International,  Israel/Palestine,  Stateside

“Anti-imperialists” bash Obama

One of a series of occasional posts recording hard-Left, anti-Zionist and “anti-imperialist” outrage, shock and profound disappointment at Barack Obama’s foreign policy pronouncements:

Joshua Frank, Why I Can’t Support Barack Obama, at Counterpunch:

Like the majority of his colleagues, Obama has done very little to change the face of American politics. He has voted for war spending, appeased the pro-Israel lobby, and helped build the erroneous case against Iran, saying nothing about Israel’s plentiful arsenal of nuclear warheads. In short, Barack Obama is not an ally to those of us who oppose the ambiguous War on Terror.

“I want you to know that today I’ll be speaking from my heart, and as a true friend of Israel,” Obama announced a day after he locked up his party’s nomination to a crowd of pro-Israel zealots. “[W]hen I visit with AIPAC, I am among friends, Good friends. Friends who share my strong commitment to make sure that the bond between the United States and Israel is unbreakable today, tomorrow, and forever.”

Former US senator James Abourezk, Deadly Fallout From Obama’s Groveling Before Israel Lobby, at Counterpunch:

It was left to Barack Obama, a candidate who at one time brought a great deal of hope to many Americans, including this writer, to complete the round robin of pandering to AIPAC, first by wearing not only an American flag pin, but one conjoined with an Israeli flag pin as well. Obama’s nomination has improved America’s image around the world, with the realization that, “everyone has a chance in America,” as the saying used to go. But that is what makes his pandering so painful.

Obama declared Jerusalem indivisible, presumably for the Israelis only, in contrast to the United Nations’ holding that Jerusalem was, and is, an international city, belonging to neither side.
Obama’s statement of unquestioning and unqualified support for Israel’s objectives will likely embolden Israel to once again try to invade Lebanon to destroy Hizbollah’s fighters, the only force strong enough to resist Israeli aggression in that country…

Alexander Cockburn, Obama Goes Over the Top, at Counterpunch:

Obama inspires young people who flock to his rallies. He promises not only to “create a new kind of politics” but to “transform this country,” “change the world”, “create a Kingdom right here on earth.” Comingled with these doses of uplift are the familiar coarse pledges to crucial interest groups, such as the Miami Cubans. Obama’s speech to them on May 25 was an dismal exercise in right-wing demagoguery.

Take his speech to the Cuban American National Foundation in Miami on May 23,: “Throughout my entire life, there has been injustice and repression in Cuba. Never, in my lifetime, have the people of Cuba known freedom. … This is the terrible and tragic status quo that we have known for half a century—of elections that are anything but free or fair.… I won’t stand for this injustice, you won’t stand for this injustice, and together we will stand up for freedom in Cuba,… I will maintain the embargo.”
After invoking hope and change in St Paul Obama rushed the next day to Washington for some ritual groveling to the AIPAC:

“We will also use all elements of American power to pressure Iran. I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Everything in my power. Everything and I mean everything.” Israel should get whatever it wants and an undivided Jerusalem should be its capital.

We can look ahead to months of Obama deflecting McCain’s onslaughts on him as a starry eyed peacenik by insisting that what the beleagured Empire above all needs is efficiency, ruthless if necessary. “The [U.S.] generals are light-years ahead of the civilians.” He reassured one of his fans, the neoconservative New York Times columnist, David Brooks. “They are trying to get the job done rather than look tough.”

Please feel free to submit other examples.

Update: More hilarity from Norman Finkelstein (remember this knee-slapper?):

In an annoucement that brought shock and dismay to residents of South Brooklyn, Presidential-hopeful Barack Obama announced that if elected he would give Coney Island to Israel as Holocaust compensation. Work is sheduled to begin next January on dismantling the Ferris Wheel and Roller-Coaster, but it’s still unclear how he intends to transport the 2.5 miles of boardwalk and coastline to Israel. This move comes just barely a week after Obama promised to give the San Francisco Bridge and the Chicago Sears Tower to Israel if elected. Rumors are now rife that Disneyworld, Hollywood and Obama’s in-laws are planning to relocate in Canada before his next press conference. Meanwhile, there are unconfirmed reports that Obama’s wife Michelle and two children are learning Hebrew, although the campaign’s press secretary issued a scathing denial. “There’s nothing, nothing, to this malicious and mendacious rumor! Shalom.”

Stop it, Norm. You’re killing me.

(Hat tip: jeremy)

Update 2: And this from the reliable John Pilger:

It is time the wishful-thinkers grew up politically and debated the world of great power as it is, not as they hope it will be. Like all serious presidential candidates, past and present, Obama is a hawk and an expansionist. He comes from an unbroken Democratic tradition, as the war-making of presidents Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter and Clinton demonstrates. Obama’s difference may be that he feels an even greater need to show how tough he is. However much the colour of his skin draws out both racists and supporters, it is otherwise irrelevant to the great power game. The “truly exciting and historic moment in US history” will only occur when the game itself is challenged.

(Hat tip: Abdul Alhazred)