Charles Hill: What Obama has done

Charles Hill is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution as well as Brady-Johnson Distinguished Fellow in Grand Strategy, Senior Lecturer in International Studies, and Senior Lecturer in Humanities at Yale, where he is one of the principal teachers and presiding spirits in the Directed Studies program for freshmen as well as the year-long course on Grand Strategy for university students. Before undertaking his career as a teacher, Professor Hill compiled an incredibly distinguished record in the foreign service and in the State Department, where he rose to chief of staff. Among Professor Hill’s many awards deriving from his service in the government are the Presidential Distinguished Service Award in 1987 and 1989 and the Secretary of State’s Medal in 1989. I wrote to ask Professor Hill if he would comment on what President Obama has just done in the United Nations. I am grateful to Professor Hill for his permission to share his comment with our readers:

The first thing Obama did when entering office was to derail all hopes for an Israeli-Palestinian agreement by declaring all settlements to be illegal. Now the last thing (if only…) he’s done is to enshrine that anti-Israel position into international law in language that can be followed up with sanctions to delegitimize Israel’s existence itself. From anti-settlement to anti-Zionism to anti-Israel to anti-Semitic is the logic chain at work here.

And all this as the Arab-Islamic realm is engaged in the greatest Muslim mass slaughter of Muslims in history while “the international community” does nothing. The reality undergirding the two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians is that there must be, in direct negotiations, an agreed trade-off between a major curtailment of Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank east of Jerusalem and a major curtailment of the Palestinian Right of Return to the land of Israel west of Jerusalem. Obama has done just about all he can to make that negotiated agreement impossible.