Israeli PM is slated to give a speech to American Congress on March 3rd. Democrats in Congress should boycott this speech lock-stock barrel. Reasons are pretty clear:
- As is the norm, speeches by foreign leaders in USA are to be co-ordinated by White House since ultimately contemporary Foreign Policy is the responsibility of current White House occupant and he needs all the maneuvering space as possible to set the tone and contours of foreign policy. This includes highly visible communication act of a speech in the Congress. In this case, Israel PM did not co-ordinate his speech with Obama White House; implying a clear cut intention of undermining Obama Administration. There is no reason for Democrats in Congress to participate in this scheme.
- Speaker John Boehner could have guided Israeli Ambassador to White House when he breached this topic with him. He did not do it. Clearly Speaker was motivated by the partisan bickering and did not let go an opportunity to snub President Obama. Once the Bibi Speech became football, there is no reason for Democrats not to produce an equally partisan response to this speech.
- When Israeli elections are so nearby - March 17 - it would have been prudent for the newly elected Israeli PM to address the Congress to articulate Israel's concerns and strategies with a new mandate. A speech before the election is nothing but a blatant attempt by Bibi to use American Congress for his electoral prospects. (Once upon a time Barack Obama on the eve of 2008 election wanted Brandenburg Gate as prop for his Berlin Speech. Chancellor Merkel rightly rebuffed him. Obama White House did not get an opportunity to straighten up Bibi, but Democrats do that by having half of Congress empty on Bibi's Speech.)
- Israeli PM thinks he is waging a jihad (!) against Obama's dovish policy towards Iran and in the process defending Israeli's security. And to protect Israel, that is his argument, he would do anything, Implicit to this and his speech to Congress is he wants to make political life of Democrats harder by snatching their Jewish votes and Jewish Dollars in American elections. Democrats cannot be beholden to such an open interference by an Israeli politician. Israeli politicians, and Bibi in particular, want American politicians to keep aside America's national interest and serve misguided strategy of defending Israel at any cost. Time has come to break this nexus and stop making American Foreign policy hijacked by Israel. Rather than succumbing to propaganda of Israeli Conservatives that "these Democrats are leaving Israeli security high and dry"; what Democrats need to argue is that neither Bibi aggression against Iran is going to solve the issue nor America can concede it's sovereign foreign policy to a different country - even though it happens to be Israel.
- Israeli PM wants America to bomb Iranian nuke installations and basically undertake even more costly ground war against Khamenei's Iran than Bush's Iraq war. There is no reason for America to fall for this nor the blackmailing by Israel in this regard. Absence of Democrats to the Bibi speech will make an emphatic statement that not all Americans would simply allow other nations to dictate it's foreign policy with long term consequences.