Another Broken Promise Made to Jews -- Part IV
עשרה קבין של יופי ירדו לעולם תשעה נטלה ירושלים ואחד כל העולם כולו
Ten measures of beauty came down [from Heaven] into the world.
Jerusalem took nine and all the rest of the world took one.
Talmud Qiddushin 49:2
If ten measures of hypocrisy came down into the world, Europe
took nine and all the rest of the world took one.
Ariel Kahana, Maqor Rishon, 7 December 2012
אל תתיראי מן הפרושין ולא ממי שאינן פרושין, אלא מן הצבועין
[An ancient Jewish king on his deathbed said to his wife:]
Don't fear the Pharisees nor fear those who are not Pharisees.
The ones to fear are the hypocrites.
Talmud Sotah 22:2
When fascism comes to America, it will be called anti-fascism
attributed to Huey Long
The vote in the UN General Assembly to make the Palestinian Authority into a state, without negotiating with Israel, is the latest in a series of betrayals of promises and international legal commitments made to the Jewish people over the last century.
The Europeans, the EU, "were accomplices in a flagrant violation of the Oslo Process by supporting recognition of a Palestinian state at the UN" -- Daniel Haik, Hamodia [French ed., 12-12-2012]
But there is a whole record of broken promises to the Jews. Breaking promises to Jews, to Israel, is Standard Operating Procedure for Britain, for France, for the EU, for the USA, for the USSR and now for Russia. Just as the newly elected President Obama disavowed the 2004 Bush letter to PM Sharon, so too in June 1967, President Johnson feigned ignorance of or disavowed a commitment made by President Eisenhower to Israel in 1956-1957, in order to persuade Israel to withdraw from the Sinai Peninsula which Israel had taken in the short Operation Kadesh [October 1956] meant on Israel's part to be a preemptive war against Nasser's Egypt as Nasser and his propaganda outlets made constant blood-curdling threats to destroy Israel and such like. To be sure, Israel had attacked in coordination with France and Britain [especially France], but each of the three powers had its own reasons for attacking Egypt.
Israel had taken all or nearly all of Sinai and was in a strong position to demand a peace treaty from Egypt in return for withdrawal. Israel also wanted passage through the Suez Canal and the Straits of Tiran into the Gulf of Eilat [also Gulf of Aqaba] to Israel's southernmost port and city, Eilat. The UN secretary general, Dag Hammarskjold, in full peace-loathing mode, thought it unfair to allow Israel to have peace with Egypt as a result of the war, while the US Eisenhower administration, its foreign policy led by John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles, agreed that Israel should have access to its port of Eilat but no more, as a result of the war and of Israeli withdrawal. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles issued an aide-memoire to the effect that the US viewed the Straits of Tiran as an international waterway that should be kept open [not promising to do so itself], while Eisenhower went farther and stated
We should not assume that, if Israel withdraws, Egypt will prevent Israel shipping from using the Suez Canal or the Gulf of Aqaba. If, unhappily, Egypt does hereafter violate the Armistice Agreement or other international obligations, then this should be dealt with firmly by the society of nations [February 20, 1957; Theodore Draper, Israel & World Politics: Roots of the Third Arab-Israeli War (New York: Viking 1968), p 20, pp 137-139; also see Lester Velie, Countdown in the Holy Land (New York: Funk & Wagnalls 1969), p 5].Here President Eisenhower was hinting at the use of international military force against a future Egyptian blockade of Israeli shipping in those two international bodies of water. Egypt never did open up the Suez Canal to Israeli shipping, as required by international law, before the Six Day War of 1967. But Israel was able to sail ships through the Straits of Tiran to the port of Eilat between 1957 and 1967.
Then on 22 May 1967, Nasser declared a blockade of the Straits of Tiran, virtually cutting Israel off from seaborne trade with Asia. This was a clear casus belli, a reason to go to war. But when President Johnson and the State Department were reminded of the 1957 aide-memoire and of Eisenhower's statement, they suddenly developed a short memory. And refused to organize any international effort to break the illegal Egyptian blockade. The documents from 1957 were hard to find among State Dept records and archives.
In like manner, when Obama came into the White House, he conveniently forgot about his predecessor George Bush's letter to Sharon of 14 April 2004. The Bush said that the major settlement blocs in Judea-Samaria should be taken into consideration under any peace agreement in the future. On these grounds, Sharon withdrew all Israeli residents and troops from the Gaza Strip. So Obama broke the promise on the grounds of which Sharon had withdrawn from that zone. That withdrawal was a moral error on Sharon's part and a strategic error as well, but the letter was supposed to bind not only Bush but his successors as president. As long as Obama does not accept the Bush letter, he is treating Israel dishonestly and unfairly --and is a hostile factor.
But before we consider Obama and his policies in detail, we need to cover another betrayal of promises to Israel made by the Nixon administration. After Nasser's Egypt had rearmed after the Six Day War, Nasser began what was called a "war of attrition". With new Soviet-supplied artillery, Nasser pounded Israeli positions east of the Suez Canal in hopes to force an Israeli withdrawal without a peace treaty between the two countries. Israel retaliated with deep penetration raids into Egypt and with daring commando raids. Israel was actually getting the best of this War of Attrition which was shaping up as "an unmitigated military defeat" for Egypt. However, as the USSR supplied Egypt with more and more Soviet-operated anti-aircraft missile batteries, Israeli airpower became less effective and Israel was losing planes. Yet, Nixon and his administration refused to resupply Israel with fighter aircraft and France, Israel's main supplier of the jet fighters used in the Six Day War, refused to sell Israel any major weapons, even refusing to honor contracts that Israel had already paid for.
As Joseph Churba, a top US Air Force intelligence expert, wrote
The United State political initiative, dating from June 1970, now seemed the only option available to Israel. It asked Israelto test Moscow and Cairo's intentions through indirect "peace" talks as called for in Security Council Res. 242 --the Jarring Mission--
and to risk a limited cease fire despite the prospect of its being exploitedby Egypt and the USSR in order enhance Egyptian offensive and defensive capability along the Suez Canal. The political concession required from Israel was that this so-called "Rogers cease fire" [after US secretary of State, William Rogers] was a retreat from SC res 242
of 1967 [which] had called for an unlimited and unconditional cease fire. Nor could Israel overlook the indirect talks which had failed before, refusal of the Arabs to meet face to face with Israel as part of their non-recognition policy [See "The three noes of Khartoum." Most Arab states & the PLO/PA still refuse to recognize Israel] and the Soviet-Egyptian reference to a "political solution," not a genuine peace settlement.Yet
Nevertheless, because of the intense pressures [of the US on Israel], the most telling of which was the tacit American threat to cut off the supply of Phantom jets, Israel agreed in August 1970 to accept the American initiative [the "Rogers cease fire"]. Against its inclination, the Israeli government agreed to a series of unilateral concessions in an effort to get the talks started. Israel accepted the principle of indirect negotiation, agreed to a limited cease fire. . . . and agreed not to make an issue out of the Arab refusal to delegate their foreign ministers to the talks as United Nations mediator Gunnar Jarring had requested.
Israel entered the cease fire, only to find the Soviets and Egyptians immediately taking advantage of it in order to improve their missile defenses. A cardinal provision of the agreement read: 'Both sides will refrain from changing the military status quo within zones extending 50 kilometers (30 miles) to the east and the west of the cease fire line. Neither side will introduce or construct any new military installations in these zones.Activities within the zone will be limited to the maintenance of existing installations at their present sites and positions. . . ' Moscow had given Washington a 'categorical commitment' to abide by the restrictions.
On the night that the cease fire went into effect, the agreement was violated by the Egyptians and the Soviets, who advanced their missile bases toward the Suez Canal. The United States had initiated the cease fire, and Israel had agreed to it only after Washington had informed her that the Russians would abide by it.Isn't that cute? The US Defense Dept, which had at its disposal all sorts of spying and surveillance devices --such as the U2 & SR71 spy planes with their super cameras that could see just about everything on the ground (a U2 was brought down by the Soviets ten years earlier while on a spying flight over the USSR)-- could not tell whether or not the Soviets and their Egyptian Arab allies had violated the terms of the cease fire. Finally,
These and further violations were announced by Israel, but not confirmed by the United States. . . . Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird stated that it was 'very difficult to prove or disprove' the [Israeli] charges and that the United States government had no proof that promises had been broken. . . . the Soviets dismissed the Israeli allegations as 'fabrications' and in the process quoted Secretary Laird.
On 19 August Washington finally acknowledged a 'forward deployment' [of Soviet-Egyptian missile batteries] but repeated that evidence of a continuing buildup was 'not conclusive.' It was not until 1 September that the United States government confirmed the violations.By then it was too late for Israel to act to remove these anti-aircraft missile batteries --Soviet-operated at that time-- without suffering major losses of its own aircraft. The batteries were already set up and operational. Churba adds:
The dense missile system which Egypt, with Soviet connivance, had deployed in the standstill zone under the cease fire screen altered the military balance and produced a threat [to Israel] that did not exist prior to 7 August. [Churba quotes are from Joseph Churba, The Politics of Defeat, America's Decline in the Middle East (New York: Cyrco Press 1977), pp 60-63]The US govt urged Israel to do nothing to reverse this change in the balance. Anyway, any Israeli military effort to restore the previous balance would have been very costly. Churba speaks of "Soviet connivance." There was American connivance too. In fact, objectively speaking --if not subjectively and deliberately as well-- the White House, State Dept, Defense Dept and CIA were in connivance with the supposedly hated --at that time-- Soviet Union. Both superpowers were conniving with the Egyptians to give Egypt a military advantage with a view towards another war. This act of tripartite --Arab, Soviet and US-- treachery eased Egypt's path towards another war against Israel. This was because the anti-aircraft missiles newly placed in the forbidden zone neutralized potential Israel air force resistance to an Egyptian crossing of the Suez Canal. Thereby, the USSR & USA made possible the Yom Kippur War of October 6, 1973. These superpowers made another Arab attack possible [or thinkable on the Arabs' part]. This is how "peace moves" and peacemongers may promote war --maybe even by design.
How do we explain all this? Is this pattern of breaking promises and allegedly solemn commitments and undertakings not only dangerous to Jews and Israel but an expression of Judeophobia?
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See the other posts in the Broken Promises series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 .
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UPDATING 3-21-2013 In light of President Obama's call on Israeli young people to protest against the country's democratically elected leaders for the sake of "peace" with Arabs who indoctrinate their own population toward genocide, the post of above is even more relevant than when first posted.
Here is another book describing the treachery of the Rogers cease fire of 1970. I L Kenen, long-time observer of Israel-US relations and a leader of the America-Israel Public Affairs Committee, described the events in a chapter entitled "The Violent and Violated Truce" of his book
I L Kenen, Israel's Defense Line: Her Friends and Foes in Washington (Buffalo, NY: Prometheus 1981), pp 245-247.