Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
  @GlennKesslerWP |  Contact: factchecker@washpost.com  |  RSS Feeds RSS
Posted at 6:00 AM ET, 02/ 7/2011

Huckabee of Judea

By Glenn Kessler

"There are vast amounts of territory that are in the hands of Muslims, in the hands of Arabs. Maybe the international community can come together and accommodate" the Palestinians
--Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, Feb. 2, 2011

Once and possibly future GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee visited Israel last week. A hallmark of many politicians running for president is expressing support for symbolic measures that hold deep meaning for various ethnic or religious groups. One typical example is promising to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Israel's capital. The State Department maintains the embassy in Tel Aviv because the status of Jerusalem is still in dispute, but Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama all pledged to move it--only to abandon the promise once they took office. Huckabee also supported moving the embassy during his visit. But he also went further and said the Palestinians should not get any land on the West Bank--what Israelis call Judea and Samaria--for a Palestinian state. Instead, he suggested, Arabs should carve out a Palestinian state out of Arab lands, somewhere in the Middle East. How workable is this idea?

The Facts

The first part of Huckabee's statement is factually correct--virtually all of the Middle East is occupied by Arab Muslims--but his proposal is completely unrealistic. If an American president were to formally propose such an idea, it would spark outrage throughout the Muslim world. It might even start a war.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has lasted for more than six decades because of two conflicting narratives--Jewish claims that they have roots in the land dating back 3,500 years and Palestinian claims that they, not the Jews, are the descendants of all previous inhabitants and that Judaism is just a religion, not a title to land. Such deeply felt beliefs are almost impossible to bridge--and wading into the middle of the dispute only causes problems for a politicians. President Obama, for instance, got in some trouble in Israel when, during his 2009 Cairo speech, he attributed the "aspiration for a Jewish homeland" to the Holocaust.

Ever since the 1967 Six-Day war, international diplomacy has sought to resolve the conflict through the concept of "land for peace," which is also enshrined in United Nations Security Council Resolution 242. That resolution ultimately was accepted by all of the main parties to the conflict, including Israel, Israel's neighbors and the Palestinian Liberation Organization.

From the perspective of Palestinians, they have already given up a substantial portion of what they consider their homeland. Palestinian negotiating maps frequently note that they are negotiating with Israel over just the remaining one-quarter of what they consider historic Palestine. (Israelis, of course, would differ with the math.) Huckabee proposes that more than 2 million Palestinians would now leave the West Bank as well for some other part of the Arab world. (We asked a Huckabee spokesman if the former governor also wanted the Palestinians to give up the tiny Gaza Strip, where an additional 1.5 million Palestinians live, but did not get an answer.)

There are some Israelis who have touted what is called "the Jordanian option," under which Jordan would become the Palestinian state. A substantial portion of Jordan's population, after all, is Palestinian, though most consider themselves refugees with a claim on property in Israel. But Jordan has adamantly rejected this idea and Israel's peace treaty with Amman is a core part of its security. Daniel Levy, a former Israeli peace negotiator now at the New America Foundation in Washington, said "it is considered such a wacko position in Israel that it basically does not make it into any mainstream polling whatsoever."

Speaking of polling, a key reason for a politician to pander to ethnic or religious groups is because the stance will help win votes. But there is substantial support within the Jewish community--and in Israel--for the creation of a Palestinian state on the West Bank, as long as it is demilitarized. Various surveys show that between 54 percent and 64 percent of Israelis Jews support the creation of a Palestinian state, with about 30 percent opposed. Among American Jews, 48 percent favor the establishment of a Palestinian state and 45 percent oppose the idea, according to a recent American Jewish Committee survey. Still, it raises the question of how many Jewish votes Huckabee would attract with his proposal.

In the Arab world, the idea would be a nonstarter and probably be considered deeply offensive. Sixty years after Israel's founding, its existence is still not recognized by all but two Arab countries. Which Arab country or countries would give up land in order to resettle more than 4 million Palestinians?

Name this category

Ordinarily, at this point we would have a "Pinocchio Test." But Huckabee's statement does not lend itself easily to Pinocchios. The problem is less one of facts than in being completely divorced from reality. So, with this statement, The Fact Checker is going to start a new feature on politician panders, which we will grade according to how unrealistic they are. What should we call this category? How should we grade them? And what sort of icon should we display? (a "Pander Bear"?) Huckabee's proposal sets a pretty high bar for other politicians to leap over, but we are sure the challenge will be met. Post your suggestions in the comment section below or send an e-mail to factchecker@washpost.com.

UPDATE, February 7, 11:25 am:

A reader suggests that Obama was very careful not to directly promise moving the embassy to Jerusalem. During the 2008 campaign, Obama at one point called Jerusalem "the capital of Israel," and I have found references to aides saying or strongly suggesting he supported moving the embassy. But when directly questioned by ABC News in July 2008, he dodged the issue, saying, "I think we're going to work through this process before we make these kinds of decisions." By contrast, his GOP rival, Sen. John McCain, without qualification said he would move the embassy to Jerusalem.

Follow The Fact Checker on Twitter @GlennKesslerWP

By Glenn Kessler  | February 7, 2011; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Middle East, Mike Huckabee, Panders  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: History lesson: Why letting go is so hard to do
Next: Obama's unsubstantiated boosterism

Comments

Fifty years ago, people like Huckabeee made the same argument about American blacks: If they don't like living in a segregated America, they could move back to Africa.

Huckabee is s religious racist. He is the Ahmadinejad of America.

Huckabeenejad.

Posted by: Garak | February 7, 2011 7:29 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure exactly what the specifics are, but rapture monkeys like Huckabee think their jesusgod isn't going to come and get them until the jews own israel again - all of what used to be known as israel in the old testament.

Any part of that once-israel that is returned to arabs, particularly muslim arabs, is only pushing his rapture that much farther off.

Remember, Huckabee and these rapture monkeys are insane, but there are a lot of them around.

Posted by: eezmamata | February 7, 2011 7:44 AM | Report abuse

what else can we expect from homophobic hucky an employee of FAUX NOISE.

Posted by: willemkraal | February 7, 2011 7:55 AM | Report abuse

Whether something is "realistic" is an opinion - not a fact. Again, the so-called fact checker can't confine himself to the assigned task. He really should have a column for his opinions and leave fact checking to someone who can do the task.

Posted by: Ashland | February 7, 2011 8:37 AM | Report abuse

huckleberry is both smarter and dumber than his recent critics. smarter because he realizes that the vast majority of g.o.p. voters are as bigoted, ignorant, and vile as he is. dumber, because when his throwaways to this crowd are examined in the light of intelligence and honor, the nomination of the republican party won't be worth a pitcher of warm spit.

Posted by: jimfilyaw | February 7, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

The Conservos are so lost in pseudo religious mumbo jumbo they create fantasy worlds where opinions become facts and mythology replaces logic.

The whole gang, Palin, Bachman, Huckabee, Limbaugh, Beck, Scalia, Thomas, live in a make believe world burnished with naive platitudes and fictional wishful thinking.

Posted by: inplants | February 7, 2011 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Whatsa matter Ashland?Hurt your fee-fees?The article is completely reasonable.

Posted by: dartam | February 7, 2011 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Well, Huckabee may or not be right but look at Wash. Post's reason on why Huckabee is wrong and perhaps a racist. Article says it will start a war in Middle East. Hmm, there you go- afraid of Muslims taking to violence to get what they want.

What is wrong with one very small Jewish state (with 20 percent Muslims inside) among 50 or so mostly intolerant and hateful Muslim states?

Posted by: arvindkaul | February 7, 2011 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Fifty years ago, people like Huckabeee made the same argument about American blacks: If they don't like living in a segregated America, they could move back to Africa.

Posted by: Garak

---------------------------

That's not the same argument at all, moron.

If you can't follow the debate, maybe you should stay silent.

Posted by: Benson | February 7, 2011 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I wonder what would happen if the situation were reversed.

Picture a Palestinian state with a 20% or so Jewish population: What would the majority Muslims do to accomodate a "two-state solution"? How sensitive would the Muslim be? When they invaded "Gaza" last year (or was it '09), would they have shown the same restraint, or virtually wiped out the populace?

We all already know what THAT scenario would look like, because we have seen it time and again in Iraq (1 million Christians, now down to about 100,000) and now in Egypt, and in nearly every Muslim majority country.

You are all hypocrites who decry Israel's treatment of the terrorists of Gaza and the West Bank (and virtually all the people there qualify). You know full well that they have shown more restraint than we Americans would have, and certainly more than any Muslim country.

I read a few months ago that Greece was selling islands. I thought, "What a great solution: Isreal can buy a few of them, then deport all Gazans, et al, who would not swear allegiance to Isreal there to their new homeland."

Posted by: ScottinVA | February 7, 2011 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Everyone else gets Pinocchios for digressing from the facts, i.e., lying, but no Pinocchios for Huckabee's major league suckup to our Jewish brethren about Israel.

We expected no less. You have saved your job.

Posted by: Lazarus40 | February 7, 2011 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Fifty years ago, people like Huckabeee made the same argument about American blacks: If they don't like living in a segregated America, they could move back to Africa.

Posted by: Garak

---------------------------

Benson replies, in a post devoid of content except ad hominem insults: "That's not the same argument at all, moron.
If you can't follow the debate, maybe you should stay silent."

Oh, it's the exact same argument all right. If people aren't/weren't happy living as 3rd class citizens, whether in the segregated South or the segregated West Bank, then they should move/should have moved.

Posted by: newageblues | February 7, 2011 10:27 AM | Report abuse

Israel gave Gaza to the Palestinians and all they got in return were mortar attacks. Fact check that!

Posted by: CubsFan | February 7, 2011 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Palestine is the modern version of the word Philistia. Now anyone looking at a map of the ancient middle east can plainly see that Philistia occupied the area currently known as the Gaza Strip (basically from Joppa to Gaza). THAT is the homeland of the Palestinians, not the rest of the current nation of Israel, and NOT the West Bank, which is a part of what was known as Judah.

Matter of fact, the Philistines were originally invaders from the island of Crete; so their claims of that area being their homeland aren't any more valid than the Israelis.

Posted by: mhoust | February 7, 2011 11:04 AM | Report abuse

I like Pander Bear. Or if you're looking for less PC categories, Space Cadet for statements where the speaker or writer would have to have been high to make them.

Posted by: dkp01 | February 7, 2011 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Moving beyond checking facts - to assessing the feasibility of a proposal - is more difficult since it requires a value judgement (opinion), and therefore a fact checker without a political axe to grind. The current fact checker doesn't possess that necessary quality. Stick with just checking the facts - you have a difficult enough time producing a credible news product.

Posted by: JM80 | February 7, 2011 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Fifty years ago, people like Huckabeee made the same argument about American blacks: If they don't like living in a segregated America, they could move back to Africa.

Posted by: Garak

---------------------------

That's not the same argument at all, moron.

If you can't follow the debate, maybe you should stay silent.

Posted by: Benson | February 7, 2011 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Huckabee is a joke. Plain and simple. How can anyone think he's credible?

Posted by: jckdoors | February 7, 2011 11:28 AM | Report abuse

"The first part of Huckabee's statement is factually correct--virtually all of the Middle East is occupied by Arab Muslims."

Actually...this is NOT correct. Persians (now Iranians) and Kurds are not Arabs. They are Muslim but not Arab.

Posted by: ec3663 | February 7, 2011 11:32 AM | Report abuse

In a post devoid of all logic:

Oh, it's the exact same argument all right. If people aren't/weren't happy living as 3rd class citizens, whether in the segregated South or the segregated West Bank, then they should move/should have moved.

Posted by: newageblues

------------------------------

I'll spell it out clearly.

To imply an equivalency between blacks moving to Africa and Palestinians moving elsewhere in the middle east is flawed.

Why?

Because Garack was saying that the population in question should move back to where they came from.

In the case of the Palestinians, that is exactly what they want to do.

Posted by: Benson | February 7, 2011 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Huckleberry is an idiot. I hope the GOP have someone smarter to run against President Obama or 4 more years of Obama will be happen. I watch the news to see who the GOP may have to go up against Obama and all I see are idiots. We have Palin trying to get her name and her daughters name patent and I say' WTF" is wrong with her"? And than we have newtgangrene and I shake my head in disgust and the list goes on and on. So Huckleberry wants to have a foreign policy that suggests that we could settle the middle east issues by moving the Palestinian people. Than take land from another country to from another country, really? This is the best this idiot can come up with. Wow, the GOP are screwed if this is the best they can come up with to take on president Obama.

Posted by: Realistic5 | February 7, 2011 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Hey Ashland, the Fact Checker correctly states the facts:
1)That "there is substantial support within the Jewish community--and in Israel--for the creation of a Palestinian state on the West Bank, as long as it is demilitarized. Various surveys show that between 54 percent and 64 percent of Israelis Jews support the creation of a Palestinian state, with about 30 percent opposed. Among American Jews, 48 percent favor the establishment of a Palestinian state and 45 percent oppose the idea, according to a recent American Jewish Committee survey. Still, it raises the question of how many Jewish votes Huckabee would attract with his proposal."
2)That Huckabeenejad is just pandering to a certain constituency.
So what is your problem? Unless you have issues with reading comprehension, for which, I would strongly suggest signing up for Remedial English lessons.

Posted by: schatter003 | February 7, 2011 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Wonder how Huckabee feels about the the 2+ million Palestinians each getting 40 acres and a mule in Arkansas? Apparently Huckabee is on a Sarah Palin rehabilitation tour.

Posted by: crete | February 7, 2011 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Shortsighted and incredibly inept comments such as Huckabee's used to be attributable to "dumb blondes" -- which has always been unjust.

It's abundantly apparent that these insipid political statements that are as ill-informed and embarrassing as his should be attributed to their rightful owners, especially of late: hugely inept republicans and fake news channels that promote them.

Posted by: jKO2010 | February 7, 2011 12:01 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps a duncecap for politicians (almost invariably Republicans and/or Tea Totalitarians) who make statements that have only tangential basis in reality?

Mr. Kessler did his audience, and the Huckster, a disservice by not mentioning other odd remarks that the Huckster made, e.g.:

"I cannot imagine as an American being told that I could not live in certain places in America because I was Christian, or because I was white, or because I spoke English," Huckabee said. "I would be outraged if someone told me that in my country, I would be prohibited and forbidden to live in a part of that country, for any reason."

A. Quite possibly Palestinians feel the same way, especially since they are already living in locales that the international community agrees is theirs.

B. Since Mike Huckabee is a white English-speaking Fundamentalist Christianist, it is not surprising that he lacks imagination or any recollection of his own personal history. If he were Jewish (Huckabee really loves the Jews, as long as they eventually come to Jesus) or Black or Hispanic or ... or ... or ..., it would take no imagination at all to be "told ... that in my country, I would be prohibited and forbidden to live in a part of that country, for any reason."

C. If the Huckster really thinks that any noticeable number of American Jews don't see through him, he is even more deluded than he appears.

Posted by: edallan | February 7, 2011 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Why should any of the arab states give up some of their land to foreigners (Palestinians)?

I've got a better idea: why not give the Palestinians Arkansas? After all, we've got lots of land, right?

Posted by: steve1231 | February 7, 2011 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Huckaby is not pandering to Jews, you dimwits; he is pandering to Christians.

Most Jews are as braindead Leftist as you are. They will perform their roles as useful idiots right into the next gas chamber and oven.

They don't seem to get the lessons of the holocaust: it can happen anywhere, anytime. Thier best chance at survival as a people is a national homeland they can defend.

Of course, the Bible says they will always be a people, despite Egypt which is about to join the Muslim Brotherhood Caliphate) and the rest attacking them soon.

As I said, let's reverse the situation, and see how the Muslims would treat the minority Jews. Oh, but genocide is OK if it's Jews at the receiving end, eh?

Hypocrite Leftists.

Posted by: ScottinVA | February 7, 2011 12:30 PM | Report abuse


Who nominated this smarmy jennyass Glenn Kessler to be the WaPo "fact checker"? Hmm?

Flatter yourself much, Kessler? Nice neutral tone you have there, "Huckabee of Judea" now that is a real neutral POV. I have read college newspaper reporters with a whole lot more journalistic integrity than this jack hole Kessler.

Posted by: screwjob23 | February 7, 2011 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Another reason this proposition is offensive to Arabs is because "the Arabs" are not homogeneous group, despite what most of American thinks. Qataries are Qataries, Lebanese are Lebanese, Palestinians are not Jordanians. It is ridiculous and ignorant to assume otherwise.

Posted by: wydeveng | February 7, 2011 1:19 PM | Report abuse

How about elves or unicorns as an emblem of the completely impossible?

As to Huckabee, he keeps demonstrating that he's completely unfit for the Presidency. The fact that he's one of the Republican front-runners proves again how far into crazyland the party has drifted.

Posted by: rashomon | February 7, 2011 1:21 PM | Report abuse

There is not a single embassy worker who wants to embassy to be moved to Jerusalem. Tel Aviv is a much nicer place to be, and there is much more to do.

Posted by: jtackeff | February 7, 2011 1:27 PM | Report abuse

@Benson: I agree with you, moron. And disagree, moron.

First, moron, I agree with you in that the Palestinians want to move back to he land from whence they came.

Second, moron, I disagree with you that my comparison is flawed. In each case, racists want to get rid of undesirables. In the South, it was go back to Africa (as if their coming here was voluntary). In Israel, it's expel them, presumably by using the same means as the Zionists employed in 1948 (mass terror and ethnic cleansing). In each case, the racially superior want the racially inferior to leave.

And, moron, we can't even be sure whether Huckabee believes the Palestinians are from Palestine. Huckabeenejad may have fallen for the Joan Peters fraud, that Palestine was empty before the Zionists came along, that the Palestinians showed up only to work the Jews (see Peters' discredited book From Time Immemorial). If Huckabeenejad swallows this line of BS (and I'll bet you he does), then he's really no different than the Southern racists. For Huckabeenejad, too, would be telling the Palestinians to go back to their ancestral lands, which would not include Palestine.

I hope this isn't too difficult for you to understand.

Posted by: Garak | February 7, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

To Glenn Kessler and the Washington Post, the title of your article is biased and inflammatory, as are many other articles on other topics. Please just present the article without loading it first and allow the reader to form an opinion.

Thanks,

Posted by: I_can_see_DCfrommyhouse | February 7, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

To Glenn Kessler and the Washington Post, the title of your article is biased and inflammatory, as are many other articles on other topics. Please just present the article without loading it first and allow the reader to form an opinion.

Thanks,

Posted by: I_can_see_DCfrommyhouse | February 7, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

To Glenn Kessler and the Washington Post, the title of your article is biased and inflammatory, as are many other articles on other topics. Please just present the article without loading it first and allow the reader to form an opinion.

Thanks,

Posted by: I_can_see_DCfrommyhouse | February 7, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

This is not about pandering to Jews...This is clearly a fundamentalist Christian, End-tmes pander.

Posted by: willandjansdad1 | February 7, 2011 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Benson wrote:

I'll spell it out clearly.

To imply an equivalency between blacks moving to Africa and Palestinians moving elsewhere in the middle east is flawed.

Why?

Because Garack was saying that the population in question should move back to where they came from.

In the case of the Palestinians, that is exactly what they want to do.

----------------------
Garak wrote:

Benson: I agree with you, moron. And disagree, moron.

First, moron, I agree with you in that the Palestinians want to move back to he land from whence they came.

Second, moron, I disagree with you that my comparison is flawed. In each case, racists want to get rid of undesirables. In the South, it was go back to Africa (as if their coming here was voluntary). In Israel, it's expel them, presumably by using the same means as the Zionists employed in 1948 (mass terror and ethnic cleansing). In each case, the racially superior want the racially inferior to leave.

And, moron, we can't even be sure whether Huckabee believes the Palestinians are from Palestine. Huckabeenejad may have fallen for the Joan Peters fraud, that Palestine was empty before the Zionists came along, that the Palestinians showed up only to work the Jews (see Peters' discredited book From Time Immemorial). If Huckabeenejad swallows this line of BS (and I'll bet you he does), then he's really no different than the Southern racists. For Huckabeenejad, too, would be telling the Palestinians to go back to their ancestral lands, which would not include Palestine.

I hope this isn't too difficult for you to understand.

Posted by: Garak

-----------------------------

We both agree that Huckabee is wrong on this policy.

Your analogies could use some work, however.

Posted by: Benson | February 7, 2011 2:02 PM | Report abuse

Here's an idea for Huckabee. The Arabs get together and volunteer to give Arkansas and New York state to the Palestinians. Let's see how generous everyone is when it's their homes being offered up.

Posted by: ash-shareef | February 7, 2011 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I think the author misunderstands Huckabee's intended audience. Remember that he is an ordained Southern Baptist minister. As other commenters have alluded, the conservative Christian view is that the rapture will not occur until all of ancient Palestine (including Judea and Samaria) is occupied by the Jewish people. Huckabee is subtly appealing to this conservative Christian audience, not to Jews (except as a means to an end).

Posted by: jdrd58 | February 7, 2011 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Huckabee is so generous with Palestinian land by suggesting that it should be given to Israel interlopers.

How many intellectual duds has the US got inside its borders?

Posted by: robertjames1 | February 7, 2011 2:53 PM | Report abuse

Sigh . . . Pat Robertson once came close to becoming a serious prospect for the Presidency. What a disaster that would have been!

Now...Here we are again with a religious fundamentalist preacher who doesn't understand and who denies anything about biological and geological evolution - ready to win the White House and stick with Israel 100% no matter what Israel does. Why? BECAUSE, like other evangelical "Christians" he believes that 100% support of Israel conforms to prophecies of the "Second Coming” of Christ. What he (and most of the fundamentalists) don’t blatantly publicize, is their belief that Jesus will gather ONLY those who accept him as their personal savior and God into to his heavenly fold. In other words, ALL non-Christians, including Jews … ALL…even children, who don’t accept Jesus will burn forever in torment.


Sigh! For me, I would prefer (if their was such a thing as life after death - which there ain't) to be with Mark Twain, who said, “Heaven for Climate; Hell for Company”

Posted by: lufrank1 | February 7, 2011 3:23 PM | Report abuse

@Benson: Thanks.

Posted by: Garak | February 7, 2011 3:33 PM | Report abuse

@jtackeff - having been to Israel several times, I heartily disagree. Jerusalem is ten times more interesting than Tel Aviv ( granted, Tel Aviv's nightlife is better but even in conservative Jerusalem you still have a nightlife).

Those of you who pointed out that Huckabee is pandering to evangelicals, not Jews, have hit it right on the head. Israelis who have to live with this on an every day basis, plus most American Jews, recognize the cold hard reality that trying to claim "Judea and Samaria" as Israeli land, and kicking out Palestinians, ain't never gonna happen. A lot of evangelicals are doing Israel more harm than good.

Maybe we don't create a Palestinian state tomorrow, and it may be that certain areas of the West Bank that have high numbers of Jewish settlers become part of Israel (and certain areas of Israel that are mostly Arab become part of the new Palestine) but the idea that ALL of the West Bank becomes part of Israel is absurd.

As a Jew it pains me mightily to say this, but while Israel is not apartheid-era South Africa it IS moving in that direction. That applies both to the Israeli treatment of Israeli Arabs, who are citizens but decidedly second-class situations who's situation is worsening instead of getting better, and their treatment of Palestinians. Israel can be a Jewish state only if it upholds the morals and values of the Torah. Right now, it isn't.

Posted by: marclips | February 7, 2011 3:40 PM | Report abuse

This is not a "fact checking" issue, but one having to do with fitness for the presidency.

Pandering is one thing, but to say things this inflammatory and dangerous for the sake of winning the support of evangelical Republicans illustrates that he lacks judgment and is not fit for the presidency.

Posted by: Meridian1 | February 7, 2011 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Kessler has done his fair share of exposing foolishness of both party's politicians. Those who accuse him of bias are pretty selective in their judgement.

It would be unbecoming of Mr. Kessler to treat Huckabee's statement seriously. It is just so utterly asinine and unenlightened. No reasonable and enlightened person could consider this a feasible or appropriate proposal.

Posted by: j762 | February 7, 2011 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Saying the Palestenian claim to the land is a compeating 'narrative' is pretty offensive. Its a historic fact that almost a million refugees were created when Israel established a state.

This is not a narrative. Imagine the out cry if someone explained the Civil rights movement or even the Holocaust in terms of 'they claim this' or the narrative is....come on. Between this and the Rubin lady, I am not going to waste any more time reading this paper.

Posted by: HarrySmith1 | February 7, 2011 11:40 PM | Report abuse

Would it not be simpler to move the Jewish people to say the US?
Remember that the British Gov. gave the Jewish people the right of return before they have any legal control of the land, with the 1917 Balfour Declaration to Lord Rothschild in exchange for continued bank loans for the war from Jewish bankers in the UK, France and US.
Part of the letter:
"His Majesty's Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country".

Much of this wording is included in UN 181 and Israel's UN charter for becoming a state which make a "Jewish State" illegal and making the blocking of the return of refugees and taking their land without compensation also illegal.

The British created this problem then UN and US have only made it worst, so now a fair solution is needed but an agreement on what is fair between Israel and Palestinians is likely impossible until the gap between them is narrowed by Quartet, on issues like Ma’ale Adumin and Ariel settlements that neither side will give up willingly because they are key to control of W. Bank, both in road access and water.

Posted by: Bloodyscot | February 8, 2011 2:02 AM | Report abuse

"President Obama, for instance, got in some trouble in Israel when, during his 2009 Cairo speech, he attributed the "aspiration for a Jewish homeland" to the Holocaust."

I'm sorry?! How about "destroyed his credibility with Israeli Jews and their American supporters, exposed himself as anti-Zionist and caused the highest level of fear and distrust ever recorded towards American president, virtually killing his chances to bring about the final settlement in the Middle East"? That would be much more accurate. Israelis are very sceptical people, but if embracing Huckabee or Romney or Palin means to stick it to Obama, they will cheer anything those folks say.

Posted by: arik67 | February 8, 2011 2:22 AM | Report abuse

Those of you who believe Huckabee to be an idiot really, most likely, have little understanding of the man.

First of all, as a Southern Baptist preacher, he holds a Masters of Divinity degree which is comparable to a law degree in terms of rigor and length. I guarantee Mr. Huckabee knows more about the history of the Middle East region and the modern Middle East conflicts than any current posters here.

Secondly, obviously Huck is pandering to conservative Christian voters and not Jewish voters. The fact that the fact checker doesn't make that point makes me wonder about his qualifications.

Finally, I still love Huckabee's answer about foreign policy in one of 2008's early primary debates when he called Bush's foreign policy an "arrogant bunker mentality."

Posted by: troythecommenter | February 8, 2011 10:27 AM | Report abuse

This one's a twofer! He is pandering to american northeast jews who are in many cases more extreme than Israelis, but very rich and very concerned about the survival of Israel, and at the same time pandering to his evangelical end of times crazies who think he is fulfiling the rapture prophecy. And he also manages to thoroughly offend every palestinian, arab or anyone with a brain enough to see how stupid that suggestion is. Thats why he will not get teh nomination. Thats about as bad a foreign policy understanding gaffe at Rick Lazio thinking North Korea is near australia.

Posted by: Sleepseazy | February 8, 2011 5:50 PM | Report abuse

It's one thing to talk in the abstract about territory and ethnicity.

The problem is, Huckabee is suggesting that people abandon their family farms and ancestral homes, and that some other poor family should give up part of their farm to give land to the refugees.

Let's see how much of a preacher you are, Huck, let's see you sell this to one of the Arab states.

Posted by: j3hess | February 8, 2011 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Huckabee may be onto something. If he wants the Arab world to give up land for 4 million Palestinians, surely he would support the West's doing so for a similar number of Israelis. Problem solved.

Posted by: Rightist | February 9, 2011 7:56 AM | Report abuse

He appears as dumb as Bush, and even loonier when it comes foreign policy.

Posted by: Bettybb | February 12, 2011 8:48 PM | Report abuse

Post a Comment

We encourage users to analyze, comment on and even challenge washingtonpost.com's articles, blogs, reviews and multimedia features.

User reviews and comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions.




characters remaining

 
 
RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2011 The Washington Post Company