Forget your opinion of Barack Obama. Love him or loathe him, the reality remains unchanged: we have but one president at a time. And but one commander-in-chief.
U.S. national security is endangered—perhaps now more than at any time in history. Both the president and our military leaders are bound by an oath to defend this nation from all enemies, both foreign and domestic.
Recent events suggest that, in cooperation with senior military officers, President Obama is battling a cunning and committed adversary. To prevail, he needs public support.
Be clear on this point: we were deceived to wage war in Iraq on fabricated intelligence. Only one nation had the means, motive, opportunity and stable nation state intelligence to succeed with such an operation inside the U.S.
That same state now seeks to induce our invasion of Iran. Or Pakistan. In 1948, the Joint Chiefs of Staff cautioned Harry Truman about the “fanatical concepts” of this extremist enclave, especially its plans for “military and economic hegemony over the entire Middle East.”
President Eisenhower saw this fledgling state in action when, during his 1956 presidential campaign, Britain, France and Israel sought to start a war with Egypt over control of the Suez Canal. London and Paris were quickly persuaded to abandon that effort. Not Tel Aviv.
When this Republican leader sought Congressional support, he found none. The former general turned instead to a televised address to counter an influence that has only grown stronger over the past 52 years. This month, a bipartisan 363 members of Congress committed themselves to an “unbreakable bond” with Israel—regardless of its behavior.
A similar commitment was addressed to the commander-in-chief over the signatures of 76 Senators led by Democrat Barbara Boxer of California. Republican Eric Cantor of Virginia and New York Senator Charles Schumer, a Democrat, unleashed a pro-Israel attack on Obama that sounded less like the Congress than the Knesset.
Forced to face the reality of an enemy within, our military leadership signaled Obama that they are prepared to cover his back. The oath of office mandates a defense against all enemies. Yet it also places our defense under civilian control.
Senior military officers now understand the need to mount a vigorous defense against an enemy adept at waging war “by way of deception.” That’s the operative credo of the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence and foreign operations directorate.
In January, CENTCOM Commander David Petraeus dispatched a team to brief Admiral Mike Mullen on the adverse impact of Israeli behavior on U.S. security interests. As chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Mullen was reportedly stunned.
General Petraeus also argued that CENTCOM should have oversight of Israel/Palestine. It’s long been known how to resolve those hostilities: declare Jerusalem an international city under U.N. protection and dispatch international troops to secure the area.
The Israeli government fired right back. On the early March arrival of Vice-President Joe Biden in Tel Aviv, the Netanyahu government announced the construction of 1,600 homes in the most contentious area in dispute.
When Netanyahu arrived two weeks later for a White House meeting, Obama’s cool reception set off a flurry of pro-Israeli ads in papers nationwide while Nobel peace laureate Elie Wiesel proclaimed, “Jerusalem is above politics.”
Meanwhile Israeli saber rattling moved into high gear as the “existential threat” of Iran again became the drumbeat of the nation’s pro-Israeli mainstream media. The Pentagon fired right backed with an announcement from the Undersecretary of Defense for Policy that U.S. military force against Iran is “off the table in the near term.”
Another adventure in the Middle East would be ruinous for the U.S. not only militarily but also financially and geo-strategically. That may well be what the Israel lobby has in mind as it seeks with its dominance in politics and media to induce another war that would further damage U.S. interests worldwide.
To defend against the manipulation of thought and emotion that typifies modern warfare, the Pentagon is mounting a vigorous counteroffensive. Though non-transparent to the public, its latest initiative was a shot across the bow of this enemy within.
On April 22, the Pentagon rescinded evangelist Franklin Graham’s invitation to a National Prayer Day event. News reports confirmed that his anti-Islam comments were contrary to a newly revised Pentagon policy meant to minimize such provocative rhetoric.
Though that analysis is correct, the underlying dynamics are more complex and far more troublesome for Israel. Those dynamics include its continued status as a legitimate state.
Tel Aviv well recalls a tape-recorded discussion in 1972 between Republican President Richard Nixon and evangelist Billy Graham, Franklin’s father, in which Graham agreed with a commander-in-chief that Jews control the media, calling it a “stranglehold.”
Franklin’s attacks on Islam overcompensated for his father’s agreement on that key strategic point. With this action, the Pentagon signaled confidence in the intelligence identifying a key source of the deception that has long plagued U.S. national security.
By urging that the Congress express its “unbreakable bond” with Israel, the lobby inadvertently conceded good news for America: this perilous bond is already broken.
Please defend the U.S.: support our Commander-in-Chief.
A Vietnam veteran, Jeff Gates is a widely acclaimed author, attorney, investment banker, educator and consultant to government, corporate and union leaders worldwide. He served for seven years as counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance.
He is widely published in the trade, popular and academic press. His latest book is Guilt by Association: How Deception and Self-Deceit Took America to War.
His previous books include Democracy at Risk: Rescuing Main Street From Wall Street and The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century. Topical commentaries appear on the Criminal State website.