Thursday, October 30, 2014
When you call an ally, "chickenshit", you are engaged in strange diplomacy. That was what an American government official called the Israeli prime minister. Gutter language is not a part of diplomacy, even if one hates the opposition. One must always leave a door open for talks and for peacemaking. It is a fact that the Israeli government pounded the Palestinians in the latest outbreak between the two countries. America advised against it, but Netanyahu went ahead. So too, the decision to build new housing in Jerusalem territory claimed by Palestinians. Bad and self-interested behavior is a norm in diplomacy. One should hardly be offended by it. Countries and their leaders think of their own security first. That is as it should be. It takes unusual circumstances and a leader with courage to put a country into potential jeopardy in order to seek peace. In Netanyahu's defense, Palestinians haven't merited much outreach with their continuous effort to rocket and mortar Israel. One would think the American official would understand that. At least to the point where he would not have called Netanyahu poultry manure.