Yair Lapid’s delusions about the Democrats

Lapid’s acknowledgment that the current team in the White House has been “friendly,” was necessary. Nobody knows better than him how misleading polls can be.

Opposition leader Yair Lapid speaks at an Israel Democracy Institute video conference, July 27, 2020 (photo credit: ISRAEL DEMOCRACY INSTITUTE)
Opposition leader Yair Lapid speaks at an Israel Democracy Institute video conference, July 27, 2020
(photo credit: ISRAEL DEMOCRACY INSTITUTE)
In an interview with i24NEWS on Monday, Opposition leader Yair Lapid expressed satisfaction with the newly released draft of the US Democratic Party platform. Saying that he doesn’t agree with everything in the document, he nevertheless praised it for being a “triumph of the moderates” over the “more radical, progressive voices,” whose positions on Israel have been a source of worry for him.
About the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, however, he never had any misgivings.
“Joe Biden is a great friend of Israel and has been so all his life,” Lapid said, pointing to the former vice president’s “impeccable” record in the Senate where the Jewish state is concerned. So, Lapid concluded, “We’re going to have a friendly administration [in Washington], whoever wins the coming election.”
Lapid’s acknowledgment that the current team in the White House has been “friendly,” was necessary. Nobody knows better than him how misleading polls can be.
So, the chairman of the Yesh Atid Party – who was certain more than once during the past 15 months that his “anybody but Bibi” bloc was on the verge of ousting Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – knows not to count on Biden defeating US President Donald Trump in November.

THIS IS NOT how he explained his cautious refusal to “support any side” in America’s internal political struggles, however. Instead, he held up his ostensible neutrality as a virtue that his nemesis, Netanyahu, allegedly does not possess.
“One of the fundamentals of Israel’s foreign policy is the… need to stay bipartisan when working with the United States,” he stressed, casting aspersions on the Netanyahu-led government’s behavior in this regard.
Accusing Netanyahu of “creating a wedge” in America by favoring the Republican Party is a recurring theme of the center-Left.
The far-Left doesn’t bother with the fiction; its members understand the root of and encourage the partisanship. They were pleased when former US president Barack Obama, soon after assuming office in January 2009, told a group of American-Jewish leaders, “When there is no daylight, Israel just sits on the sidelines and that erodes our credibility with the Arabs.”
This was a total lie, of course, since Israel had been making peace overtures to the Palestinians for years before Obama arrived on the scene. These included endless negotiations and territorial withdrawals, all of which resulted in an increase in terrorism against innocent Israelis.
Furthermore, the “tough love” attitude of the Left towards Israel was on full display even when Labor Party leader Ehud Barak was prime minister 20 years ago and practically begged PLO chief Yasser Arafat to accept massive Israeli concessions.
That was in 2000 at the Camp David summit, hosted by then-US president Bill Clinton, the kind of pro-Israel Democrat that the party no longer seems to welcome in its ranks.
Arafat’s response to Barak’s generous offer and Clinton’s coaxing was to launch a suicide-bombing war on Israeli citizens going about their business riding buses, dining at restaurants and shopping in malls. Much of the center-Left in Israel promptly moved rightward. The far-Left blamed Barak for the failure at Camp David.
The Democrats in America were divided, but didn’t lose faith in the religion of diplomacy.

IN ANY CASE, Clinton’s term was coming to a close. In November that year, the Republican George W. Bush was elected president. By the time that Obama entered the Oval Office eight years later, the Democrats had undergone the radical shift that put him there in the first place.
Blinded by his good looks and proud to be voting for a black candidate (as long as he wasn’t a Republican), even most American Jews were able to overlook the fact that Jeremiah Wright, the pastor of the church he attended for two decades, was an antisemite and a preacher of the ills of the “White Man.”
But it was Obama’s true mentor, Saul Alinsky, a Jewish “white man,” whose ideas – which came to transform the Democratic Party into what it is today – should have caused liberal Americans of all stripes to pause, if not recoil. In the last of his books, Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals, Alinsky spelled out his methodology for “those who want to change the world from what it is to what they believe it should be.”
According to Alinsky, “The Prince was written by Machiavelli for the Haves on how to hold power. ‘Rules for Radicals’ is written for the Have-Nots on how to take it away.”
The way to do this, he explained, was for the “organizer” to establish credibility for the purpose of working within the system that he is trying to destroy. Through a combination of seduction and resentment-fanning, he can create a “mass army” to carry out the task.
Could anything better describe the activity and success of the Black Lives Matter movement in spearheading the cancel-culture revolution?
Though it exploded across the country during Trump’s tenure – thanks to the chaos created by the coronavirus pandemic – it first had to take over the Democratic Party. That it did so with such apparent ease is Obama’s greatest achievement.

WHICH BRINGS us back to Israel. Obama’s treatment of Netanyahu and the Jewish state was not due to personal animosity or antisemitism. It was, rather, totally in keeping with his dim view of American power and exceptionalism, both of which Israel admires and strives to emulate.
As human-rights scholar Anne Bayefsky pointed out in 2015, “The fact is that huggable Barney the Purple Dinosaur could have been Israel’s elected leader, and the [Obama administration’s] relations [with the government in Jerusalem] would have been equally hostile.”
The same goes for the mindset of the numerous radical Democrats in Congress today. If Lapid imagines otherwise, he’s kidding himself. He is also delusional to consider the Democratic Party platform a victory of the moderates, and to believe that Biden – Obama’s loyal veep – will be anything but a puppet of the progressives, in the event that he is elected president three months from now.
Clearly, the Israeli Opposition leader is basing his optimism on the following sentences in the platform: “Democrats believe a strong, secure and democratic Israel is vital to the interests of the United States.
Our commitment to Israel’s security, its qualitative military edge, its right to defend itself and the 2016 Memorandum of Understanding is ironclad.”
He also probably took comfort in the platform’s assertion that “while Jerusalem is a matter for final-status negotiations, it should remain the capital of Israel, an undivided city accessible to people of all faiths,” and in the claim that Democrats “oppose any effort to unfairly single out and delegitimize Israel, including at the United Nations or through the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement, while protecting the Constitutional right of our citizens to free speech.”

PERHAPS LAPID doesn’t know how to read between the lines in English.
Nor did he focus too much on the surrounding text. Take the preceding passage, for example, which states: “Democrats will call off the Trump administration’s race to war with Iran and prioritize nuclear diplomacy, de-escalation and regional dialogue… We believe the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) remains the best means to verifiably cut off all of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear bomb… That’s why returning to mutual compliance with the agreement is so urgent.”
Then there’s the typical moral equivalence between Israel and the Palestinians – engaged in a “conflict that has brought so much pain to so many” – with a juxtaposition of “incitement and terror” with “settlement expansion.”
It’s time for Lapid to realize that even if he does become prime minister at some point, which is highly unlikely, it is the Republicans who will be on his side, not the Democrats – unless, of course, he moves to satisfy the mullahs and Alinskyites by demolishing the Jewish state from within.
In the meantime, the rest of us can hope that none of the above is put to the test, at least not for another four years.