Thursday, February 06, 2014

Who Is Intimidating Whom?

Susan Rice has been attacked for seeking to limit freedom of speech.

She tweeted:

“Personal attacks in Israel directed at Sec Kerry totally unfounded and unacceptable.” 

State's spokesperson Psaki previously declared that if accurate, Ya’alon’s remarks are 

“offensive and inappropriate, especially given all that the U.S. is doing to support Israel’s security needs.”

And now, a State Department spoksperson also declares satirical rhetoric is "unaccpetable":-

"I think it goes in with what I’ve already stated about attempts to mischaracterize [Kerry's] record, his position, his positions on issues, his statements, how that is not an attack on him; that’s an attack on the process. And of course that kind of rhetoric we find unacceptable," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Wednesdays during a press briefing.

She also tweeted:

Jen Psaki ‏@statedeptspox  Feb 2
#SecKerry has always expected opposition & difficult moments in process & expects all parties to accurately portray his record & statements.

The full transcript of that press conference section is hilarious:-

QUESTION: Are you satisfied with the attempts by Prime Minister Netanyahu and Tzipi Livni, Justice Minister Livni and other Israeli officials to tamp down some of the invective rhetoric coming from other Israeli officials, which now – and spiritual leaders as well? I just saw something about a group of very Orthodox rabbis saying that the Secretary declared war on God, and using words like, well --
MS. PSAKI: Well, I spoke with the Secretary about this particular issue – not your exact question, but this morning – and where he stands at this point is he’s not going to spend a lot of time worrying about words people are using against him. His greatest concern about this is the impact they have or they could have on the process, that the words aren’t an attack on him, they’re actually an attack on the peace process itself. He knows that trying to create peace isn’t a favor – and this is something he conveyed this morning – isn’t a favor we’re doing, and it’s very much his view, for the Israelis and the Palestinians. It’s something that people in Israel and – the Israeli people and the Palestinians very much want. So while he has a tough skin and he’s been through a lot more difficult circumstances than having personal verbal attacks thrown at him, he is – he wants the focus to be on these tough issues.
QUESTION: Right, but considering – if, in fact, he does believe – and I’m sure he probably does – that these are not really – these are attacks more against the peace process --
MS. PSAKI: Mm-hmm.
QUESTION: -- and he is the messenger of the --
MS. PSAKI: Mm-hmm.
QUESTION: -- of that peace process, are you satisfied with the attempts that have been made, apparently been made, by the prime minister and the justice minister, to rein – and the president of Israel also to try to rein in this – I don’t even know what you call it --
MS. PSAKI: Sure.
QUESTION: -- rein in this clearly inflammatory rhetoric?
MS. PSAKI: Well, we’ll see what happens over the coming days and weeks, Matt. I think the challenge here is that it’s hard to evaluate until you have a circumstance. Obviously, the events of the last weekend, I think I’ve spoken pretty extensively to those and the Secretary’s view on that. But we have a long way to go in this process, and I think his view is that some of this is a sign that the heat is on and we’re getting down to the difficult issues. So it’s hard for me to evaluate whether we’re satisfied or not. I think the question is whether his record and his words will continue to be mischaracterized.
QUESTION: Well, maybe satisfied is the wrong word to use --
MS. PSAKI: Mm-hmm.
QUESTION: -- but are you – do you think that – are you seeing the rhetoric being toned down now or not?
MS. PSAKI: Obviously, the comments this weekend were more heated than the comments over the last couple of days, but there continue to be concerning comments made.
MS. PSAKI: And I think what would be a successful outcome would be for parties to focus their efforts on grappling with these tough issues and taking on these tough issues, and that’s what he thinks the focus should be on.
QUESTION: Did the Secretary watch --
QUESTION: Just – could I just ask --
MS. PSAKI: Let’s just do one at a time. Go ahead, Jo.
QUESTION: Can I just ask --
MS. PSAKI: Mm-hmm.
QUESTION: -- you said that the Secretary believes that these aren’t an attack necessarily on him but attack on the peace process. Does he fear that it could – this invective could damage the peace process and the efforts to bridge the gaps? Could it drive the sides further apart?
MS. PSAKI: Well, that process it ongoing even at the same time. And I talked about this a little bit earlier this week, but even on Sunday, he was meeting with Justice Minister Livni and Yitzhak Molho while some of these comments were being made. And certainly his hope is that the focus will be on what the lasting peace will bring to the Israeli and Palestinian people. And that’s what people will talk about. So --
QUESTION: But you have an atmosphere which is already very tense. I mean, issues which haven’t been decided or agreed on for the last 60 years. If you’ve got this kind of poisonous atmosphere that’s being injected into the process, doesn’t that make his job more difficult?
MS. PSAKI: Well, any rhetoric is – any damaging rhetoric or rhetoric that is inaccurate and as critical as this is is never helpful. But I think the larger point here is this process is not about Secretary John Kerry. This process is about what the future for the Israeli and the Palestinian people and the prospects of peace and security and prosperity. And that’s what he thinks people need – should be – need to be reminded of, in addition to the fact that these kind of attacks are unacceptable, and they not only distort his record but they distract from the real issues at hand.

We used to chant "sticks and stones can't break my bones" but Secretary Kerry makes that "bullets":-

"I've been, quote, 'attacked' before by people using real bullets, not words. And I am not going to be intimidated," Kerry told CNN according to a transcript released by the broadcaster.

Whoa, there, John.  You're feeling intimidated?

If so, imagine what we're feeling.


1 comment:

Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

by real bullets, Kerry means the bullets that the Viet Cong shot at him in Vietnam. But his experience in the Nam, which ostensibly gives him credibility, only lasted for 4 months and 10 days, a much shorter tour of duty than other sailors and naval officers assigned to the Swift boats in that war.

By the way, he managed to pick up a silver star and a bronze star in those 4 months and 10 days. That's pretty good too. He got his medals pretty fast.