- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 17, 2000

Why did the United Nations Security Council vote to condemn the Israelis for excessive violence without even mentioning the provocative acts of violence committed by the Palestinians?

And why did the United States fail to veto such a partisan and unbalanced UN resolution? This is particularly puzzling, given the Clinton-Gore administration's firsthand knowledge that Israel Prime Minister Ehud Barak had gone further than anybody ever dreamed in making significant concessions to Yasser Arafat, only to see them summarily rejected.

It was Arafat who chose to resolve the crisis in the streets rather than through diplomacy. And yet, the United States pulled the rug out from under the Israelis at a critical moment when they truly needed and deserved support.

A direct answer to these questions has been studiously avoided by the media and leaders in the White House. The answer is simple. It is this: the Arab nations once again have the nations of the western world, including America, over an oil barrel.

The explanation is given that we threw Israel overboard so we could remain a neutral broker in the “peace process.” This is a story concocted to cover the harsh truth that we have made ourselves increasingly vulnerable to blackmail. We are finally reaping the whirlwind for allowing environmental extremists to dictate our energy policy. It is a policy which has discouraged the building of new refineries, forbidden oil exploration, and imposed heavy regulations and mandates on production processes.

Today, crude oil prices are surging to all-time highs, general inventories are thin, heating oil inventories are 51 percent lower than at this time last year, and refineries can't meet demands. Our vulnerability is such that our archenemy Saddam Hussein, could, with a single command, stop Iraq's production of 3 million barrels a day and throw the American economy and the stock market into a tailspin.

Even if the current situation does not degrade along worst-case lines, the future of Israel hangs precariously in the balance. Even now, America's erstwhile best friend in the Middle East is essentially alone and isolated. Many of those who would help, dare not. And there is an awful calculation underway in the inner sanctums of major governments. Some diplomat, even now, possibly one in the White House, is saying, “We could get rid of our fear of an oil embargo and we could greatly minimize the possibility of more attacks and deaths caused by terrorists. All we have to do is give up Israel.”

The so-called Middle East “peace process” was ill-conceived from the start. The Clinton-Gore team sent political operatives to Israel to help engineer the election of the accommodating Ehud Barak as Prime Minister, replacing the tough-minded Benjamin Netanyahu. This cleared the way for Clinton's peace-at-any-cost process, which eventually meant Barak conceding everything and Arafat conceding nothing.

There was a time when America had a policy of not negotiating with terrorists. The Clinton-Gore tandem brought a career terrorist into high-level negotiations and treated him like a statesman. Arafat, Saddam Hussein, the Palestinians, and terrorists everywhere, including those in Yemen, viewed every concession as a sign of weakness. Their current aggressiveness and intractability stem from their perception that the enemy does not have the will to win or the resolve to endure.

A backlash is under way. Co-president Hillary was booed off the stage at a huge pro-Israel rally in New York. Other speakers were more favorably received, including Gov. George Pataki, Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, senatorial candidate Rick Lazio, and Jerusalem Mayor Ehud Olmert.

Meanwhile, Algore is desperately trying to straddle the unstraddleable gulf developing between American Arabs and Jews. He has brought aboard James Zogby, a fervent, Arab-American activist, to serve as a senior adviser to his campaign. And, for good measure, he is keeping vice-presidential candidate Joe Lieberman out of sight.

Hillary and Algore are afraid that before the election, a politically ruinous truth will seep into the American psyche. It is the truth that their implementation of crazy environmental policies, their emaciation of America's military strength, their transfer of military secrets and technology to potential enemies, their plunder of strategic oil reserves, and their diplomatic incompetence have made America and Israel vulnerable to enemies who would throw a party and do a river dance on their graves.

The good news is this: Help is on the way! Expected time of arrival: Nov. 7, 2000.

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