Best of 2009: Does Sarah Palin Think the Apocalypse Is Nigh?
All day, we’re re-running our favorite blog posts of the last year. This post was originally published on Nov. 18, 2009.
Well-known Israel expert Sarah Palin criticizes President Obama’s criticism of Israeli settlement expansion (most recently over Gilo):
“I disagree with the Obama administration on that,” Palin told Walters. “I believe that the Jewish settlements should be allowed to be expanded upon, because that population of Israel is, is going to grow. More and more Jewish people will be flocking to Israel in the days and weeks and months ahead. And I don’t think that the Obama administration has any right to tell Israel that the Jewish settlements cannot expand.”
Uh, more and more Jewish people will be flocking to Israel in the days and weeks and months ahead? Does Palin think the end times, heralded by the ingathering of the Jews, is nigh? In reality, Jews are immigrating to Israel at a fairly historically low rate.
J Street’s Jeremy Ben-Ami had this reaction, issued in a statement from the pro-peace pro-Israel pro-Palestinian group:
J Street rejects Sarah Palin’s comments attacking President Obama’s sensible policy on Israeli settlements in the West Bank yesterday during an ABC News interview with Barbara Walters.
Palin’s pandering to her right-wing base comes at the expense of the security of the State of Israel, the lives of those actually living the conflict, and the fundamental American interest in achieving a two-state solution in the near term. Her words reveal a glaring ignorance of damaging facts and a callous disregard of past and present U.S. policy.
For decades, American presidents have held that Israeli settlements in the West Bank are an impediment to peace. They are joined by the majority of Israelis and pro-Israel Americans who view the growing settlement enterprise as a threat to Israel’s very future as a Jewish democracy.
President Obama’s administration continued along that path yesterday, rightly and sensibly expressing concern with unilateral actions on both sides that would preempt the negotiation of final status issues that are necessary to achieve a two-state solution to the conflict.
J Street supports President Obama and Middle East Peace Envoy George Mitchell as they press the parties to begin the hard work of achieving a two-state solution, the only way to secure Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic homeland.