David Horovitz is the founding editor of the Times of Israel. In his most recent column, David explains the absurdity of White House Special Assistant lecturing the Israelis on their best interests as he emerged from a safe recess of the hotel following a missile attack on Tel Aviv. David’s column is “Lecuturing us on security, as the rockets fly.” In an email message this morning, David notes: “The man delivered his prepared speech, word for word, after the conference had been evacuated….”
In the column David seeks to capture the absurdity of Gordon’s lecture as delivered under the circumstances. David writes that “parts of [Gordon's] oration read as though Gordon is a recent arrival from Planet Zog who has mistaken the Middle East for Finland.” The whole thing is worth reading; here is David’s conclusion:
Our closest friend doesn’t help us, or the Palestinians, or its regional interests, by pretending that a government whose ministers were subject to a Hamas veto is not compromised by that association. It doesn’t help by heaping disproportionate blame on Israel for failures in the peace process, heightening the Palestinian sense of grievance, reducing the likelihood of Palestinian compromise, and legitimizing the assaults on Israel’s very existence by those who are not our closest friends. And it doesn’t help by failing to acknowledge that it hasn’t got a clue as to how to protect its own interests from “a range of contingencies, including the rising threats we see around the Middle East today,” much less protect our interests.
Gordon delivered his speech after the Iron Dome missile defense system kept him safe from Hamas’s rockets, launched by an organization which his administration has implicitly legitimized as an acceptable backer of the Palestinian government. The US, to its great credit, has funded Iron Dome’s development. But the security innovations behind its life-savingly effective performance are Israeli.
There’s a lesson in there which Gordon and the rest of the Obama administration should have long since internalized. It’s that our closest friend should be just a little less arrogant in telling us what we need and don’t need to do in order to keep ourselves safe.