Sunday, October 3, 2004

Why Jews Concerned About Israel Should Vote Kerry/Edwards

Ran across this great Op-Ed piece from by Dahlia Scheindlin via The Town Crier's recent posting at Jewschool:

Many American Jews and Israeli Americans seem impressed by George W. Bush’s putative support for Israel. As an Israeli, I implore responsible Jewish voters who care about Israel: Look at his record over his rhetoric, and you’ll see the dangers of his leadership for this country.

Luckily, John Kerry’s record offers hope for Israel.

I made aliyah from New York and have lived in Israel for nine years, through two intifadas and at least two Iraq scares, masks and all. But I have never been more frightened for Israel’s safety, than under George W. Bush. I have never despaired more of advancing peace, as during George W. Bush’s term.

It is difficult to recall a president who was less engaged in solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Whether we liked or disliked Bush Sr. and his secretary of state, James Baker’s disciplinarian approach, they were involved. Whether one agrees or disagrees with him, President Clinton was passionately committed.

During the worst four years in Israel’s history, George W. Bush has done a resounding nothing... With the second intifada, many here felt that only strong American involvement would help reach a negotiated end to the misery. To date, George W. Bush hasn’t even visited Israel. His policy is an irrelevant mess of contradictions that leaves Israel in despair...

John Kerry understands. He has supported Israel in every vote for 20 years; that’s way before the electoral campaign started. Kerry understood how to fight terrorism long before Bush was ignoring intelligence reports on imminent attacks in the United States.

While Bush Sr. was selling missiles to Saudi Arabia (how is that good for Israel?), Kerry was one of the first to write a Senate report investigating Saudi businesses for funding terrorist organizations. Bush Sr. met members of the Bin Laden family, and the figures incriminated in Kerry’s 1992 report helped fund George W.’s electoral campaign.

Kerry has a 12-year, highly analytic approach targeted at the sources of terrorism. Bush has a four-year record of being passive on intelligence, coddling Saudis, making the wrong connection between Iraq, weapons of mass destruction and 9/11, and talking tough while Iran and North Korea fester.

Despite his rhetoric, the administration has cut State Department counter-terrorism programs by an average of 20 percent every year since 9/11...

When the election dust settles, Bush will no longer need to buy Jewish votes — so there is no guarantee that actions he eventually does take would favor Israel. And after four years of Bush’s leadership, Israel is a more dangerous place, a more hated place and a more hopeless place.

How can we reject a candidate who understands, with unwavering support, what Israel needs?

[Read the full Article]


The background image on this page is a Hebrew translation of the verse from Bob Dylan's song  It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding), from which the title of this blog is taken. Translation courtesy of Yoram Aharon of Hod-HaSharon's page--found via YudelLine-- which has many Dylan lyrics in Hebrew.