Tag Archives: Israel

UPDATE ON NETANYAHU’S CRIMINAL CHARGES – PART 2

BLOG 550

January 24, 2022

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

UPDATE ON NETANYAHU’S CRIMINAL CHARGES

PART 2

Last week I updated viewers on the criminal indictments facing former Prime Minister Netanyahu. A number of readers wanted to know more. In the past week, the negotiations have continued with Netanyahu’s legal team trying to keep him out of jail. Here’s where things stand today.

Deputy State Attorney Shlomo Lamberger said Thursday it would be “inconceivable” for a plea deal with opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu not to include a clause of “moral turpitude” — which would bar the former prime minister from public office for seven years.

“Anyone who understands moral turpitude understands that with such acts (criminal behavior)  it is inconceivable there isn’t moral turpitude,” Lamberger told the Israel Bar Association, in reference to the charges against Netanyahu in his graft trial. The comments were the first public remarks by a senior justice official about the prospect of a plea deal in Netanyahu’s trial, rumors of which have been swirling in recent days.

According to a television report Thursday, there has been no contact between Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit and Netanyahu’s lawyers since a Wednesday phone call, with talks on a potential plea bargain appearing to have stalled. Sources in Israel claim both sides now believe that there will not be an agreement before Mandelblit steps down as attorney general at the end of the month.

The reports have listed Mandelblit’s conditions for an agreement as follows: Netanyahu admits to fraud and breach of trust in cases 1000 and 4000; he accepts the designation of moral turpitude; he will be sentenced to seven to nine months of community service; and he admits to having instructed former Communications Ministry director Shlomo Filber to provide benefits to the controlling shareholder of the Bezeq media company, Shaul Elovitch — the main accusation against the former premier in case 4000.

Netanyahu is on trial in three separate graft cases: for fraud and breach of trust in Case 1000 and in Case 2000, and for bribery, fraud and breach of trust in Case 4000. Under the reported potential deal, the bribery charge in Case 4000 would be dropped, and Case 2000 would be closed altogether.

According to the Israeli media, Mandelblit had moved away from an earlier idea of allowing the trial judges to rule on the question of the moral turpitude clause, rather than having it be an integral part of the deal, and wants it to be agreed to upfront. Netanyahu has been reported to be wary of doing so in case the negotiations subsequently break down.

That’s where we are today. Let’s see what comes next.

Stay tuned!

I have a new books coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under Elections, Israel, Netanyahu, The Middle East

A NEW YEAR WITH NEW FINDS

BLOG 548

January 8, 2022

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968,  Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

A NEW YEAR WITH NEW FINDS

Most of what we discuss about the Middle East proves to be disconcerting or troubling. However, since we have just plunged into a new year let’s stand back, take a deep breath, and look on the lighter side. How about archeology? Something old for the new day? We haven’t considered this field in awhile.

No country in the world has as much going on archeologically as does Israel. Everywhere I looked in the past I found someone with a shovel in hand. For example ….

The area around the Temple Mount always sheds light on where both the Temple and the Kingdom of Judah’s treasuries once stood. Dr. Zachi Dvira and Dr. Gabriel Barkay, analyzed dozens of clay seals that were found over the decades by sifting soil from the holy area where archaeological digs are not allowed as well as from excavations at Ophel Park, adjacent to the southern wall of the Old City. Clay seals were used in antiquity to sign documents or containers, ensuring they would reach their recipients closed and untouched. The seals often bear symbols or inscriptions of kings, prophets, and businessmen and important people mentioned in the Bible. They continue to find important clues that verify the history found in the Old Testament.

Now here’s a different twist. Could the ancient Ark of the Covenant be resting in Ethiopia? Really? But Ethiopia? My oldest son once taught at the University of Addis Abba, in Ethiopia and went to the place where the Ark might be found. The legend says that 3,000 years ago the Queen of Sheba (now in Ethiopia)  met with King Solomon. During this exchange, a man named Menelik brought the Ark to Ethiopia for safe keeping while an exact replica was left in hiding for protection. Another perspective maintains that a Jewish group during the time of King Manasseh took the Ark to Egypt and then sailed up the Nile to Ethiopia.

Either way, today that Ark is in the Church of Our Lady of Zion in the town of Aksium where a man called “The Guardian of the Ark of the Covenant” is the only one who can view it. The guardian lives in a fenced-off area for his entire life protecting the treasure. When he dies, a new guardian will replace him for the rest of that man’s life.

 Who believes this story? Well, Haile Selassie, the former emperor of Ethiopia did and claimed to be a direct descendant of Menelik. Haile Selassie claimed to be the 225th descendant of King David as well.

Great shades of Indiana Jones! Except this isn’t out of the movies. It has been believed by a multitude for 3,000 years. Give it some thought. A fascinating way to kick off 2022!

I have a new books coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under archaeology, Egypt, History, The Middle East

A NEW YEAR WITH OLD PROBLEMS

BLOG 547

January 1, 2022

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

A NEW YEAR WITH OLD PROBLEMS

As the promise of a new day unfolds, the approaching year is dragging old issues in that we can’t avoid in the months ahead. Putin and Russia are poised on the Ukraine border with the worst intentions in mind.  Ukraine President Volodynyr Zelensky claims that Putin intends to assassinate him.  Don’t underestimate Vladimir Putin. He has never been a friend of the West. The year 2020 will have to face this problem.

Equally troubling is the situation in the Middle East. Iran continues to issue threats against Israel. Officials in Jerusalem warn world powers of the fact as negotiations to curb the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program continue.

“Sanctions must not be lifted from  Iran,” Foreign Minister Yaie Lapid said recently. ”Sanctions should be tightened. A real military threat must be put before Iran, because that is the only way to stop Iran’s race to become a nuclear power.”

In a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron, Lapid indicated that Israel views the talks as an attempt to stall military action by Israel while Tehran advances its unilateral action.

What it boils down to is that no action — is an action on Iran’s part.

The issue lurking behind the scenes is the supply of oil. With their fiscal year beginning on March 1,  the assumption is that Iran would sell 1.2 million barrels of oil a day . The removal of sanctions would raise this figure to 2.5 million a day.  No matter what anyone says, this issue lurks in the background.

You can bet a settlement with Russia also hinges on economic implications.

I have a new books coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under Russia, The Middle East, World

THE COMING NEW YEAR

BLOG 546

December 27, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

THE COMING NEW YEAR

Except for tourists, most of the Middle East doesn’t even slow down for Christmas. The Orthodox celebrate on a different date from December 25. Life usually goes on like every other day. However, here’s several unexpected situations to ponder as we look toward the coming new year.

The head of the first major Islamic Arab party to enter a government coalition said Tuesday that Israel’s status as a Jewish state could not be changed. He was advising the Arab community to follow his pragmatic approach rather than trying to challenge the country’s identity.

Mansour Abbas’s comments were made during a conference held by the Globes news magazine in Tel Aviv. He was attempting to raise his community’s profile by working from within the government, a strategy that some fellow Arab politicians have criticized as selling out the Palestinian national cause.

“Israel was born as a Jewish state,” said Abbas, the head of the Islamist Ra’am party. “And that was the decision of the Jewish people, to establish a Jewish state. The question is not ‘what is the identity of the state?’ That’s how the state was born, and so it will remain.”

Abbas told the audience, “This is the reality. The question is not the about the state’s identity — but what the status of Arab citizens will be in it.” During the March election campaign, Abbas pledged tangible results for his voters, saying that his party offered a “realistic” approach to solving everyday problems in Arab communities, from rising crime to a severe housing shortage.

Interesting. Here’s a couple more items for you to think about.

The Israeli military has revised its open-fire policies for the West Bank, officially allowing troops to shoot at Palestinians who had thrown rocks or firebombs at cars, even if the assailants no longer present an immediate threat.

The policy change was first reported by Israel’s Kan broadcaster on Sunday night, and was later confirmed to The Times of Israel by a military spokesperson. He said it had been in effect for the past month or so. While the spokesperson described the change as a corrective to a situation that allowed suspects to evade justice, experts raised questions over the legality of using lethal force against a person who no longer poses a threat.

Here’s a final thought as you look toward a new year.

51% of Israelis would support a strike on Iran, even without US approval.

I have a new book coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under Gaza, Iran, Israel, Palestinians, The Middle East

YOU WANT TO SEE WHAT CONFUSION LOOKS LIKE?

BLOG 545

December 20, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

YOU WANT TO SEE WHAT CONFUSION LOOKS LIKE?

Ever wonder why the world seems to be in such a mess? Recent revelations about the interactions between Israeli and American diplomats demonstrate the strange contradictions and ineptitude that often comes out of Washington.

On January 2020, during a festive White House unveiling of Donald Trump’s long-gestating peace plan, then-Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu giddily announced that under its auspices, Israel would move to immediately annex large parts of the West Bank. The Israeli right was ecstatic. Finally, they believed, Israel would take full control of land that settler leaders hope will remain forever Israeli  and with the blessing of a US president, no less.

There was only one problem, according to new reporting on the events of those dramatic days: Nobody had bothered asking President Trump.

In fact, according to a new book from Israeli journalist Barak Ravid, Trump and peace-plan architect Jared Kushner were caught completely off guard by Netanyahu’s declaration during the White House event. The new details were reported in a pair of podcast episodes released Monday in a new series from Axios called “How It Happened,” which uses Ravid’s reporting from his new Hebrew book, “Trump’s Peace,” to tell the story of how Trump’s failed peace plan morphed into the successful brokering of the Abraham Accords to save face for him.

According to the podcast, Netanyahu decided to go forward with the annexation announcement after receiving assurances from then-US ambassador to Israel and longtime settlement-backer David Friedman that the US would back the move, even though the envoy never ran the idea by the White House.

The US proposal envisioned Israel annexing all of its settlements along with the Jordan Valley as part of a final status agreement. But it did not give a clear timeline, and it definitely did not stipulate that the move would take place right off the bat.

“Israel will apply its laws to the Jordan Valley, to all Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and to other areas that your plan designates as part of Israel and which the US agrees to recognize as part of Israel,” Netanyahu said.

Trump was standing right behind him and glanced at someone off stage, checking to make sure what he had just heard, Ravid recalled. After Netanyahu left the White House, Trump met with his advisers and asked them, “What the hell was that?”

Kushner, meanwhile, was livid.

The “who-said,” “they-said,” went back and forth on and on. Hypocrisy everywhere. Sorry. The scene doesn’t present a reassuring picture of international exchange — or of Netanyahu and Trump.

I have a new book coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

1 Comment

Filed under America, Gaza, Israel, Palestinians, The Middle East, Trump

A SEASON OF GOOD CHEER

BLOG 544

December 13, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

A SEASON OF GOOD CHEER

Usually, the reports from the Middle East are ominous. Fears of war, terrorism and strife make the headlines. In the midst of the bad news, December brings good news. It’s the season of lights! Celebrate!

So, I thought this blog would pick up on some positive signs happening right now. Here’s a couple for you.

Putting old animosities behind them, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid on Thursday presented his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shoukry with dozens of Egyptian relics that were illegally smuggled into Israel. Lapid met Shoukry in Cairo after first holding talks with President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi.

Eli Eskozido, Director of the Israel Antiquities Authority, joined Lapid to hand over the 95 artifacts, which included two stone tablets with hieroglyphic writing, a piece of a sarcophagus with hieroglyphics, papyrus documents and dozens of small idols of Egyptian gods.

This is, indeed, a celebratory time of year. The Jewish majority in this country has had its Festival of Lights, while Christians are currently gearing up for Christmas. All of which makes it an opportune calendar slot to address musical material of a religious nature.

That is precisely what will be going on in Nazareth between December 16-18, when the third edition of the annual Liturgical Music Festival takes place. The event is being touted as “a weekend of musical peaks” and the programming, courtesy of Nabil Abboud Ashkar, the founder artistic director of Polyphony Foundation Conservatory.  

Liturgical music comes in all shapes and forms. Like any genre, in any discipline the world over, the creative end product takes on local colors, seasoning and the personal baggage of the human conduit of expression. In Nabeel Hayek’s case that presents a multihued tapestry of sounds and dynamics which, no doubt, will come across on December 17 (11:30 a.m.), when the 20-year-old pianist plays the instrumental accompaniment to soprano Nour Darwish at the 19th-century Anglican Church in Nazareth, in an intimate program of Baroque and Romantic works. The repertoire for the occasion is as about variegated as you can get within the varied stratified confines of classical Christian liturgical scores.

And anyone looking to make a day or two of it can also get into the Yuletide spirit by joining guided tours of the Christmassy locale, and enjoy some seasonally priced accommodation offers.

Yes, there are good things happening in the Middle East. Let’s hope the light stays on all through the approaching year.

I have a new book coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered on Amazon or at your local book store. 

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable

Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under America, Bible Lands, Christians, Faith, Forgivness

THE POT KEEPS BOILING

BLOG 538

October 18, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert Wise has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

THE POT KEEPS BOILING

While American news sources have been following other stories, the problem of Iran keeps simmering in the Middle East. The issue just won’t go away. In a trilateral meeting, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said that the world must act to stop the evil of Iran. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and United Arab Emirates Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed met with Lapid  in Washington on Wednesday.

“Israel reserves the right to act at any given moment, in any way,” Lapid stated. “That is not only our right, it is also our responsibility. Iran has publicly stated it wants to wipe us out. We have no intention of letting that happen.”

Lapid warned that the Iranians are “dragging their heels” in order to enrich uranium and develop its ballistic missile program while the world waits for them to return to negotiations. “Secretary of State Blinken and I are sons of Holocaust survivors,” Lapid said. “We know there are moments when nations must use force to protect the world from evil. If a terror regime is going to acquire a nuclear weapon, we must act. We must make clear that the civilized world won’t allow it. If diplomacy between world powers and Iran fails, other options will be on the table,” Lapid said.

“When we say other options, I think everyone understands here in Israel, in the Emirates and in Tehran, what it means,” Lapid added.

Those “other options” were discussed in the meeting between Lapid and US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan on Tuesday in the bilateral meeting with Blinken and the trilateral meeting, the foreign minister said. Blinken stated he and the foreign ministers are “united in the proposition that Iran cannot get a nuclear weapon.”

The US believes that diplomacy is the best way to make that happen and is prepared to return to the 2015 nuclear deal – the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – with Iran, but, Blinken cautioned, “What we are seeing – or more accurately, not seeing – from Tehran suggests that they’re not.”

“Time is running short, because as we’ve also had the opportunity to discuss, we are getting closer to a point at which returning to compliance with the JCPOA will not recapture the benefits of the JCPOA, because Iran is using this time to advance its program. With every day of refusal to engage in good faith, the runway gets shorter,” Bliken said.

We need to stay informed. The clock is ticking!

I have a new book coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered at the local book store. 

I can make copies available at:

Rev. Robert L. Wise, PO Box 22716 , Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 731203

Cost is $15.00 plus the shipping fee.

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jews, The Middle East

UNREST IN IRAN

BLOG 537

October 11, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Having traveled and worked in the Middle East since l968, Robert L. Wise, Ph.D. has journeyed through the region, giving him insights from behind the scenes. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon. Each week he attempts to present an objective view of current events.

UNREST IN IRAN

The recent wave of protests across Iran raises important questions about what is ahead. In the southwest Khuzesan providence, a serious shortage of what has led to animals dying sparked anger. Lack of water also led to a breakdown in electricity with frequent blackouts. Scarcity of water was only the trigger.

This particular providence also has had tension with the central government. However, these protests spread  to cities like Istaban, Kermanshab, and Tabiz. By the following Monday, the protests reached the capital with chanting that opposed the regime. Shouts like, “Death to the Dictator,” “Khamenei Shame on You, leave Iran alone,” rang through the streets. The unrest reflects discontent with the country’s resources being used to support terrorist activities across the region. Similar widespread unrest exploded in 2019.

Notably some protestors chanted slogans favorably supporting Reza Shad who founded the Pahlavi dynasty during the 20th century. A radical Muslim revolution sent him out of the country and overtook the American Embassy. Now many Iranians remember Shad for his attempts to modernize the country.

Is it possible that this current round of protests signal a potential revolt against the continued rule of the clerical reign? Hard to say. Unrest has existed for a long time in Iran. However, the demonstrations signal a significant problem with a lack of water in a farming region.

Religious revolts like the one that brought Muslem leaders to the top are always shaky. Promising great things, rebels forget about the resources and capacities necessary to fulfill their promises. Iran has been obsessed with its attack on Israel as a means to whip up the local population’s support. That strategy may be wearing thin.  It certainly is when the faucets run dry and you can’t turn the lights on.

The Achille’s heal of the Iranian system has always been an inability to create workable conditions and a positive social life for the citizens that it controls. Sorry, that condition has not changed.

Stay tuned. More to come.

I have a new book coming out.

MAN ON FIRE can be ordered at the local book store. 

I can make copies available at:

Rev. Robert L. Wise, PO Box 22716 , Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, 731203

Cost is $15.00 plus the shipping fee.

I hope you’ll avail yourself of this inspiring story!

Also these fine books are available now:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under Iran, Israel, The Middle East

A VIEW FROM ISRAEL  

BLOG 534

September 20, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Each week Robert L. Wise, Ph.D., explores the Middle Eastern situation, ranging from Egypt through Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and the surrounding area. Wise first traveled to Israel and the neighboring countries in 1968. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon universities. Wise presents an objective view of the behind the scenes situation in these countries.

A VIEW FROM ISRAEL  

Many Americans are wondering what the debacle in Afghanistan means for them and the future. America was there twenty years and the country fell in twenty days. Something is very wrong with that picture. Americans will claim we won the war and the Taliban will maintain they ran the Allies out. Obviously, American troops killed Bin Laden and probably should have left then. How do we interpret the fact that we stayed and then made a bungled exit, leaving some Americans behind? Not to mention the Drone strike on the Taliban that turned out to kill an Aid worker Zemari Ahamdi and seven children. A little hard to swallow, wouldn’t you say? Oh, yes. America left behind helicopters and vehicles as well as truck loads of weapons the Taliban captured.

Amtoz  Asa-El is an Israeli who writes about history. He has some penetrating observations for us to consider. Take a look.

Asa-El notes America built 800 bases worldwide 20 times more than all the other superpowers combined. America’s annual military is larger than the next five military spenders combined.  America’s eleven aircraft carriers equal the combined total of all other countries’ carriers.  America is the top dog …. And runout by the Taliban?

What have Americans wanted in past decades? Teddy Roosevelt called the national goal “the Imperialism of Duty.” While denouncing colonialism, America had pursed its own imperial goal. Asa-El notes that goal was achieved. The Soviet Empire crumbled while America marches on after a goal it could not achieve: proselytizing.

The imperialism imposition of an ideology became the mountain too high to climb.

It is one thing to wield power and win battles. It is another thing to impose a foreign idea on a resistant people while we believe we can change their minds. The Taliban had a saying. “Americans have watches: we have the time.” They were a radical Ismailis tribal state and not about to become a democracy. The story ends on a runway where American airplanes were hauling everyone out they could get on a jet.

Historian  Asa-El argues this form of American Imperialism was finished with the hasty exit from Afghanistan.  You can’t plant democracy in a resistant country. The historian argues “America’s imperial period has been intense and in many ways rewarding, but it wasn’t part of the American Way.” In the beginning George Washington warned we should have as little political connection with other nations as possible. In other words, America can’t go around the world planting democracy where the soil is too thin to support the idea. It didn’t grow in Vietnam, Iraq, or Afghanistan.

Amotz Asa-El ends his argument by writing: “World management should never have been America’s task, and the Afgan misadventure should be its last imperial war.”

Gives you something to think about.

My latest books:

I Marched with Patton: A Firsthand Account of World War II

Alongside One of the U.S. Army’s Greatest Generals!

by Frank Sisson (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

You can find I MARCHED WITH PATTON on Amazon.

82 Days on Okinawa: One American’s Unforgettable Firsthand Account of the Pacific War’s Greatest Battle!

You can find 82 DAYS ON OKINAWA on Amazon.

by Art Shaw (Author), Robert L. Wise (Author)

Leave a comment

Filed under America, History, Israel, The Middle East

MORE TROUBLE

BLOG 529

August 9, 2021

WISE ON THE MIDDLE EAST

Each week Robert L. Wise, Ph.D., explores the Middle Eastern situation, ranging from Egypt through Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Israel and the surrounding area. Wise first traveled to Israel and the neighboring countries in 1968. Two of his sons taught in Jordan and Lebanon universities. Wise presents an objective view of the behind the scenes situation in these countries.

MORE TROUBLE 

The shadow war with Iran popped up in another area this week. This time it was from the Iranian backed Hezbollah terrorist army based in Lebanon. Just as the Israelis got Gaza under control in the South, problems exploded in the North. As you may be aware, Hezbollah moved into Lebanon and has virtually taken over the country. They are resourced by Iran.

Hezbollah fired a barrage of 19 rockets at Israel, in the first attack since the 2006 war with the Jews. Military sources said 10 projectiles were intercepted by air defenses. Six struck open areas and 3 landed in Lebanon. The terrorist claimed the attack was in response to recent Israeli airstrikes following rocket fire by Hezbollah, August 6, 2021.

The Iran-backed terrorist group confirmed it had fired the projectiles, Several previous rocket attacks on Israel have been attributed to Hezbollah, but it had not acknowledged responsibility.

“The Islamic Resistance shelled open areas near the Sheba Farms with dozens of 122mm rockets,” Hezbollah stated in a statement carried in Arabic-language media.

There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage in Friday’s rocket attack. The Magen David Adom ambulance service said it was not aware of any injuries. The IDF (Isreaeli Defense Force) reported it had begun a wave of artillery strikes toward the source of the rocket fire. The military added that there were no special instructions for residents in the area. “Routine civilian life adjacent to the Lebanese border should be maintained,” the IDF reported in a statement. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kohavi and other security officials were to hold talks to review Israel’s potential course of action following Friday’s attack.

The United Nations’ peacekeeping mission in Lebanon (UNIFIL) considered the situation to be very serious and urged both sides to cease fired.  Israeli military spokesman Ran Kochav told reporters that Israel  has “no intention of going to war but we do not want to turn the Lebanon border into a line of confrontation. The incident shows Hezbollah’s deterrence, as it fired at open areas.” Kochav noted that Hezbollah intentionally fired at open areas. The Iron Dome defense system still intercepted most of the rockets.

Nevertheless, Israeli officials noted they reserve the right to respond to rocket attacks as they see fit. Fortunately, the Hezbollah attack was a symbolic gesture mainly to appease their constituency. They are well aware of how dangerous a genuine attack on Israel would be. Look at Gaza drowning in a sea of broken cement.

Let’s hope Hezbollah leaves well enough alone!

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