The Obama administration appears to have given a green light to an Israeli attack on an unarmed flotilla carrying peace and human rights activists — including a vessel with 50 Americans on board — bound for the besieged Gaza Strip. At a press conference on June 24, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton criticized the flotilla organized by the Free Gaza Campaign by saying it would "provoke actions by entering into Israeli waters and creating a situation in which the Israelis have the right to defend themselves."Every time I read a story of this nature, it stupefies me that, on both sides of the mainstream political aisle, President Obama is viewed as a liberal or, by some, a socialist! Actions like this are more in line with Ronald Reagan or George Bush II. Can you imagine FDR, JFK or LBJ advancing this kind of policy rationale?
Clinton did not explain why a country had “the right to defend themselves” against ships which are clearly no threat. Not only have organizers of the flotilla gone to great steps to ensure are there no weapons on board, the only cargo bound for Gaza on the U.S. ship are letters of solidarity to the Palestinians in that besieged enclave who have suffered under devastating Israeli bombardments, a crippling blockade, and a right-wing Islamist government. Nor did Clinton explain why the State Department suddenly considers the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of the port of Gaza to be “Israeli waters,” when the entire international community recognizes Israeli territorial waters as being well to the northeast of the ships’ intended route.
~ from Washington Okays Attack on Unarmed U.S. Ship by Stephen Zunes ~
What gets me even more is that so many progressive-minded citizens see Obama as one of them. How can this be for a president who
- allows the inhumane treatment of an American citizen not charged with a crime -- Bradley Manning -- to go on for nearly ten months?
- authorizes the assassination of an American citizen who has no legal charges pending against him?
- targets whistleblowers who expose corruption and deceit at the highest echelons of government?
- surrounds himself with big business Wall Street types to guide the nation's economic policies?
- goes off to war without bothering to seek Congressional approval as stipulated in the US Constitution?
- sanctions torture, secret prisons, wiretapping, and widespread spying on citizens and foreigners alike?
This very partial list does not point to a leader who is progressive at all! These are conservative and reactionary positions. If times were a bit different today, Barack Obama would make an excellent choice for the REPUBLICAN nominee for President in 2012.