John Kerry has had a long and disgustingly distinguished career of bullying those he disagrees with, going back to his unforgiveable attacks on our servicemen in Vietnam.
The U.S. secretary of state was recently giving a speech to the Trilateral Commission, an unofficial organization of influential world leaders, when he said this about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:
"A two-state solution will be clearly underscored as the only real alternative. Because a unitary state winds up either being an apartheid state with second-class citizens — or it ends up being a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state. Once you put that frame in your mind, that reality, which is the bottom line, you understand how imperative it is to get to the two-state solution, which both leaders, even yesterday, said they remain deeply committed to."
Mr. Kerry didn't think there would be any reporters at this meeting, but — surprise — there were, and, rightfully so, his comments touched off firestorms in both the United States and Israel. Accusing Israel of becoming an "apartheid" state is very inflammatory and insulting language.
You'd think the secretary of state would understand what a loaded word "apartheid" is.
You'd also think the secretary of state would understand that nobody in Israel is actually contemplating a "unitary state." That's just Palestinian propaganda. Using such language is a tip-off that Mr. Kerry, and the Obama administration, have taken sides in this long-running conflict — and it isn't Israel's side.
Mr. Kerry and President Obama desperately want a "legacy" achievement in the Middle East, and they think they can bully Israel into making concessions to reach it. Pushing Israel around is a lot easier than trying to lean on the Palestinians, because Israel holds the same values America does. Israelis don't want to be an apartheid state, or come anywhere near it. There are Arab members of the Israeli Knesset, Arab judges on the Israeli Supreme Court, and Arab ambassadors representing the state of Israel.
Mr. Kerry was miffed at the Israelis for suspending negotiations with the Palestinians. They did this because the Palestinian Authority entered into a united agreement with the terrorist group Hamas. Does the Obama administration really want to put its hands on Israel's shoulders and force them to remain seated at the bargaining table after Hamas pulls up a chair? We're supposed to think the only options are "cut a deal with Hamas" or "become an apartheid state?"
There's no way to read Mr. Kerry's comments in a way that doesn't insult and diminish Israel, while giving support to this questionable Palestinian government. He offered a weak semi-apology after his "apartheid" remarks became public knowledge, saying, "If I could rewind the tape, I would have chosen a different word to describe my firm belief that the only way in the long term to have a Jewish state and two nations and two peoples living side by side in peace and security is through a two-state solution."
Well, he can't rewind the tape. He can't take it back. He is the secretary of state of the United States of America. His words have consequences and his message was delivered. The Israelis, rightfully so, have made it clear they are in no mood to be bullied, and now his words are forever written in stone. That's his legacy. For that reason, John Kerry is this week's Liberal Bully of the Week.
Rusty Humphries, a nationally syndicated talk-radio host, is a contributor to The Washington Times.