Happy Birthday, Israel.
As journalist Allison Kaplan Sommer wrote today at Pajamas Media, "Today, is a day to celebrate the accomplishments of the country which has been my home for 15 years. First and foremost, the fact that it is here at all, is , in itself, its greatest accomplishment. The country has fulfilled its basic purpose as providing a haven for the Jewish people in the traumatic aftermath of the Holocaust, a safe place for Jews to live, grow and prosper."
"The state's humble goal was at first and foremost merely to exist - and that is still here is probably what its founders would be most proud of if they could see it today. What would most devastate them is that a substantial part of the world still questions its right to exist, and the fact that so much of the country's time and energy must still be spent trying to counter these existential threats."
The truly amazing and miraculous part of the story is that in the face of its struggles against its enemies, Israel has not only survived, but thrived. The Israeli economy is thriving and robust, that the level of high-tech development in such a tiny country and that we produce not only a record number of new inventions and research papers to the world, and world-class scientists - along with supermodels, soccer coaches, and Olympic wind-surfing champions. Along with prestigious universities and holy places, a thriving nightlife and a fun-loving and youth culture."
President Bush will travel to Israel next week for the birthday celebrations. A White House aide said Bush will "reaffirm his personal commitment to peace." Israel has had no better friend than President George W. Bush, that is a fact.
Iran remains the major threat to Israel's survival. It is the expressed goal of Amadidijad to push Israel off into the sea.
Author and American Enterprise Institute (AEI) resident scholar Michael Ledeen advocates discussion not bombs with Iranian leadership. He believes moral, logistical and material support for Iranian dissidents will bring about the change needed for terrorism to stop driving the country's agenda. Ledeen is of the group of scholars that believe the population of Iran has a dissident majority.
I don't necessarily buy that thought. Yes, there are always young people, university students, who will speak to reporters about their hopes of living in freedom. They desire a way out of the grip of the Ayatollah. I am not at all sure that this is how the rest of the country's population feels.
John Bolton, a senior fellow at AEI and former U.S. ambassador to the U.N., has recently published his opinion that the terrorist training camps must be bombed in Iran sooner rather than later. He believes the camps should be taken out now.
General Petraeus has verified Iranian-made rockets and bombs have been launched into Iraq to be used against American soldiers and the Iraqi people, too.
I'm not certain what the correct next step is, but I do know it is not to just go have tea and chat with the Mad Man in Tehran as Barack Obama claims he will do. The current administration has begun quiet diplomacy with Tehran and so far nothing has come of it. That's the problem when you expect terrorists to think as rational people.
Ledeen writes he is pleased that John Bolton has made public his thoughts on Iran. He wants action against a country that has been waging a war using terror against us for thirty years now. We have another chatty Democrat to thank for that, you may remember.
Happy Birthday, Israel.