The current Israeli prime minister – general election on 17th ins. – Benjamin Netanyahu gave a speech yesterday to the US Congress following an invitation from Republican Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner. The invitation bypassed normal protocol by not informing the president prior to it being issued; several Democrat members of Congress boycotted the speech.
The speech (transcript of Netanyahu speech) focused on Israel’s fantasies about Iran and, in particular, fantasies about Iran’s nuclear weaponry potential. The Iranian government has had success recently with its developments in nuclear power despite unjust restrictions on access to materials placed upon it by the US and allies. There is no evidence that Iran has attempted to develop nuclear weaponry and, indeed, international inspections have found absolutely no evidence of such. Facts, however, are alien to Netanyahu and his baying mob of fans. His speech repeats his tired, old, many times disproved, narrative on Iran’s capabilities and its intentions while simultaneously and offensively casting Israel as a defender of freedom and progressive. Clive Staples Lewis would surely shudder in his grave in Oxford if he heard his wonderful Chronicles Of Narnia being lampooned so clumsily: Iran cast as Jadis with the potential to plunge the Arabian peninsula into a permanent (nuclear) winter and Netanyahu as Aslan aided by the children of the US. Narnia, of course, is much more believable than the bizarre fantasies of the Israeli prime minister.
Israel prefers to exist and act outside of international agreements and co-operation: It and the US are not signatories to the ICC and Israel steadfastly ignores all UN resolutions aimed at restricting illegal actions. Israel refuses to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty for nuclear weapons because it refuses to admit that it has any. The use of experimental, wholly illegal, weaponry in Gaza, the process of undocumented kidnap, incarceration and injustice, and the theft of land and destruction of property in the occupied West Bank is done shamelessly with the full knowledge of its illegality under the Geneva Convention. Israel acts as a cabal of gangsters. But, it cannot operate without the support of the US.
The support for Israel in the US among some elected representatives, throughout the right-wing lack-of-thinking-tanks and from the gobby TV talking heads is a recognition of Israel’s importance in the profit margins of arms manufacturers and arms dealers: The simple sequence where US tax-payers money is given to Israel as “aid” and then said money used to enhance the profit margins of the arms business. Israel is merely a conduit. Elected Republican representatives are always lackeys of whoever is paying them. The grotesque sight of endless standing ovations as Netanyahu ejaculates lies and reveals his moronic fantasies is an embarrassment to the entire history of democracy in the US. It was the day that any pretence of acting on behalf of the voters of the US was finally admitted as being a complete fallacy. Each puppet clapping away stupidly was concerned solely with pleasing those who slip them thousands of dollars in frequent donations.
Pantomime is a British tradition, liked and loathed in equal measure. As a form of entertainment it has struggled to become popular in the US. Yesterday showed that maybe Les Dennis, Jim Davidson and Christopher Biggins should have another go at exporting this great tradition, there appears to be some love for “he’s behind you” and “oh no he didn’t” among Boehner and his friends.