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The Whole World Is Watching

Obama’s Atrocities Prevention Board institutionalizes indifference to mass murder.

12:55 PM, Apr 24, 2012 • By LEE SMITH
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Elliott Abrams has written that the administration’s Syria policy should serve as a wake-up call to the Israelis. The administration says it has Israel’s back regarding the Iranian nuclear weapons program, but its position on Syria makes it clear that the White House is willing to look the other way. Obama has shown he is capable of doing nothing to help those under fire, even when there are national interests at stake and we share common adversaries—with Israel it’s Iran, with the Syrian opposition it’s Assad, a man who has facilitated the murder of American troops and targeted U.S. allies over the last decade.

For Israelis, the lesson in self-reliance is derived from the Holocaust—don’t count on others to protect you because history is evidence that they won’t. The Holocaust was the pretext for Obama’s remarks on Syria yesterday, and for Americans, yesterday’s speech should serve as a wake-up call. Either we stand with our allies and for ourselves and our interests, or we can tell ourselves beautiful fictions about our consciences when we just can’t be bothered to tell the truth. The Holocaust Museum should be a reminder to us as well, lest it become nothing more than a monument to our indifference.

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