By Alan Caruba
In life as in international affairs the rule is to never show weakness. It tends to awaken a bloodlust and too often leads to the worst outcomes.
In the Arab culture this is especially true. They are a pretty cowardly bunch as people go. Their weapon of choice these days is the suicide bomber; some dimwit who thinks 72 virgins are awaiting him. As 9/11 demonstrated, they have developed the sneak attack to perfection and, not surprisingly, the word “assassin” comes from Arabic. Arabs prefer to wage war on the weak and that usually means each other.
They tried destroying Israel in 1948, 1967, and 1973. They failed. They were especially unhappy with the protection and friendship America extended, but now they have less reason to be unhappy. They have, they suspect, a Muslim in the White House. A lot of other people suspect that as well.
They have spent decades using their fellow Arabs, the so-called Palestinians, as a wedge to pry loose land from Israel in exchange for a peace that never occurs.
The Israelis withdrew from southern Lebanon in May 2000. Hezbollah made war on them from southern Lebanon in 2006. The Israelis withdrew from the Gaza strip in 2005. Hamas used it as a platform for 10,000 rockets, an act of war punished in recent months. One wonders how Hamas found the time when they weren’t making war on Fatah, another Palestinian group.
Other acts of Arab “courage” include Iraq’s Saddam Hussein using poison gas against an Iraqi village of Kurds. When not slaughtering other Iraqis, he waged war against Iran for eight fruitless years, settling for a truce. Then he invaded Kuwait. And people keep wondering why, after chasing the Taliban out of Afghanistan, George W. Bush decided that the Middle East would be better off without Saddam Hussein. If you ask the Saudis or the Gulf State sheiks, they would agree.
They would also agree that their next big problem is not the United States, nor Israel, but Iran. Iran is composed mainly of Persians, not Arabs, and of Shiites, the minority sect of Islam where the Sunnis are used to calling the shots. Rumor has it the Persians have a low opinion of Arabs.
As for Muslims in general, ask any nation where they have or begin to gain a majority population status and you will discover a combination of antipathy and fear. Arab Muslims always insist on their rules, not yours. They neither trust, nor like each other much.
Israel knows how essential it is to show no weakness. Bibi Netanyahu did not genuflect to President Obama during his recent visit and dismissed U.S. demands about West Bank settlements. Israeli’s have no intention of withdrawing into six blocks of Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. Lately, they have been practicing nationwide war games in preparation for another attack from Hamas and/or Hezbollah.
The most interesting news out of Israel was Avigdor Lieberman’s statement after a recent three-day visit to Russia. The Foreign Minister said that Israel had no intention of bombing Iran’s nuclear facilities, adding that Arab nations in the region should be even more concerned about a nuclear-armed Iran than Israel. I have met Lieberman and he is a very soft-spoken man, almost inaudible, but his words have sent a very loud message to the United States, the Arab states, and the world.
“We do not intend to bomb Iran, and nobody will solve their problems with our hands. We don’t need that. Israel is a strong country. We can protect ourselves,” said Lieberman.
We shall see now how Israel’s projection of strength contrasts with whatever President Obama has to say in Cairo. If the Arabs hear a message of weakness from Obama, he will have opened the door for more attacks on the homeland and our allies.
You can be sure that President Obama’s failure to say one word thus far about this week’s Muslim jihadist murder of a U.S. Army recruiter in Little Rock, Arkansas, is being examined like the entrails of a chicken or goat for its greater significance, nor is it lost on his Arab hosts that he is not going to visit Israel on this trip.
President Kiss-Up needed to go to Turkey to tell Muslims that America is “not a Christian nation” and one can only wonder what other absurd thing he will say in Cairo, Egypt. If he sounds weak and apologetic, we shall all pay the price for his Magical Muslim Tour.