Good Morning America, Bibi is Coming to Town


Good Morning America: Do you know who has stolen your Congress? In two weeks you could hear from one of the culprits.

On March 3, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to speak to what was once your United States Congress.

Prime Minister Netanyahu will speak to the Congress and tell the members that President Obama is wrong. Netanyahu promises to say the President is wrong to think it is possible to negotiate Iran back from the brink of adding further to the world’s nuclear arsenal.

Benjamin Netanyahu will tell the Congress that negotiations are wrong because only the threat and application of military power will succeed in stopping Iran from beginning to build its own nuclear weapons arsenal, a collection of deadly weapons that could rival Israel’s Middle East nuclear military control.

A control, that is, snugly resting and hidden in a secret stash of more than 400 Israeli nuclear weapons, a secret protected by the United States’ refusal ever to mention its existence, even during negotiations about Iran’s nuclear future

The Israeli Prime Minister will be greeted by cheers and applause from those members of Congress who will be in attendance. Some members will not attend. How many will skip the event could depend on voters who demand their absence.

Even strong pro-Israel outlets like Fox News, and Liberal Zionist media outlets like MSNBC, are urging Netanyahu to cancel his March 3 moment in the world media spotlight.

That media backing could encourage members to follow the example of President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and Secretary of State John Kerry, two of whom have announced they have duties to perform elsewhere when Bibi comes to town.

President Obama was more direct. He said it was not good political form to take sides in a foreign election. 

Joe Biden will be the most significant missing person in the House chamber on March 3. He  normally sits next to Boehner when a joint session of Congress assembles. Biden’s  announced absence is a risky move for someone who might contest Hillary Clinton in 2016.

The invitation to Netanyahu came as quite a surprise to both Obama and Biden, as well as to Kerry’s State Department. Protocol for invitations to speak to a joint session calls for prior agreement from the White House.

Prior consultation was ignored by newly-elevated Republican House Speaker John Boehner, the first of many in-your-face steps Boehner is expected to make in the next two years.

The invitation and Netanyahu’s prearranged acceptance, is giving a certain grim delight to Netanyahu’s opponents in Israel’s March 17 election.

An Israeli campaign speech to the U.S. Congress two weeks before an election?  Not politically smart, which is no doubt the only reason Netanyahu may still cancel.

Update: CNN reports that “New York Rep. Charlie Rangel is among more than a dozen congressional Democrats who are planning to skip Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress next month.”

Rangel, ever the canny politician, insists he is not “a boycotter”. He insists he is “a friend of Israel”, and is not boycotting. His absence will be “about respecting my President on foreign policy.”

Meanwhile, Kairos USA continues its campaign urging voters to contact their members and request they “stay away from the speech”. USA Kairos provides  a helpful link  on how voters may contact their members. End Update.

Assuming Netanyahu is stubborn enough to keep his speech date, regardless of the political damage back home, and the pressure he puts on his supporters in Congress, this is a time when voters have an opportunity to influence their members of Congress to do the right thing, which is to “stay away”.

Permanent ownership of our Congress is at stake here. In the next two weeks, Americans have the opportunity to call, write, email or speak directly to each of their three elected representatives (one house member, two senators).  

This is the time to paraphrase a line from Mission Commander Swanbeck in the film with Tom Cruise, Mission Impossible 2.

“Good morning, Mr. Hunt. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, involves the recovery of a stolen item designated freedom.”

The mission now for those who choose to accept it, is to deliver a warning to their elected members, recalling a loud whisper by Pete in the film, O Brother, Where Art Thou?,

“Do not seek the treasure. Its an ambush.”

Your three members will get Pete’s meaning: The danger of an ambush lurks behind the treasure they seek.

This should be the time when some members of Congress will choose to follow Pete’s advice, avoid the ambush, and not “seek the treasure”. Their choice is between their President and Israel’s Prime Minister. They won’t get many opportunities to regain their integrity as specific as this one.images

To bolster your determination to carry out your mission to tell your members to stop “seeking the  treasure”, read carefully the counsel offered by Israel’s leading peace activist, former Irgun fighter and former Knesset member, 91-year-old Uri Avnery. (right).

In a timely and prophetic posting this week, which he entitled, “The Casino Republic”, Avnery tells us what the political future could hold for the U.S., unless dependance on pro-Israel money is broken.

He would have us start by studying what has happened in Israel after the invasion of the deep pockets of American billionaire Sheldon Adelson.

Avnery describes the control Adelson has gained over Israel’s current prime minister. He begins “The Casino Republic”:

“Who is the ruler of Israel?
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, of course.

The real ruler of Israel is one Sheldon Adelson, 81, American Jew, Casino king, who was rated as the world’s tenth richest person, worth 37.2 billion dollars at the latest count. But who is counting?

Besides his casinos in Las Vegas, Macao and Singapore, he owns the US Republican party and, lately, both Houses of the US Congress.

He also owns Binyamin Netanyahu.”

Avnery outlines how Adelson captured Netanyahu. 

“Addison’s connection with Israel is personal. On a blind date, he fell in love with an Israeli woman.

Miriam Farbstein was born in Haifa, attended a prestigious high school, did her army service in the Israeli institute which deals with bacteriological warfare and is a multifaceted scientist. After one of her sons (from her first marriage) died of an overdose, she is devoted to the fight against drugs, especially cannabis.

Both Adelsons are fanatical supporters of Israel. Not just any Israel, but a rightist, supremacist, arrogant, violent, expansionist, annexationist, non-compromising, colonialist Israel.

In “Bibi” Netanyahu they found their man. Through Netanyahu they hope to rule Israel as their private fief.

To assure this, they did an extraordinary thing: they founded an Israeli newspaper, solely devoted to the furthering of the interests of Binyamin Netanyahu. Not of the Likud, not of a specific policy, but of Netanyahu personally.”

Back home, Adelson prepares for the 2016 U.S.presidential race.

Avnery is warning American voters and power brokers what to expect from an Adelson-controlled American government. 

The decision by members of Congress to attend, or not to attend, Netanyahu’s speech March 3 is a test of loyalty for members, to their elected president or to the Sheldon Adelson-controlled prime minister of Israel.

That is a political decision.  It is also a personal moral decision, which is why the words from Joshua 24:15, cannot be repeated too often: “Choose ye this day whom you will serve. As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”.  

The picture above of Benjamin Netanyahu is from Max The picture of Uri Avnery is from the website

About wallwritings

From 1972 through 1999, James M. Wall was editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine, based in Chicago, lllinois. He was a Contributing Editor of the Century from 1999 until July, 2017. He has written this blog, wall, since it was launched April 27, 2008. If you would like to receive Wall Writings alerts when new postings are added to this site, send a note, saying, Please Add Me, to Biography: Journalism was Jim's undergraduate college major at Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. He has earned two MA degrees, one from Emory, and one from the University of Chicago, both in religion. He is an ordained United Methodist clergy person. He served for two years in the US Air Force, and three additional years in the USAF reserve. While serving on active duty with the Alaskan Command, he reached the rank of first lieutenant. He has worked as a sports writer for both the Atlanta Journal and Constitution, was editor of the United Methodist magazine, Christian Advocate for ten years, and editor and publisher of the Christian Century magazine for 27 years. James M Wall died March 22, 2021 at age 92. His family appreciates all of his readers, even those who may have disagreed with his well-informed writings.
This entry was posted in Iran, Iran, Israel, Middle East, Netanyahu, Obama. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Good Morning America, Bibi is Coming to Town

  1. Dean Lueking says:

    Jim; Keep on educating us to the realities behind the planned Bibi visit. I am increasingly outraged by the chutzpah of the whole thing, and as I share my feelings with my closest rabbi friends I sense that they, too, see the perils of overreach. Dean.

  2. Jack Graham says:

    Jim, — A good explanation of why our special relationship with Israel is bad for the United States and Israel, why American Jews are not responsible for the evils which come from it, but oppose bellicose Zionism. I believe that, if they had a say, American Jews would quickly make peace with neighboring Arab states along lines of the Geneva Accord, or the Saudi peace plan, or the Roadmap, or some reasonable combination of elements drawn from these plans already on the table, enabling Israel to become a friend instead of a parasite. If Netanjahu insists on insulting the people of the United States by appearing before Congress on the 3rd of March, I hope it backfires, — Jack G.

  3. abunaalgodon says:

    Jim, the linkage to Adelson, whose attempt to buy politicians can only be described as obscene, is a foundational issue in all this. And those who bend the knee before him will, I pray, someday regret it. Eventually – and maybe already, Bibi will have overstepped himself, and the Israeli people (and the likes of John Boehner) will heed the words of prophets such as Uri Avnery. But those who, what else can I say, “suck up” to Adelson will have permanently lost their integrity.

    I will forward this edition of Wallwritings to as many in my 9th Congressional District as I can in the hope they will join me in urging Jan Schakowsky to leave an empty seat when Bibi comes. Cotton

  4. Leonard Cohen is the kind of mench who would gladly lend himself to the cause: “First, we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin. . . .” Democracy has to be coming!

    Janet Gunn

  5. Roy says:

    Thank you, Jim. My Allies on AOL (The A’s) and I are helping to give this essay the widest possible circulation on the Internet. Peace, Roy

  6. Robert says:

    From north of 49: Any chance the speech will be the moment Obama has lived for — the license to pull the plug on underwriting Israeli transgressions with political capital? Or is there for Netanyahu in his calculus no bridge too far?

  7. Sami Joseph says:

    Too little too late. American politicians have already abdicated their responsibility when they accepted contaminated donations for their election campaigns. It is naive to assume that they didn’t know what was expected from them in return.

  8. Samia Khoury says:

    Thank you Jim. I hope this will be a wake up call for the Americans and the congress to assert who is actually in control.

  9. Emmanuel St John says:

    See George Carlin’s magnificent 3-min video at:

  10. Robert says:

    Perhaps oui?

    Obama Plays Hardball with Israel?

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