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Takin’ It To China

While China has wavered over whether to participate in the American-led march to hang sanctions on Iran, officials of the Jewish Country have been pushing their own mum campaign to convince the Chinese that Iran should be disciplined for their renegade nuclear program.


Last February, an Israeli delegation made their way to Beijing to present evidence of Iran’s nuclear ambitions. The divulged purpose of the visit was to illustrate the economic impact on China that would result from an Israeli strike on Iran. Should the international community fail to stop Iran from assembling an atomic weapon, Israel warns that an attack is inevitable.

Said one Israeli official:

“The Chinese didn’t seem too surprised by the evidence we showed them, but they really sat up in their chairs when we described what a pre-emptive attack would do to the region and on oil supplies they have come to depend on.”

Ties between Israel and China were marred when in 2000 an arms deal became bungled. The United States pressured Israel to cancel a $1 billion arms deal, many years in the making, to sell China an advanced airborne tracking system. Israel later agreed to pay a $350 million penalty. In 2005, Washington blocked another Israeli arms deal with Beijing involving a drone aircraft.

Well, Israel is also threatened by China’s growing thirst for Middle East oil from many of the Jewish State’s sworn enemies.

The Israeli ambassador to Beijing, Amos Nadai was heard saying:

“Israel is not a great supplier of the kinds of natural resources that China can find among some of our neighbors but we do have a lot to offer them, and there is a strong sense of mutual respect.”

Well, look at it in this light:

These two nations have some remarkable commonalities:

“their histories as ancient civilizations and the transformative economic growth that has defied conventional wisdom and a yearning for regional stability.”

Says Andrew Jacobs, Jerusalem correspondent for The New York Times.

In the game of tangible goods, Israel sells China: telecommunications equipment, high-tech products and irrigation systems. Trade between these two countries reached $4.5 billion last year; that’s up from $3.8 billion in 2006, although three-fourths of this is Chinese exports to Israel.

If not for the two-decade-old American-led embargo on arms sales to China which has stymied the Jewish Country’s most lucrative export, the imbalance would be less severe. Well, Israeli officials are frustrated over the ban, though they’re forced to acknowledge that their Washington relationship trumps the yearning for Chinese business.

Andrew Jacobs says that:

“Oddly enough, the close ties between Israel and the United States have become something of an Achilles’ heel for the Jewish state, during the 1990s, when Beijing was diplomatically isolated after the violent crackdown on demonstrators in Tiananmen Square, the Chinese sought closer relations with Israel because they thought it might bring them closer to the United States”

“This was an illusory period during which China thought the Jewish and Israeli lobbies could open doors for them in Washington”

Said research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies, Yoram Evron.

A deeply held affection for Karl Marx and Albert Einstein and regard for the Jewish’s country’s military prowess are cornerstones of a Chinese fascination with Jews. Adding to the previously mentioned commonalities between the two ancient nations, recall that both are victims of genocide and Japanese hatred during the era of the Second World War.

Destination: Zion

“There are about 200 countries in the world, but it seems that only two attribute holiness to their capital: Israel and Palestine (still not a recognized state, but on the way there). Perhaps three, if we count the Vatican as a state.”

– Yossi Melman

western wall jerusalemU.S. President Barack Obama is delaying an action which would move the U.S. embassy in Israel, from the Tel Aviv coast to the city of Jerusalem. Tel Aviv is the former capital city of the State of Israel – and while the nation always dreamed of having Jerusalem as its capital, the change didn’t actually happen until 1980.

In 1995 a U.S. law was passed, recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and in the same ruling it was ordered that the embassy be moved to there. The law also allowed a 6-month leeway to delay the change, in the name of national security grounds – this clause was invoked during the presidencies of both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, respectively. Barack Obama joined the U.S. presidential trend of delay, when on Thursday he told Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to delay moving the embassy until at least June.

Madeba mosaic JerusalemThe fear is that left-leaning Obama is thinking along lines similar to Yossi Melman of Haaretz, who wrote an article on June 12th 2009, suggesting that Israel give up Jerusalem as a capital altogether. He suggests that it has always been an obstacle in the Middle East peace process:

“Most capitals contain religious symbols: cathedrals, mosques, temples, but they were not selected as capitals because of these. Even Saudi Arabia did not select Mecca or Medina, holy cities to Muslims, but Riyadh as its capital. Conclusion: The attitudes attributing holiness to a city were, in most countries, isolated from the political considerations that govern and shape day-to-day life.”

The Haaretz contributor added:

“It is hard to understand how two peoples, in the modern era, are willing to die for the sake of religious symbolism of stones and places of worship. Moreover, this ‘holiness’ is preventing any chance of achieving a settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

For me, what is so hard to understand is how any Jew could be so removed from the soul of his heritage. If you wish to cite Saudi Arabia as a parallel to Israel, you are already wide of the mark. Saudi Arabia is the home of a culture which conquered much of the world often by the sword – and has most of the world shaking in their boots, today, out of sheer intimidation, inspired by a recent history of vicious violence. Israel, on the other hand, is a nation which has been oppressed more than any other on the planet and was driven from its capital as a result of racial, religious and cultural persecution. Yossi Melman is the one who should change location, not Zion.

Is Washington Become Anti-Israel?

Obama and IsraelEric Cantor of the US House of Representatives told JPost:
The possibility is there…There have been incidences of late that do not indicate that we have challenges on that front, and I’m very committed to doing everything I can to make sure that Congress remains Israel’s strongest ally in the quest for what it needs in terms of its security.

“I have a lot of concerns about what I have seen lately, about the continued desire to try to engage with Iran and about pressure being applied to Israel in terms of concessions in the name of peace…Israel is a pillar in our national security strategy and we ought to be emphasizing every bit of our commitment to Israel right now as it faces an existential threat.”

On Tuesday, President Barack Obama was supposed to speak at the Jewish Federations of North America’s annual General Assembly, but pulled out at last minute to attend the memorial service for the victims of the Fort Hood massacre, last week. Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel spoke in his place.

Late Sunday the White House confirmed that on Monday Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is coming to Washington to address the General Assembly and also to meet with members of Congress. While no conversations are scheduled between Netanyahu and Obama, Netanyahu is not concerned that the President has all together turned his back, expressed Bibi’s spokeswoman Nir Hefetz.

“If the trip’s objective had been to meet with the president of the United States, then such a meeting would have been secured in advance of the trip…The prime minister decided to travel to Washington to address the second largest Jewish community in the world after Israel, the American Jewish community.”

Netanyahu’s agenda in Washington was to give an update on Israel’s diplomatic situation, including the controversy over the Goldstone Commission’s Report and the threat from Tehran.

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