He stoops to pander

New York governor Andrew Cuomo, accompanied by assembly speaker Sheldon Silver, state senate co-leaders Dean Skelos and Jeff Klein, and several well-heeled hangers-on, left today on a “unity trip” to Israel. Even under normal circumstances this would be a questionable state incursion into foreign affairs, but these are not normal circumstances: Israel is in the midst of a war with Hamas in the Israeli-occupied Gaza strip. While Hamas certainly has been a bad actor, the brutality of the Israeli incursion is completely disproportionate. Israeli forces have killed nearly 2,000 Palestinians, the vast majority of them civilians. Only three Israel civilians have lost their lives and they were actually working with the military. Cuomo’s trip is, basically, an endorsement of these atrocities. Furthermore, he and his delegation pointedly declined an invitation to meet with representatives of the people of Gaza. The trip is funded, it is claimed, by Cuomo’s reelection campaign. However, the fact that these worthies are flying El Al and not a US airline suggests that the real sponsor is the Israeli government.

I have no doubt that I will be accused of anti-Semitism for objecting to this blatant display of pandering to wealthy downstate Jewish campaign contributors, some of whom are almost certainly laundering illegal Israeli government money. But it must be said that the governor of New York should be tending to the affairs of the State of New York, not involving himself in international relations. The one-sided nature of this trip will only serve to further inflame the situation in Gaza. Mr. Cuomo will be returning from this entirely inappropriate junket with the blood of Palestinian children on his hands—and, of course, thirty pieces of silver in his pocket.

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