Recently the United States took a hit to its international prestige when Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel banned our two congresswomen from entering Israel. President Trump, at first, said it was a stunt on their part to get publicity, but it turned out he was the one who told Netanyahu to stop them.

I’m concerned because it seems that President Trump is just testing the waters to see how far his autocracy can reach.

The ironic part of this whole drama is that President Obama  granted Israel a 10-year, $30 billion foreign aid package. If I were Speaker Pelosi, I would immediately shut off all funds to this grant.

Bill Rose, Southern Pines

(18) comments

Jim Tomashoff

Leary challenges me as follows: "If you know anything definitive regarding Israel's nukes why don't you write a column about that. I'm very curious about their German made nuclear submarines."

I have not had any access to CIA information about Israeli nukes since 1988, and what I knew then was highly classified, so writing an article about them is not an option for me. Read a book titled: "The Samson Option." I don't know why you are curious about German submarines sold to Israel. I'm somewhat familiar with the submarines in question. They are not nuclear powered. They are very, very quiet, making them extremely difficult to locate. It is thought that Israel possess cruise missiles armed with nuclear warheads that can be fired from these submarines while the boat remains submerged. Does that satisfy your curiosity?

Richard Wright

When Israel was created by the "two state" agreement, the Arab nations refused to agree. There never has been a nation of Palestine.

Mark Hayes

The entire incident was a side show, and apparently there were a few that bought tickets.

Peyton Cook

Mr Rose omitted to include some salient information. These two members of Congress are know critics of Israel. One, Omar, is not a Palestinian. The other was Palestinian. They both wanted to go to Israel to protest the treatment of Palestinians, which might have fomented violence. They claimed that as members of Congress they had the authority to do so. Israel did give Thalia humanitarian permission to visit her grandmother, if she did not protest. She refused other offer.

Jim Tomashoff

For some reason I cannot comment directly below Ken Leary's latest screed, but I'll try to rebut his latest comment. The population growth of Palestinians is simply undeniable whether Ken accepts this fact or not. Their "country" was not illegally taken from them. The United Nations, legally under international law, created two new countries, Israel and Palestine. The Jews accepted this decision the Palestinians backed by all the neighboring Arab countries did not. War ensued and the Palestinians and their allies were defeated. The Israelis captured all the land that was earmarked for Palestine, thus creating Israel's pre-1967 borders, which included only the Western part of Jerusalem. Hundreds of thousands of "Palestinians" fled to the surrounding Arab countries, mostly to Lebanon and Jordan. I put Palestinians in quotes because prior to the U.N.'s decision to create both Israel and Palestine there had never before in history been a state of Palestine. The rest of your screed cannot be rebutted in "facts," since they are nothing but unfounded accusations based on nonsense. By all means, supply all the facts you can, but so far you have provided exactly none.

ken leary

We can do this forever evidently. Yes Jim, the Palestinians are having more children than the Jews. Poverty seems to inspire births just as education seems to limit births. Was the Indian removal act of 1830 from the eastern United States legal because Andrew Jackson signed a law. Should the Indians have accepted the decision willingly? Sykes-Picot agreement, the Balfour decision, Palestinian mandate, the white paper, etc., were all made by people with an agenda. Most agendas changed with the situations (British didn't want another Arab uprising prior to WW2 so they limited Jewish immigration, land sales, etc.) but the zionists were and are single minded. They want it all; and there is no amount of vicious behavior that they will not demonstrate. For example using thousands of people for target practice on the Gaza border in the last year. But Jim, you are wrong, the zionist are illegally occupying land taken during war. (Of course the USA and Israel disregard laws they don't like) They are not complying with UN resolution 181 or 242. What you really need to do is ask yourself why you are taking the white side against the Arab side just as you would have, probably, taken the white side over the Indian side. Why you are defending the zionist position when it is obviously never going to be resolved, and in their desperation they have lost all decency. Oh. I should remind you (careful, this is a secret) the zionist's have nukes.

Jim Tomashoff

For someone who doesn't know me you assume too much. You move the goalposts whenever your assertions/facts turn out to be factually wrong. I'm not going to play that game. And Ken, I worked nuclear proliferation while at CIA, believe me, I know quite a lot about Israel's nukes. My point was to refute your wild assertion that Israel was committing genocide. It is not, end of discussion.

ken leary

My "assumptions" about you are based on previous comments: defending the bombing of Nagasaki and Hiroshima in spite of a preponderance of evidence concluding it was unnecessary; not knowing anything about Hillary's undermining of the Honduran government (which suggests you know nothing about death squads, the School of the America's, or any other murderous efforts by "us" in South and Central America,; and you defend the deaths caused by "us" through sanctions in Venezuela. If you know anything definitive regarding Israel's nukes why don't you write a column about that. I'm very curious about their German made nuclear submarines. Play Jim.

ken leary

Same problem. I can't comment on your Nakba comment, but, you should probably look at UN resolution 194 which has been reaffirmed 135 times. It concerns the Palestinians right of return which of course the zionists will not allow because it would compromise their agenda. There is also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (article 13) and UN resolutions 2535, 393, 2452, and 3236.

Peyton Cook

A very fine summary of historical facts.

Dan Roman

Israel acceded to Trumps demand so Israel should be punished? That's a ridiculous display of lack of knowledge, illogic and bias. Maybe Rose should also mention that Israel decided to allow one of the congresswomen entry on humanitarian grounds and the congresswoman refused?

Thankfully Pelosi is smarter than Rose could ever hope to be.

ken leary

No. Israel should be denied the United States citizen's financial support because they are an apartheid government supporting the genocide of the Palestinian people in defiance of international law.

Jim Tomashoff

To suggest that Israel is supporting "...the genocide of the Palestinian people..." is factually absurd. The population of Palestinians is growing at a much faster rate than is the population of Jews living in Israel and the occupied territories.

Conrad Meyer

Jim Tomashoff - agree with you 100%. Imagine that!

ken leary

Is the population of the Palestinian people in what was, up until the western world illegally decided to give their country to others, growing? Why do you defend what is clearly a racist, zionist, method of exterminating the people who occupied what is now called Israel . Is this your CIA background not being able to confront reality because it undermines belief in your righteousness. You want facts, keep up your BS Jim. I'll supply all the fact you desire. You have any explanation for why it is ok for Israel to be bombing three adjacent countries lately. I thought that was our domain; but of course Israel is really just an USA outpost, a fort if you will, so it is ok. Right Jim.

Jim Tomashoff

"As Palestinians prepare to mark Nakba Day, statisticians released figures Thursday showing the world-wide Palestinian population is eight times that of 1948, the period commemorated Sunday.

The Nakba, or catastrophe, refers to fighting which saw an estimated 700,000 Palestinians were expelled from or fled their homes in fighting that would lead to the establishment of the state of Israel.

The population that year was 1.4 million, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics said, while at the end of 2010 it was estimated at 11 million globally, and 5.5 million in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza, while 5.7 million Jews reside in the area.

At current growth rates, the bureau said, Jewish and Palestinian populations are predicted to equal at 6.1 million at end of 2014, and reach 7.2 million Palestinians and 6.7 million Jews at the end of 2020."

Dan Roman

That is simply, factually, not true. Leary is entitled to his opinion, although it exposes his total, abject and preemptively willful ignorance concerning the subject matter.

Dan Roman

FACT: What is now Israel was part of the Ottoman Empire, which sided with the Axis during WW I and was defeated. The Sykes-Picot Agreement between Britain France with the agreement of Imperial Russia dismembered the Ottoman Empire. What became Israel fell under the British Mandate until U.N. Partition in 1948 when the State of Israel came into existence. Jordan illegally occupied what is called the west bank and East Jerusalem from the end of WW II until the 1967 Six Day War when Israel ended the Jordanian occupation. Israel also captured Gaza, rehabilitated it, returned it under international pressure and has suffered for that decision ever since.

In the same vein Israel, as a matter of necessity, captured the Golan Heights to stop constant bombardment by the Syrians. In the 1948 war after partition some Arabs were displaced, some voluntarily, some involuntarily by both sides, from what became Israel. As many, if not more, Jews were involuntarily displaced from, among others, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt.

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