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The US-engineered and brokered Israel-Lebanon (Hezbollah) maritime/gas accord includes (in section 4) US guarantees. It aims to reassure both parties, especially Israel: “The United States intends to exert its best efforts working with the Parties to help establish and maintain a positive and constructive atmosphere for conducting discussions and successfully resolving any differences as rapidly as possible.”

Is that a reassuring commitment?

Section 4 of the maritime/gas accord is a classic example of four features of all US’ international guarantees, which – as logically expected – intend to subordinate the implementation of the guarantees to the interests of the US guarantor, not the interests of the guaranteed countries:

*Non-specificity;
*Non-automaticity;
*Open-ended interpretations;
*Escape routes.

*For example, the NATO Treaty – led by the US – is perceived to be the tightest commitment by all member states to the defense of an attacked NATO country.  However, article 5 of the NATO Charter highlights the aforementioned four features:

“The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them… will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area…. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security.”

*Furthermore, the seeds of the current devastation of Ukraine were planted in the December 5, 1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances accorded to Ukraine by the US, Britain and the USSR in return for Ukraine’s giving up its nuclear arsenal, which was the 3rd largest in the world.

According to the Budapest Memorandum: “Taking into account the commitment of Ukraine to eliminate all nuclear weapons from its territory within a specified period of time… the United States of America, the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, reaffirm their commitment to Ukraine… to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine….”

The Budapest Memorandum was exposed as a useless and misleading “screen saver” in 2014, when Russia occupied the Crimean Peninsula. Its ineffective nature was further revealed during the 2014-2022 Russia-Ukraine war in Donbas and in 2022, when Russia – again – invaded and plundered Ukraine with no implementation of the Budapest Memorandum of Security Assurances.

*Israel should be aware of the intrinsic flaws of all security guarantees, and persist in reliance only upon its own national security capabilities, rather than the mirage of international/US assurances.

*Moreover, the US constitutional balance of power stipulates that no US international commitment is binding unless ratified by a 2/3 Senate majority.

Thus, in 1999 and 2000, President Clinton signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which prohibits international nuclear testing, and the Rome Statute, which established the International Criminal Court in the Hague. However, Clinton did not submit the Rome Statute for Senate ratification (realizing that there was no support for ratification), and the Test Ban Treaty was also not ratified – it was defeated 48:51 in the Senate.  Both are yet to be ratified….

The open-ended nature of US guarantees, and the paramount role of US interests during the implementation phase, were demonstrated by the US defense treaties, which were concluded with Taiwan (1955), South Vietnam (1973) and New Zealand (1951), but terminated by the US in 1979, 1975 and 1986, in order to advance US interests, as perceived by US presidents at the time.

*Israeli reliance on US guarantees in the context of the 2022 maritime/gas accord ignores past mistakes:

*In 2000, President Clinton pledged $800mn in emergency aid to fund Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon. It was never delivered, since Congress – and not the President – possesses the Power of the Purse, and it did not agree to fund the self-defeating Israeli withdrawal (which triggered an unprecedented wave of Palestinian terrorism).

*In 1979 – when President Carter attempted to insert into the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty a reference to a future Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights – the Israeli team shared with Carter the September 1, 1975 assurance of President Ford  to Prime Minister Rabin, required to induce an Israeli withdraw from the Gulf of Suez to the Mitla’ Pass in mid-Sinai: “… [The US] will give great weight to Israel’s position that any peace agreement with Syria must be predicated on Israel remaining on the Golan Heights.”  President Carter’s correct response was that President Ford’s non-ratified executive commitment did not bind any of Ford’s successors in the White House.

*In 1967 – on the eve of the Six Day War – Israel shared with President Johnson well-documented evidence about the Egypt-Syria-Jordan planned war on Israel. Prime Minister Eshkol submitted to President Johnson the 1957 assurance (Aide Memoir) by President Eisenhower, which was a prerequisite for Israel’s withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula. It implied US willingness to deploy its military in the face of Egyptian violations of commitments made to the US and Israel. President Johnson responded that Eisenhower’s non-ratified Executive Commitment did not bind Eisenhower’s successors, and “it ain’t worth a solitary dime.” He added that “I am a tall Texan, but a short president in the face of a Congress that opposes overseas military deployment.”

The bottom line

*Security agreements with the US should enhance – not reduce – Israel’s posture of deterrence and its independence of national security action.

*Security agreements with the US should advance Israel’s posture as a national security producer – which deters regional violence – rather than a national security consumer, which fuels regional violence.

*Security agreements with the US should expand Israel’s posture as a unique force-multiplier for the US – a strategic asset, not a liability.

*The 2022 maritime/gas Israel-Lebanon (Hezbollah) accord suggests that US and Israeli policy-makers are determined to learn from history by repeating – rather than avoiding – past critical mistakes, undermining their own interests.

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Irrespective of the final outcome of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, it should serve as a wake-up call for Israeli and Western policy-makers and molders of public opinion.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has exposed the flawed nature of certain assumptions, which have impacted the worldview of the Western establishment – but not the worldview of most of the world – while attempting to induce/coerce Israel into adopting these assumptions.

For example:

*The illusion that most of the world subscribes to the Western worldview of a new world (and new Middle East) order, which is supposedly more stable, predictable, tolerant and trending toward peaceful-coexistence, focusing on butter rather than guns;

*The ostensible end to the era of major wars and massive ground force invasions;

*The self-destruct notion that a military posture of deterrence can be effectively-replaced by peace accords, security guarantees and generous financial and diplomatic packages. Thus, the seeds of the current predicament of Ukraine were planted in the reckless December 1994 Budapest security assurances, which were extended to Ukraine by the USA, Britain and Russia in return for Ukraine’s surrender of its most-deterring nuclear stockpile (3rd largest in the world). In 2022, these assurances are exposed in their futility.

*Ignoring the tenuous, unreliable, unpredictable, non-committal and open-ended nature of all security guarantees, even article 5 of the NATO Charter, which is supposed to be the tightest security commitment. But, article 5 states that all NATO members shall assist an attacked member “as [they] deem necessary, including the use of armed force….” As they deem necessary….

*The delusion that peace and security agreements are more important (for national security) than military capabilities and geography/topography-driven posture of deterrence.  This delusion ignores the fact that while peace accords and security guarantees are tenuous, topographic dominance (e.g., the Golan Heights and the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria) and geographic depth are everlasting.

*Overlooking the fact that a gradual reduction of defense budget is interpreted by most of the globe as erosion of deterrence in a stormy world (and volatile Middle East), undermining stability and crippling national security, and therefore inducing terrorism and wars;

*The presumed superiority of the diplomatic option as a more effective negotiation tool than the military option in settling conflicts with rogue regimes, which have systematically revealed themselves as bad-faith negotiators (e.g., Iran’s Ayatollahs since assuming power in February, 1979);

*The alleged subordination of national ideologies and strategic visions to a cosmopolitan/universal peaceful-coexistence state of mind;

*Preferring the speculative assessments of the future track records of rogue regimes over their realistic historical track record, which highlights the centrality of rogue history in shaping their radical national vision, policy-making, school curriculum, religious sermons and media.

*The illusion that rogue conduct (e.g., subversion, terrorism and wars) is despair-driven, rather than ideology-driven.

Western policy makers have attempted to induce/coerce Israel into a withdrawal from the topographically dominant mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria – in return for a peace accord and security guarantees.  However, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has highlighted the false sense of security, which is generated by security guarantees, which replace geographic depth and dominant topography in the highly volatile, violent, intolerant and unpredictable Middle East. The global experience has reaffirmed the centrality of the military-driven posture of deterrence in the shaping of national security.

Moreover, unlike Ukraine (the 2nd largest European country), Israel’s lack of geographic depth (a 7-15 miles sliver from the Mediterranean to the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria) provides for an extremely small margin of error. Thus, if the 1973 surprise Arab military offensive were launched against a pre-1967 Israel (without the dominant topography of the Golan Heights and Judea and Samaria and the strategic depth of the Sinai Peninsula), the Arabs would be able to annihilate the Jewish State.

Support Appreciated

 

recent posts

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
January 9, 2024

The Gaza theatre!

*The track record of the Gaza Strip reveals that it lends itself to terrorism, as contended by the June 29, 1967 memorandum submitted by General Earl Wheeler, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs-of-Staff, to Defense Secretary Robert McNamara.

*Gaza is contiguous to the largely lawless Sinai Peninsula, which has been a platform for anti-US ISIS-supported and Iran-supported Palestinian, Syrian, Iraqi, Libyan, Egyptian terrorists and drug traffickers.

*The Gaza reality is impacted by the unpredictably volcanic Middle East, especially by Iran’s Ayatollahs, the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamic terror entities.  

*A postwar plan for the Gaza Strip must be based on exclusive Israeli military control, not on well-intentioned US guarantees and defense pacts, and not on non-Israeli peacekeepers, who would not be limited to observing compliance, but mostly to combatting terrorists. However, non-Israeli peacekeepers should not be expected to sacrifice their lives on the altar of Israel’s security.

*In 1983, Hezbollah terrorists car-bombed the US Marine barracks and US Embassy in Beirut, killing 260 Americans, prompting the withdrawal of US soldiers – who participated in the Multinational (peacekeeping) Force – from Lebanon.

US guarantees and defense pacts?

*According to Prof. Michla  Pomerance, Hebrew University, international relations, US guarantees and defense pacts (dating back to the early 19th century) feature escape routes – highlighting the dominance of US interests over the interests of the guaranteed party – facilitating delay, suspension and non-implementation:
<Non-specificity;
<Non-automaticity;
<Non-implementation;
<Subordination to the US Constitution, which limits presidential power.

*In fact, the inherent ambiguity, non-durability and tentative nature of US guarantees and defense pacts have unintentionally tended to fuel conflicts. 

For example:

<On December 5, 1994, the US, Britain, and Russia signed the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances, guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Ukraine.  It prohibited Russia from using military force or economic coercion against Ukraine, except in self-defense. It required Ukraine to give up its nuclear arsenal, which was at the time the 3rd largest in the world. Donald Blinken, the US Ambassador to Hungary and father of Secretary Tony Blinken, was in attendance.

The undeterred 2014 Russian occupation of Crimea and Donbas in eastern Ukraine and the 2022 invasion of other parts of Ukraine, and the resulting destruction of Ukraine, attest to the mirage-like significance of US and British guarantees, which were not ratified by the US Senate.

<In 1954, President Eisenhower signed a defense treaty pact with Taiwan, but in 1979 – when China sided with the US against the USSR – President Carter annulled the treaty unilaterally with the support of Congress, acknowledging the “one China position” with “Taiwan is part of China….” The US Supreme Court refrained from action, declaring it “non-justiciable.”  The defense treaty was substituted with the 1979 non-diplomatic and militarily non-committal congressional Taiwan Relations Act.

The predominance of the US Constitution in the shaping of US domestic and foreign policy attests that US defense pacts are not iron clad.

<In November 1956, President Eisenhower issued a memorandum, compensating Israel for its full withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula: “No nation has the right to forcibly prevent free and innocent passage in the Gulf [of Suez] and through the Straits [of Tiran, leading to Eilat]…. The United States… is prepared to exercise the right of free passage and to join with others to secure general recognition of this right.” Israel was led to believe that the US would use all means to prevent Egyptian violations of demilitarized Sinai, blocking Israeli passage in the Suez Canal and blockading the access to the port of Eilat. However, in 1967, when the documentation of Egyptian violations were presented to President Johnson, he (rightly) claimed that the memorandum was not ratified by the US Senate, that there was no congressional support for military intervention, and “I’m a tall Texan, but without Congress, I’m a short President…. It ain’t worth a solitary dime.”

The Egyptian violations, the withdrawal of the UN Emergency Force, and the imminent Egypt-Syria-Jordan military offensive, along with the intrinsic unreliability of US guarantees, led to the preemptive 1967 Six Day War.

<US military guarantees are not carved in stone as demonstrated by the open-ended NATO treaty (article 5): “…The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them shall be considered an attack against them all….Each of them… will assist the party or parties so attacked by taking…such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force….”

International peacekeepers?

*International peacekeeping forces are ineffective, not durable, nor politically and militarily sustainable. Just like US guarantees, it creates a false sense of security, eroding Israel’s posture of deterrence, yielding a tailwind to anti-US and anti-Israel Islamic terrorists and a headwind to Israel and the US. Non-Israeli peacekeepers would be targeted by Gaza and Sinai-based Islamic terrorists, which would severely undermine the relations with Israel and fuel anti-Semitism. Furthermore, the stationing of foreign peacekeepers on Israel’s borders would cripple Israel’s defense capabilities, requiring Israel to seek prior approval in preempting or countering terrorism, which would damage Israel’s ties with the peacekeepers, transforming Israel’s image from a unique force-multiplier for – to a burden upon – the US. 

For example:

<On March 19, 1978, the US-funded UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) was established, in order to restore peace and security in the aftermath of Israel’s war against southern Lebanon-based Palestinian terrorists. In 2006, UNIFIL was expanded to 10,000 soldiers, aiming to facilitate Lebanon’s effective authority in southern Lebanon, “free of any armed personnel, assets and weapons, other than those of the Government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL…. To ensure that its area of operations is not utilized for hostile activities of any kind….”

The inherent ineptness of international peacekeepers facilitated the Iran-supported Hezbollah’s takeover of Lebanon – especially southern Lebanon – and its systematic raining down upon Israeli civilians with rockets and missiles; thus, paving the road to the 2024 Israel war against Hezbollah terrorists.

<In 2007, when Hamas assumed full control of the Gaza Strip, the European Union observers fled the (Egypt-Gaza) Rafah Border Crossing, which exponentially expanded the smuggling of advanced military systems to Gaza.

<On May 18, 1967, the UN Emergency Force withdrew from Sinai and Gaza, in compliance with Egypt’s demand, and irrespective of the Egyptian violation of Sinai’s demilitarization and additional commitments made to the US and Israel, in return for Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza and the Sinai Peninsula.

*The bottom line

There is no substitute for Israel’s exclusive military control of the Gaza Strip. Moreover, intangible, tenuous, open-ended and reversible security guarantees and an international peacekeeping force – whose implementation is not determined by Israel – would engender a false sense of security, compromising Israel’s existence.  As stated by Prof. Alan Dowty, Notre Dame University: “The effectiveness of a guarantee depends upon the willingness of the guarantor to react to a threat, and upon his ability to react with sufficient force…. Fear of disrupting US relations with Arab states was a factor in the 1967 US decision not to force open the Red Sea Straits of Tiran to Israeli ships…. The effectiveness of a commitment depends on the underlying interests and capabilities of the guarantor [not the guaranteed!]…. Guarantees are not unambiguous blessings….”

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The US-engineered and brokered Israel-Lebanon (Hezbollah) maritime/gas accord includes (in section 4) US guarantees. It aims to reassure both parties, especially Israel: “The United States intends to exert its best efforts working with the Parties to help establish and maintain a positive and constructive atmosphere for conducting discussions and successfully resolving any differences as rapidly as possible.”

Is that a reassuring commitment?

Section 4 of the maritime/gas accord is a classic example of four features of all US’ international guarantees, which – as logically expected – intend to subordinate the implementation of the guarantees to the interests of the US guarantor, not the interests of the guaranteed countries:

*Non-specificity;
*Non-automaticity;
*Open-ended interpretations;
*Escape routes.

*For example, the NATO Treaty – led by the US – is perceived to be the tightest commitment by all member states to the defense of an attacked NATO country.  However, article 5 of the NATO Charter highlights the aforementioned four features:

“The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them… will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area…. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security.”

*Furthermore, the seeds of the current devastation of Ukraine were planted in the December 5, 1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances accorded to Ukraine by the US, Britain and the USSR in return for Ukraine’s giving up its nuclear arsenal, which was the 3rd largest in the world.

According to the Budapest Memorandum: “Taking into account the commitment of Ukraine to eliminate all nuclear weapons from its territory within a specified period of time… the United States of America, the Russian Federation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, reaffirm their commitment to Ukraine… to respect the independence and sovereignty and the existing borders of Ukraine….”

The Budapest Memorandum was exposed as a useless and misleading “screen saver” in 2014, when Russia occupied the Crimean Peninsula. Its ineffective nature was further revealed during the 2014-2022 Russia-Ukraine war in Donbas and in 2022, when Russia – again – invaded and plundered Ukraine with no implementation of the Budapest Memorandum of Security Assurances.

*Israel should be aware of the intrinsic flaws of all security guarantees, and persist in reliance only upon its own national security capabilities, rather than the mirage of international/US assurances.

*Moreover, the US constitutional balance of power stipulates that no US international commitment is binding unless ratified by a 2/3 Senate majority.

Thus, in 1999 and 2000, President Clinton signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, which prohibits international nuclear testing, and the Rome Statute, which established the International Criminal Court in the Hague. However, Clinton did not submit the Rome Statute for Senate ratification (realizing that there was no support for ratification), and the Test Ban Treaty was also not ratified – it was defeated 48:51 in the Senate.  Both are yet to be ratified….

The open-ended nature of US guarantees, and the paramount role of US interests during the implementation phase, were demonstrated by the US defense treaties, which were concluded with Taiwan (1955), South Vietnam (1973) and New Zealand (1951), but terminated by the US in 1979, 1975 and 1986, in order to advance US interests, as perceived by US presidents at the time.

*Israeli reliance on US guarantees in the context of the 2022 maritime/gas accord ignores past mistakes:

*In 2000, President Clinton pledged $800mn in emergency aid to fund Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon. It was never delivered, since Congress – and not the President – possesses the Power of the Purse, and it did not agree to fund the self-defeating Israeli withdrawal (which triggered an unprecedented wave of Palestinian terrorism).

*In 1979 – when President Carter attempted to insert into the Israel-Egypt Peace Treaty a reference to a future Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights – the Israeli team shared with Carter the September 1, 1975 assurance of President Ford  to Prime Minister Rabin, required to induce an Israeli withdraw from the Gulf of Suez to the Mitla’ Pass in mid-Sinai: “… [The US] will give great weight to Israel’s position that any peace agreement with Syria must be predicated on Israel remaining on the Golan Heights.”  President Carter’s correct response was that President Ford’s non-ratified executive commitment did not bind any of Ford’s successors in the White House.

*In 1967 – on the eve of the Six Day War – Israel shared with President Johnson well-documented evidence about the Egypt-Syria-Jordan planned war on Israel. Prime Minister Eshkol submitted to President Johnson the 1957 assurance (Aide Memoir) by President Eisenhower, which was a prerequisite for Israel’s withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula. It implied US willingness to deploy its military in the face of Egyptian violations of commitments made to the US and Israel. President Johnson responded that Eisenhower’s non-ratified Executive Commitment did not bind Eisenhower’s successors, and “it ain’t worth a solitary dime.” He added that “I am a tall Texan, but a short president in the face of a Congress that opposes overseas military deployment.”

The bottom line

*Security agreements with the US should enhance – not reduce – Israel’s posture of deterrence and its independence of national security action.

*Security agreements with the US should advance Israel’s posture as a national security producer – which deters regional violence – rather than a national security consumer, which fuels regional violence.

*Security agreements with the US should expand Israel’s posture as a unique force-multiplier for the US – a strategic asset, not a liability.

*The 2022 maritime/gas Israel-Lebanon (Hezbollah) accord suggests that US and Israeli policy-makers are determined to learn from history by repeating – rather than avoiding – past critical mistakes, undermining their own interests.

Support Appreciated

 

 

Irrespective of the final outcome of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, it should serve as a wake-up call for Israeli and Western policy-makers and molders of public opinion.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has exposed the flawed nature of certain assumptions, which have impacted the worldview of the Western establishment – but not the worldview of most of the world – while attempting to induce/coerce Israel into adopting these assumptions.

For example:

*The illusion that most of the world subscribes to the Western worldview of a new world (and new Middle East) order, which is supposedly more stable, predictable, tolerant and trending toward peaceful-coexistence, focusing on butter rather than guns;

*The ostensible end to the era of major wars and massive ground force invasions;

*The self-destruct notion that a military posture of deterrence can be effectively-replaced by peace accords, security guarantees and generous financial and diplomatic packages. Thus, the seeds of the current predicament of Ukraine were planted in the reckless December 1994 Budapest security assurances, which were extended to Ukraine by the USA, Britain and Russia in return for Ukraine’s surrender of its most-deterring nuclear stockpile (3rd largest in the world). In 2022, these assurances are exposed in their futility.

*Ignoring the tenuous, unreliable, unpredictable, non-committal and open-ended nature of all security guarantees, even article 5 of the NATO Charter, which is supposed to be the tightest security commitment. But, article 5 states that all NATO members shall assist an attacked member “as [they] deem necessary, including the use of armed force….” As they deem necessary….

*The delusion that peace and security agreements are more important (for national security) than military capabilities and geography/topography-driven posture of deterrence.  This delusion ignores the fact that while peace accords and security guarantees are tenuous, topographic dominance (e.g., the Golan Heights and the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria) and geographic depth are everlasting.

*Overlooking the fact that a gradual reduction of defense budget is interpreted by most of the globe as erosion of deterrence in a stormy world (and volatile Middle East), undermining stability and crippling national security, and therefore inducing terrorism and wars;

*The presumed superiority of the diplomatic option as a more effective negotiation tool than the military option in settling conflicts with rogue regimes, which have systematically revealed themselves as bad-faith negotiators (e.g., Iran’s Ayatollahs since assuming power in February, 1979);

*The alleged subordination of national ideologies and strategic visions to a cosmopolitan/universal peaceful-coexistence state of mind;

*Preferring the speculative assessments of the future track records of rogue regimes over their realistic historical track record, which highlights the centrality of rogue history in shaping their radical national vision, policy-making, school curriculum, religious sermons and media.

*The illusion that rogue conduct (e.g., subversion, terrorism and wars) is despair-driven, rather than ideology-driven.

Western policy makers have attempted to induce/coerce Israel into a withdrawal from the topographically dominant mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria – in return for a peace accord and security guarantees.  However, the Russian invasion of Ukraine has highlighted the false sense of security, which is generated by security guarantees, which replace geographic depth and dominant topography in the highly volatile, violent, intolerant and unpredictable Middle East. The global experience has reaffirmed the centrality of the military-driven posture of deterrence in the shaping of national security.

Moreover, unlike Ukraine (the 2nd largest European country), Israel’s lack of geographic depth (a 7-15 miles sliver from the Mediterranean to the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria) provides for an extremely small margin of error. Thus, if the 1973 surprise Arab military offensive were launched against a pre-1967 Israel (without the dominant topography of the Golan Heights and Judea and Samaria and the strategic depth of the Sinai Peninsula), the Arabs would be able to annihilate the Jewish State.

Support Appreciated

 

MIDA” magazine, https://bit.ly/2NridWA

Do commitments made by a US president bind his successors? History proves that these commitments do not even bind the president who signed them.

Even when the US commitments are driven by the purest of intentions, one should recognize certain features – a derivative of the US Constitution and the power struggle between the Legislature and the Executive – which have characterized all US international agreements, pacts, memoranda of understandings and guarantees since 1776 (thoroughly researched by Hebrew University Prof. Michla Pomerance).  These inherent features are designed to subordinate the implementation (or non-implementation) of all US international commitments to the overriding US interests, as defined by the implementing president, not necessarily the president who signed the commitments.

Take for example, the feature of vagueness and non-specificity, as demonstrated by “the Deal of the Century.”  The Deal stipulates Israeli security control in the entire area from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean. But, who defines “control?”  Will it be President Trump and his team, or the more pro-Palestinian team of President Biden? Obviously, each team will have a different interpretation, reflecting their different worldviews and ideology, minimizing or maximizing the scope of “control,” which could render Israeli “control” highly-constrained and quite ineffective.

What constitutes “interpretation” for the promisor (USA), may be perceived as “breach” and “evasion” by the promisee (Israel).

Moreover, the list of preconditions for the establishment of a Palestinian state is subject to contradictory, subjective interpretations of the preconditions and related-compliance set by President Trump or President Biden?  The strict school of thought may insist that the Palestinians will have to become Canadians in order to comply with the preconditions (Trump), while the lenient school of thoughts may be satisfied with Palestinians remaining Palestinians (Biden).  Thus, in 1993, Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas, supposedly, accepted a list of preconditions, in order to establish the Palestinian Authority in Judea, Samaria and Gaza. Notwithstanding their systematic and egregious violation of the preconditions, Arafat became the most-frequent-visitor to President Clinton’s White House and was awarded the 1994 Nobel Prize for Peace. Furthermore, President Clinton, President Obama, and all Israeli Prime Ministers since 1993, vouched for the good behavior (compliance) of Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas. This facilitated the handover of Hebron to the Palestinian Authority (1997), and the transfer of the $400MN annual US foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority, notwithstanding the unprecedented wave of Palestinian hate-education and terrorism.

Then, there is the feature of non-automaticity, which stipulates that the implementation of all US agreements and guarantees is in the hands of a sitting US president, depending on the president’s worldview and assessment of US interests.

The bottom line – and the third feature of US international commitments – is that they are deliberately open-ended, in order to preserve US interests, irrespective of other interpretations and reservations by the other parties to the agreement.

Anyone who assumes that a US international commitment is carved in stone should examine the very important, yet non-specific, non-automatic and open-ended NATO treaty (article 5): “…The Parties agree than an armed attack against one or more of them shall be considered an attack against them all….Each of them… will assist the Party of Parties so attacked by taking…such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force….”

Another feature of US international commitments involves the balance of power between the US Legislature and the US Executive. Thus, the ratification of an agreement requires a 2/3 Senate majority (at least 67 Senators), which is currently an impossibility under the political climate on Capitol Hill: a 53:47 Republican Senate majority and a vehemently anti-Trump Democratic party.

As an example, in 1999 and 2000, President Clinton signed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty, prohibiting international nuclear testing, and the Rome Statute, which established the International Criminal Court in the Hague. However, he did not submit the Rome Statute for Senate ratification (realizing that there was no support for ratification), and the Test Ban Treaty was also not ratified – it was defeated 48:51 in the Senate.

The open-ended nature of US international commitments, and the paramount role of US interests during the implementation phase, were demonstrated in the US defense treaty signed with New Zealand (in 1951), which was suspended in 1986 due to US considerations.  Likewise with the 1955 US-Taiwan Defense Pact, which was terminated in 1979, when President Carter decided that enhancing ties with China was much more important than abiding by a prior treaty with Taiwan.

The power of the President to suspend international treaties was reaffirmed in a November 15, 2001 Memorandum submitted by the US Justice Department: “The President has broad constitutional powers with respect to treaties, including the powers to terminate and suspend them…”

When it comes to Israel:

*In 2000, President Clinton pledged to Prime Minister Barak $800MN in emergency aid to fund Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon. However, it was never delivered, since Congress – which possesses the Power of the Purse – did not agree to fund the self-defeating withdrawal (which triggered an unprecedented wave of Palestinian terrorism).

*In 1967 – on the eve of the Six Day War – Israel became increasingly besieged by Egyptian violations of the demilitarization of the Sinai Peninsula, blockading the port of Eilat and forming the joint Egypt-Syria-Jordan anti-Israel military command.  Therefore, Prime Minister Eshkol submitted to President Johnson the assurance (Aide Memoir) from President Eisenhower, which was issued in 1957, in order to entice Israel to withdraw from the Sinai Peninsula. The Eisenhower assurance implied – but did not specify – a US willingness to deploy its military in face of Egyptian violations.  The pro-Israel President Johnson invoked constitutional and congressional non-compliance, stating that Eisenhower’s Executive Commitment did not bind Eisenhower’s successors, and “it ain’t worth a solitary dime.” He added that “Israel will not be alone unless it decides to go alone,” and concluded by stating:  “I am a tall Texan, but a short president in the face of a Congress that opposes overseas military deployment.”

*In 1979 – during the final stages of the Israel-Egypt peace talks, when President Carter attempted to insert a reference to a future Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights – the Israeli team shared with Carter the September 1, 1975 assurance of President Ford  to Prime Minister Rabin, geared to induce an Israeli withdraw from the Gulf of Suez to the Mitla’ Pass in mid-Sinai: “… [The US] will give great weight to Israel’s position that any peace agreement with Syria must be predicated on Israel remaining on the Golan Heights.”  President Carter’s correct response was that President Ford’s executive commitment did not bind any of Ford’s successors in the White House.

 

The aforementioned comments do not constitute a criticism of the US, but is advice to Israeli policy-makers to study precedents, and to realize the substantial vagueness and other limitations of any US presidential commitment, guarantee or assurance, and avoid – rather than repeat – past critical mistakes.

Moreover, Israel’s national security must be based on the worst – not the best – case scenario, especially in the increasingly unpredictable, turbulent political climate in the Middle East and the world at-large, including the USA.

Finally, Israel must retain the independence of national security action, including the application of its laws to the Jordan Valley, Judea and Samaria, rather than await a “green light” from Washington, DC.  This critical feature of leadership was demonstrated – in defiance of brutal US and international pressure – by Prime Ministers Ben Gurion (expanding Israel’s area by some 30% during the 1948/49 War), Eshkol (preempting an Arab war on Israel, reuniting Jerusalem and establishing the initial Israeli neighborhoods beyond the “Green Line”), Golda Meir (expanding Jewish presence beyond the “Green Line”), Begin (applying Israel’s law to the Golan Heights and bombing Iraq’s nuclear reactor) and Shamir (bolstering Israel’s presence in Judea and Samaria).

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The cause of failed western policies in the Middle East

April 27, 6PM Israel time / 11AM EST

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  1. Jewish-Arab Demography: No Arab Demographic Time Bomb

Israel’s Jewish fertility rate is higher than the fertility rates of most Arab countries

April 28, 7PM Israel time / 12:00PM EST

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Constructive Defense Pact

A constructive US-Israel defense pact should be based on shared values and shared strategic interests, expanding the two-way-street, win-win US-Israel strategic cooperation.

An effective US-Israel defense pact should enhance Israel’s self-reliance and independence, rather than Israel’s dependence upon the US.

A useful US-Israel defense pact should bolster and leverage Israel’s posture of deterrence at the geographic junction of the Mediterranean-Europe-Africa-Asia, which is a focal point of global terrorism, the proliferation of ballistic and nuclear technologies and unpredictable tectonic military eruptions. Israel’s role is doubly critical at a time when Europe’s posture of deterrence is rapidly collapsing.

A beneficial US-Israel defense pact should further extend the strategic hand of the US – through Israel’s proven capabilities – without additional US aircraft carriers and troops in the Middle East.

A worthwhile US-Israel defense pact should underscore the role of Israel as the most cost-effective, battle-tested laboratory of US defense industries, upgrading US military performance, research and development, production, export and employment. The unique Israeli battle experience has benefitted US military operations by enhancing the formulation of US battle tactics and maneuverability.

The primary aim of a constructive US-Israel defense pact is not to defend Israel, but to face mutual threats and challenges such as the conventional and non-conventional threats of Iran’s Ayatollahs, global Islamic Sunni terrorism, the emergence of additional rogue regimes in the Middle East, lethal threats to every pro-US Arab regime, the violent unpredictability and unreliability of the Middle East, the need to maintain a military and commercial technological edge, etc.

An effective US-Israel defense pact must not constrain Israel’s freedom of unilateral, self-defense military action against clear and present threats, which has bolstered Israel’s posture of deterrence, and therefore transformed the Jewish State into a most reliable beachhead of the US. Tying Israel’s military hands would erode Israel’s posture of deterrence; thus shrinking its contribution to US interests.

For instance, the 1981 and the 2007 Israeli bombings of Iraq’s and Syria’s nuclear reactors – in defiance of US opposition – saved the globe from the wrath of nuclearized Saddam Hussein and Assad, sparing the US a nuclear confrontation in the 1991 Gulf War. Israel’s 1967 preemptive war against a unified Arab offensive was opposed by the US, but devastated the pro-Soviet Egyptian leader, Nasser, who strove to topple the pro-US Arab Gulf regimes. It deprived the USSR of a rare bonanza, while sparing the US a devastating blow, at a time when the US was largely dependent upon Persian Gulf oil.

Defense pacts do not stifle unilateral military actions, as documented by the NATO Treaty which stipulates (Article 4): “The Parties will consult together whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened.”

The aim of a valuable US-Israel defense pact is to confront threats and challenges in the larger regional and global context, not the Arab-Israeli conflict and the Palestinian issue, which have never been core causes of regional turbulence, and – irrespective of the Arab talk – have never been a top priority of the Arab walk.

The aim of a compelling US-Israel defense pact must never involve US troops on Israel’s borders, nor determination of Israel’s future borders, nor any reference to Israeli withdrawals from the strategic high-ground of the Judea and Samaria mountain ridges (the cradle of Jewish history). Such a retreat would downgrade Israel from a strategic asset to a strategic liability.

A mutually-beneficial US-Israel defense pact should focus on:

*A substantial enhancement – qualitatively and quantitatively – of the prepositioned US military stockpiles in Israel (expediting deployment to conflict areas; benefitting from Israeli security and maintenance; and available to – and replenished by – Israel upon eruption of wars);
*Upgrading intelligence-sharing, benefitting from Israel’s unique network of intelligence;
*Boosting counter-terrorism and special operation cooperation;
*Expanding joint military exercises;
*Providing Israel with access to more sophisticated military systems, in order to test them under battle conditions, while sustaining Israel’s qualitative military edge.
*Improving the Haifa and Ashdod port facilities in order to accommodate the US 6th Fleet and its aircraft carrier. They are closer than European ports to conflict areas, providing the US navy with a more effective platform of maneuvers, maintenance and repair;
*The establishment of a series of bilateral funds in the mode of the successful bilateral BIRD Foundation, which is limited to non-defense industries. They will stimulate the joint development and manufacturing of advanced military systems by compatible US and Israeli defense contractors and startups (leveraging Israel’s do-or-die state of mind and ground-breaking innovations) in the areas of space and space satellites, aerospace, missile defense, cyber defense, artificial intelligence, command-control-communications-computers, unmanned systems and robotics, electro-optics.

Open-ended aspects of Defense Pacts

Productive US-Israel relations – and Israel’s own national security – behoove Israel to reject the deployment of US troops on its borders.

Moreover, no treaty should be perceived as automatic US military involvement on behalf of Israel.  All US treaties are open-ended, subject to the US Constitution, which endows US presidents with the authority to avoid full implementation of treaties/guarantees.

For example, a November 15, 2001 Department of Justice memo to the White House determined that the US President has the Constitutional discretionary authority to terminate, or suspend, unilaterally, fully or partly, the 1972 USA-USSR ABM Treaty without seeking coordination with Congress, whenever the president determines that it is in the national interest to do so.

In 1985 and 1986, President Reagan unilaterally suspended security commitments to New Zealand, and terminated the Treaty of Friendship with Nicaragua.  In 1979, President Carter unilaterally terminated the mutual defense treaty with Taiwan upon the establishment of diplomatic relations with China.

Escape routes are also provided by Article 5 of NATO Treaty: “The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them shall be considered an attack against them all…. Each of them…shall assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith…such action as it deems necessary [my emphasis], including the use of armed forces [an option, but not mandatory….].”

According to Hebrew University Prof. Michla Pomerance; “A treaty can never entail more than a contingent and tentative promise to use force in the future…. American defense commitments… are generally characterized by vagueness, non-specificity and the explicit denial of any automatic obligation to use force… to keep the US options open and its absolute discretion intact in deciding whether, and how, to redeem its promise…. What constitutes ‘interpretation’ for the promisor may well be seen as ‘breach’ by the promise…. A president’s decision to execute – or not to execute – an international commitment depends on his own – not the promisee’s – assessment…. Every US international commitment allows for future non-implementation, consistent with US interests and the US Constitution….”

In conclusion, a constructive US-Israel defense pact should be dedicated to the enhancement of mutually-beneficial, win-win, two-way-street cooperation in the face of regional and global mutual threats, not by the reintroduction of one-way-street relations.  Moreover, it should not include any reference to Israel’s withdrawal from critical high ground – which is irreversible – in return for a US military commitment, which is – by definition – reversible.

Please watch – and consider recommending/sharing – my online video seminar (forty 6-minute-videos) on the following topics:
1. US-Israel ties
Israel’s contributions, 400-year-old foundations, Congress – the co-equal ally, State Dep’t blunders) and more;
2.Jewish-Arab Demographics
3. The Palestinian issue
Core causeof turbulence? Arab crown-jewel?Terrorism root cause? Cruxof conflict? And more;
4. Palestinian terrorism
6.Palestinian refugees
7. Jewish refugees
8. Christian repression
10. Anti-US terrorism
11. Iran’s Ayatollas
12. Israeli settlements
13. Israel’s economy
14. The real Middle East
15. Israel’s pre-1967 borders
The precariousness of Israel’s pre-1967 borders;
16. International and US security guarantees

Can Israel rely on US/international security guaranteesand/or peacekeepers?

Video#36:http://bit.ly/2mpQc6g; Entire mini-seminar: http://bit.ly/1ze66dS

1. US-Israel defense cooperation should be driven by the enhancement of the mutually-beneficial, win-win, two-way-street ties, not by the re-introduction of one-way-street relations, which would burden the US and increasing the dependency of Israel upon the US. The proposal to extend, to Israel, US security guarantees – including a defense pact and a peacekeeping force – in exchange for Israel’s retreat from the historically and militarily critical, dominant mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria, ignores the inherently ineffective track record of such (open-ended) US guarantees, the provisions of the US Constitution, which enables US presidents to avoid full implementation of the guarantees, and the US public opposition – especially since the military involvement in Vietnam and then Iraq and Afghanistan – to the stationing of US troops abroad.

2. According to a November 15, 2001 Department of Justice memo to the White House National Security Council, irrespective of international law and consistent with the US Constitution, the President has the constitutional, discretionary authority to terminate, or suspend, unilaterally, fully or partly, the 1972 USA-USSR ABM Treaty – the  limitation of anti-ballistic missile systems – without seeking coordination with Congress, and certainly not with the USSR, whenever the President determines that it is in the national interest to do so.

3. In 1979, President Carter unilaterally terminated/abrogated the Mutual Defense Treaty with Taiwan, upon the establishment of diplomatic relations with China. Such a presidential prerogative was also asserted by Presidents Madison, McKinley, Wilson, Coolidge, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, and recently by Carter and Reagan.  Thus, in 1986, Reagan suspended the ANZUS (Australia, New Zealand, US) Pact security obligations to New Zealand, and in 1985, he terminated the Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation with Nicaragua.

4. The London Economist wrote on March 9, 2015: “Article 5 [of the NATO Treaty] stipulates that the response [to aggression against a member state] may include armed force, but it does not mandate it. All that NATO actually promises is to take ‘such action as it deems necessary’ to restore and maintain security. That could be anything from nuclear war to a stiff diplomatic protest…. The Baltics argue that an attack on them would mean an all-out East-West confrontation…. But Article 5 does not specify such a response…. Many eastern NATO members worry, since it is hard to imagine a US president risking nuclear war to defend a tiny country half a world away…. What might count locally as an intolerable assault on the Baltic States’ sovereignty may not be seen in NATO headquarters as an ‘armed attack’…. All the strength of the world’s mightiest military alliance will not amount to much if its members cannot agree when an aggressor has actually stepped over the line….” 

5.
According to Hebrew University Prof. of international relations, Michla Pomerance: “A treaty can never entail more than a contingent and tentative promise to use force in the future; execution of the promise requires further specific authorization by Congress.  Otherwise, the treaty-makers – the President and 2/3 of the Senate – would be unconstitutionally usurping the war-making powers of Congress (the 1973 War Powers Act, which passed over a presidential veto)…. Past American defense commitments… are generally characterized by vagueness, non-specificity and the explicit denial of any automatic obligation to use force… to keep the US options open and its absolute discretion intact in deciding whether, and how, to redeem its promise….

6. In 1967, President Johnson invoked constitutional and congressional non-compliance with the 1957 Eisenhower’s-Dulles’ assurances to Israel, in response to Egyptian violations of the ceasefire and demilitarization accords.  Johnson said: “I’m a tall Texan, but without Congress, I’m a short president.”

7.  “Any commitment must be interpreted and applied by the President. And, the line between interpretation and breach, evasion and non-execution may be thin indeed.  What constitutes ‘interpretation’ for the promisor may well be seen as ‘breach’ by the promisee. Evasion by means of interpretation would not be a difficult task.  Recent legislative restrictions on presidential war-making could readily be cited as additional justification for non-execution or evasion…. The violation of international law by the US president is not proscribed by the Constitution…. A president’s decision to execute – or not to execute – an international commitment depends on his own – not the promisee’s – assessment of the domestic and international political and military environment. Every US international commitment allows for future non-implementation, consistent with US interests and the US Constitution.”
8. Against the backdrop of the US Constitution and past US security guarantees and defense pacts, it is clear that US security guarantees, with or without troops on Israel’s borders – in exchange for Israel’s withdrawal from the dominant mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria – would create a short-term false sense of peace and security, while dramatically eroding Israel’s posture of deterrence in the Middle East, transforming Israel’s image in the US from a role-model of strategic ally to a feeble dependent, undermining US-Israel relations, injuring US reliability and power-projection, and therefore fueling Middle East turbulence, damaging US interests and causing another setback to the cause of peace. 

9. The next video will highlight the systematic blunders of the Department of State, Foggy Bottom.

 

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel initiative”
YouTube 6-minute-video on-line seminar on US-Israel and the Mideast

Video#35 https://bit.ly/2LJXyO9; Entire mini-seminar: http://bit.ly/1ze66dS

1. US and/or international guarantees – including peacekeeping forces on Israel’s borders with Arab entities – have been proposed as a means to convince Israel to retreat from the historically and militarily critical and irreplaceable mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria, contending that Israel’s national security would be guaranteed by US and/or international guarantees and forces on its border in the most violently intolerant and unpredictable region in the world.

2. While Israel’s retreat is Israeli-controlled, precise, certain and irreversible, the political and military viability of these guarantees and their potential benefits are top-heavy on escape routes, uncontrolled by Israel, imprecise, uncertain, open to various interpretations, doubtful, reversible and subject to multitude of changing circumstances, which are sometimes uncontrollable by the guarantor.

3. Notre Dame University Prof. of international relations, Alan Dowty, conducted a thorough study of “the role of great power guarantees in international peace agreements,”  concluding that: “The effectiveness of a guarantee depends upon the willingness of the guarantor to react to a  threat, and upon his ability to react with sufficient force…. [For instance,] fear of disrupting American relations with Arab states was a factor in the 1967 US decision not to force open the Red Sea Straits of Tiran to Israeli ships [contrary to the US commitment in 1957, in return for a full Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula]…. The effectiveness of a commitment depends on the underlying interests and capabilities of the guarantor, [not the guaranteed!]….”

4. According to Prof. Dowty, “Great Powers’ guarantees are generally effective only when their own dominant or strategic position is involved.  In general, the credibility of their promises and commitments is continuously vitiated by inadequate power, lack of means or sustained interest, multiple and conflicting interests, changes in relative might, changes in international alignments, rapprochement between former rivals, the breakup of guaranteeing coalitions, or by changes of government in the guaranteeing state.  No international guarantee is more stable than the international and internal combinations that produced it…. Guarantees are by no means universally reliable even after they have been promulgated by formal or informal means [guarantees, alliances, defense pacts and peace accords]….The frequency with which weak states reject offers of protection is striking and shows that guarantees are not unambiguous blessings….”

5.  Prof. Dowty concludes that “in the past, nations seeking to evade their commitments to support another state’s independence and territorial integrity have never failed to find the means of doing so. Either commitment had changed, or the commitment was reinterpreted, or the failure of others to act was cited as excuse, or prior commitments were invoked, or failure of the guaranteed state to heed the guarantor’s advice was held to release the latter from its commitment.  Or, the commitment was simply ignored. The question of who will guarantee the guarantor remains unresolved.”

6. US peacekeepers would be targeted by terrorists – such as Hezbollah, which murdered 300 Marines in 1983 in Beirut – who are proxies of anti-US rogue regimes – such as Iran – intimidating Washington, constraining the US capability to respond to provocations elsewhere (e.g., the Persian Gulf), and extort political concessions by targeting US servicemen, while preserving the element of deniability. 

7. Against the backdrop of the US public reaction to US military involvement in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and Lebanon, another peacekeeping undertaking would not be politically/militarily sustainable, leading to a prompt withdrawal in response to casualties and/or hostage-taking.  
8. A US peacekeeping force on Israel’s borders would, inadvertently, shield terrorists by constraining Israel’s capabilities to preempt – and react to – Arab terrorism and aggression. It would also deny the US the benefits of Israel’s military operations, which are not coordinated with the US, such as the bombing of Iraq’s nuclear reactor in 1981, which spared the US a nuclear confrontation in 1991. 

9. The stationing of US peacekeepers on Israel’s borders would demolish Israel’s posture of deterrence and US public and congressional support of Israel, which would be transformed from a country defending itself and a strategic asset, extending the strategic hand of the US, to an American dependent and liability, relying on US soldiers. Most Americans support military aid to Israel, but not sending troops to protect Israel.  

10. A tenuous US military force on Israel’s borders – in exchange for Israel’s withdrawal from the dominant mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria – would have a short life expectancy, undermining US-Israel relations, further eroding US reliability and posture of deterrence, dramatically limiting Israel’s power-projection, which would exacerbate regional instability and injure US interests, causing another setback to the cause of peace. 

11. US-Israel defense cooperation should be driven by the enhancement of the mutually-beneficial, win-win, two-way-street ties, not by the re-introduction of one-way-street relations, which would burden the US and increasing the dependency of Israel upon the US.

12. The next video will highlight the constitutional constraints on US security guarantees.

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SCHEDULE LECTURES & INTERVIEWS

Demography

Demographic optimism IN, demographic pessimism OUT

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
October 2, 2023

The suggestion that Israel should retreat from the mountain ridges of Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) is based, partly, on the assumption that the Jewish majority is exposed to an “Arab demographic time bomb,” which would explode if Israel were to apply its law to Judea and Samaria.

However, Israel’s Jewish majority is not vulnerable to an “Arab demographic time bomb,” but benefits from demographic momentum, fertility-wise and migration-wise.

Arab demography artificially inflated

This erroneous assumption is based on the official Palestinian numbers, which are embraced and reverberated by the global community – with no due-diligence auditing – ignoring a 1.6-million-person artificial inflation of the reported number of Arabs in Judea and Samaria.

For instance:

*The official Palestinian census includes 500,000 residents, who have been away for over a year, while international standards require their elimination from the census (until they return for, at least, 90 days).  This number was documented by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (325,000 in 1997), Election Commission (400,000 in 2005) and the Ministry of Interior, increasing systematically through births.

*The Palestinian census ignores the net-emigration of 390,000 since the first 1997 census, as documented by Israel’s Population and Immigration Authority, which supervises Israel’s international passages.

*375,000 Jerusalem Arabs and more than 150,000 (mostly) Judea and Samaria Arabs, who married Israeli Arabs are doubly-counted (by Israel and the Palestinian Authority). This number increases systematically through births.

*A September 2006 World Bank report documented a 32% artificial inflation of the number of births.  At the same time, death has been substantially underreported as evidenced by the 2007 Palestinian census, which included Arabs born in 1845….   

*The aforementioned data indicates an artificial inflation of 1.6 million in the Palestinian census of Judea and Samria Arabs: 1.4 million – not 3 million – Arabs.

Arab demography Westernized

Contrary to Western conventional wisdom, Arab demography has been westernized dramatically in recent years, from a fertility rate of 9 births per woman west of the Jordan River during the 1960s to 2.85 births in 2021 in pre-1967 Israel and 3.02 in Judea and Samaria.

The westernization of Arab demography has been a result of sweeping urbanization. From a 70%-rural-population in Judea and Samaria in 1967, to a 77%-urban-population in 2022.  In addition, almost all girls complete high school, resulting in the expanded integration of women in employment and academia, as well as an increase in wedding age (from 15 to 24-year-old).  Moreover, there has been an expansion of the use of contraceptives (70% of women in the Palestinian Authority) and a shorter fertility cycle (25 through 45 in 2022 compared to 16 through 55 during the 1960s).

Demographic westernization has occurred in the entire Moslem World, other than the Sub-Saharah countries: In 2022, Jordan – 2.9 births per woman, Iran – 1.9, Saudi Arabia – 1.9, Morocco – 2.27, Iraq – 3.17, Egypt 2.76, Yemen – 2.91, the UAE – 1.62, etc.

Jewish demographic momentum

Israel’s Jewish demography features a fertility momentum – especially in the secular sector – simultaneously with a moderate decline in the ultra-orthodox sector. In fact, Jewish fertility (3.13 births per woman) is higher than any Arab country, other than Iraq’s (3.17). The OECD’s average fertility rate is 1.61 births per woman.

In 2022, the number of Jewish births (137,566) was 71% higher than in 1995 (80,400), while the number of Arab births (43,417) was 19% higher than in 1995 (36,500).

Contrary to most global societies, Israel enjoys a positive correlation between the level of fertility, on the one hand, and the level of education, income, urbanization and (the rise of) wedding age on the other hand.

The growth of Jewish fertility reflects a high level of patriotism, optimism, attachment to roots, communal responsibility, frontier mentality, high regard for raising children and the decline in the number of abortions.

The Jewish population is growing younger, while the Arab population is growing older.

Until the 1990s, there was a demographic race between Arab births and Jewish immigration.  Since the 1990s, the race is between Jewish and Arab births, while net-migration provides a robust boost to Jewish demography.

The Jewish demographic momentum has been bolstered by an annual Aliyah (Jewish immigration) – which has been the most critical engine of Israel’s economic, educational, technological and military growth – simultaneously with the declining scope of annual emigration.  From an additional 14,200 emigrants in 1990 to 10,800 in 2020, while the overall population has doubled itself since 1990. A substantial decline in emigration has taken place since the 2007/2008 global economic meltdown, which has underscored the relative stability and growth of Israel’s economy.

In 2023, there has been an increase in Aliyah. This highlights a potential of 500,000 Olim (Jewish immigrants) in five years – from Europe, the former USSR, Latin and North America – should the Israeli government resurrect the pro-active Aliyah policy, which defined Israel from 1948-1992.

The bottom line

In 1897, upon convening the First Zionist Congress, there was a 9% Jewish minority in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-1967 Israel.

In 1948, upon the establishment of the Jewish State, there was a 39% Jewish minority in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-1967 Israel.

In 2022, there was a 69% Jewish majority in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-1967 Israel (7.5 million Jews, 2 million Arabs in pre-1967 Israel and 1.4 million Arabs in Judea and Samaria), benefiting from a tailwind of fertility and net-migration.

Those who claim that the Jewish majority – in the combined area of Judea, Samaria and pre-1967 Israel – is threatened by an Arab demographic time bomb are either dramatically mistaken, or outrageously misleading.

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Iran

Diplomatic option toward Iran is self-destructive

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
December 19, 2023

*The US State Department’s diplomatic option has facilitated the transformation of Iran from “the American policeman of the Gulf” to “the largest anti-American venomous octopus in the world,” stretching its rogue arms from the Persian Gulf through Africa to Latin America and the US-Mexico border, which it perceives as the soft underbelly of the US.

*The diplomatic option – including a frail US response to sustained Iranian attacks on US installations in the Persian Gulf region – has aggravated Middle East instability, threatening the survival of every pro-US Arab regime, and is inducing anti-US global Islamic terrorism.  This is severely eroding US posture of deterrence, benefitting Russia, China and mostly Iran, while undermining US national and homeland security. 

*The diplomatic option has suspended most economic sanctions – without Congressional consent – surging Iran’s oil export from 500,000 barrels per day to 2-3 million barrels per day, increasing Iran’s national income by some $100bn, mostly dedicated to bolster Iran’s anti-US rogue operations, increasingly in Latin America, the US’ backyard.

*The diplomatic option has consistently overlooked the decisive power of the Ayatollahs’ imperialistic ideology, and its determination to export the anti-US Islamic Shiite Revolution. Consequently, the State Department has deluded itself into believing that an astounding financial and diplomatic bonanza would induce Iran’s Ayatollahs to accept peaceful coexistence with their pro-US Arab Sunni neighbors, become good-faith negotiators, and abandon their 1,400-year-old religious, fanatic vision, which is enshrined in their Constitution, K-12 school curriculum, Friday mosque sermons and official media.

*However, as expected, the mega-billion-dollar bonanza yielded by the diplomatic option (e.g., the 2015 JCPOA and the current suspension of economic sanctions) has bolstered its global terroristic network, advancing its vision to topple all pro-US Sunni regimes, and bring the “infidel” West to submission, especially the “The Great American Satan,” while egregiously oppressing and suppressing Iranian women and religious and ethnic minorities.  

*The State Department’s diplomatic option was initiated in 1978/1979, stabbing in the back the pro-US Shah of Iran, and contending that Ayatollah Khomeini was anti-Communist and therefore potentially pro-Western and a stabilizing element geopolitically, “…holding a Gandhi-like positionpreoccupied with tractors, not tanks….”

*Has the diplomatic option dumped the Monroe Doctrine?! In 2023, Iran’s Ayatollahs invest mega billions of dollars in fueling civil wars, terrorism, drug trafficking and money laundering throughout the Middle East, Africa and especially in Latin America. There, they collaborate – along with Hezbollah terrorists – with the drug cartels of Mexico, Columbia, Bolivia, Ecuador and Brazil, and train terror organizations. They cooperate with all anti-US governments (especially Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Bolivia), testing ballistic missiles, and supplying predator drones, attack boats, anti-ship missiles, and equipment for the construction of underground tunnels along the US-Mexico border, which smuggle drugs and illegal Middle East terrorists into the US.

*The bottom line is: Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice shame on me!  After 44 years of being fooled by the Ayatollahs, critically undermining the strategic posture of the US and its allies, it is time to reassess the diplomatic option, and consider other options, such as regime-change and a credible military threat hovering above the head of the Ayatollahs.  

Support Appreciated

Judea & Samaria

Israel-Saudi accord and Israel’s control of Judea & Samaria (video)

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
September 15, 2023, https://www.israelnationalnews.com/news/377022

*The platform of an Israel-Saudi accord is the volcanic, violent and unpredictably tenuous Middle East, not Western Europe or No. America;

*Saudi Arabia is driven by Saudi – not Palestinian – interests;

*Unlike the State Department, Saudi Arabia accords much weight to the rogue Palestinian track record in the intra-Arab arena, and therefore limits its support of the proposed Palestinian state to (mostly) talk, not to walk; *An accord with Saudi Arabia – in the shifty, tenuous Middle East – is not a major component of Israel’s national security. On the other hand, Israel’s control of the mountain ridges of Judea & Samaria is a prerequisite for Israel’s survival in the inherently turbulent, intolerantly violent Middle East, which features tenuous regimes, and therefore tenuous policies and accords.

Jerusalem

United Jerusalem – a shared US-Israel legacy and interest

US departure from the recognition of a United Jerusalem as the exclusive capital of the Jewish State, and the site of the US Embassy to Israel, would be consistent with the track record of the State Department, which has been systematically wrong on Middle East issues, such as its opposition to the establishment of the Jewish State; stabbing the back of the pro-US Shah of Iran and Mubarak of Egypt, and pressuring the pro-US Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, while courting the anti-US Ayatollahs of Iran, Saddam Hussein, Arafat, the Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas, the Palestinian Authority and the Houthis of Yemen; transforming Libya into a platform of global Islamic terrorism and civil wars; etc..

However, such departure would violate US law, defy a 3,000 year old reality – documented by a litany of archeological sites and a multitude of documents from Biblical time until today – spurn US history and geography, and undermine US national and homeland security.

United Jerusalem and the US law

Establishing a US Consulate General in Jerusalem – which would be a de facto US Embassy to the Palestinian Authority – would violate the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which became US law on November 8, 1995 with substantially more than a veto-override majority on Capitol Hill.

According to the Jerusalem Embassy Act, which enjoys massive support among the US population and, therefore, in both chambers of Congress:

“Jerusalem should remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected….

“Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the state of Israel; and the United States Embassy in Israel should be established in Jerusalem….

“In 1990, Congress unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 106, which declares that Congress ‘strongly believes that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected….’

“In 1992, the United States Senate and House of Representatives unanimously adopted Senate Concurrent Resolution 113… to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem, and reaffirming Congressional sentiment that Jerusalem must remain an undivided city….

“In 1996, the state of Israel will celebrate the 3,000th anniversary of the Jewish presence in Jerusalem since King David’s entry….

“The term ‘United States Embassy’ means the offices of the United States diplomatic mission and the residence of the United States chief of mission.”

United Jerusalem and the legacy of the Founding Fathers

The US Early Pilgrims and Founding Fathers were inspired – in their unification of the 13 colonies – by King David’s unification of the 12 Jewish tribes into a united political entity, and establishing Jerusalem as the capital city, which did not belong to any of the tribes (hence, Washington, DC does not belong to any state). King David entered Jerusalem 3,000 years before modern day US presidents entered the White House and 2,755 years before the US gained its independence.

The impact of Jerusalem on the US founders of the Federalist Papers, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Federalist system and overall civic life is reflected by the existence, in the US, of 18 Jerusalems (4 in Maryland; 2 in Vermont, Georgia and New York; and 1 in Ohio, Michigan, Arkansas, North Carolina, Alabama, Utah, Rhode Island and Tennessee), 32 Salems (the original Biblical name of Jerusalem) and many Zions (a Biblical synonym for Jerusalem and the Land of Israel).  Moreover, in the US there are thousands of cities, towns, mountains, cliffs, deserts, national parks and streets bearing Biblical names.

The Jerusalem reality and US interests

Recognizing the Jerusalem reality and adherence to the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act – and the subsequent recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, the site of the US Embassy to Israel – bolstered the US posture of deterrence in defiance of Arab/Islamic pressure and threats.

Contrary to the doomsday assessments by the State Department and the “elite” US media – which have been wrong on most Middle East issues – the May 2018 implementation of the 1995 law did not intensify Palestinian, Arab and Islamic terrorism. State Department “wise men” were equally wrong when they warned that Israel’s 1967 reunification of Jerusalem would ignite a worldwide anti-Israel and anti-US Islamic volcanic eruption.

Adherence to the 1995 law distinguishes the US President, Congress and most Americans from the state of mind of rogue regimes and terror organizations, the anti-US UN, the vacillating Europe, and the cosmopolitan worldview of the State Department, which has systematically played-down the US’ unilateral, independent and (sometimes) defiant national security action.

On the other hand, US procrastination on the implementation of the 1995 law – by Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama – eroded the US posture of deterrence, since it was rightly perceived by the world as appeasement in the face of pressure and threats from Arab/Muslim regimes and terrorists.  As expected, it radicalized Arab expectations and demands, failed to advance the cause of Israel-Arab peace, fueled Islamic terrorism, and severely undermined US national and homeland security. For example, blowing up the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and murdering 224 persons in August 1998; blowing up the USS Cole destroyer in the port of Aden and murdering 17 US sailors in October 2000; the 9/11 Twin Towers massacre, etc.

Jerusalem and Israel’s defiance of US pressure

In 1949, President Truman followed Secretary of State Marshall’s policy, pressuring Israel to refrain from annexing West Jerusalem and to accept the internationalization of the ancient capital of the Jewish people.

in 1950, in defiance of brutal US and global pressure to internationalize Jerusalem, Prime Minister David Ben Gurion reacted constructively by proclaiming Jerusalem the capital of the Jewish State, relocating government agencies from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and settling tens of thousands of Olim (Jewish immigrants to Israel) in Jerusalem. He upgraded the transportation infrastructure to Jerusalem, erected new Jewish neighborhoods along the 1949 cease fire lines in Jerusalem, and provided the city land reserves for long-term growth.

In 1953, Ben Gurion rebuffed President Eisenhower’s pressure – inspired by Secretary of State Dulles – to refrain from relocating Israel’s Foreign Ministry from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

In 1967, President Johnson followed the advice of Secretary of State Rusk – who opposed Israel’s 1948 Declaration of Independence – highlighting the international status of Jerusalem, and warned Israel against the reunification of Jerusalem and construction in its eastern section. Prime Minister Levi Eshkol adopted Ben Gurion’s statesmanship, fended off the US pressure, reunited Jerusalem, built the first Jerusalem neighborhood beyond the 1949 ceasefire lines, Ramat Eshkol, in addition to the first wave of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria (West Bank), the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights.

In 1970, President Nixon collaborated with Secretary of State Rogers, attempting to repartition Jerusalem, pressuring Israel to relinquish control of Jerusalem’s Holy Basin, and to stop Israel’s plans to construct additional neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem.  However, Prime Minister Golda Meir refused to rescind the reunification of Jerusalem, and proceeded to lay the foundation for additional Jerusalem neighborhoods beyond the 1949 ceasefire lines: Gilo, Ramot Alon, French Hill and Neve’ Yaakov, currently home to 150,000 people.

In 1977-1992, Prime Ministers Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir defied US and global pressure, expanding construction in Jerusalem, sending a clear message: “Jerusalem is the exclusive and non-negotiable capital of Israel!”

“[In 1978], at the very end of [Prime Minister Begin’s] successful Camp David talks with President Jimmy Carter and President Anwar Sadat, literally minutes before the signing ceremony, the American president had approached [Begin] with ‘Just one final formal item.’ Sadat, said the president, was asking that Begin put his signature to a simple letter committing him to place Jerusalem on the negotiating table of the final peace accord.  ‘I refused to accept the letter, let alone sign it,’ rumbled Begin. ‘If I forgot thee O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget its cunning,’ said [Begin] to the president of the United States of America, ‘and may my tongue cleave to my mouth’ (The Prime Ministers – An Intimate Portrait of Leaders of Israel, 2010)”

In 2021, Prime Minister Bennett should follow in the footsteps of Israel’s Founding Father, Ben Gurion, who stated: “Jerusalem is equal to the whole of the Land of Israel. Jerusalem is not just a central Jewish settlement. Jerusalem is an invaluable global historical symbol. The Jewish People and the entire world shall judge us in accordance with our steadfastness on Jerusalem (“We and Our Neighbors,” p. 175. 1929).”

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Jewish Holidays

Chanukah guide for the perplexed, 2023

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
November 29, 2023

More on Jewish holidays: SmashwordsAmazon

1. According to Israel’s Founding Father, David Ben Gurion: Chanukah commemorates “the struggle of the Maccabees, which was one of the most dramatic clashes of civilizations in human history, not merely a political-military struggle against foreign oppression…. Unlike many peoples, the meager Jewish people did not assimilate.  The Jewish people prevailed, won, sustained and enhanced their independence and unique civilization…. It was the spirit of the people, rather than the failed spirit of the establishment, which enabled the Hasmoneans to overcome one of the most magnificent spiritual, political and military challenges in Jewish history….” (Uniqueness and Destiny, pp 20-22, David Ben Gurion, IDF Publishing, 1953).

2. A Jewish national liberation holiday.  Chanukah (evening of December 7 – December 15, 2023) is the only Jewish holiday that commemorates an ancient national liberation struggle in the Land of Israel, unlike the national liberation holidays, Passover, Sukkot/Tabernacles and Shavu’ot/Pentecost, which commemorate the liberation from slavery in Egypt to independence in the land of Israel, and unlike Purim, which commemorates liberation from a Persian attempt to annihilate the Jewish people.

3. Chanukah and the Land of Israel.  When ordered by Emperor Antiochus IV Epiphanes of the Seleucid region to end the Jewish “occupation” of Jerusalem, Jaffa, Gaza, Gezer and Akron, Shimon the Maccabee responded: “We have not occupied a foreign land…. We have liberated the land of our forefathers from foreign occupation (Book of Maccabees A: 15:33).”

Chanukah highlights the centrality of the Land of Israel in the formation of Jewish history, religion, culture and language. The mountain ridges of Judea and Southern Samaria (the West Bank) were the platform for the Maccabean military battles: Mitzpah (the burial site of the Prophet Samuel, overlooking Jerusalem), Beth El (the site of the Ark of the Covenant and Judah the Maccabee’s initial headquarters), Beth Horon (Judah’s victory over Seron), Hadashah (Judah’s victory over Nicanor), Beth Zur (Judah’s victory over Lysias), Ma’aleh Levona (Judah’s victory over Apolonius), Adora’yim (a Maccabean fortress), Eleazar (named after Mattityahu’s youngest Maccabee son), Beit Zachariya (Judah’s first defeat), Ba’al Hatzor (where Judah was defeated and killed), Te’qoah, Mikhmash and Gophnah (bases of Shimon and Yonatan), the Judean Desert, etc.

4. Historical context  Chanukah is narrated in the four Books of the MaccabeesThe Scroll of Antiochus and The Wars of the Jews.

In 323 BCE, following the death of Alexander the Great (Alexander III) who held Judaism in high esteem, the Greek Empire was split into three independent and rival mini-empires: Greece, Seleucid/Syria and Ptolemaic/Egypt.

In 175 BCE, the Seleucid/Syrian Emperor Antiochus (IV) Epiphanes claimed the Land of Israel. He suspected that the Jews were allies of his Ptolemaic/Egyptian enemy.  The Seleucid emperor was known for eccentric behavior, hence his name, Epiphanes, which means “divine manifestation.”  He aimed to exterminate Judaism and convert Jews to Hellenism. In 169 BCE, he devastated Jerusalem, attempting to decimate the Jewish population, and outlaw the practice of Judaism.

In 166/7 BCE, a Jewish rebellion was led by the non-establishment Hasmonean (Maccabee) family from the rural town of Modi’in, half-way between Jerusalem and the Mediterranean.  The rebellion was headed by Mattityahu, the priest, and his five sons, Yochanan, Judah, Shimon, Yonatan and Eleazar, who fought the Seleucid occupier and restored Jewish independence.  The Hasmonean dynasty was replete with external and internal wars and lasted until 37 BCE, when Herod the Great (a proxy of Rome) defeated Antigonus II Mattathias.

5. The reputation of Jews as superb warriors was reaffirmed by the success of the Maccabees on the battlefield. In fact, they were frequently hired as mercenaries by Egypt, Syria, Carthage, Rome and other global and regional powers.

6. The significance of Chanukah. Chanukah celebrates the Maccabean-led national liberation by conducting in-house family education and lighting candles for 8 days in commemoration of the re-inauguration of Jerusalem’s Jewish Temple and its Menorah (candelabra).

The Hebrew words Chanukah (חנוכה), inauguration (חנוכ) and education ((חנוך possess the same root.

7. As was prophesized by the Prophet Hagai in 520 BCE, the re-inauguration of the Temple took place on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev, which is the month of miracles, such as the post-flood appearance of Noah’s rainbow, the completion of the construction of the Holy Ark by Moses, the laying of the foundations of the Second Temple by Nehemiah, etc.

In 1777, Chanukah candles were lit during the most critical battle at Valley Forge, which solidified the victory of George Washington’s Continental Army over the British monarchy.

The 25th Hebrew word in Genesis is “light,” and the 25th stop during the Exodus was Hashmona (the same Hebrew spelling as Hasmonean-Maccabees).

The first day of Chanukah is celebrated when daylight hours are equal to darkness hours – and when moonlight is hardly noticed – ushering in brighter days.

8. Chanukah highlights the defeat of darkness, disbelief, forgetfulness and pessimism by the spirit of light, faith, commemoration and optimism over.

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Golan

US interests and Israel’s control of Judea & Samaria (West Bank)

A new 8-minute-video: YouTube, Facebook

Synopsis:

*Israel’s control of the topographically-dominant mountain ridges of the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria has enhanced Israel’s posture of deterrence, constraining regional violence, transforming Israel into a unique force-multiplier for the US.

*Top Jordanian military officers warned that a Palestinian state west of the Jordan River would doom the pro-US Hashemite regime east of the River, transforming Jordan into a non-controllable terrorist heaven, generating an anti-US domino scenario in the Arabian Peninsula.

*Israel’s control of Judea and Samaria has eliminated much of the threat (to Jordan) of Judea and Samaria-based Palestinian terrorism.

*Israel’s posture of deterrence emboldens Jordan in the face of domestic and regional threats, sparing the US the need to deploy its own troops, in order to avoid an economic and national security setback.

*The proposed Palestinian state would become the Palestinian straw that would break the pro-US Hashemite back.

*The Palestinian track record of the last 100 years suggests that the proposed Palestinian state would be a rogue entity, adding fuel to the Middle East fire, undermining US interests.

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Islamic Terrorism

US and Israel facing the mutual threat of Islamic terrorism

Ambassador (ret.) Yoram Ettinger, “Second Thought: a US-Israel Initiative”
February 21, 2024

*FBI Director Christopher A. Wray visited Israel on February 14, 2024, during the Israel-Hamas and Israel-Hezbollah wars, meeting with leaders of the Mossad, Israel’s Secret Service, and Israel’s National Police in order to benefit from Israel’s unique urban and tunnel warfare experience and battle tactics in the war against Islamic terrorists, who are advancing the vision of Iran’s Ayatollahs and the Moslem Brotherhood.

*Director Wray considers Israel’s as the most effective battle-tested laboratory of the US armed forces, law enforcement agencies and defense industries.

*Director Wray is aware of the Ayatollahs’ and Hezbollas’ growing entrenchment in Mexico, along the US-Mexico border and throughout Latin America. In fact, since the early 1980s, Iran’s Ayatollahs and Hezbollah have entrenched themselves in Latin America, bolstering collaboration with the drug cartels of Mexico, Columbia, Bolivia, Ecuador and Brazil, all Latin American terror organizations, and each anti-US Latin American government. They supply the drug cartels underground tunnel construction equipment, and train them in the areas of car bombs and Improvised Explosive Devices. In addition, they have leveraged the convoys of illegal aliens from Guatemala to the US-Mexico border, smuggling terrorists and drug traffickers into the US.

*Islamic terrorism has targeted the US since the early 19th century irrespective of US policy and independent of the identity of the US President.  Thus, Islamic terrorism afflicted the US during the presidencies of both Trump and Obama, G.W. Bush and Clinton, Reagan and Carter.

*Hamas is a branch of the Moslem Brotherhood – the largest Sunni terror organization with religious, educational and welfare branches – whose charter aims to topple all national Islamic regimes, establish a universal Islamic society, bring the Western “infidel” – and especially the USA – to submission, and establish Islam as the only legitimate and divinely-ordained religion.

*Hamas and Hezbollah are proxies of Iran’s Ayatollahs, whose Constitution highlights a megalomaniacal vision, which stipulates the toppling of all “apostate” (Sunni) regimes, asserting itself globally – beyond the Persian Gulf, the Middle East, Europe and Africa, all the way to Latin America – and bringing the “infidel” West, and especially “The Great American Satan” to submission.

*Since February 1979, when it toppled the Shah of Iran, the Ayatollahs’ regime has transformed Iran from “The American Policeman of the Gulf” to the leading anti-US epicenter of global terrorism, drug trafficking, money laundering and the proliferation of advanced military systems.

*Israel’s war against Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism has bolstered the US’ defense against Islamic terrorism.

*On November 15, 2023, Director Christopher Wray testified at the House Committee on Homeland Security:

“The war in the Middle East has raised the threat of an attack against Americans in the US to a whole other level…. Since October 7th, we’ve seen a rogue gallery of foreign terrorist organizations call for attacks against Americans and our allies. Hezbollah threatened to attack US interests in the Middle East. Al-Qaida issued specific calls to attack the US. Al-Qaida called on jihadists to attack Americans and Jewish people everywhere. ISIS urged its followers to target Jewish communities in the US and Europe.

“Our most immediate concern is that individuals or small groups will draw twisted inspiration from the events in the Middle East to carry out attacks here at home. That includes homegrown violent extremists inspired by a foreign terrorist organization and domestic violent extremists…. We cannot discount the possibility that Hamas or another foreign terrorist organization may exploit the current conflict to conduct attacks on our own soil…. But it’s not just Hamas. As the world’s largest state sponsor of terrorism, Iran has directly, or by hiring criminals, mounted assassination attempts against dissidents and high-ranking current and former U.S. officials, including right here on American soil. Hezbollah, Iran’s primary strategic partner, has a history of raising money and seeking to obtain weapons here in the US…. Hezbollah has tried to seed operatives, establish infrastructure, and engage in spying here domestically, raising our concern that there may be contingency planning for future operations in the United States….”

*The bottom line is that FBI Director, Christopher Wray, is driven by Middle East reality, not by alternative, less frustrating, but self-destructive reality. Therefore, he does not subscribe to the diplomatic option in the battle against Islamic terrorism, and does not propose to negotiate with – and make financial and diplomatic concessions to – terrorists. He does not expect Iran to accept peaceful coexistence with its pro-US Sunni Arab regimes, conduct good faith negotiation, or abandon its 1,400-year-old fanatic vision. Director Wray attempts to defeat Iran-controlled Islamic terrorists. He does not expect Israel to slow down its war on Hamas, which is a proxy of Iran. Just like Saudi Arabia and all other pro-US Arab countries, Director Wray is aware that the obliteration of Hamas, militarily, politically and educationally, will bolster the posture of deterrence of both Israel and the USA, reducing terror assaults on pro-US Arab countries (e.g., Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan and Morocco) and in the US mainland.

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