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article imageOp-Ed: Clinton lays out 10 year war plan in AIPAC speech

By John McAuliffe     Mar 21, 2016 in Politics
Hillary Clinton has concluded her speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). She has outlined a predominantly hostile policy against Iran and firm military commitment to Israel's needs.
Clinton's AIPAC speech painted very strong comparisons of America to Israel, Iran to terrorism, and Trump to Hitler. The world view portrayed in her speech resembled far-right Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu's rather than that of an American Democrat, but understandably so. AIPAC is America's single largest lobby group, but it is also one of Israel's lobby groups active in the U.S. It has traditionally had a very powerful influence over the success and failures of election campaigns of American politicians and frequently drafts legislature for Congress on behalf of those elected, requiring only their signature of approval thereafter.
As such a political heavyweight, it has become standard practise to appease AIPAC when running for elected office in the U.S. Hillary Clinton has done just that. Her greatest contenders are Sanders and Trump, both of who have been rather ambiguous regarding their stance on Israel. Trump has voiced his support for Israel, but his commitments lack zeal. Sanders has stated he is neutral on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, which is not good enough for AIPAC. Clinton has come out as a fervent zealot for Israel's cause, strongly attacking any notion of neutrality: "America can't ever be neutral when it comes to Israel's security."
Indeed she is not neutral. Seeking to bring American-Israeli relations to "the next level", Clinton confirmed this would be based on military relations: "That’s why I believe we must take our alliance to the next level. I hope a new 10-year defense memorandum of understanding is concluded as soon as possible to meet Israel’s security needs..."
Clinton also voiced her personal approval of relations with Israel's current Prime Minister, Netanyahu, stating: "One of the first things I will do as President is invite the Israeli Prime Minister to the White House"
This can also be seen as an attack on Obama's relations with Netanyahu, which have deteriorated over the past few years to the point of avoiding each other on official state visits. Netanyahu has even flown to the U.S. to meet high-profile Republicans in unofficial visits, and recently received Vice President Biden in Israel hours before announcing the annexation of 234 more hectors of Palestinian territory. The policy runs contrary to Obama's official position on supporting the two-state solution, a position neither Republicans nor Clinton have voiced much consideration for. Although in her speech, she passingly voiced mild support for a two-state solution to tepid applause.
One of Clinton's strongest points for winning support from AIPAC was her vicious position of hostility and zero tolerance against Iran, a position Netanyahu is famously fixated on. Generating the loudest applause of her speech, she announced: "This (Iran) is a serious danger, and it demands a serious response. The US must continue to enforce existing sanctions and must impose new sanctions..."
Further supporting sanctions and past sanctions regimes, she said:
"I really believe the US, Israel and the world, are safer as a result, but still as I laid out in a speech (...) its not good enough to trust and verify. Our approach must be to distrust..."
Despite Iran's moderate President having accomplished a remarkable recovery of relations with the international community, including the U.S., and despite Iran's moderates having made significant gains in the country's recent elections this year, Hillary proceeded to slam them, claiming: "This remains an extremist regime."
Clinton's position appears to dismiss and undermine Obama's accomplishments by proposing America resume the status quo of hostile treatment against Iran. She claims her concerns are for peace.
But Clinton announced her intended plans to bring peace to the Middle-East. She unveiled a plan for America and Israel to jointly engage in international warfare against Islamic State and to solve the Palestinian issue without much involvement from Palestine. But she also expressly sought to keep the international community out of the latter issue: "I would vigorously oppose any attempt for outside parties to impose a solution, including by the UN Security Council."
It wasn't long before Clinton resorted to outright flattery, despite it's accuracy being highly suspect. For her, even America takes the back seat in liberty and tolerance when it comes to Israel: "We marvel that such a bastion of liberty exists (referring to Israel) (...) we wonder what's taking so long for us here, in America."
"America should be better than this"
Overall, her speech portrayed nearly everyone at fault except Israel and the U.S., which she advocated become inseparable against Iran, a Europe with "rising anti-Semitism," and even the United Nations. It was a speech certainly intended to make an Israeli blush, but the authenticity and accuracy of the world view portrayed in the speech should be a stern concern for voters when they go to the polls. Are Americans ready to go hand in hand with Israel to war against Islamic State and possibly Iran while alienating the international community? Are Americans willing to part with their moral standing by tying their fate to a state that is in breach of dozens of UN resolutions? These are questions that elevate foreign policy to a much higher standing than is often attributed it at election time, but they are questions that will profoundly affect America's position in the world if Clinton is elected.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about Hillary clinton, Clinton, AIPAC, Israel, America
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