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Obama's AIPAC speech. Text as prepared for delivery.

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Prepared text of Barack Obama's speech for the AIPAC foreign policy forum.


Remarks of Senator Barack Obama

As Prepared for Delivery

AIPAC Policy Forum

March 2, 2007

Chicago, Illinois

Thank you so much for your kind introduction and the invitation to meet
with you this morning.

Last week, this event was described to me as a small gathering of
friends. Looking at all of you here today; seeing so many of you who care
about peace in this world; who care about a strong and lasting friendship
between Israel and the United States, and who care about what’s on the
next page of our shared futures, I think “a small gathering of
friends” fits this crowd just right.

I want to begin today by telling you a story.

Back in January of 2006, I made my first trip to the Holy Land. It is a
place unlike any other on this earth – a place filled with so much
promise of what we truly can be as people; a place where we’ve learned
how in a flash, violence and hatred and intolerance can turn that promise
to rubble and send too many lives to their early graves.

Most will travel to the holy sites: the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the
Dome of the Rock or the Western Wall. They make a journey to be humbled
before God. I too am blessed to have seen Israel this way, up close and
on the ground.

But I am also fortunate to have seen Israel from the air.

On my journey that January day, I flew on an IDF helicopter to the border
zone. The helicopter took us over the most troubled and dangerous areas
and that narrow strip between the West Bank and the Mediterranean Sea. At
that height, I could see the hills and the terrain that generations have
walked across. I could truly see how close everything is and why peace
through security is the only way for Israel.

Our helicopter landed in the town of Kiryat Shmona on the border. What
struck me first about the village was how familiar it looked. The houses
and streets looked like ones you might find in a suburb in America. I
could imagine young children riding their bikes down the streets. I could
imagine the sounds of their joyful play just like my own daughters. There
were cars in the driveway. The shrubs were trimmed. The families were
living their lives.

Then, I saw a house that had been hit with one of Hezbollah’s Katyusha
rockets.

The family who lived in the house was lucky to be alive. They had been
asleep in another part when the rocket hit. They described the
explosion. They talked about the fire and the shrapnel. They spoke about
what might have been if the rocket had come screaming into their home at
another time when they weren’t asleep but sitting peacefully in the now
destroyed part of the house.

It is an experience I keep close to my heart. Not because it is unique,
but because we know that too many others have seen the same kind of
destruction, have lost their loved ones to suicide bombers and live in
fear of when the next attack might hit. Just six months after I visited,
Hezbollah launched four thousand rocket attacks just like the one that
destroyed the home in Kiryat Shmona, and kidnapped Israeli service
members. And we pray for all of the service members who have been
kidnapped: Gilad Shalit, Eldad Regev, and Ehud Goldwasser, and I met with
his family this week. I offered to help in any way I can.

It is important to remember this history—that Israel had unilaterally
withdrawn from Lebanon only to have Iran supply Hezbollah with thousands
of rockets.

Our job is to never forget that the threat of violence is real. Our job
is to renew the United States’ efforts to help Israel achieve peace with
its neighbors while remaining vigilant against those who do not share this
vision. Our job is to do more than lay out another road map; our job is
to rebuild the road to real peace and lasting security throughout the
region.

That effort begins with a clear and strong commitment to the security of
Israel: our strongest ally in the region and its only established
democracy. That will always be my starting point. And when we see all of
the growing threats in the region: from Iran to Iraq to the resurgence of
al-Qaeda to the reinvigoration of Hamas and Hezbollah, that loyalty and
that friendship will guide me as we begin to lay the stones that will
build the road that takes us from the current instability to lasting peace
and security.

It won’t be easy. Some of those stones will be heavy and tough for the
United States to carry. Others with be heavy and tough for Israel to
carry. And even more will be difficult for the world. But together, we
will begin again.

One of the heavy stones that currently rest at the United States’ feet
is Iraq. Until we lift this burden from our foreign policy, we cannot
rally the world to our values and vision.

As many of you know, I opposed this war from the beginning – in part
because I believed that giving this President the open-ended authority to
invade Iraq would lead to the open-ended occupation we find ourselves in
today.

Now our soldiers find themselves in the crossfire of someone
else’s civil war. More than 3,100 have given the last full measure of
devotion to their country. This war has fueled terrorism and helped
galvanize terrorist organizations. And it has made the world less safe.

That is why I advocate a phased redeployment of U.S. troops out of Iraq to
begin no later than May first with the goal of removing all combat forces
from Iraq by March 2008. In a civil war where no military solution
exists, this redeployment remains our best leverage to pressure the Iraqi
government to achieve the political settlement between its warring
factions that can slow the bloodshed and promote stability.

My plan also allows for a limited number of U.S. troops to remain and
prevent Iraq from becoming a haven for international terrorism and reduce
the risk of all-out chaos. In addition, we will redeploy our troops to
other locations in the region, reassuring our allies that we will stay
engaged in the Middle East. And my plan includes a robust regional
diplomatic strategy that includes talking to Syria and Iran – something
this Administration has finally embraced.

The U.S. military has performed valiantly and brilliantly in Iraq. Our
troops have done all that we have asked them to do and more. But a
consequence of the Administration’s failed strategy in Iraq has been to
strengthen Iran’s strategic position; reduce U.S. credibility and
influence in the region; and place Israel and other nations friendly to
the United States in greater peril. These are not the signs of a
well-paved road. It is time for profound change.

As the U.S. redeploys from Iraq, we can recapture lost influence in the
Middle East. We can refocus our efforts to critical, yet neglected
priorities, such as combating international terrorism and winning the war
in Afghanistan. And we can, then, more effectively deal with one of the
greatest threats to the United States, Israel and world peace: Iran.

Iran’s President Ahmadinejad’s regime is a threat to all of us. His
words contain a chilling echo of some of the world’s most tragic
history.

Unfortunately, history has a terrible way of repeating itself. President
Ahmadinejad has denied the Holocaust. He held a conference in his
country, claiming it was a myth. But we know the Holocaust was as real as
the 6 million who died in mass graves at Buchenwald, or the cattle cars to
Dachau or whose ashes clouded the sky at Auschwitz. We have seen the
pictures. We have walked the halls of the Holocaust museum in Washington
and Yad Vashem. We have touched the tattoos on loved-ones arms. After 60
years, it is time to deny the deniers.

In the 21^st century, it is unacceptable that a member state of the United
Nations would openly call for the elimination of another member state. But
that is exactly what he has done. Neither Israel nor the United States has
the luxury of dismissing these outrages as mere rhetoric.

The world must work to stop Iran’s uranium enrichment program and
prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. It is far too dangerous to
have nuclear weapons in the hands of a radical theocracy. And while we
should take no option, including military action, off the table, sustained
and aggressive diplomacy combined with tough sanctions should be our
primary means to prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons.

Iranian nuclear weapons would destabilize the region and could set off a
new arms race. Some nations in the region, such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia
and Turkey, could fall away from restraint and rush into a nuclear contest
that could fuel greater instability in the region—that’s not just bad
for the Middle East, but bad for the world, making it a vastly more
dangerous and unpredictable place. Other nations would feel great pressure
to accommodate Iranian demands. Terrorist groups with Iran’s backing
would feel emboldened to act even more brazenly under an Iranian nuclear
umbrella. And as the A.Q. Kahn network in Pakistan demonstrated, Iran
could spread this technology around the world.

To prevent this worst-case scenario, we need the United States to lead
tough-minded diplomacy.

This includes direct engagement with Iran similar to the meetings we
conducted with the Soviets at the height of the Cold War, laying out in
clear terms our principles and interests. Tough-minded diplomacy would
include real leverage through stronger sanctions. It would mean more
determined U.S diplomacy at the United Nations. It would mean harnessing
the collective power of our friends in Europe who are Iran’s major
trading partners. It would mean a cooperative strategy with Gulf States
who supply Iran with much of the energy resources it needs. It would mean
unifying those states to recognize the threat of Iran and increase pressure
on Iran to suspend uranium enrichment. It would mean full implementation
of U.S. sanctions laws. And over the long term, it would mean a focused
approach from us to finally end the tyranny of oil, and develop our own
alternative sources of energy to drive the price of oil down.

We must also persuade other nations such as Saudi Arabia to recognize
common interests with Israel in dealing with Iran. We should stress to the
Egyptians that they help the Iranians and do themselves no favors by
failing to adequately prevent the smuggling of weapons and cash by Iran
into Gaza.

The United States’ leverage is strengthened when we have many nations
with us. It puts us in a place where sanctions could actually have a
profound impact on Iran’s economy. Iran is highly dependent on imports
and foreign investment, credit and technology. And an environment where
our allies see that these types of investments in Iran are not in the
world’s best interests, could help bring Iran to the table.

We have no quarrel with the Iranian people. They know that President
Ahamadinejad is reckless, irresponsible, and inattentive to their
day-to-day needs which is why they sent him a rebuke at the ballot box
this fall. And we hope more of them will speak out. There is great hope
in their ability to see his hatred for what it is: hatred and a threat to
peace in the region.

At the same time, we must preserve our total commitment to
our unique defense relationship with Israel by fully funding military
assistance and continuing work on the Arrow and related missile defense
programs. This would help Israel maintain its military edge and deter and
repel attacks from as far as Tehran and as close as Gaza. And
when Israel is attacked, we must stand up for Israel’s legitimate right
to defend itself. Last summer, Hezbollah attacked Israel. By using
Lebanon as an outpost for terrorism, and innocent people as shields,
Hezbollah has also engulfed that entire nation in violence and conflict,
and threatened the fledgling movement for democracy there. That’s why
we have to press for enforcement of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701,
which demands the cessation of arms shipments to Hezbollah, a resolution
which Syria and Iran continue to disregard. Their support and shipment of
weapons to Hezbollah and Hamas, which threatens the peace and security in
the region, must end.

These are great challenges that we face. And in moments like
these, true allies do not walk away. For six years, the administration has
missed opportunities to increase the United States’ influence in the
region and help Israel achieve the peace she wants and the security she
needs. The time has come for us to seize those opportunities.

The Israeli people, and Prime Minister Olmert, have made clear that they
are more than willing to negotiate an end to the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict that will result in two states living side by side in peace and
security. But the Israelis must trust that they have a true Palestinian
partner for peace. That is why we must strengthen the hands of
Palestinian moderates who seek peace and that is why we must maintain the
isolation of Hamas and other extremists who are committed to Israel’s
destruction.

The U.S. and our partners have put before Hamas three very simple
conditions to end this isolation: recognize Israel’s right to exist;
renounce the use of violence; and abide by past agreements between Israel
and the Palestinian Authority.

We should all be concerned about the agreement negotiated among
Palestinians in Mecca last month. The reports of this agreement suggest
that Hamas, Fatah, and independent ministers would sit in a government
together, under a Hamas Prime Minister, without any recognition of Israel,
without a renunciation of violence, and with only an ambiguous promise to
“respect” previous agreements.

This should concern us all because it suggests that Mahmoud Abbas, who is
a Palestinian leader I believe is committed to peace, felt forced to
compromise with Hamas. However, if we are serious about the Quartet’s
conditions, we must tell the Palestinians this is not good enough.

But as I said at the outset, Israel will have some heavy stones to carry
as well. Its history has been full of tough choices in search of peace and
security.

Yitzhak Rabin had the vision to reach out to longtime enemies. Ariel
Sharon had the determination to lead Israel out of Gaza. These were
difficult, painful decisions that went to the heart of Israel's identity
as a nation.

Many Israelis I talked to during my visit last year told me
that they were prepared to make sacrifices to give their children a chance
to know peace. These were people of courage who wanted a better life. And
I know these are difficult times and it can be easy to lose hope. But we
owe it to our sons and daughters, our mothers and fathers, and to all
those who have fallen, to keep searching for peace and security -- even
though it can seem distant. This search is in the best interests of
Israel. It is in the best interests of the United States. It is in the
best interests of all of us.

We can and we should help Israelis and Palestinians both fulfill their
national goals: two states living side by side in peace and security.
Both the Israeli and Palestinian people have suffered from the failure to
achieve this goal. The United States should leave no stone unturned in
working to make that goal a reality.

But in the end, we also know that we should never seek to dictate what is
best for the Israelis and their security interests. No Israeli Prime
Minister should ever feel dragged to or blocked from the negotiating table
by the United States.

We must be partners – we must be active partners. Diplomacy in the
Middle East cannot be done on the cheap. Diplomacy is measured by
patience and effort. We cannot continue to have trips consisting of
little more than photo-ops with little movement in between. Neither
Israel nor the U.S. is served by this approach.

Peace with security. That is the Israeli people’s
overriding wish.

It is what I saw in the town of Fassouta on the border with Lebanon.

There are 3,000 residents of different faiths and histories.
There is a community center supported by Chicago’s own Roman Catholic
Archdiocese and the Jewish Federation of Metro Chicago. It is where the
education of the next generation has begun: in a small village, all faiths
and nationalities, living together with mutual respect.

I met with the people from the village and they gave me a tour of this
wonderful place. There was a moment when the young girls came in and they
played music and began to dance.

After a few moments, I thought about my own daughters, Sasha and Malia and
how they too could dream and dance in a place like this: a place of renewal
and restoration. Proof, that in the heart of so much peril, there were
signs of life and hope and promise—that the universal song for peace
plays on.

Thank you.

34 Comments

Thank you to Lynn Sweet and the Chicago Sun-Times for providing the convenient full text of Sen. Obama's speech today at the Streeterville Sheraton. In the affable and moderately toned address, Obama seemed to me, empahtic about 4 points; Full and complete support of Israel, "the only democracy in the region"; Redeployment of U.S. troops in Iraq beginning no later than "May 1st of this year"; Denunciation of Iranian leader Ahamadinejad's domestic policies; and the promise of possibility of dialog with Palestinian moderates like Mahmoud Abbas in order to achieve "peace with security" for Israel.

Good speech, just like I said,"he speaks out about the torture of the Jewish people, but he's silent about the police torture of African- American men, women and boys, one of the boys was 13 years old."

He wants the United World body to stand against anyone he believe will bring harm to a peaceful Jewish commuity by terrorizing the people, and I agree with him, because I've been there 3 times, my wife and I renewed our wedding vows over there.

So Sen.Obama, the UNITED WORLD BODY, has spoke out about the police torture here in Chicago and against the COVER-UP of these tortures by elected and appointed officials { Mayor Daley and Cook County States Attorney Devine}, it's time for your voice to be heard.

Just like you are calling for the world to do something to keep the enemies of Israel in check, PLEASE ASK THE U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the COVER-UP { by elected and appointed officials} OF THE POLICE TORTURE OF African- American men, woman and boys.

Make that speech either at breakfast in Selma or right before you, Sen.Clinton and the others march across the EDMUND PETTUS BRIDGE, I wasn't there but I remember reading about the police beatings and Congressman John Lewis getting his skull bashed in by the Alabama police while leading a march from Selma to Montgomery, I know he endorsed you, but did you tell him that you endorsed a man that's more evil than THEOPHILUS ENGENE" BULL" CONNOR, over a African-American Woman.

Wallace"Gator"Bradley
Urban Translator
312-371-6914

Memo regarding Nedra Pickler's article reporting Obama's ancestors owned slaves, page 6.

An important fact not included is the history of the Baltimore Sun, the source for this article.

This newspaper ran ads offering rewards, $2.00 to $50.00, for runaway slaves.

The Baltimore Sun needs to print a story about their history with slavery.

Let's be fair!

I knew it was only a matter of time ..... for this speech to follow after Obama's great speech in Springfield in January when he spoke of ‘a tall gangly lawyer from Illinois’ running for president.  How clever it was for him to describe himself and Lincoln in one fell swoop!  And how brimming with hope that cold, crisp Saturday was ...

It was only a matter of time – which turned out to be about a month, if you don’t count Obama’s Hollywood jaunt with hat in hand.  Oh well, it was nice while it lasted.  Do we blame Obama or do we blame the system?  it’ll be good to have Kucinnich in the race “without ANY strings” as he keeps stressing, to at least bring up the issues that others won’t. These are the strings that show us that our American ‘republic’ has failed.

But – after acknowledging how hopeless the situation is, I remind myself, and you, of what William Sloane Coffin said in another divisive and divided time in American history: HOPE IS A POLITICAL ACT.  Yes, I have to remember that without hope, I surrender.  

So it is, that even with Obama going so quickly to AIPAC (and saying just like Rumsfeld flying over Iraq, that that things look good from above), I refuse to give up and give in.  Because my hope for the future is my only weapon.

Sharpen that weapon......

Say it ain't so, Barack!!!! Are you really going to be pan-handling, chasing for Wall Street money this coming week? The March 2, 2007 Wall Street Journal says so. Are you really going to be meeting with private investment funds, hedge-fund managers, and others who want to PRIVATIZE SOCIAL SECURITY which you claim to be AGAINST? How do you explain that? It gives a strong smell of complete hypocrisy!! And finally are you going to be soliciting funds and support from the guy who just bought another 2 million shares of Dick Cheney's Haliburton Company stock, Mr. George Soros? Is that because you are serious about saving this country or are you just a cute cut-out doll that these powers think is useful to fool people once again? Remember Abrahman Lincoln, who you claim to be walking in the footsteps of, could see a phony a mile away!! So, what do you have to say for yourself, Senator Obama?

Obama has talked about protecting Israel from Iran, yet he wants to pull out troops from Iraq. Obviously there is some support for Iran within Iraq, and Iran has influence among some terrorists there. If the US withdraws most of its forces from Iraq, then should a war between the US and Iran take place, Iraq will be exposed, and Iran could decide to go into Iraq, or Iraqis could choose to help Iran. Then the US would have to send troops back into Iraq once more and start all over again. Also if there is war in Iran and it gets messy like Iraq, in order to avoid being a hypocrite, Obama would have to give up. The US simply cannot afford to have a president who will give up if all isn't going well. Obama would have been no good to the UK if he was prime minister during 1940.

Senator Obama reminds us that "the threat of violence is real," and to confirm that reality he joins Sen. Clinton, George Bush, and others by posing threats to Iran.

Obama repeats the LIES about Ahmadinejad, mistranslated for the NYT by MEMRI. Pitiful!

Instead of speaking before a spy organization you think he'll give any one of these guys the same honor?

Independent Jewish Voices;
Brit Tzedek v’Shalom;
Alliance of Concerned Jewish Canadians;
Jews for a Just Peace;
European Jews for a Just Peace;
Australian Jewish Democratic Society;
Jewish Voice for Peace;
Not in Our Name – Toronto (PDF);
Ebrei contro l'Occupazione;
Jewish Socialists’ Group;
Jewish Women for Justice in Israel and Palestine

They are all the same .. I lost my interest in Obama after this speech. He is trying to please his MASTERS and showing how savvy politician he is. If he can't rise above this pandering to AIPAC, he has no hope from the people, but he will get lots of money from the bosses.
What a shame !!

This speech disappoints and discourages me. There is no mention actions by Israel have provoked much of the retaliation from Palestinians. There is no recognition of how unstinting, unqualified "support" of Israel by the US emboldens even further Israeli action again Palestinians, using much of the fungible $3 billion we have been giving in annual aid, much of it military, since the Carter Era Camp David accords between Begin and Sadat. There is no mention of the constant enlargement and proliferation of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, despite seeming representations by Israel. And no mention of how Gaza is a prison to those still living there (Many of the Jews removed from Gaza were settled in the West Bank).

Senator Obama has found it necessary to schmooze AIPAC during his speaking event in Chicago. Competing with Hillary for who's 'better' on Israel? Definitely. Something necessary for a 'viable' presidential candidate? Sadly, Obama must believe so. The candidate for peace, justice & human rights? I'm having significant doubts.

Personally, I experienced a entirely different view of Israel/Palestine during my visit...not from the air in an IDF helicopter like Obama but rather on the ground. My experience was significantly less pastoral. Nothing like the tranquil picture of Kiryat Shmona that Obama paints.

Obama notes seeing Israeli houses "like you find in suburban America". I saw demolished Palestinian homes and a 24' concrete separation wall in the name of 'security'.

Obama imagined children riding their bikes down the streets. I met Palestinian children who rode together in a vehicle for four hours - stopped at periodic Israeli checkpoints - to travel a 30 minute route as the crow flies. And I heard from other Palestinian youth who wondered if they would be able to pass safely to school from day to day.

Obama saw trimmed shrubs. I saw demolished Palestinian olive groves and water shortages.

Obama mentions three captured Israeli military members. I met with Palestinians whose civilian family members - including minors and women - incarcerated for years...no charges, no trial, no hopes.

Obama mentions another road map. I rode in a vehicle along Palestinian roads within the West Bank that had been dug up by US-made earth moving equipment, blocked by boulders or giant concret blocks and covered with oil to mark footprints of those walking in the area.

Obama makes a bit of an effort to the be the 'uniter' near the end of his speech but his message is disappointingly clear. And disappointing. No mention of the 40-year Israeli occupation of Palestine, the counless civilian casualties this last summer in Lebanon resulting from direct Israeli bombing or Israeli settlements expanding in the West Bank.

One can wonder what reaction Obama's Muslim father would think of his son's speech. Or his progressive Christian friends from his UCC congregation in Chicago. Or blacks that lived through South African apartheid. Or Arab Americans who have suffered immeasurable discrimination, especially since 9/11.

Obama recalls the horrors of the Holocaust & confirms that it is time to "deny the deniers". I agree with him wholeheartedly. It is also right to "deny the deniers" of the Israeli occupation and the human rights violations burdened upon Palestinian Christians and Muslims today.

Barak's problem is that he "thinks" like a Liberal. The perfect example is his mindless acceptance of the irrational leftist claim that fighting the terrorists in some way makes the world LESS safe.

There is, of course, no substance to this "beief" but rather the "thinking" of the Modern Liberal who sees things in terms of "feelings." Since the terrorists are only terrorists because they're "sad" then fighting back against them will only make them sadder and thus they will become even more dangerous.

Clearly killing and capturing the terrorists, cutting off their funding, denying them state sponsorship and training camps, intercepting their communications, forcing the remnants into caves, etc. makes the terrorists less of a threat and thus makes the world safer.

The bottom line is that during the appeasement years of the Clinton and Carter administrations we had our embassies blown up two at a time, our ships at sea bombed, offices in Saudi Arabia and New York attacked, etc. yet, from the very day we changed that policy and started fighting back in the wake of 9/11 there has not been a single successful terrorist attack in America OR ON AN AMERICAN INTEREST anywhere in the world.

Simply consider the different outcomes when Jimmy Carter was in the White House and the terrorists took over our embassy and held our citizens hostage for 444 days because they knew the weakness of a Democratic President and the appeasement policies of the leftists and when Syrian terrorists recently tried to take over our embassy there and the government said "no way, we're not going to suffer the wrath of a Republican president!"

Obama is among the few politicians who speaks about and to the people in the U.S., Iran and Israel and not just to the heads of state.

People who believe Dick Cheney's belligerence is the message that can win hearts and minds may find Obama's honesty hard to understand.

I AM A SENIOR AND VERY ACTIVE AND WORK THREE DAYS A WEEK...
I KEEP UP WITH LOCAL AND WORLD NEW EVERY DAY. I AM VERY
DISAPOINTED WITH THE COVERAGE ON IMMAGRATION. THE SUNTIMES
FRONT PAGE BLEEDING HEART STORY OF THE MEXICAN WOMEN...
HOW COME YOU DIDN'T RUN THE STORY OR PICTURE OF THE MEXICAN
STUDENTS AT THE CALIFORNIA HIGH SCHOOL, DISACRATING MY AMERICAN
FLAG. #1 THAT IS NOT PROTESTING ... ITS MY FLAG..IF THEY CAN'T
RESPECT IT. LIKE I DO THEN I DONT WANT THEM..#2 WHAT ARE THEY
TEACHING THEM IN THAT SCHOOL. IT IS DIFFENTELY NOT THE AMERICAM
WAY.... THESE AMERICAN FLAGS HATERS.. ARE THE FUTURE TERROIST
THEY DON'T HAVE TO COME FROM IROC.THESE FLAGS HATERS ARE ALL
VERY YOUNG KIDS, WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY GET OLDER, TO GET EVEN
WITH THE BAD AMERICANS AND THERE FLAG, NOW MAY THEY WILL BOMB A
A FEW BUILDING TO GET EVEN......................

Obama's speech is a tortured and peculiar thing indeed. Is there anybody in there? I really want to believe in this guy, but like Hillary he's telling AIPAC what it wants to hear and clearly unable to envision any progress between Israel and the Palestinians because he buys into the continuing rhetoric of the war on "terror." Terror has many faces, including the implacable steel face of a giant Israeli bulldozer (made in the USA) as it tears down Palestinian houses. Did Obama see this on his helicopter ride, or just the neat hedges of the Israeli settlements? I'll find someone else to vote for if he keeps up this hypocrisy.

I'm so sick of Democratic candidates talking about the threats faced by Israel. Why dont they ever mention the much more deadly threat that Israelis pose to Palestinians? Israel kils WAY more Palestinians than vice versa. Same deal in Lebanon, Israel killed over 1000 Lebanese civilians, Hezbollah killed about 50, and 140 Israeli soldiers. If any Democrat speaks up for the Palestinians, then I'm voting for that candidate.

We need to tell the Democrats to stop putting Israeli interests ahead of American ones, and no, the two are not one in the same!

Poster Evan Sayet suggested that the Iranians "caved" when Reagan came into office. That's quite a revisionist spin on things. You must not have been around back then. Let me help you out: the Iranians didn't release the hostages because they were "afraid" of Reagan. They released the hostages to spite America. It was a signal that they, the hostage takers were the ones in control.

I am sick and tired of Reagan worshippers trying to spin the best out of a bad situation. Everyone around the world saw the release for what it was. Republican operatives who think that the release was a signal of Reagan's "strength" show themselves to be naive pie in the sky thinkers without a solid grasp on reality.

maybe israel is a democratic country, but it is a more dangerous country than iran when you see what this country have done with the palestinian population since this country exist.
How it can be possible that a nation force an other not to have ports and airport, and how can be possible that israel build in the palestinian territory when the onu say it is not an israel territory?
There are billions of palestinian citizen with less and less water and food because israel take all against all international laws.
The world have to help every time palestinians citizens to save them, and all because of the israel policy.
There is regulary israel raids on gaza and always civils women and childrens killed by that.
Israel is killing the palestinan population making living them in a huge prison, and doing raids...
Peace can only be possible if people, understand that terrorism grow with the help of israel policy, because the death and poverty they made around them make people angry.
There is jewish people who say they are ashamed by the acts of israel and i understand them.
Israel is not a jewish country, it use this false image to be protected by the history and precisly to holocaust.
A true jewish can not defend this policy.
If israel realy want peace, they have to help and give to palestinans.
If Iran could lie to people and could say israel must desapear it is because israel is criminal with others, but if we change this fact, iran would not have one little true reason to say bad things like that and it will help people to be more friendly with israel and western countries, killing the dictature and integrism.

All depend on how western countries and israel will treat arab people and muslims inside them and in the world.
Peace need the true intention to have peace.

If Obama see only the bad things of the arab side, it will not bring peace but war.

Is this anything more than being a flip flopper for political expediency? Not change I can believe in....

Republicans or Democrats, both parties will always support Israel blindly and cover its war crimes and international law violations in the Middle East region.

And they ask you why the people in the Middle East hate USA!

obama in this speech looks the same like others mccain,clintons
who support israelis for more occupations,a forign bad policy which isolate israel and USA from the rest of the world.
obama should know the american people who supported him not the lobbies to become the nominaee

Obama has proven that he is just like the rest of the rotten lot. He does not have the courage or moral judgement to speak about Israel's brutality against the Palestinians.

What a shame!

Obama has proven that he is just like the rest of the rotten lot. He does not have the courage or moral judgement to speak about Israel's brutality against the Palestinians.

What a shame!

No longer supporting Obama because he refuses to recognize the massive number of innocent people- Palestinians, Iraqis, Iranians, etc. who don't have a hand in domestic politics. Shame on him for kissing butt for money.

i voted and donated and supported obama but after this speech no more

Everyone has to stick their nose till the nostrils become brown before they become eligible to become the President. The tail wags the dog because the dog's brain resides in its tail

It seems to me that Mr. Obama is not running for the US presidential candidate but for the Israeli presidency. I was so upset by his speech not because of favoring Israel in the all aspect but because of his mentality and precondition to short out all the issue between I-P.

for all those who are now realizing that Obama is no diffrent than most other politicians (political opportunists) and have decided to no longer back him. I hope you will also begin to realize that the only candidate that really offered any hope for "change" was Ron Paul. Oh well, one can only hope that others will begin to see the hugely missed opportunty this nation (and indeed the world) had this election season.

i hope Ron Paul,to be the president,obama is the same like the others,FOX news guide him what to say,what to do [indirectely]

After reading all the comments I realized the immense ignorance of these americans,not only for their confused and biased ideas but also for their lack of knowledge of the english language.May God help America!

At the risk of sounding like an apologist, I’d say that Obama’s AIPAC speech was something he had to do to stay on the road to the Whitehouse. He had to counter the OMG-a-towel-headed-hussein-is-going-to-be-President germ before it got out of hand.

If we take a step back, however, it is absolutely clear that Obama has enough going for him to be a great President who can help reverse some of the damage done by Bush. Obama is not and can never be a magic pill for all the ills… he will ultimately be President of the USA, and that the USA has been consistently on the wrong side of several issues (Cuba for one), irrespective of whether it was a Red or a Blue Whitehouse.

The path that America took (is still taking) with 9/11 is interesting and Appu might take a closer look at that in his blog in the next week or so but, simply put, the Americans are realising that their knee jerk reaction to 9/11 has caused ‘em more pain and made the problem worse (indicator: The Taliban has been hijacking & selling American helicopters). For the first time in a long time, the Americans have been forced to use their brains at an election (to the extent that it is possible).

http://parippuplease.blogspot.com/

"My plan also allows for a limited number of U.S. troops to remain and
prevent Iraq from becoming a haven for international terrorism and reduce
the risk of all-out chaos."= the US will stay in Iraq= security for israel

"and we can, then, more effectively deal with one of the
greatest threats to the United States, Israel and world peace: Iran."
= the US will fight in place of Israel for Israel's interest: destroy Iran. (i mean wtf do most americans care about iran?, , even if they had nuclear weapons, they still don't have the technology to launch them as far as the US.)

And while we
should take no option, including military action, off the table,
= we are going to war with Iran under Obama.


Hey america, wake up! AIPAC runs this country,

I guess I am now considered a "anti-semite" for writing this. -DANG!

AIPAC, maybe in the future you can make the action of questioning ANY jew in america... illegal? sounds crazy, however do just that, and loose your high profile job.

The Palestinians can expect no help, mercy off Gordon Brown or Uncle Tom Obama, who rapidly nailed his Zionist membership card to the mast of the Zionist flagpole to secure his election.
Witness his gut churning grovelling to the Zionist war machine by Obama at his AIPAC address speech 2008
Hardly now likely to upset the apple-cart 2weeks before his inauguration as Leader of the Free World
YUK!!! makes ya wanna puke through the roof, along with Hillary Clinton's grovelling
Kinda sad really, considering the USA's upper most Defence & Security departments have their phones tapped by Israeli spies also under Bill Clinton

Maybe now things will start changing, who knows.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on March 2, 2007 2:35 PM.

Sweet blog special: GOP launches first attack on Obama. Just before Israel policy speech in Chicago, accuses him of skimpy foreign policy record. was the previous entry in this blog.

Sweet blog special: In Selma with Barack and Hillary. Rahm publically picks a side--with HRC is the next entry in this blog.

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