Ex-ambassador ridicules idea that Israel is threatened

Has Kurtzer been watching the news lately? Why does he seek to misleadingly portray Israel as facing no threats along its borders, with the only possible threat from far-away Iran?

Att'y Stephen M. Flatow, | updated: 23:53

S. Flatow
S. Flatow

Stephen M. Flatow, a vice president of the Religious Zionists of America, is an attorney in New Jersey. He is the father of Alisa Flatow, who was murdered in an Iranian-sponsored Palestinian terrorist attack in 1995.

Continuing his campaign to create a State of Palestine, ex-ambassador Daniel Kurtzer last week ridiculed the idea that Israel still faces any threats from forces along its borders.

Kurtzer, who previously served as America’s ambassador to Israel, proclaimed at Congregation B’nai Israel in Rockville, Maryland: “That problem of being surrounded by implacable enemies out to seek Israel’s destruction no longer exists, except in the case of Iran.”

That’s a pretty big “except.” So even Kurtzer admits that the largest and most powerful army in the Middle East is still in the hands of a regime that seeks Israel’s destruction. But his “solution” to that problem is to continue championing the Obama Iran deal, which, Kurtzer told his audience, is “the best of all the alternative options.”

Giving Iran hundreds of millions of dollars to spend on terrorism; leaving Iran free to develop intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs); tolerating Iran’s refusal to permit the U.N. to inspect its military sites; and allowing European companies to enrich Iran with new trade deals without sanctions—that was the “best” option, according to the former ambassador.

Sounds to me like a pretty good deal for Iran, but not a very good deal for Israel or America.

What about the forces along Israel’s borders, which Kurtzer insists are so benign? Yes, part of Israel’s southern border straddles Egypt, with which Israel has a peace treaty. But Kurtzer seems to have forgotten that the other part of the southern border—the part closest to Israel’s population centers—is the Gaza Strip, controlled by the mass-murderers of Hamas. 

That’s the same Hamas regime which each week organizes mobs of firebomb-throwers to try to crash through the border fence, into Israel. Has Kurtzer been watching the news lately?

How about that northern border? Well, thanks to last week’s election, Lebanon is now completely controlled by the Hezbollah terrorists and their allies. Hezbollah has 150,000 rockets in southern Lebanon, aimed at Israel. Hezbollah’s leaders openly declare that their goal is to annihilate Israel. So yes, Mr. ex-Ambassador, I’d say they qualify as “implacable enemies.”

Kurtzer - according to the New York Times -was the key figure in persuading the outgoing Reagan administration and incoming Bush administration, in late 1988, to recognize Arafat and the PLO.
The other part of Israel’s northern and northeastern border is with Syria. The Syria which has waged war against Israel since 1948. The Syria which was developing nuclear weapons until the Israelis destroyed them. The Syria which is host and haven to numerous Palestinian terrorist groups. The Syrian regime that would be gleefully slaughtering Israelis if it weren’t so busy slaughtering its own people. Yes, Mr. ex-Ambassador, they do “seek Israel’s destruction.”

Let’s look at the forces to Israel’s east. There’s Jordan, with which Israel has a peace treaty. But much closer to Israel’s population centers is the Palestinian Authority regime. It’s headed by a lunatic Holocaust-denier. Its official policy is to pay financial rewards to people who murder Jews. It has never outlawed or dismantled terrorist groups. It has never extradited a single terrorist to Israel—or kept any of the other obligations it accepted in the Oslo accords. And the Palestinian Authority has amassed one of the largest per-capita security forces in the world—a de facto army, just miles from Jerusalem.

The facts I have just outlined regarding Israel’s borders are no secret. Daniel Kurtzer is as familiar with them as I am. So why does he seek to misleadingly portray Israel as facing no threats along its borders, with the only possible threat from far-away Iran?

Because Kurtzer has made the creation of “Palestine” his life’s mission. He’s been trying to bring about the establishment of a Palestinian state since the 1980s, long before anyone could claim that Yasir Arafat had become “moderate.” It was Kurtzer who—according to the New York Times—was the key figure in persuading the outgoing Reagan administration and incoming Bush administration, in late 1988, to recognize Arafat and the PLO.

Nothing that happened in the years to follow ever prompted Kurtzer to re-think his beliefs. True believers never do. The incontrovertible evidence of the PA directly sponsoring terrorism against Israel? No impact on Kurtzer. The capture of Arafat’s ship, the Karine A, with 50 tons of weapons? No impact. The years and years of non-stop murderous incitement? No impact.

Today, long after he was left office, when most people his age are enjoying a quiet retirement, Kurtzer remains single-mindedly devoted to his goal of pushing Israel back to the nine-miles-wide pre-1967 borders and creating a deadly Palestinian state within easy striking distance of Jerusalem and Ben-Gurion airport.

If Israel and its supporters recognize that the Jewish State faces dangers along its borders, then of course they will never agree to going back to being just nine miles wide. That’s why Kurtzer propagates the myth that Israel’s borders are all safe. He must try to pull the wool over our eyes, because he can’t win this debate on the merits.