Earlier today, I described Samantha Power, President Obama’s nominee for ambassador to the U.N., as “virulently anti-Israel” and “Israel hating.” These are harsh words. Even some good faith supporters of Israel may consider them unfair.
But let’s look at Power’s harsh words about Israel. For example, as I noted in this post:
Power has expressed outrage at the way Israel has treated the U.N.’s faux peacekeepers in South Lebanon, the ones who stood by while Hezbollah gained a dominant position and used it to commit aggression against Israel. In this connection, Power quotes (with no disapproval) the statement of Sergio Vieira De Mello, the subject of her hagiography, that the Israelis are “bastards.” Power also attributes Israel’s incursion into South Lebanon not to the terrorism launched against it from that area, but to the existence of dispossessed Palestinians and Israeli “insecurity.”
Power, it seems, considers Israelis “bastards.” That’s pretty hateful.
Still on the subject of Lebanon, I wrote:
[Power] stated that our alleged “deference” to Israel has caused us “to replicate Israeli tactics, which, as the war in Lebanon last summer demonstrated, can turn out to be counter-productive.” Power did not state what she thinks these tactics were, but she seems to have had in mind the bombing of civilians which caused an international outcry. In any case, Power provided no evidence that Israel is to blame for whatever U.S. tactics she finds objectionable.
Blaming Israel for U.S. tactics in Iraq, of which Power clearly disapproves, is such a reach that it can only spring from deep-seated anti-Israel sentiment. So strong is her hatred of Israel that she attributes to this small State the power to corrupt the world’s super power.
Power engaged in similarly wild overreach when she blamed U.S. Jews for getting America involved in Iraq in the first place:
Power has blamed deference to Israel and the “special interests” that support Israel for the U.S. intervention in Iraq. She does so in the face of evidence that Israel had no particular desire that we overthrow Saddam Hussein, and actually viewed that enterprise as a distraction from the more serious threat posed by Iran.
Here, Power’s hatred of Israel spills over into animus against American Jews. The same animus is evident from other comments:
Power has spoken favorably about the notion of “alienating a domestic constituency of tremendous political and financial import [American Jews] and sacrificing…billions of dollars, not in servicing Israel’s military, but actually investing in the state of Palestine.”
If you want to take money away from Israel and give it to Palestinians, whose charter (whether Fatah or Hamas) calls for the destruction of Israel, you clearly are anti-Israel.
But Power didn’t just argue for a massive shift in resources from Israel to Palestinian interests. In 2002, she spoke about investing billions of dollars to impose a Palestinian state. That investment would include the insertion of “a mammoth” and explicitly “military” force into the disputed territory.
Far out! Maybe I should stop calling her “Soft Power.”
The New York Times is not fond of Israel. But at least it had the decency to report that, contrary to its earlier stories, no massacre took place in Jenin at the hands of Israeli forces. What was Power’s response?
Power criticized the New York Times, which had promoted the bogus Jenin “massacre” story, for attempting to set the record straight through a headline that said “Human Rights Reports Finds Massacre Did Not Occur in Jenin.” Power thought the headline should have been about alleged “Israeli war crimes.”
Did Power not thereby manifest a strong anti-Israel bias?
Power’s confirmation conversion should be quite a spectacle.
UPDATE: I have changed the original version of this post to reflect the fact that when Power spoke of inserting a mammoth force into disputed territory she was responding to a hypothetical question about what she would advise the U.S. President to do about the Israel-Palestinian problem “if one party or another [starts] looking like they might be moving toward genocide.” Although this context makes her comments in the 2002 interview less crazy, I still find them disturbing for the reasons stated by Melanie Phillips.