Does Abdullah really want a Hamas-run Palestinian state next door to Jordan right now, or was he just saying what had to be said?
If one were to distill 110% wrongheadedness and then distill it again a second, third, and fourth time, one couldn't come up with a speech as purely wrongheaded as the one that the Hashemite king, Abdullah II, delivered yesterday to a joint meeting of Congress. The king's aim amounted to blaming Israel for all the world's problems. "The wellspring of regional division, the source of resentment and frustration far beyond, is the denial of justice and peace in Palestine," the king said. "This is the core issue. And this core issue is not only producing severe consequences for our region, it is producing severe consequences for our world."
Balderdash is the kindest way to describe it. It doesn't track with the actions of the violent terrorists, and it doesn't track with their statements. If the terrorists are upset about Israel's treatment of the Palestinians, why are they setting off bombs in Indonesia and Spain and Saudi Arabia and Iraq, which are hardly in the vanguard of support for Israel? Given that the terrorists state publicly that their end goal is to make all of Europe and America subject to Islamic law, why should we believe that in fact they have the far more modest goal of merely seizing land belonging to the Jewish state?
In a speech on American soil, Abdullah incredibly snubbed his own country and his own family when he referred to "Sixty years of Palestinian dispossession." Why, his family knows all about Palestinian Arab dispossession. The gall of the son of King Hussein, who perpetrated what the Arabs call Black September, fetching up in the Congress to lecture the Americans on Palestinian Arab dispossession is astounding. Abdullah well knows that Jordan controlled the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem between 1948 and 1967. If the Palestinian Arabs were dispossessed during that period it was no one's fault but the Hashemites', who didn't exactly use those decades, or the years after, to race to establish a Palestinian Arab state.
Abdullah made reference to a Saudi proposal from 2002 that he described as the "Arab Peace Initiative." That plan would be more accurately described as the Arab Destruction of Israel Initiative. Its aim was to seek to reward the second so-called intifada, which followed the collapse of President Clinton's Camp David II, by giving the Palestinian Arabs half of the Israeli capital of Jerusalem. The Saudis not only sought to divide Israel's capital in Jerusalem but also to force Israel to abandon Jerusalem's Old City, retreat to militarily indefensible borders, and absorb within those borders enough Arab "refugees" so that its character as a Jewish state would be eradicated. No one fell for it save for Thomas Friedman of the New York Times.
Abdullah's speech yesterday won negative reviews from many of the Democratic lawmakers who now control Congress. The New York Times' Paris edition quoted Rep. Steve Israel of Long Island as saying, "I was troubled to hear the suggestion that the fact that Sunni and Shia are murdering each other is somehow the fault of the Israelis. This implication is a dangerous one and completely unacceptable." The chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee, Rep. Thomas Lantos, was quoted by Fox News as saying the speech was "Profoundly disappointing
a missed opportunity." One of the effects of the Islamist terrorist onslaught of recent years is that more Americans have thought more deeply about these matters. They will not be gulled by a foreign potentate offering up Israel as a scapegoat for troubles that originate with the failings of the Arab and Islamic world and their nondemocratic leaders, Abdullah among them.