July 30th, 2013

Can someone please explain this to me?

Israel releases terrorists in anticipation of talks with Palestinians.

At this point I can’t say I really understand any part of it. These periodic releases—and periodic talks—keep happening, and there’s no reason to expect that anything good will come of it, and plenty of reason to expect bad. I am puzzled as to what such talks would gain for Israelis:

Netanyahu said somewhat elliptically that being involved in a diplomatic process will make it much easier for Israel to act – and stop actions – in the area.

Israel, he said, had three interests in re-engaging now with the Palestinians: To try to find a solution to the conflict; to prevent negative trends against Israel in the international arena from gaining steam; and to allow Israel to better prepare to deal with the “challenges and opportunities” in the region.

Everything clear now?

This justificaton is particularly laughable, in a bitter-laugh sort of way: “to prevent negative trends against Israel in the international arena from gaining steam.” These “trends” have gained so much steam in the last forty years or so despite Israel’s cooperation in a gazillion negotiations and prisoner releases that they are capable of driving a dynamo that could power the entire country.

As for “finding a solution to the conflict” through talking—does anyone realistically think that has any chance of happening? The Palestinians have given no indication of wanting to find solutions except 100% on their terms. They are winning the propaganda war, they get aid and comfort from all over the world, and if they ever “solved” the conflict they’d have to face the extreme economic and political dysfunction of their own country (I assume it would have become a country at that point). Why would they want to ever do that?

Maybe the key to this move is something in internal Israeli politics? I’m not conversant enough with that arena to say. Perhaps some readers can shed a bid of light.

And by the way, in the past whenever I’ve written about Israel, the posts have almost immediately drawn trolls. We’ll see what happens with this one.

[NOTE: One odd fact from the article:

They [the Israeli negotiating team] were expected to hold a preliminary meeting Monday at US Secretary of State John Kerry’s home with Palestinian negotiators Saeb Erekat and Mohammad Shtayyeh, and then begin the negotiations in earnest on Tuesday.

John Kerry’s home? Doesn’t that seem rather odd? Kerry lives in Louisburg Square in Boston’s Beacon Hill, by the way, one of the ritziest old-money spots in the city:

The Greek Revival houses around the square reflect the rarefied privilege enjoyed by the 19th century upper class in Beacon Hill. The Atlantic Monthly editor William Dean Howells, teacher A. Bronson Alcott and his daughter, author Louisa May Alcott, are among the famous people who lived there in the 19th Century. One of the last private residences built on Louisburg Square was 2 Louisburg Square, built in 1847 for wealthy merchant and philanthropist Thomas Handasyd Perkins Jr., known as ‘short-arm Tom,’ who lived at 1 Joy Street.

Currently it is one of the most expensive residential neighborhoods in the country, and an oft-included landmark in walking tours and guidebooks. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry owns a townhouse on Louisburg Square. The average cost of a townhouse on the street exceeds $6 million and reaches as high as $20 million.

Of course, Kerry has many other homes, too. Perhaps it’s one of the others we’re talking about? But technically, only the Louisburg Square home could rightly be called “his”; the others are in wife Teresa’s name.

A lot of people think Kerry is rich because he married Teresa, who was rich because she inherited the money from her late husband John Heinz. That’s indeed how Teresa got her enormous wealth, and it’s also true that Kerry’s wealth increased tremendously on marrying her (at least, his access to the perks of her wealth did). But he was a fairly wealthy man through his own inheritance before he ever married her.

It’s interesting to note that Kerry’s wealth was no issue for the Democrats in the 2004 election, although it was unearned by him or his wife, whereas Romney’s almost entirely earned wealth was considered an awful thing by Democrats in 2012. One can only conclude that earned wealth is more philosophically objectionable to liberals than inherited wealth—at least, when it’s earned by a Republican.

Oh, and of course, Bain Capital BAD. It seems like only yesterday that Bain was the bane of so many people’s existence. But it was only a year ago.]

15 Responses to “Can someone please explain this to me?”

  1. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Here’s my take;

    The Israeli’s know there’s nothing to gain from these talks. They agreed only because of the pressure Obama has brought to bear and to nullify the canard that Israel refuses to negotiate. They are releasing the prisoners as irrefutable proof of Israel’s desire for peace.

    Netanyahu knows that Obama is looking for any excuse to cut off aid to Israel and to refrain from exercising our veto in the UN upon Israel’s behalf.

    Regarding Netanyahu’s reasons; “To try to find a solution to the conflict” Balderdash, pure political but mandatory rhetoric. “to prevent negative trends against Israel in the international arena from gaining steam” Bingo, at this time anything Israel can do to prevent Obama from failing to block UN economic sanctions against Israel is of critical strategic importance to Israel. “and to allow Israel to better prepare to deal with the “challenges and opportunities” in the region.” More diplo-speak only valid in regard to the prior point.

    The desire by Israel for peace is well established and undeniable by any fair-minded and knowledgeable observer. The complete rejection by Palestinians and Islam, of Israel’s very right to exist is well established and undeniable by any fair-minded and knowledgeable observer.

    Kerry is a fool and a tool.

    Obama knows there will be no peace and that the differences are irreconcilable. The primary purpose of this travesty is to further weaken Israel and the secondary advantage for Obama is that it allows the media to focus the attention of the public away from ‘imagined’ scandals and on to ‘important’ issues.

    Physically through the release of committed terrorists. Politically by portraying in the media that it is Israel that is intransigent. And diplomatically by coercing Israel to accept now and in the future ‘negotiations’ that start with Israel’s acceptance of what militarily, amounts to suicidal ‘conditions’.

    Today, the very first day of ‘negotiations’… PA leader Abbas in speaking with Egyptian reporters stated that, “In a final resolution, we would not see the presence of a single Israeli — civilian or soldier — on our lands” 6/30/2013

    And just to be clear, Abbas’ “on our lands” includes Israel.

    These charades will continue as long as Israel believes that it needs the US, which given its mind-set it actually does and will continue to do so until the Israeli public faces up to its true enemies; Islam itself and the Marxist left.

    Israel has benefited from America’s friendship in two primary ways; Military/economic assistance and US vetoes in the UN. Now that Israel is developing its gas and oil fields off its coasts, US military and economic assistance will increasingly be a non-factor.

    The UN is a joke, Israel needs to find the fortitude to tell the UN, EU and everyone else to go pound sand. Once Israel’s gas and oil fields are at full production, economic sanctions by the UN won’t matter. Iran has already proven that such sanctions can be evaded. Israel will have plenty of money to purchase exemptions to any boycott. Money talks.

    Israel is already a pariah nation. Well, if they’re going to have the label they might as well live up to it. Bad guys always count on the self-restraint of the good guys. It’s long past time for Israel to get as ruthless as her enemies. You don’t win a gunfight with a knife.

    Since the EU has removed all doubt that its intentions towards Israel are hostile, Israel should make known that the day Tel Aviv is destroyed in a nuclear terrorist attack is the day London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels and The Hague disappear.

    Israel’s biggest problem is that her enemies face no consequences for their actions. But that is not the fault of her enemies, that is Israel’s fault.

  2. Mr. Frank Says:

    Kerry’s first wife was also wealthy.

  3. John A. Fleming Says:

    Netenyahu is following the Usurper. Better to kill them in operations than lock them up. If you do capture them, hold them until the next “peace” talks. Think of it as managing a chronic disease: trade off the expense of various treatments versus the acceptance of (some) deleterious effects.

    If you hold the terrorists for several years, after release they are not nearly as effective as they once were.

  4. Colin Weingarten Says:

    My own take is that Israel gets some diplomatic or trade concession out of just agreeing to the talks themselves. Nothing is resolved, but that’s probably not the point in the first place.

  5. London Trader Says:

    This article by Barry Rubin at PJ sums up Israel’s reason for agreeing to the talks.


    All pretty much in line with earlier comments here.

  6. Lizzy Says:

    Like the rest of the lifer Senators and Congressmen, Kerry has a huge house in the DC area: a 23-room Georgetown townhouse (valued at 4.7 million in 2007). Probably meeting there.

  7. Baltimoron Says:

    If you think of the negotiations as negotiations of course the prisoner release won’t make sense. But if you look at them as nothing more than a big photo op it all comes together.
    The Americans really want to look like they’re accomplishing something and the Israelis want to keep the Americans happy. That leaves the Palestinians with something the Israelis want.
    So the only real negotiations that go on here are the Israelis and Palestinians haggling over the price of John Kerry’s photo op.

  8. JuliB Says:

    Reading this post over at Atlas Shrugs brings home the injustice in releasing the terrorist, regardless of political effect:


    Color me livid.

  9. blert Says:

    Jerusalem is playing for time; counting down to the end of Barry’s days.

    BTW, have you noted just how many times the Wan has referenced HIS countdown clock in recent remarks?

    He’s now obsessional about it…

    as in, he can’t bear to leave the percs.

  10. vanderleun Says:

    From my far flung correspondents:

    “Israeli-Palestinian peace talks: Nine-month deal goal

    John Kerry: ”Our objective will be to achieve a final status agreement over the course of the next nine months”

    Read the whole story here.

    [Interesting timing, n’est-ce pas? Apart from seeing whether a peace deal will be reached, we will also find out if the life saver Netanyahu’s apologists cling to – namely, a secret backdoor deal with Obama to stop Iran - will stay afloat. By next April everyone’s “red lines” will have been crossed, and should Iran’s centrifuges be still spinning away, we’ll know with certainly just who’s been had. The betting here is that, at best, Bibi will be left holding a worthless piece of paper while scanning the skies over his diminutive state for Iranian incoming. Go ahead, ask any peace processor, and they’ll tell you their “process” can never withstand a war a with Iran. Not even the silver-tongued Netanyahu can avoid a choice. One or the other, not both. df]“

  11. Ymarsakar Says:

    Israel releases terrorists periodically. 500 live Palestinians for 1 dead Israeli body. Mutilated and tortured as it was.

    Israel does not comprehend the utility and necessity of fury and vengeance. So they are stuck in a permanent forever war. From now until… I guess until the Second Coming.

  12. Ymarsakar Says:

    I’ve always preferred immediate execution, en masse, for pirates and insurgents. More efficient that way. Leaves less room in the future for hope.

    Of course live bodies can also be useful in a variety of ways… ways Israel has yet to access.

  13. stan Says:

    Re: rich dems and rich Republicans

    It isn’t the money that is objectionable. It’s being Republican. Republicans are the embodiment of all that is evil. Democrats represent all that is good. Therefore, it is perfectly appropriate to beat up Republicans with any stick available. Whatever works. Slanders, lies, hypocrisy … Lenin lives — whatever advances the cause is moral and true.

    Democrats don’t start with a series of beliefs and concerns and then support a candidate or party based thereon. They start with their ‘team’, anoint themselves and their teammates as moral and good, and any who oppose them as evil.

    Doesn’t matter who corrupt, dishonest, incompetent Obama, Clinton, Sharpton, et al are. Ever. Just like it doesn’t matter what kind of person Zimmerman is or what he did. All that matters is what advances the cause. What helps the ‘good’ guys, their team. Period.

  14. ziontruth Says:


    “At this point I can’t say I really understand any part of it. … I am puzzled as to what such talks would gain for Israelis”

    Your bafflement is only exceeded by our (Israeli Jews’) outrage. A lot of commenters here are suggesting some kind of “long game” on Bibi’s part, but the view from Israel is far less favorable. If my count is right, this is the fourth time Bibi has wimped out from doing the right thing:

    1) He gave the order to dismantle the Jewish outpost of Giv’at Ulpana in Judea and Samaria. In order to gain the requisite votes for this, he appealed to the Knesset Members to “think of the international court of law in the Hague,” thereby establishing the primacy of superstate laws over sovereign national interests.

    2) He called off Operation Pillar of Cloud in Gaza prematurely as soon as it was known Obama had won reelection, and under pressure to adhere to accords co-written by Hillary and Morsi.

    3) He apologized to Turkey’s Erdogan for sending the IDF to block the pro-terrorism flotilla sponsored by Turkey.

    This recent move is only one in a series, and Bibi’s cowardice is itself only a continuation of the same by previous Prime Ministers of Israel, right from the first, David Ben-Gurion. Here are a few lowlights:

    1) Ben-Gurion had the slogan of not paying heed to what the non-Jewish nations might say (the loophole here big enough for a truck to get through is left as an exercise to the reader). Following the Sinai War of October 1956, he declared the Sinai Peninsula to be Israel’s for all time, but just a month later, following the combined threat of sanctions by Eisenhower and Bulganin, he agreed to retreat and have a U.N. force placed there (which, in 1967, got out at the tiniest flick of Nasser’s finger).

    2) Menachem Begin had been the hardliner while in opposition, known for his insistence that Transjordan (given to the Hashemites in 1922) was to be retaken by Israel someday, not just Judea and Samaria and Gaza (those weren’t in dispute before 1967 by anyone in Israel except the Arab and Communist parties). As we all know, he was the one to give up the Sinai Peninsula, with its flourishing Jewish population centers and oil fields, for a peace agreement with the Egyptian government—not the people in Egypt, who would trash the peace at the first opportunity if given the choice.

    3) In 1975, Yitzhak Rabin railed against the U.N. equation of Zionism with racism, saying, among other things, that it gave an opening for “the setting up of an Arafatian state in Israel’s midst.” In 1993, he did that all by himself.

    You ask what’s behind all those steadfast ideologues (I say this truly, not in sarcasm) caving in like that at the moment of truth. The fact is they’re believers in the material-only reality of history and the world; by leaving God’s connection to the Jewish people out of the equation, it is no wonder that Ben-Gurion believed that economic sanctions would cripple Israel, that Begin was enticed by Carter’s incentives, that Rabin was so certain that the option of staving off the Arab demographic threat by mass expulsion would result in deadly isolation for the Jewish State, and that Bibi thinks Israel cannot survive the Iranian threat unless America saves her.

    It will take the rise of an unfaltering believer to change things. Someone who won’t be known by passionate slogans and speeches and books, but by acting in Israel’s interests and responding to all detractors by saying, “We don’t need you. You’re not in the charge of the world. Your fates are in the hands of the same One as ours, but in our case it is even more so. We don’t need your gifts of money, we don’t need your pledges of military support.” A true Jewish believer is one who rejects the seen lie of materialistic thinking—the illusion borne of having a small part of the big picture, just like thinking the earth is flat—and embraces the truth that everything that happens in world history does so because HaShem has made it so, therefore it is He and not flesh and blood who must be feared and obeyed.


    The ills of maintaining a military occupation on Jewish land (the entire Land of Israel, including Judea and Samaria) could have been prevented by expelling the entire hostile population from the area immediately following their retaking, as the Torah calls for (Numbers 33:50–53). Regrettably this was not done (see above for the reason why), but one day, HaShem willing soon, it will be done, and then the Arab squatters will no longer have to suffer such inconveniences.

  15. Ymarsakar Says:

    Looks like a nation of Jews wasn’t all that much better than a nation of the goi.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.


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