Obama compares both Jews and 'Palestinians' to American blacks
The President of the United States cannot decide whether the Jewish or 'Palestinian' experience is more closely related to that of American blacks
. (Hat Tip: Memeorandum
During a press conference with Palestinian Authority President
Mahmoud Abbas, Obama said young people he'd met on the trip made him
think of his own children.
"Whenever I meet these young people, whether they're Palestinian or
Israeli, I'm reminded of my own daughters, and I know what hopes and
aspirations I have for them," Obama said at the Palestinian headquarters
compound in Ramallah. "And those of us in the United States understand
that change takes time but it is also possible, because there was a time
when my daughters could not expect to have the same opportunities in
their own country as somebody else's daughters."
Obama's comments—which invoked life under Jim Crow in the U.S. or
perhaps even under slavery—seemed to give support to Palestinian
narratives that describe Arabs and Palestinians as second-class citizens
in Israel. That line of criticism deeply angers many Israelis. Some
critics of Israel go so far as to use the word apartheid, a word that
angers Israelis further.
But at stops in Jerusalem later on Thursday, Obama invoked the
history of African-Americans in the U.S. in ways far more pleasing to
Israelis and Jews generally.
During his main speech to the Israeli people, Obama noted how the
bible story of the expulsion of the Jews from Egypt and the drive to
reach the promised land animated African Americans in the U.S. for ages.
He also drew a personal connection to his own life.
"To African Americans, the story of the Exodus was perhaps the
central story, the most powerful image about emerging from the grip of
bondage to reach for liberty and human dignity -- a tale that was
carried from slavery through the Civil Rights Movement into today,"
Obama declared. "For generations, this promise helped people weather
poverty and persecution, while holding on to the hope that a better day
was on the horizon. For me, personally, growing up in far-flung parts
of the world and without firm roots, the story spoke to a yearning
within every human being for a home."
And Thursday night, Obama invoked the history of Jews who worked for
racial justice, in particular the Jewish American activists who joined
the civil rights movement in the 1960s.
"This story—from slavery to salvation, of overcoming even the most
overwhelming odds—is a message that’s inspired the world. And that
includes Jewish Americans but also African Americans, who have so often
had to deal with their own challenges, but with whom you have stood
shoulder to shoulder," Obama said at a State Dinner held at the
residence of Israeli President Shimon Peres.
"African Americans and Jewish Americans marched together at Selma and
Montgomery, with rabbis carrying the Torah as they walked. They
boarded buses for freedom rides together. They bled together. They
gave their lives together -- Jewish Americans like Andrew Goodman and
Michael Schwerner alongside African American, James Chaney," the U.S.
So which is it? And who is more clueless: Obama or Condi
Labels: anti-Black racism, anti-Semitism, Barack Hussein Obama, Condoleeza Rice, Palestinians