And Now a Word from the War Manager

Posted on June 5, 2010

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From an NYT article today, examining  Washington’s argument that Israel’s provocative acts, like the attack on the Gaza aid flotilla, endanger “American security”:

Both President Obama and Gen. David H. Petraeus, who oversees America’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, have made the link in recent months between the long-running Arab-Israeli conflict and American security interests. During a press conference in April, Mr. Obama declared that conflicts like the one in the Middle East ended up “costing us significantly in terms of both blood and treasure”; he drew an explicit tie between the Israeli-Palestinian strife and the safety of American soldiers as they battle Islamic extremism in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere.

When Israelis speak of American double standards, this is exactly what they’re talking about. The cockeyed liberal discourse on international relations posits that the US is free to do whatever it feels necessary to protect its vaguely defined criteria of security. When Israel kills people in its wars, defined and defended in the same ways as our establishment does, we must have our “war manager” opine about whether it is good for our war franchise and industry, where a death toll of nine civilians from disparate nations is a day to day affair. This is not to defend in any way Israel’s actions. But those who seek to critique them as something separate from our own cowardly violence and sense of entitlement and exceptionalism are doing their cause a disservice.