Whenever I point out the fact that Hillary Clinton was the first person on any White House staff EVER to publicly call for the establishment of a Palestinian state, or that famous hugging incident with Mrs Arafat my more liberal friends point out that the Junior Senator from NY had a spotless record on Israel since she was elected to the Senate.
Well of course she did, she is the senator from New-freaking-York. A major part of but as Secretary of State she no longer has to worry about the Jewish vote, so why is everyone surprised that she has returned to her pro-Palestinian position.
And then there is the Clinton connection to the world’s biggest exporter of terrorism, Saudi Arabia, the Saudi Royal Family donated $10,000,000 to the Clinton Library.
According to a 1993 New York Times article, Prince Turki bin Feisal was a college classmate of Bill’s at Georgetown University and (at the time of the article’s writing) was the head of the Saudi Arabian intelligence service. While he was still governor of Arkansas, it looks like Bill Clinton cashed in on that relationship, “work[ing] hard to secure a multimillion-dollar Saudi donation to a Middle Eastern studies program at the University of Arkansas.” Due to the intervention of the Gulf War, the first installment of $3.5 million didn’t arrive until 1992, with another $20 million arriving after Bill Clinton’s first inauguration.
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This week Mrs Clinton has been pressuring Israel to open up the Gaza border, even though Hamas has not made any concessions. All of a sudden the Jewish leadership that once worshiped Mrs Clinton are so surprised. A “Clinton doesn’t change their spots” Read on for the Jewish Leadership reaction:
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to members and guests of the Asia Society Feb. 13, 2009, in New York City. Secretary Clinton’s speech was made ahead of her first official trip to the East Asian countries.
In a swift about face from her views as New York’s senator, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is now hammering Israel over its treatment of Palestinians in Gaza.
As First Lady, Clinton raised eyebrows when she kissed Suha Arafat.
Since she was then seeking a Senate seat the resulting brouhaha caused her to “re-think” her positions.
“I’m a very strong supporter of Israel,” Clinton said back in February 2000.
On Thursday, as Secretary of State she had yet another about face in the form of angry messages demanding Israel speed up aid to Gaza. Jewish leaders are furious.
“I am very surprised, frankly, at this statement from the United States government and from the secretary of state,” said Mortimer Zuckerman, publisher of the New York Daily News and member of the NYC Jewish Community Relations Council.
“I liked her a lot more as a senator from New York,” Assemblyman Dov Hikind, D-Brooklyn, said. “Now, I wonder as I used to wonder who the real Hillary Clinton is.”
Clinton’s decision to hammer Israel comes as the Clintons and President Barack Obama are planning to give the Palestinians $900 million toward the rebuilding of Gaza in the wake of the Israeli offensive that was sparked by Hamas rocket fire.
“We are working across the government to see what our approach will be,” Clinton said.
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“I don’t believe that we should be in a position at this point to do anything to strengthen Hamas,” Zuckerman said. “We surely know what Hamas stands for as I say they are the forward battalions of Iran.”
For some, Clinton’s change of position is upsetting.
“I feel it’s unfortunate that they don’t continue the policy of the Bush administration, which was much more pro-Israel,” said Akiva Homnick of Jerusalem.
“I happen to have a lot of family who live in Israel and I feel, personally, when you are dealing with people who are very strong against you, you have to stand up to them,” said Tami Davudoff of Kew Gardens.
“Hillary had Mrs. Arafat here and she invited Mrs. Arafat for lunch when she was the first lady,” added Babak Chafe of Great Neck. “She is pro-Palestinian 100 percent, really. Of course, we always knew it.”
“The easy way to make a peace agreement is to pressure Israel because you can’t pressure the Arabs,” said Solomon Loewi of Monsey, N.Y.
All this could lead to a chilly reception when Mrs. Clinton arrives in the Middle East next week.
The new U.S. envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, arrived in Israel on Thursday with a mission to inject new life into peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.