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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Sarkozy will disappoint Israel

The election of Nicholas Sarkozy to the French Presidency was greeted with incautious and almost unalloyed joy by Jews and supporters of Israel. Headlines that announced that "the Jew" had become President were among the  silly, groundless and tasteless commentary. Just because someone had Jewish ancestry, it doesn't mean they will be pro-Israel or "good for the Jews." Karl Marx and Torquemada the inquisitors are sobering reminders of that fact.
Israeli officials, apparently unaware of the possibilities, were shocked that Sarkozy picked Socialist Hubert Vedrine as Foreign Minister. Vedrine's record makes someone like James ("F the Jews") Baker III look like a great Zionist.  During the Intifada II, Vedrine advocated sanctions against Israel.  
In January, Vedrine had told al-Hayat that:
 "Palestinians... endure misfortune and utter chaos, viewed as the outcome of a policy suggested by the US and Israeli right-wing parties."
Vedrine is also open to recognition of Hamas:
"With respect to France, I always call for keeping dialogue channels open with Iran, Syria, Hizbullah and Hamas. I would not be the least be stunned should France follow this path," he said.
Nonetheless there are those in the Israeli foreign ministry who try to find "explanations" -- Vedrine will be dependent on Sarkozy, Vedrine has good contacts in the Arab world etc. No doubt, there were Jews who found "explanations" for Torquemada's policies as well.

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