The only way they were ever going to be able to finally drown the Zionist entity was to get inside the levers of power of her most important ally. With Obama, they have done this.

    He was put there, more than for any other reason, to either a) force a Saudi-style “peace” plan down Israel’s throat, which would amount to slow assisted suicide for the Jewish state, or failing that, b) destroy the U.S.-Israeli alliance while making it look like Israel’s “fault” due to her “intransigence”, so that she could then be isolated and politically and economically strangled in the same manner as Apartheid South Africa, or Rhodesia.

    That is why Obama is such an abject failure at everything else he has tried to do. He isn’t there, really, to do anything else. The rest – e.g., the health care fiasco, etc. – is just all the far left liberal academia “baggage” that he and his cohorts piggybacked onto his presidency, to see what else they could get away with. One might make an analogy to a couple of rowdy kids whose rich daddy gave them the keys to the car…with the express purpose of running over the local uppity Joo down the street. While they are out cruising around, of course, they’ll take some personal initiative on some other escapades as well…but that’s not why they got the keys to the car.

    Consider Obama’s incredible haphazardness, inattentiveness, incompetence as displayed on virtually every other issue. Other than pretty much shutting down the coal industry, he has got nowhere so far with his much-ballyhooed “global warming” agenda. He has got nowhere with gun control. His signature legislation, “Obamacare”, is an utter disaster. I am fairly certain that it will be dismantled by the opposition at some point in the foreseeable future. He has accomplished NOTHING…

    ….but throughout his tenure as President, he has focused like a laser beam, unalterably, on the Israeli-Palestinian issue. His entire foreign policy clearly revolves around this. He is even willing to play Russian roullette with the possibility of a nuclear Iran – by his own admission, saying that the chances of a final successful deal are at best 50/50 (What then??!!) – just to keep the pressure on Israel not to strike, so as to maintain the threat of an imminently nuclear Iran over Israel’s heads as pressure to capitulate to the Palestinians.

    Of course, this Iran issue has unfolded in a manner that is much to the consternation of the Petrodollar Pimps, but this is yet another illustration, among so many in history, of how Jew hatred makes people utterly irrational. What idiots.

    So, no matter how surreal all of this gets, it is metaphysically impossible for Obama or his cretinous cohorts to EVER admit they are wrong about what they are trying to do. If they admit Israel is in the right, and the Palis are in the wrong, the entire rationale for their foreign policy will unravel. And with that, nothing less than Obama’s entire presidency, will also unravel.

    The grotesque political spectacle of Obamaism serves as an object lesson in what happens to a country when their objective national interests, or even a reasonable facsimile thereof, is simply hijacked by foreign interests that are not the least concerned with the welfare of the country in question, except as a vehicle through which to pursue aims that are in fact opposed to the host country’s interests. Obama’s single-minded pursuit of this goal warps his entire presidency; his unsuitability for the office a clear indication of just how far down into the bottom of America’s political barrel the Petrodollar Pimps had to scrape to find someone to do their bidding, to the exclusion of all else.

    The greatest irony is the people like myself are accused by Obama types as being ‘Israel-centric’…which is about the most blatant example of projection I’ve ever witnessed in my life.

    In apite of all of this, I would say that on the whole, Israel under Bibi is holding her own rather well. I’m sure a lot better than Obama & Co. had ever imagined she would.

    And, you must continue to do so. You have friends here, more than you may know.

    PM Harper is coming next week. That should be very, very interesting. I note that this bogus “interim agreement” with Iran is supposed to start to go into effect about the same day Harper is due to arrive in Israel. I’m sure that is no coincidence; that is meant to crowd Harper out of the news. That is vintage Obama; he used to schedule press conferences at 5:00 p.m. just to pre-empt the Glenn Beck show (I’m not making that up; he really did this). That is how petty he is. That is how contrived all of this is.


  2. NormanF says:

    The US succeeded in humiliating Israel again.

    But in forcing Israel to grovel, ironically enough, Kerry has probably achieved the opposite of his intended goals.

    People whom you treat like dirt are not likely to do you favors and its hard to imagine Ya’alon now wanting to make the egocentric Kerry look good!

    So in the end, it may well turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the Jewish State.