I’m a Palestinian, so I watch the news all the time. And I’ve been intensely watching for the past week. And it’s been ridiculous.
Benjamin Netanyahu visited Washington, DC and had a sit-down with President Barack Obama. They seemed happy to see each other… kind of. Netanyahu came into town to address the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the largest and most influential pro-Israel lobby group. Obama addressed them too, assuring everyone that he “has Israel’s back.” Kind of ridiculous.
The main issue was Iran, and nothing else. It was all Iran, all the time.
Obama has announced that he will try diplomacy first, and only bomb if he has to. Israel has announced that it will bomb first, and only try diplomacy if it has to. Israel is treating this whole Iran thing the same way an Arab mother sets up her son with a wife: Shoot first, ask questions later. Ridiculous indeed.
And I must say something here. I have watched American presidents and politicians for a long time. I have always accepted that they are beholden to the Israeli lobby. But I have never seen them this subservient, this obedient, this meek. Yes, it is an election year, and everyone is being especially responsive to special interest groups. But this has been ridiculous.
Barack Obama has been particularly doting in his words, even expressing at times his disbelief that supporters of Israel would question his commitment to the Jewish State. Really, Barack? You’re a black Harvard-trained civil-rights lawyer, so you can understand racism, recognize it, and eloquently fight against it. You’ve had Palestinian friends, so you might have heard our pitch a few times. Oh, and you’re Muslim. News flash, Mr. President, Israel doesn’t trust you.
Israel will probably attack Iran, but it will have very little to do with any sort of nuclear program that Iran is building. Israel needs war. She has an addiction, and war is the drug. And she is a functioning addict. War makes her get up in the morning. War makes her look forward to the day. War gets her high.
Like any addict, she is in massive denial. She believes that she doesn’t have a problem. She is arrogant, rude, impolite, vulgar, uncouth, discourteous, foul, offensive, and ill-mannered (The “Thesaurus” function on Microsoft Word is really useful). She denies she is doing anything destructive. But as we all know, the addict does not go through her disease alone. Those closest to Israel are caught in her web as well. The denial of Palestinian history, rights, and simple humanity are not evidence of Israel’s evil, just symptoms of her sickness.
America is, of course, Israel’s enabler and dealer, feeding her addiction with unconditional support, constant coddling, and an endless amount of ammunition and protection. She needs her fix, and America helps make it possible. America’s funding and political submission are just what Israel needs to get high. AIPAC gets in on the act too, coming up with any and all excuses to exempt her from any responsibility.
During Israel’s visit, we Palestinians were nowhere to be found. They didn’t even talk about us. Not a word. We were totally left out. It seemed like we might be left alone for a little bit while Netanyahu dealt with Iran. No such luck. Immediately upon his return, he began a bombing campaign in Gaza that has killed almost 20 Palestinians in three days. He couldn’t help himself. When a true addict sees even the smallest opportunity, he is powerless to fight the urge. That’s how it works. A compulsive gambler should never hold too much cash, and Netanyahu should never hold too many M-16s.
Israel’s addiction has taken her through ups and downs, including one mild overdose (Lebanon 2006), and a few binges (Gaza 2009). Like any addict, she will eventually experience a major overdose (perhaps Iran). And when she overdoses, she will be left with the only two choices an addict in that position has. She will either die… or her friends will get together, have an intervention, and push her into rehab. The world has been trying to push Israel into rehab for sometime, but her main enablers and dealers have continued to giver her the illusion that she can handle her compulsive sickness, causing her to act more and more absurdly as time passes by. When Israel finally does enter rehab, her formula for recovery will be simple: a complete reversal of her current approach to life.
When that happens, I’ll be the first one to hold her hand.