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For the first time, Turkey did not turn to Israel to mobilize Jewish lobbies against Congress’ annual attempt to pass a resolution on the Armenian genocide. The resolution, accordingly, passed the Foreign Affairs Committee and will now test Obama’s nerve. He can sacrifice morality to expediency, as Bush did three years ago, and urge Congress to drop the resolution. Or he can take the moral high ground and tear Turkey from the West.

The Armenian genocide resolution would be a heavy blow to the embattled remnants of Turkey’s secular establishment, as it would signify that America does not support them anymore.

Perhaps Obama could send Clinton to do the hack job on the resolution in Congress. So far, he has kept a low profile in urging congress to vote against the resolution. Obama is constrained by his clear electoral promise to classify the Turkish massacre of Armenians as genocide—which, like his other promises, he cannot fulfill.

As Obama’s envoy Mitchell is due to arrive in Israel to begin shuttling between Jerusalem and Ramallah for the indirect peace talks, Israeli media predict that his involvement will intensify American pressure on Israel because Obama cannot afford to lose once his administration is involved directly. Wrong. Obama has lost on many issues, and his loss on this one will, at most, result in a few I-told-you-so’s in the State Department, while remaining entirely irrelevant to common Americans.

The talks are utterly senseless. Abbas rejected Olmert’s offer on Jerusalem and refugees, saying that the “gaps are too wide,” yet Netanyahu offers even less than Olmert did.

Netanyahu is also demanding Palestinian security guarantees, which Abbas cannot deliver. Besides, security is impossible in a situation in which, for example, a plane landing in Palestine could attack Tel Aviv 9/11 style within about three minutes. By the time IAF recognized that the pilot did not err, it would be too late to shoot down the plane.

The routine Friday riots on the Temple Mount by loyal Arabs turned out exceptionally hot today. Some 60 Jews were hurt by rock-throwers.

Police arrested only a handful of Arab cheerleaders and let the majority of the attackers escape. Instead of taking the necessary security measures, police forcibly evacuated Jews who were praying at the Western Wall.

Jewish religious law leaves no doubt about the proper punishment for natives who refuse to submit to Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel.

The chief of Iran’s nuclear energy commission announced that the Bushehr reactor will go hot this spring. The reactor had not been expected to start operation until autumn.

The Russians will miss this deadline, too, but the important part is that they are cooperating with Iran despite their talk about sanctions.

Israel has not taken the hint from the Russian delays in launching the Bushehr: we have to bomb the place before it starts operating in order to prevent another Chernobyl in case of attack.

March 2010
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