Kerry’s rebuke of Israel too little, too late: American journalist

Kerry’s rebuke of Israel too little, too late: American journalist

Thu Dec 29, 2016 9:58PM

US Secretary of State John Kerry’s harsh rebuke of Israel over its illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories has not accomplished anything and is too late to be useful for Palestinians, according to Stephen Lendman, an American writer, journalist and political analyst based in Chicago.

The outgoing administration of US President Barack Obama allowed a UN Security Council resolution to pass on Friday by refusing to veto it, defying extraordinary pressure from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and incoming US President Donald Trump.

On Wednesday, Kerry gave a speech at the State Department to defend Washington’s abstention at the UN Security Council, speaking with a clarity and harshness almost never heard from US diplomats when discussing one of their closest allies.

“This is all taking place within few weeks of Obama leaving office,” Lendman said during an interview with Press TV on Thursday. “Why did they wait all this time to do what they’re doing now?”

“It was a worthless effort; words without action are hollow and that’s what America’s abstention last Friday and Kerry’s speech was all about; lip service alone, symbolic, meaningless, nothing was advanced to help the cause of the Palestinian people,” Lendman said.

“They remain occupied, they remain persecuted, they remain victims of anytime Israel intends to wage another war and for certain America will support it; so in other words, nothing was accomplished,” he added.

Kerry’s speech on Wednesday was seen by Israel as a final gesture from an unfriendly American administration in its final weeks.

The Obama administration has grown increasingly frustrated with Israel’s illegal settlement construction, describing it as an obstacle to peace and a “two-state solution.”

“The Israeli prime minister publicly supports a two-state solution, but his current coalition is the most right-wing in Israeli history, with an agenda driven by its most extreme elements,” Kerry said.

His remarks were harshly criticized by both Republican and Democratic lawmakers, highlighting the Zionist lobby’s deep influence over the US Congress.

“While he may not have intended it, I fear Secretary Kerry, in his speech and action at the UN, has emboldened extremists on both sides,” said Senator Chuck Schumer, a Democrat from the state of New York.