In ’07, Gingrich Blamed Israel For Palestinian Conditions – OpEd


By Philip Weiss

Seems like both Barack Obama and Newt Gingrich have moved relentlessly right on the Palestinian issue. (Yes, and why?) Here’s some more data. Tablet’s Jacob Sugarman reports that one of Obama’s rabbis on Israel/Palestine issue is, god help us, Ed Koch:

On Sept. 21, 2011, hours after delivering a speech to the United Nations general assembly in which he denounced the Palestinian Authority’s bid for statehood and temporarily restored the faith of Israeli loyalists across the country, Obama brokered a détente of his own with one of the Jewish state’s staunchest defenders. Their conversation, held at the New York Public Library, was frank. “He said that my voice was heard outside of New York and that he needed me,” noted the former mayor from his Manhattan office. During their talk, Obama expressed his distress that the Jewish community had grown unhappy with him. “He was surprised because he thought he was doing what they wanted,” said Koch. “I said ‘No, you’re not.’ ” Less than a week after their kibitz, Koch committed to campaign on the president’s behalf in 2012.

What promises did Obama make? And speaking of promises to keep, here’s Gingrich…. Becky Boydstun in the Fort Worth Conservative Examiner:

In February of 2007, Newt Gingrich was interviewed by Charlie Rose and was asked how he would handle the Palestinian and Israeli issue. He first responded by saying he would do everything he could to help the Palestinians defeat Hamas. He followed these comments with this quote:  “Israel has to bear a lot of the burden in this. Despite 40 years of opportunity, the Israelis have never figured out how to grow a generation, a faction of Palestinians, who would be safer, more prosperous and freer.”

It is obvious what he was expressing here. Unlike his most recent viewpoint, where he placed blame for the unrest on the continuous fighting on the part of the Palestinians, before he blamed Israel for the conflict with Palestine. It just cannot be both ways.

Thanks to Annie Robbins and Paul Mutter.

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of

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Mondoweiss is a news website devoted to covering American foreign policy in the Middle East, chiefly from a progressive Jewish perspective. Mondoweiss is maintained by Philip Weiss and Adam Horowitz. Weiss lives in New York state and Horowitz lives in New York City.

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