The State Department Should Restrain Itself on Response to Israeli Kidnappings


state-departmentBy Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn

The State Department’s demand that Israel “exercise restraint” in its search for the Hamas kidnappers makes a mockery of President Obama’s pledge two years ago that he “will always have Israel’s back.”

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki declared on June 20 that the Obama Administration is “urging all parties to exercise restraint and avoid steps that could destabilize the situation.”

That phrase “all parties” was a thin veneer of even-handedness. Everyone knows the call for “restraint” was aimed at Israel. In fact, Psaki made her slant clear in her very next words, expressing “concern” that two Palestinian Arabs were shot dead by Israeli troops. Psaki did not exhibit any “concern” for the Israeli soldiers at whom those Arabs were throwing rocks and firebombs.

This attempt by the Administration to tie Israel’s hands in its search for the kidnappers is just the latest in a series of indications that President Obama is trying to avoid siding with Israel against Hamas.

1. The Obama Administration website,, which offers monetary rewards for tips leading to the capture of terrorists who harm Americans, is not offering any reward in connection with the kidnapping – even though one of the victims, 16 year-old Naftali Frankel, is an American citizen.

2. While spokespeople for the Administration have made the usual general remarks of sympathy for Israel in the current crisis, President Obama himself has not said a word about the kidnapping. A President who is so well known for his rhetorical gifts has suddenly fallen silent.

3. The Obama Administration has refused to withdraw its recognition of the Hamas-Palestinian Authority regime.

4. The U.S. continues to send $500 million annually to the PA, even though Hamas is now a full partner in its government. That’s a total of more than $20-billion since 1993 – yet all the Administration could get out of PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas was a vague statement about how he is against kidnapping because Israelis “are human beings, too.” That’s not exactly an earth-shaking concession.

President Obama’s March 2012 vow to “always have Israel’s back” evoked some private skepticism in the American Jewish community, since it was made when he was running for re-election. But now the Obama Administration’s failure to unequivocally side with Israel in the current kidnapping crisis exposes his pledge of support as painfully hollow.

Israel’s war of self-defense against Hamas is just one front in an international battle against jihadist terrorism that is being waged on many continents. In Nigeria, the Boko Haram jihadists are kidnapping hundreds of Christian girls. In Afghanistan, Taliban terrorists are attacking NATO bases. In Iraq, they are conquering city after city. And in Israel, they are seeking to terrorize an entire country by kidnapping Jewish children.

Israeli soldiers are risking their lives every day by going into hostile Palestinian Arab neighborhoods in search of the kidnapped boys. PA chairman Abbas’ own Fatah movement has urged Arab residents to interfere with the soldiers’ efforts. In many instances, the soldiers have been confronted by mobs throwing deadly firebombs.

The Obama Administration, which has been reluctant to send U.S. forces to confront terrorists abroad, should give unequivocal support to the Israeli forces that are trying to do the job without any outside help. At the very least, the Administration should have the decency to restrain its tongue and let the Israelis defend themselves without interference.

The authors of members of the board of the Religious Zionists of America.

The Algemeiner Journal

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  1. why is anyone surprised? we all know where he stands vis-à-vis the muslims. stop thinking anyone is going to help us. oll tivtichu b’….she’ain lo t’shuah

  2. This is not Obama. Condoleeza Rice under bush, spoke this way as 250 rockets fell on the heads of Israel. She said the exact same gibberish;”We urge both sides to show restraint”.
    It is called passive aggresive anti-semitism, and it belongs to the state department of EVERY administration lately.

  3. Those who represent the State Department should
    save their ‘restraint’ advise for
    when their kids will be kidnapped.
    Obama has nothing to say…
    We have One Eibeshter . Please answer
    your children with Besruos Tovos Now!!!

  4. Those who represent the State Department should
    save their ‘restraint’ advise for
    when their kids will be kidnapped.
    Obama has nothing to say…
    We have One Eibeshter . Please answer
    your children with Besuros Tovos Now!!!

  5. Jen Psaki is like a school teacher who has no carpet on her mighty stick. She can not refuse the reasoning of good hope and she can not affix a future of better regulation. Instead, her stick can not be used to steal the show. It only seems like a piece of arrogant wood.

    Good luck on this one Obama. You have not covered your heart when you are facing the flag

  6. #8:
    The State Department has always been anti-Semitic, not just lately.

    The difference is that this IS Obama.

    There is not one other president in recent times – Democrat or Republican – who would have remained silent when three teenagers, two of whom are minors (kidnapping children is a war crime)and one of whom is an AMERICAN citizen, are kidnapped by a terrorist organization.

    Only Obama says nothing. Zero. Nada.

  7. And the hypocrite Obama will not say anything either. The “fahrbrecher” Trayvon Martin was important to Obama because he wished he had a son like that. No “restraint” there…..

    Obama only opens his mouth when it matters personally to him. Obama is all about Obama 24/7.