Yasser Arafat’s incremental conquest of Israel was learned at the feet of the North Vietnamese in 1970. The Vietnamese told the Arab leadership that they accepted the fact that victory in Vietnam would take many years, during which it would be necessary to temporarily accept the division of the country into two states, while they worked for a shift in the balance of power. In this, the Vietnamese were smart enough to permit the Americans to save face. They had no intention of respecting the agreements they signed with the United States; the point was to provide political cover for the American retreat.
Today, Barack Obama is giving the Arabs the same opportunity as Nixon gave the Vietnamese. Obama told a Muslim audience in Cairo in the first months of his administration that America’s support for Israel was “unbreakable,” even as he moved to compel Jerusalem to cede even more territory to its enemies. In this new broadside, Michael Ledeen asks why the Obama administration has chosen this course, and examines what this betrayal means for Israel and the world at large.