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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Obama tries to scrub Bush White House and State Department references to 'Jerusalem, Israel'

Our friends the Zivotofsky's (yes, of course Mrs. Carl and I know them) are sure making life miserable for the Obama administration.

You will recall that last week I reported that the White House had scrubbed clean references on its own website to "Jerusalem, Israel," in preparation for the Supreme Court hearing in Zivotofsky v. Clinton. Now, Omri Ceren reports in Commentary that the White House is trying to rewrite the Bush administration's relationship with Israel to claim - as usual - that Bush did the same thing. Well, he didn't.
Sometimes Bush-era White House photos explicitly identified Jerusalem as being in Israel and sometimes they didn’t, just like sometimes they explicitly identified Tel Aviv as being in Israel and sometimes they didn’t. A naive “Jerusalem, Israel” Google search on the Bush White House archives is sufficient to turn up this 2002 photo of Vice President Cheney captioned as “a press briefing in Jerusalem, Israel.”
It also turns up this photo labeled “Mrs. Laura Bush visits the Western Wall Tunnels… in Jerusalem, Israel.” That’s from the exact, precise, identical tour that Kredo linked to in order to “hammer home the point” that the Bush administration “never explicitly labeled [Jerusalem] as part of Israel.”
Getting beyond photo captions, Bush-era documents show that the previous White House was indeed able to correctly identify the city of Jerusalem as being inside the state of Israel. The record shows that the President even acknowledged that the Jerusalem consulate – the same one that won’t issue passports referencing “Jerusalem, Israel” – was located in Jerusalem, Israel. Bush’s statement nominating Jeffrey Feltman to be ambassador to Lebanon, for instance, explicitly described Feltman’s previous position as “Deputy Principal Officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem, Israel.”

It gets worse for Obama’s defenders, though, than merely being demonstrably wrong. It turns out that while they were insisting that the Bush administration consistently refused to reference “Jerusalem, Israel,” the Obama State Department was busy scrubbing documents in which Bush administration referenced “Jerusalem, Israel.” Straight down the memory hole. That’s kind of amazing when you pause and think about it, no?

The “Jerusalem, Israel” captions and statements from the Bush-era White House are digitally archived and frozen, and so beyond the administration’s reach. But Bush-era State Department reports are stored on the Obama State Department’s servers. Two old documents in particular – the State Department’s FY 2002 and FY 2003 Performance and Accountability Reports – come up quickly in searches. When they were originally written they both had appendices identifying the location of the Jerusalem consulate as “Jerusalem, Israel.” Some time in the last two weeks that location was changed to “Jerusalem.” Whoever made the changes even went back and scrubbed the old “hard copy” PDFs. You can do the compare and contrast yourself. Click on these links for scrubbed versions of FY 2002 HTML, FY 2003 HTML, FY 2002 PDF, FY 2003 PDF, and on these links for cached original versions of FY 2002 HTML, FY 2003 HTML, FY 2002 PDF, FY 2003 PDF.
I guess that the Obama administration has hired Donald Segretti as a consultant.

Read the whole thing.

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At 2:46 AM, Blogger HaShaliach said...

As I recall, there was a book titled, 1984, where the governmental practice of rewriting history was common place.

Hmmmm Perhaps that is why the 1917 Balfour Declaration also seems to have been scrubbed from our history books.

Big Brother is still looking out for our best interests. Or, is he?


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