President Barack Obama shakes hands with Palestinian children during a visit to the Church of the Nativity in the occupied West Bank town of Bethlehem, March 22, 2013. (ATEF SAFADI-POOL/GETTY IMAGES)
Lebanese Kurds wave the Kurdish flag and a flag picturing Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan during Persian New Year, or Noruz, celebrations in Beirut, March 21, 2013. (JOSEPH EID/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lipid (c) with former Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who resigned his position after being indicted on charges of fraud and breach of trust, at the Feb. 5 swearing in of the 19th Knesset. (URIEL SINAI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
Israeli soldiers take pictures of each other in front of Israel’s illegal apartheid wall near the Qalandia checkpoint outside Ramallah, March 30, 2013. Israeli troops earlier had clashed with Palestinian demonstrators commemorating the 37th anniversary of “Land Day.” (ABBAS MOMANI/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
Clay, Babylon, Mesopotamia, after 539 BCE D x H: 7.8-10 x 21.9-22.8 cm British Museum, London, ME 90920 Photo: ©The Trustees of the British Museum
Prosthetic legs for wounded American soldiers at the Center for Intrepid rehabilitation gym at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, TX, Aug. 7, 2012. (JOHN MOORE/GETTY IMAGES)
September/October 1993, Page 114
We Salute George D. Kenney. . .
Marshall Freeman Harris and Jon Western.
All Three Resigned.
From the Department of State's Office of Eastern European and Yugoslav Affairs, to protest America's. . .
Vacillating Policy in Bosnia.
Their moral indignation is non-partisan. Kenney resigned during the last seven months of the Bush administration. Harris and Western resigned during the first seven months of the Clinton administration.
Their Public Resignations May. . .
Or may not help to inject a sense of history, reality and decency into U.S. policy, but at least. . .
They Did Their Damndest.
And stood up to be counted.
When It Counted.
As Arkansas Democrat Gazette editorial page writer Paul Greenberg asked in an article printed in the Aug. 11 Washington Times:
"Who Says There Are Not...
"Men of honor in the diplomatic service? You can tell who they are by their resignations." Even if the U.S. finally does the right thing, however, those three are unlikely to be invited back to continue what could have been extraordinarily fulfilling, and important, careers. Too bad because. . .
"Men of Honor"...
(With compassion, decency, clear-headedness and strong moral compasses) are the kind of representatives America needs directing its foreign policy.
But These Three Won't Be.
We Heard a Talk. . .
A few years ago, at the national convention of a major Arab-American group, by a State Department official. He had been booed, literally, at a Hadassah meeting a few weeks earlier. As his talk became increasingly insensitive, his audience of Arab Americans, arguably...
The World's Politest People. . .
Visibly stiffened. Finally, when he became openly demeaning, there was an uneasy shuffling among his listeners, and, eventually, audible murmurs of disapproval. Afterward we asked. . .
His Personal Aide. . .
Who had done his junior officer training under our direction. . .
"What's It Like. . .
To work for someone who came here purposely to be booed by Arab Americans in order to make brownie points with the organized Jewish community?”
Our Former Protege's Face Fell.
His answer, in its entirety, was: "The foreign service has changed a lot since you retired, and not for the better." At least Kenney, Harris and Western have proved that not all diplomats. . .
Consider Such Changes Acceptable.
That's on a tee-shirt sometimes worn by Chairman of the Council of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations Lester Pollock. It's to remind President Clinton that, according to exit polls, 86 percent of American Jews voted for him last fall.
Clearly, the President Remembers . . .
And believes that unless he lets Israel's Washington lobby dictate his Middle East policy for his first term. . .
There Won't Be a Second One.
We thought of that in July when we keynoted a fund-raising dinner by the Arab-American Republican club of Northern Virginia. The ballroom was full, and five of the tables were filled by Republican candidates for Congress and for every state office from governor to county councils. They were all there to garner votes. We wondered why.. .
Arab Americans are Important. . .
When it comes to state offices, but utterly marginalized at the national level. The numbers answer both questions. There are perhaps 2.5 million Christian Arab Americans who generally think the same things on Middle East questions as some 6 million Muslim Americans. Those are big numbers and every candidate wants them in his or her column. But presidential candidates know that at their level the. ..
Only Operative Number is 50-50!
Jewish supporters of Israel are active in both parties but on election day they become one-issue pro-Israel voters who cast their ballots as a block. Every presidential candidate knows it, and most pander accordingly.
Arab-American Voters and. .
Muslim-American voters are active in both parties and every election day they split their votes about evenly between both parties, at all levels, including the presidential election. Next time you curse the darkness that obscures our outrageously one-sided policies, so counter-productive to our own national interests in the Middle East...
Think About It!
Make a Difference. . .
There's not a thing any of us can do about the level of aid to Israel for 1994. This year it's $4.3 billion in direct aid, and another $2 billion in loan guarantees (see table on page 17). In his first month in office, President Clinton promised Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin that the level would not be reduced in fiscal year 1994. Congress won't reduce it without presidential urging.
But It Won't Hurt to Tell. . .
Your representative in Congress, your two senators, the secretary of state and the president how you feel, using the addresses, phones and fax numbers listed on page 93 of this issue.
Even More Important. . .
Is to let other Americans know just how much of their foreign aid money (at least a third of it) is being spent on Israel. If you're a domestic subscriber to this magazine, you'll find a bumpersticker enclosed with this issue. If you're not, the bumper sticker is pictured in the Middle East Marketplace on page 105.
You May Be Reluctant. . .
To put the sticker on your car. But don't be reluctant to put it where it will remind you to tell your relatives, friends and neighbors exactly what that figure is.
They'll Be Amazed Because. . .
Although it's true, you'll seldom, if ever, see it in the mainstream press—unless you get it into the letters to the editor column of your own newspaper—as many of our readers have by now.
We Also Hope You'll Be Sure. .
That your local library has the Washington Report in its periodicals collection. Most that don't will accept a donated subscription. Where you run into an unfriendly librarian, the excuse usually is that the Washington Report "isn't indexed."
That Excuse Won't Wash.
The Public Affairs Information Service, a non-profit indexing service, this year has selected theWashington Report for indexing. It covers 1,600 periodicals a year and is one of the most heavily used indexes in academic libraries. It is available both in print form and on-line. So tell librarians about it and. . .