The Art of the 180

As Christmas and Hanukkah approach, it is altogether fitting that the hypocrisy of the professional left has been bared, and for the umpteenth time. Its utter contempt for the rule of law; its virulent hatred of freedom and of self-determination have been exposed for all willing to see. We need look no further than what is going on first, at the UN in the case of Israel, and second, the apoplexy on the left over U.S. foreign policy with respect to Russia and nuclear arms.
Betrayal

The UN has been a cauldron of anti-Semitism since at least 1975 when it adopted a resolution equating Zionism with racism. Back then, the US firmly and resolutely opposed attempts to beat Israel into submission. In one of the finest speeches ever delivered at the UN, US Ambassador Daniel Patrick Moynihan issued a scathing indictment of the resolution and its proponents in decidedly undiplomatic language. An excerpt is below.

Fast forward to 2016. The Obama Administration joined with the jackals by pointedly refusing to veto a UN resolution that, on the surface, calls for an end to Israeli settlement building in the “occupied territories”. This not only broke with 50 years of bipartisan foreign policy; it broke with the Obama Administration’s own policy. As recently as 2011 Obama ordered a veto of what was essentially the same resolution. So what changed since 2011? Hillary Clinton had already lost the 2016 elections; that’s what.

 

 

Let’s not be fooled into thinking that the resolution is really about settlements, or that the resolution is “toothless”. The resolution is another step—and a big one—in the campaign to delegitimize the Jewish State. For instance, it puts a very big thumb on the scale by describing long-disputed territories as “occupied” territories; it declares Israeli settlements to be illegal and subjects Israelis to prosecution in European Courts. It removes one more set of incentives for Palestinians to negotiate for a just and lasting peace. (For a detailed discussion of the legal issues, please see this article by Andrew McCarthy of National Review Online.)

 

Meanwhile His Royal Highness, Donald of 5th Ave, got this one right when he successfully put pressure on Egypt to withdraw the resolution and then publicly came out against it. Unfortunately Venezuela, Senegal, Malaysia and New Zealand (what were they thinking?) picked up the Egyptian resolution and forced a vote. The result was 14 – 0 in favor with the US abstaining.

 

In response Trump said (Tweeted actually) that things would be different after January 20th. That would be refreshing. Perhaps the moral sensibilities of those titans in the fight for human rights like Senegal, Egypt, Angola, China, Russia, Venezuela and Malaysia will be taken with a very large grain of salt.

 

And, oh yes, in case you forgot, Trump is the one who is supposed to be anti-Semitic.

 

Just saying.

 

 

When Comrade Putin Speaks

 

For months U.S. progressives have been crying crocodile tears over Trump’s alleged “bromance” with Vladimir Putin, and Putin’s alleged influence over US affairs, particularly the 2016 US presidential election. For now, let’s leave aside the fact that there is no actual evidence that Putin and his KGB buddies actually influenced the outcome of the race. And let’s stipulate that Putin’s motives are not simply suspect—let’ say his motives are all nefarious. That’s a pretty good assumption.

 

For this exercise let’s note some facts. Around the time Comrade Putin invaded Crimea, he pointedly noted that his nukes were targeted at U.S. cities. He also claimed that the Russian soldiers in Ukraine were really just volunteers. Perhaps you didn’t know that Russia is famous for its citizens keeping T-14 Armata war tanks in their back yards. Just in case. You never know.

 

In the meantime, Putin has been modernizing his strategic nuclear forces for some time. As Time magazine put it back in April 2016, “Over the course of Obama’s presidency, Russia has managed to negotiate deep cuts to the U.S. arsenal while substantially strengthening its own”. Further “[Russia] has brought disarmament talks with the U.S. to a complete standstill for the first time since the 1960s. In its rhetoric, Moscow has also returned to a habit of nuclear threats, while in its military exercises, it has begun to practice for a nuclear strike, according to the NATO military alliance”.

 

So after Putin decided once again to start yammering on about his nuclear forces, Trump responded by saying (Tweeting) that the U.S. would not shrink from the challenge and that if that meant there would be an arms race, so be it. Count on the media to report this as an unwarranted Trump provocation, not a response.

 

Anyway, Progressives who had been shouting from the rooftops mere weeks ago that Trump was simply a tool of Comrade Putin, putty in his hands, immediately headed for their now well-worn fainting couches. Warmonger Trump was needlessly provoking St. Vladimir. Billionaire Trump, that tool of the military-industrial complex, was about to start a new arms race that would bankrupt the U.S..

 

As it turns out, His Majesty called this one right. That’s two-for-two, a record of sorts. We have been in an arms race for quite some time, except that only one side has been running on the track, namely the bad guys. That would include Russia, China, North Korea and Iran to name a few. The Obama Administration has at best been fairly passive in the face of Russian aggression and North Korean sabre ratting; too accommodating of China in the South China Sea, and has facilitated Iranian nuclear goals.

 

Vladimir Putin, who called the collapse of the Soviet Union the greatest geo-political tragedy of the 20th century, is busy at work weakening NATO, which is incapable of defending Europe without the U.S. Truth be told, it may very well have been a mistake for the Clinton Administration to expand NATO thus stoking Russian fears. But that is water under the bridge.

 

In any event, by announcing that he was quite willing to modernize and rebuild U.S. forces, Trump served notice that the U.S. was no longer going to be a patsy for anyone. This is a message that needs to be, and will be heard loud and clear in Russia, China, North Korea and Iran among others. And let’s be clear. There is only one nation that can win an arms race. That is the United States. It is only a question of will.

 

The United States has a choice. It can choose to defend human rights. It can choose to affirm the sovereignty of the nation-state and its role as the primary organizational unit of world politics. And its government can act as defender of human rights. And it can back those choices with combinations of soft and coercive power. Or it can choose to yield to the progressive dream, actually a nightmare, of  global government, which inevitably means governance by corrupt and self serving bureaucratic elites.

 

Thus far there is a glimmer of hope this Christmas season. Wonder of wonders, His Majesty Donald Trump seems to be leaning toward the former rather than the latter.

 

Back in 1975 when the UN was equating Zionism with fascism U.S. President Gerald Ford signed the Helsinki accords that for the first time placed human rights front and center in world politics. According to the non-binding accords:

 

“Human rights are moral principles or norms, which describe certain standards of human behavior, and are regularly protected as legal rights in municipal and international law. They are commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights “to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being,” and which are “inherent in all human beings” regardless of their nation, location, language, religion, ethnic origin or any other status.”

 

Progressives, who believe that rights flow from the State, cannot truly abide by the Helsinki declaration because it declares human rights to be inherent to the person. So watch for the upcoming 180. The professional left, which despises the US and Israel precisely because they share Liberal values, will soon be arguing that Donald Trump, who only last week was supposedly a Vladimir Putin fan boy, is actually under the thumb of the Israelis. Because the modern locus of the ancient disease of anti-Semitism is mostly on the left.

 

Merry Christmas

 

JFB

 

 

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Joe Benning