Israeli Prime Minister to appear before the US Congress
by Rachel Kohan
Tue 3rd Mar 2015
Déjà vu all over again: the much hyped up appearance of Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before the U.S. Congress, purportedly to warn the legislatures about the possibility of Iran developing its own nuclear arsenal, would only amount to his usual ostentatious rhetoric, bogus theatrical diagrams, and frivolous pontificating allegations for which he has no independently verifiable evidence. In fact a substantial number of congress members have already boycotted tomorrow’s fiasco, in part to demonstrate their growing concerns for any foreign leader dictating how the sovereign U.S. should independently administer its own internal affairs and foreign policy.
As evidenced by the Israeli right of the past few decades, Bibi’s ulterior motive in reality is not the Iranian nuclear issue, but rather, keeping the water muddied up so as to once again push the U.S. into another costly but futile war with no end in sight. In reality however, unpopular by over half the voters, Bibi will struggle to win reelection in two weeks as he portrays the façade of his strong foreign policy through deterring the Americans from any rapprochement with anyone in the region let alone with Iran. It must be equally stressed that the current regime in Iran is no angel by any remote measure; its myriad failed economic and international policies, and its suppression of the aspirations of its nearly 80 million citizens for their basic human and constitutional rights (e.g., democracy, equality, empowerment, justice) are grave concerns. That said, however, are other so-called allied governments in southwest Asia, be it Israel or Saudi Arabia just to name two, more democratic when it comes to safeguarding the same pillars of modern civil societies? Upon closer examination of Israel, with over 8 million citizens, as a self-proclaimed Jewish “democratic” state, one could discern a lack of equality and racial/ethnic/religion discrimination not only against the 25% indigenous Muslims and Christians, but also against many Jews whose origins are of Arab Jews, Sephardic-Yemeni-Mizrahi-Ethiopians and not of European immigrants.
Despite western pressure, as illustrated by multi-layered international and American economic sanctions imposed on Iran, Iran has since the 70s remained a signatory to NPT and IAEA protocols on the development and use of nuclear technology. There have been an excessive and unannounced number of IAEA inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities for over a decade. Iran has further reaffirmed repeatedly its pledge to avoid a nuclear development policy that could lead to military applications. Paradoxically Israel, which has cried foul while declining to sign onto NPT and IAEA protocols since the 70s, has developed a nuclear arsenal solely for military purposes and currently is presumed to possess several hundred medium to long range ballistic nuclear warheads.
Israel, 70 years in the making, should now be sufficiently matured to realise that the US' diplomatic relations with others in the region should not be misconstrued as leaving Israel out of the equation. The US and the West would remain supportive of Israel’s right to exist securely and peacefully. Such a long standing commitment must not any longer be [mis-]interpreted by Israel as a carte blanche to get away from its chronic policy of apartheid against one third of its own population, to preemptively wage war on its neighbours, or as an inalienable right to coerce the US and the West into futile wars against fictitious, or even real, adversaries.
Is it not hypocritical that Israel which has continuously complained about the divisive strategy of the colonialists, namely, to divide and conquer, has since inception resorted to same strategy? The case of conceiving and supporting radical criminal Islamic forces is just one example. If Israel cannot finally accept a two state solution, with two peoples living side by side in mutual security, it should consider the alternative of one secular nation in which every citizen has equal rights.
The need for peaceful American/Western engagement in the southwest Asia, leading to the empowerment of grassroots for educational and socio-economic reforms and opportunities is more far urgent than ever.
The Author , born in Iran in a diverse family comprised of the Shiite and Sunni Muslims as well as Baha’i, Jewish, Armenian/Assyrian Christian and Zoroastrian lineage, is a naturalized American who has resided in the U.S. for nearly forty years. As the steward of nature, she has come to believe in and advocate for secular universal humanism and equal [blind] justice for all on earth.