Friday, August 08, 2014

Comment sent to NYT Letters on Israeli-Hamas fighting in Gaza, Summer 2014

This is a letter sent in the first week of August 2014 to the NYTimes, with copies also sent around to my siblings.   Not, of course, a chance in hell of the NYT publishing it, so let's put it here for some kind of obscure record:

To The Editor:

Concerning "U.S. Diplomacy on Gaza Has Little Sway on Israel"  August 5), the American public needs to hear much more about last Friday's U.S. resupply of materiel to Israel during the Gaza action. 

Israel is commonly called an ally of our country, and it is clear that this is functionally the case.  Nonetheless, what exactly is the treaty of alliance between our two countries?  What obligations has the United States accepted, and in what contingencies?  Does the treaty, or do other agreement(s), cover situations created by Israeli actions not approved by the U.S.? 

Israel's Ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, implies that the lethal actions in Gaza were necessary for Israel's survival.   This is dramatic, but not true. Since the King Abdullah two-state proposals of 2002, the Arab world has accepted Israel's right to exist.  Instead, Israel has been fighting in Gaza, with weapons from us, in defense of two important current Likud/Netanyahu positions.   These are the continued settlement-building in the West Bank, and the refusal to talk with the Palestinians after the recent rapprochement between Hamas and Fatah.

The United States supports neither of these Israeli policies, yet we are constrained to go along with both. Are we Israel's ally, or Israel's hostage?  

Peter Lydon 
1584 Le Roy Avenue
Berkeley, California 94708

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