By Faisal Assegaf
Following race between Barack Hussein Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton is like watching the fighting between two supporters of Israel. During six months campaign exhaustedly, those two US presidential candidates from Democrat party have showed many times their support against the Zionist state.
Those two nominees along with John Edwards have been recomended by National Jewish Democrat Council (NJDC) for the Jewish voters. The pro-Israel position showed by Hillary and Edwards wasn’t surprisingly. They have been well known very actively defended Israel occupying Palestine.
For Hillary, Israel wasn’t a strange country. She visited there dozen times. While accompanied her husband, President Bill Clinton, in 1994, she prayed at the Western Wall located in the Al-Aqsha mosque compound, east Jerusalem. Since she was chosen as a Congress member eight years ago, Hillary and Edwards were co-sponsor a number of rules supported Israel, included Syrian Accountability Law and Act of Palestinian Anti Terror.
This New York Senator has also called for the US donor restriction to International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) until they recognize the Magen David Adom (MDA), Israeli Red Cross. The effort was successful in 2006. For her merits, she has got honorable doctor from the Yeshiva University, Jerusalem.
Certainly, Obama’s support against Israel is very ironic. Whereas, he has got place in Arab-American communities because of his consistency supporting Palestine. He has said, “There’s no anyone more suffered than Palestinians.”
Even his father was a muslim, he has become congregation of the Trinity United Community Church in Chicago led by Pastor Jeremiah Wright Jr. The pastor has married him with Michele and baptized his two children. Obama has been so admired on Jeremiah and he has recognized him as his spiritual teacher and also his moral guide.
Because of his close relationship with Jeremiah, Obama has been stamped out as anti-Israel. This caused by the pastor frequently blame on the Jewish country and always proud of the black race. He always comparing Israeli war crimes against Palestinians with the apartheid has been run in South Africa. Jeremiah was also supporter of Louis Farrakhan who called Judaism as a gutter religion and Jews are like blood sucker.
Today, Obama has change into a supporter of Israel. This policy should be done to compete for the ticket to the White House. He must be realized that how strong the Jewish lobbies in the US domestic politics, included in his party. You can imagine the Jewish communities in the United States have contributed more than 60 percents of all Democrat’s campaign funds.
He obviously can’t deny the reality that since 1920s, Jews have voted for candidates from Democrat. A survey in 2004 election against 1,511 the Jewish voters, showed that 78 percents respondents supported John Kerry, Democrat nominee, and the rest voted for President George Walker Bush.
This Illinois Senator has also recognized that the Jews dominated Congress members from Democrat as a result of 2006 election. There were 40 Democrat members from 43 Jews in the Congress. They have also place strategic positions, like Harry Reid who became majority leader in Senate and Senator Joseph Biden who chaired Foreign Relations Committee. There were also Nancy Pelosi who became House of Representatives speaker and Tom Lantos, chairman of Foreign Relations Committee.
The changing of Obama’s political position happened since two years ago. The beginning when he visited Israel for the first time in January. From Israeli chopper, he has seen emotionally children who played in Sderot, which only one kilometer from Gaza Strip border was a target of Qassam rockets almost every day. Since that time, he became an Israeli lover.
The sacrifice of his principal and political ideology that pro-Palestine has been successful. Last week, he made history becoming a first black US presidential candidate after stopped Hillary’s efforts. As his congratulation to the Jewish voters, he conveyed his first victory remarks in front of American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) members. In that occasion, he reaffirmed his commitments to Israel, included acknowledged Jerusalem as the capital of the Zionist state.
Perhaps a lot people have doubted Obama’s commitments to support Israel. But, this 46 years old man obviously has learned to love Israel. In the last two years, he learned to close his eyes and his ears from the suffering of Palestinians caused by 60 years Israeli occupation.
The political position was in line with Global Review of Anti-Semitism Law signed by President Bush in October 2004. This rule has obliged Foreign Minister Condoleezza Rice to submit annual report about anti-Semitism actions around the world. He must also appoint a special envoy chairing an office of anti-Semitism control and battle.
The international community will watch again the competition between two supporters of Israel on the last stage of the US presidential election. Obama is facing John McCain, a candidate from Republic party who was very pro-Israel. McCain has asked blessing from Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and several Israeli officials after won the convention.
Therefore, anyone who will be the next US president will not change Palestinians destiny. There will never be a peace and Palestinian independent state.
This article was published on Koran Tempo, 12 June 2008