Jen Rubin Writes: Yesterday, maybe Obama’s most vocal Zionist backer in 2008, former editor of the New Republic Marty Peretz, who went out on a limb to assure wavering Democrats of the president’s bona fides, lashed out in a scathing denunciation. In an interview in the Wall Street Journal, Peretz unloads on the Obama team’s “great self-deception” that “somehow the president’s tranquilizing words and theirs would bring honesty and reason to Russia, to China, to African tyrants and, their biggest bet, to the intersecting orbits of Arab states and Islamofascist mullahs.” His harshest words are for Obama’s stance toward Israel:
“Obama can’t visit Israel,” Mr. Peretz responds. “The Israeli public is uncontrollable. There would be a lot of unpleasantness. If he visited the Knesset — the Knesset is one of the most rambunctious parliaments in the world.”
Such rapprochement, moreover, is foreclosed by Mr. Obama’s indifference to the basic Zionist ideal, which was on full display in his 2009 Cairo speech to the Muslim world. There Mr. Obama cited the Holocaust — not millennia of Jewish ties to the land — as the basis for Israel’s legitimacy. “It took him three-and-a-half years to get to the point where he could recite some version of Zionist narrative,” Mr. Peretz sighs. . . .
All this stands in jarring contrast to the Democratic Party’s foreign-policy traditions, Mr. Peretz argues. “You know, I disagreed with Bill Clinton on some things and I didn’t disagree with him on others,” Mr. Peretz recalls. But Mr. Clinton’s administration “was in the deep tradition of the Roosevelt-Truman idea.” He concludes: “In any case, I think the Democratic Party was restored to a center role. Yes, it took a lot for the Clinton administration to rescue Bosnia. And it took a lot for the Democrats to admit to a mistake in Somalia.” But they eventually did both.
“We’re now in a new era,” Mr. Peretz warns. “I think that Obama is a child, or maybe let’s say a grandchild, of the New Left, with casual moral judgments made about very intricate ethical alternatives.” Later he thunders: “Leading by following — it’s really a sick phrase.”
Other prominent Obama supporters, such asDennis Ross, have essentially acknowledged Obama’s “peace process” efforts led nowhere and then have been conspicuous by their absence in the political campaign.