In a statement released after the president's speech, Thursday, May 19, 2011, Congressman Ron Paul took Barack Obama to task. “Unlike this president, I do not believe it is our place to dictate how Israel runs her affairs."
Ron Paul's statement, released immediately after the speech, reflected the congressman's long held views against American leaders meddling in the affairs of other countries. “Israel is our close friend," the statement reads, "While President Obama’s demand that Israel make hard concessions in her border conflicts may very well be in her long-term interest, only Israel can make that determination on her own, without pressure from the United States or coercion by the United Nations."
Paul argues that America must stop trying to rule the world and dictate policy to foreign capitals and bring its armies home from its endless wars. Warning that the country is facing annual deficits of $ 2 trillion the congressman's statement read in part, “Our military’s purpose is to defend our country, not to police the Middle East."
Ron Paul has been at the forefront of a growing movement of Americans who feel that our national interventionism has gone to extreme and is making us enemies all over the globe. In the 2008 presidential debates, while Mitt Romney and John McCain argued over how long American troops should stay in Iraq, Paul was alone in saying that they shouldn't have gone into the country in the first place.
It was a shocking statement at the time and both Romney and McCain smirked condescendingly, but today polls show two-thirds of the American people calling for a full withdrawal of American troops from both Iraq and Afghanistan.
"When will our leaders finally do what’s right for America," Ron Paul's statement asks, "And rethink this irrational approach we’ve followed for far too long?"
Paul has been critical of American's foreign aid suggesting that it is conflicted and the money misused. He once described it as money taken from poor people in a rich country and given to rich people in poor countries. Paul has pointed out the absurdity of our policies. "We give $3 billion to Israel and $12 billion to her enemies."
Obama's stunning statement, siding with the Palestinian position, calling for Israel to return to its 1967 borders would mean among other things the loss of the Golan Heights and most of Jerusalem.
The statement comes only hours before his Friday meeting with Israeli President Benjamin Netanyahu. Many devout Christians and Jews saw the return of Jerusalem to Israel in 1967 as a fulfillment of Bible prophecy. An NBC report from Cairo Thursday night showed little enthusiasm among Middle Easterners for President Obama's speech.
It remains to be seen how deep the anger will be in America. President Obama's decision may have come at a heavy political price at home with little gain in the Islamic world.
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