Over nearly two decades, several Israeli leaders offered peace terms that included a Palestinian state. The offers were rejected, a rain of Arab rockets and terror attacks followed and across the Israeli political spectrum, there was one reaction: We don’t have a partner for peace.
President Trump knows the feeling.
His remarks following the horrific attacks in El Paso and Dayton hit all the right notes. He forcefully condemned bigotry and white supremacy and touted measures aimed at flagging potential mass murderers before they get guns.
“Hatred warps the mind, ravages the heart and devours the soul,” he said, and later: “Open wounds cannot heal if we are divided. We must seek real, bipartisan solutions.”
The result: Democrats branded Trump a racist — Joe Biden even invoked the KKK — and many insisted that the president was to blame for the turmoil in American society. Not one offered to meet him halfway on guns, background checks, the internet, video games or mental health.
They don’t want solutions. They want his surrender.
It is easy to say that Washington must do something to end the senseless slaughter, and even easier to say a pox on both their houses for failing. All true, but not the whole story.
To get that, you have to clear your head of leftist slogans and media mendacity and step into reality. And the reality of our era — the one that sets it apart from all others — is that Trump has been on the receiving end of a ruthless, unprecedented and nonstop barrage of personal and political attacks. Richard Nixon got off easy by comparison.
What is a president to do when the other party makes a fetish of demonizing and resisting him, of weaponizing law enforcement against him and viewing his supporters as dumb cretins unworthy of respect or attention?
It started during the 2016 campaign when Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, the media and the establishment of both parties called Trump unfit and a threat to the world. His campaign was spied on, and the minute he won the election, the case against him became Russia, Russia, Russia.
A gusher of leaks from the White House, FBI and CIA tried to topple the new president or undermine him by painting him as illegitimate.
Here would be a worthy exercise for a fact checker: Count the times Trump was called a traitor and a Russian agent. Now remember that each was a smear.
The collusion hoax dominated for more than two years, with Trump’s every word and action pored over by biased prosecutors looking through the darkest possible lens — and they found nothing to call a crime. Nothing!
Nobody mentions Russia, Russia, Russia anymore. It did not come up once during the Dems’ presidential debates, with questioners and candidates mutually agreeing to bury their false charges.
Now we are here, at a fresh but familiar crisis of confidence in the American experiment. We have been through worse times, but there is no denying that we have reached a dead end when it comes to solving our biggest problems.
The slaughter of the innocents, the southern border, the federal deficit, China, Iran, North Korea — they all cry out for united resolve. In vain.
To be clear, Trump is no angel. He, too, can be rude and reckless and contributes to a coarsening of public dialogue. His economic policies have been so successful that, were it not for tone-deaf tweets, he likely would be on a glide path to re-election. His need to get everything off his chest right this instant is so exhausting it could be fatal.
Nevertheless, the hatred for him is so far out of proportion to any offense that you wonder whether there is any circumstance under which the left would agree to work with him for the good of the country.
More to the point, are the mass shootings horrible enough that something finally gets done?
Trump clearly signaled he’s ready to make a deal, and Dems should take him up on it while the outrage and grief are fresh and the public is paying attention.
My guess is they won’t. For one thing, the center of gravity in the party has shifted so far left that the 2020 candidates are having trouble keeping up with the latest “woke” demands.
Debate questions that reflect traditional centrist positions about criminal justice, health care and spending are denounced as “Republican talking points.” Anything Trump would support would be denounced as criminally deficient.
Congressional Dems are no better. Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer are afraid to negotiate with the president, lest they be chased out of town for collaborating with the enemy.
Schumer is especially disappointing. Soon after the election, he talked of making deals with his pal Donald and, for his trouble, got midnight demonstrations outside his Brooklyn apartment. “F–k Chuck,” the mob cleverly shouted, and he folded and joined the resistance.
Pelosi’s game of playing footsie with the impeachment caucus has achieved nothing except to encourage the wing nuts that she is waiting for the dam to break so she can give her approval. Meanwhile, time passes and House Dems appear ready to go to voters in 2020 with nothing to show for their two-year control except proof that they really, really hate the president of the United States.
As of Tuesday, the tally from El Paso and Dayton stood at 31 dead and 51 injured. Grief and shock are everywhere as fear and anger spread from sea to shining sea.
If now is not the time for Washington to come together, when would be?
Oh, how we need an ‘Ed!’
The Ed Koch stories keep coming. Reader Tom Byrnes, now a dentist in Massachusetts, was a city cabbie in 1976 when he picked up then-Congressman Koch in Manhattan. It was the evening of the Senate primary where Daniel Patrick Moynihan defeated Bella Abzug for the Dem nomination.
Byrnes writes, “I asked whom he was supporting and Koch readily replied ‘Moynihan.’ He then said we were on our way to Moynihan’s campaign headquarters. When I asked why he wasn’t supporting Abzug, he barked good-naturedly, ‘Because she’s a communist.’ We both laughed.
“Ed Koch was the best mayor in my lifetime, and a splendid human being. Our nation and New York sorely need someone like him now.”
Blas’ latest bad ‘move’
The stories about Mayor Putz keep coming, too, though of a very different sort.
The latest involves a report that the mayor’s wife, Chirlane McCray, joined their NYPD security detail as officers moved de Blasio’s daughter from Brooklyn to Gracie Mansion. Errol Louis on NY1 got nondenial denials from the mayor.
So did it happen? “Look, I wasn’t there but I can say after six years now — it’s very clear we do our own stuff for our stuff.”
So if it happened, there’s nothing wrong with it? “I wasn’t there so I can’t — I just honestly cannot go into something I didn’t see and I don’t know.”
Nobody will miss him.
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