The week that was and the weekend that isn't

No news is good news.  That was this week.  Busy, but with nothing particularly interesting on the home front.  The political arena was a three ring circus.  Obama and his cabinet continue to look like novices to the Israeli public.  The "insult" occurred when a planning commission announced a new building permit in Ramat Shlomo.  First, Ramat Shlomo is not in East Jerusalem, its in North Jerusalem.  Secondly, its not in or near an arab neighborhood.  Third, it is on land annexed by Israel in 1967 and on which no Israeli government has suggested a building freeze.

What I find most interesting is that not one of the opposition leaders in the Knesset has suggested that Israel should not build there.  Doing so would mean admitting to your constituents that you are willing to give up annexed, settled land.  This is so far from the accepted norm that it would be political suicide to support a freeze.

Eli Yishai and his ministry exposed the American and Israeli positions.  For Obama, annexed Jerusalem has no meaning and is the same as the rest of the West Bank.  For Israel, it is part of the capital.  There have never been any suggestions or offers of "giving back" Ramat Shlomo, Ramot, Gilo or Pisgat Zeev.

Some have speculated that Obama wants to meddle in Israeli politics to weaken Netanyahu.  I think he is doing the opposite right now.  In all the Middle East, attacking a reigning leader is equivalent to attacking the country and raises national unity and spirits.  Thanks Obama. Nice job.

Another theory is that Obama wants to distance the USA from Israel so that if and when Israel attacks Iran, he can convincingly argue that the USA has nothing to do with it.  This is another form of weakness.   Instead of sticking to his positions on Iran, Obama has backtracked time and again.  Iran believes correctly that the USA will not use force to stop its nuclear ambitions.  Sanctions are a joke as long as Russia and China need Iranian oil.  Good luck stopping an Iran with nuclear weapons.  Hundreds of thousands of soldiers and civilians will die once the fighting starts, because Obama did not maintain consistent positions and red-line.  Nice job dude.

Perhaps I'm wrong.  Obama is having one hell of a time passing a health-case bill that no-one understands.  If he fails, then his chances of reelection fall even further.  If he succeeds in passing the bill, then the proof will be in its implementation.   Let's see if it helps the hundreds of thousands of un-insured people in the USA.  They certainly need something.  Good luck to Obama and the un-insured.

Why am I ranting about politics instead of food!  Because I'm going away for Shabbat with three boys.  The rest are staying home to work at a bar-mitzva.  No cooking and no worries.  Of course, not much of a "normal" weekend.

Have a safe time and keep your head down when the fighting starts,
Elliot

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