Yossi Sarid / GA delegates - beware when you cheer for Netanyahu
When it comes to America, Netanyahu's rules change suddenly: The U.S. will continue to give generously, and will get an obscene hand gesture in return.
Your convention is opening five days after the "defeat" of Barack Hussein Obama, so it's best not to come off like a tea party this time. While the surveys indicate that most of you are still loyal to the Democratic Party, you find comfort in the strengthening of the pro-Israel wing in Congress.
The electorate managed to oust a number of critics and bring in obsessive writers of support letters and professional petition-signers for Israel.
It is precisely friends like this we must beware. Over-friendship is not really deeply interested in our situation and is not really familiar with the details. Give us fair friend-adversaries who do not spare the rod.
It was Henry Kissinger who first made the distinction more than 30 years ago: Israel has no foreign policy, only domestic policy, he said. He both hit and missed the mark: Foreign and domestic policy are one and the same for us. When war breaks out, another war, it is the usually the outcome of a mistake we made.
What happened to us already is now happening to America. It is mired in separatist, selfish considerations. At least Israel can rest assured it will get its share and more, but that is blind support. We are blindly marching toward the next calamity, as the Military Intelligence chief warned last week.
Tonight you will stand at the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in New Orleans and cheer the prime minister of Israel. But this is the man who weakened your president and a weak American president is bad for the Jews.
The whole world is watching and can hardly believe it: an American president as friendly as can be, lavishing abundance on his ally - yet how can he influence others when that ally won't even heed his words? He begs for another two months of frozen construction in the settlements, they haggle with him and then send him away empty-handed.
If in an unimportant matter they ignore and embarrass him, what can we and Obama expect when really important issues come up?
Netanyahu's partnership with Obama is a contradiction to Netanyahu's own principle of negotiation - if they give, they'll get. When it comes to America the rule changes suddenly: It will continue to give generously, and will get an obscene hand gesture in return.
If you really care about Israel, delegates, you should remember when you stand and cheer that Netanyahu freely chose an extreme, nationalist, xenophobic, clerical coalition. He could have an alternative coalition at any time, but he rejects it for reasons of convenience and political survival.
His coalition also ignores you. Most of you belong to the Conservative or Reform movements, and his natural partners despise you. As long as you are there, sending money and applauding, fine. But if you want to become more involved, or send your children or grandchildren, be warned, they will be thoroughly investigated.
Israel today, as expressed by the Netanyahu-Yishai-Lieberman coalition, recognizes only support for settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, only people who fund their provocations have the right to speak.
Honor Netanyahu tonight. He is an elected prime minister. Honor him and beware of him. And very importantly, tell him your true concerns to his face.