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UN Report on Flotilla Incident Exonerates Israel

12:00 AM, Sep 3, 2011 • By ELLIOTT ABRAMS
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Three days before the submission of the Palmer Report on events surrounding the flotilla to Gaza, the American pressure is growing.

According to Israeli diplomats in Washington, US officials had even implied that it would be difficult for the US to persuade other nations to reject the Palestinians' UN statehood bid in September if Jerusalem refuses to apologize to Turkey.

There are many other such stories, and it is clear that the U.S. government was pushing Israel to apologize. Of course, administration spokesmen will largely deny this and say they were seeking a  middle ground. Probably so: that has been administration policy toward Israel for two and a half years now. The policy is not to offer strong support, but to seek a compromise between Israel and her enemies.  In this case such a position was both morally wrong and dumb, if the idea was to get Erdogan off his anti-Israel kick and restore the good old days of warm Turkish-Israeli relations. One of the reasons Israel refused an apology was its clear and correct understanding that having a cold and hostile relationship with Israel is Erdogan’s goal. He will move toward that goal with whatever tools lie at hand, and an Israeli apology over the Mavi Marmara would have gained next to nothing—while weakening Israel’s self-respect and its position in the region.

So this is another example of the Obama Administration refusing the strong support Israel needs and looking instead to find compromises—tawdry, damaging, dangerous.  After 31 months of this, no one should be surprised.  But when a UN commission takes what is in many ways a stronger moral stance in defiance of the UN’s automatic anti-Israel majority than does our own government, we have a right to be disgusted.

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