Oh, H.R. 4133…
The House passed the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act (H.R. 4133) on Wednesday. The vote was close: 411 yeas, 2 nays. Nothing like a nail-biter!
Among other things, H.R. 4133 sought to make it crystal clear that the United States continues to “reaffirm the enduring commitment of the United States to the security of the State of Israel as a Jewish state” and hopes to accomplish this though helping “Israel preserve its qualitative military edge” over and against… er… all the non-Jews without nuclear weapons in the region?
Don’t be fooled though; this was extremely important. To date, the United States hasn’t been clear what “side” of the Middle-Eastern back-and-forth it’s on. President after president, congressional budget after congressional budget, Israel has suffered under the United States’ ambiguous (and inconsistent) commitment to their existence and preeminence in the Middle East. Consider this from the Congressional Research Service:
Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II. To date, the United States has provided Israel $115 billion in bilateral assistance. Almost all U.S. bilateral aid to Israel is in the form of military assistance, although in the past Israel also received significant economic assistance. Strong congressional support for Israel has resulted in Israel receiving benefits not available to any other countries; for example, Israel can use some U.S. military assistance both for research and development in the United States and for military purchases from Israeli manufacturers. In addition, all U.S. assistance earmarked for Israel is delivered in the first 30 days of the fiscal year, while most other recipients normally receive aid in installments. In addition to receiving U.S. State Department-administered foreign assistance, Israel also receives funds from annual defense appropriations bills for joint U.S.-Israeli missile defense programs.
Nothing like… uhhh… apathy? Okay, maybe that was a bad case-in-point. What of President Barack Hussein Obama? We all know he’s a “Hate Israel Firster.” I mean, heck, Obama is a Muslim, right?? Here again, from the summary of the Congressional Research Service report:
In 2007, the Bush Administration and the Israeli government agreed to a 10-year, $30 billion military aid package that gradually will raise Israel’s annual Foreign Military Financing grant from a baseline of nearly $2.55 billion in FY2009 to approximately $3.1 billion for FY2013 through FY2018. For FY2013, the Obama Administration is requesting $3.1 billion in FMF to Israel.
* Visit this site for more blistering information on Obama’s hatred for the Jewish state of Israel.
In all seriousness, though, what the heck?
Republicans typically balk at welfarism; yet this is an extreme form of welfarism! Conservatives attack the poor, they mock those on food stamps and they ridicule the unemployed. These unfortunate souls, we are told, need to learn some good old fashioned self-government. “Don’t just give ‘em fish!” they insist, “otherwise, they’ll never learn how to fish for themselves!” Damn dependency on the government. That’s slavery, after all.
And what of the Democrats? They voted 175-to-1 in favor of an “enduring commitment… to the security of the State of Israel as a Jewish state.” Really? What happened to separation of church and state being an essential ingredients to a truly just and fair democratic republic? What of the non-Jewish Israelis? And how does this reflect on our alleged commitment to even-handed negotiations in the Middle East? More directly, at least in light of election-time rhetoric, how ought this to effect how Americans view democratic criticisms of the religious right for wishing to secure the United States as a Christian nation?
Welcome to Glaring Inconsistencies 101.