Senator Hillary Clinton is attempting to shore up votes of pro-Israel groups for the 2008 elections by attending a dinner of pro-Israel groups in Manhattan this past week. During that dinner she spoke to approximately 1700 people whom according to every news report I read gave her rave reviews. Today I have read another not so biased report on how Senator Hillary Clinton’s remarks were really received that evening.
I think we should backtrack a moment to establish a few facts concerning Israel’s current postion in the middle east. First, Israel is in conflict internally with Palestinians and the terrorist group Hamas in the Gaza Strip and West Bank and externally with the terrorist group Hezbollah. Hezbollah is currently sitting on the other side of its border in Lebanon. This past year Hezbollah kidnapped Israeli soldiers that ignited a war which included rockets being fired into Israel purposely targeting civilian locations.
There are other middle east conflicts that could potentially involve Israel in Iraq and Iran. The Iraq Study Group as you recall had offered up the Golan Heights at Israel’s expense to Syria as appeasement to Iran and Syria. Both Iran and Syria are interfering with the security and stability of Iraq by providing arms and financing the Shite militia’s in Iraq. Israel has stated:
“The government views the Golan Heights as essential to the security of the state and its water resources. Retaining Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights will be the basis for an arrangement with Syria.”
If that isn’t enough; There is still the issue of Iran and its nuclear enrichment program barreling full speed ahead even against the protests of its neighbors and the United Nation. The United Nations has already adopted resolution 1737 on Iran in December 2006. If Iran continues to ignore all attempts to stop its nuclear program, Israel may very well take the lead in resolving that issue.
All of these issues served as a backdrop for Senator Hillary Clinton as she spoke at a pro-Israel dinner in Times Square this past week. As I posted previously; Hillary’s remarks were not aligned with her current posture on the war nor the anti-war position of her party. I have now found that the majority of main-stream newspapers did not provide the complete story her speech and the audience’s reaction.
In those newspapers covering the event we read that she received applause from the audience concerning her scathing remarks on Iran’s decision to hold a conference last month that questioned whether the Holocaust took place. Some of her other statements were printed without a single word about the audience’s reaction. What was left out was how these Pro-Israel groups reacted to those and other statements made by the Senator that evening. Here is an excerpt from the New York Post that provides a little more insight into Hillary’s views and how it was received that evening:
Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton drew grumbles at a pro-Israel dinner in Times Square last night when she encouraged “engaging” with Iran before taking stronger action to keep it nuke-free. Clinton said she wasn’t sure “anything positive would come out of it” and she didn’t know if it was “the smartest strategy to take,” but added, “There are a number of factors that I think argue for some attempt to do what I have suggested.”
She called for a better understanding of how Iran “really functions,” warning actions beyond sanctions could increase danger in the region.
“I also want to send a message, if we ever do have to take more drastic action, to the rest of the world that we exhausted all possibilities,” said Clinton.
Clinton’s remarks at the Marriott Marquis were met with little applause, and after she left the stage, several people said they were put off by the presidential candidate. “This is the wrong crowd to do that with,” said one person at the dinner, noting the pro-Israel crowd wanted to hear tougher rhetoric.
Senator Clintons remarks certainly highlight her lack of understanding of the issues in Iran. She is talking about “better understanding” and “not sure if anything positive would come of it” when United Nations resolutions have already been adopted and the need to implement some sort of economic sanctions is quickly approaching. Now is the time for action with Iran not “better understanding”. Hillary is still on meaningless talking points. Her remarks last week show she is not prepared for the tough foreign policy decisions that are required as President.
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