Tonight is the first Democrat debate on CNN, and participants should, but won’t, chime in on the latest book by Mideast maven Dennis Ross – “Doomed to Succeed: the US-Israel relationship from Truman to Obama.”
Released today, the tome skewers Susan Rice and reveals she is one of the reasons why the Barack Obama White House is dysfunctional when dealing with Israel, and the administration has no coherent policy to solve the never-ending conflict between Arabs and Jews.
Ross has major credentials in any assessment of Rice:
- During President Carter’s administration, Ross worked for Deputy Asst Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz in the Pentagon. There he co-authored a study urging greater U.S. intervention in the Persian Gulf “because of our need for… oil and because events in the Persian Gulf affect the Arab–Israeli conflict.”
- Under President Reagan, Ross was director of Near East and South Asian affairs in the National Security Council and Deputy Director of the Pentagon’s Office of Net Assessment (1982–84).
- In the mid-1980s Ross co-founded, with the infamous Martin Indyk, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
- Under President George H. W. Bush, Ross was director of the U.S. State Department’s Policy Planning Staff, working on U.S. policy toward the former Soviet Union, reunification of Germany and its integration into NATO, and the 1991 Gulf War. He also worked with Secretary of State James Baker on convincing Arab and Israeli leaders to attend the 1991 Middle East peace conference.
- In 1993 President Clinton named Ross the Middle East envoy. He helped Israel and Palestinians reach the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, then brokered the Protocol Concerning the Redeployment in Hebron in 1997. He also facilitated the Israel–Jordan peace treaty.
- Ross was appointed Special Adviser for the Persian Gulf and Southwest Asia to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on February 23, 2009. On June 25 that year the White House announced that Ross was leaving the State Department to join the National Security Council staff as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for the Central Region – the Middle East, the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, Pakistan and South Asia.
In his dealings with Susan Rice, first as ambassador to the United Nations and much more critically, as national security adviser, he describes her as a naysayer when it came to solving crisis points that impacted Israel.
Ross recalled that Rice “nearly always took the view that the Israelis were hurting us and never took our needs into account. She embodied the mind-set that we needed to be wary of Israel and not let it exploit differences within the administration. The less we shared with them, the better.”
When Ross suggested Obama visit Israel following is Arab Spring speech in Cairo, Rice and other advisers, shot him down. Worst of all, in 2011 Ross recalled that Rice opposed vetoing the U.N. resolution condemning Israeli settlement activity as illegal and setting the stage for sanctions against that nation. arguing that doing so would push the administration back in its relations with the Arab world and with the “international community.”
The book describes frustrated Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, who both seemed out-matched by Rice and her White House cohorts, National Security Adviser Tom Donilon and Ben Rhodes Is there Irony that Ben was born to a Jewish mother and he graduated Rice University. (A career helper? Ben’s brother is President of CBS News )
In describing Hillary Clinton’s interaction with Rice and the gang, Ross said she “felt it was futile at the outset to fight what she saw as a collective mind-set around Obama.” After a year in office she challenged the administration’s policy of putting “daylight” between the US and Israel, arguing that “the approach was not working and we needed to show greater sensitivity toward the Israelis.”
While Susan Rice’s biggest claim to infamy may be telling the American public that a film nearly no one saw caused a Benghazi massacre that nearly everyone condemned, her secret maneuvers against Israel are the core of far more tragedy and needless conflict in the Mideast.
Rice’s husband is ABC News big shot Ian Officer Cameron, and her mother, Lois, is at the Brooking Institute. Her father was the impressive Emmett J, Rice, governor of the Federal Reserve.
The apple sometimes falls very, very far from the tree.