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The Differences Between a Politician & A Statesman

Reader comment on item: Assessing Binyamin Netanyahu's Speech at Bar-Ilan University
in response to reader comment: A Jewish Response to Netanyahu's Speech

Submitted by Adina Kutnicki, Israel (Israel), Jun 15, 2009 at 08:32

In times of national crisis it is often revealed who is merely a politician-adept or otherwise-and who is truly a statesman.It must be noted that one can be both a brilliant politican and a statesman. It is not a zero sum game.

This is important to recognize particularly during this moment of truth for Israel. The fact that world leaders are for the most part aligned against Israel is tragically nothing new. It would be surprising if they acted differently.

That being said, while PM Netanyahu spoke eloquently and passionately about Jewish rights and title to our homeland, he undid all his eloquence by behaving like Obama. In no uncertain terms, after trumpeting our rights to our land, he segued into what amounted to an 'on the other hand'. Even though he didn't use those exact words, his meaning was very clear. He stated for the record and before the entire world that Israel was ready to give up its heartland ! on the condition that the PA met certain stringent requirements.

Now, there are many who are hailing this as a win-win for Netanyahu and by extension for Israel. They understand that in all likelihood the PA leaders won't accept any of the parameters set out. This is most likely true. More importantly, Netanyahu's statement revealed that DESPITE the fact that we are Israel's legitimate owners we are still willing to give it up. Color me ignorant, but no leader agrees to give up their land under ANY condition, unless they lose said land in war. The symbolism of his gesture/gambit constitutes alot more than wily politics.

At this juncture his words only accomplished a short respite from Obama's dictates, yet most tragically served to push PA demands to an even more frightening pitch. IF I were listening to this speech from the confines of Ramallah or Gaza I would surely tell my fellow jihadists that our jihad had to continue, if only because the (right wing) Israeli PM agrees that we have rights to the land too.

What is forgetten in all this is that several hundred thousand, zionist, courageous Jews, our frontlines in this struggle-tax paying citizens no less-have been told from their PM that their communities are illegitimate, and their existence there is truly temporary-if the Arabs behave themselves.

A true statesman would never had made such a bargain with the devil.

Submitting....

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