Elliott Abrams

Pressure Points

Abrams gives his take on U.S. foreign policy, with special focus on the Middle East and democracy and human rights issues.

Friedman: There He Goes Again

by Elliott Abrams Thursday, November 21, 2013

Here’s an interesting quote:

Never have I seen Israel and America’s core Arab allies working more in concert to stymie a major foreign policy initiative of a sitting U.S. president, and never have I seen more lawmakers — Democrats and Republicans — more willing to take Israel’s side against their own president’s. I’m certain this comes less from any careful consideration of the facts and more from a growing tendency by many American lawmakers to do whatever the Israel lobby asks them to do in order to garner Jewish votes and campaign donations. Read more »

Palestinians From Syria: The Worst Treatment of All

by Elliott Abrams Tuesday, November 19, 2013

There are over 500,000 Palestinian “refugees” in Syria, as counted by the UN agency handling Palestinian “refugees,” the UN Relief and Works Agency or UNRWA. The quotation marks are especially apt in this case, for the great majority of the “refugees” were born in Syria and have lived there all their lives. Only under UNRWA’s definitions of “refugee” (Palestinians who left what is now Israel in 1948, and all of their descendants until the end of time) would they qualify. Read more »

The Case of the Phony Fatwa

by Elliott Abrams Monday, November 18, 2013

It’s common knowledge that Iran’s “Supreme Leader,” Ayatollah Khamenei, has issued a fatwa banning the possession of nuclear weapons.

This “fact” has recently been cited by President Obama and by Secretary of State Kerry. In his speech to the United Nations General Assembly in September, the President said
Read more »

Are Iran Sanctions a “March to War?”

by Elliott Abrams Wednesday, November 13, 2013

White House spokesman Jay Carney yesterday called any effort to adopt additional sanctions against Iran “a march to war.”  Here, from The Cable, is the quote:

It is important to understand that if pursuing a resolution diplomatically is disallowed or ruled out, what options, then, do we and our allies have to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon? The American people do not want a march to war. Read more »

Electing the New UN Human Rights Council

by Elliott Abrams Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Next week, on November 12, new members of the UN Human Rights Council will be elected. Among the candidates are nations that should never be allowed on the Council, and indeed whose presence will make the Council a mockery: Cuba, Russia, Saudi Arabia, China, and Vietnam. Read more »

Kerry Foreign Policy: Does the United States Stand for Anything at All?

by Elliott Abrams Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Does the United States stand for anything at all? Do we have a view about, say, slavery, or child prostitution, or the stoning of gays?

What  should be a ridiculous question is raised by Secretary of State Kerry’s offensive obeisance to the Saudis yesterday when visiting Riyadh. Here is the AP story: Read more »

Is the United States Spilling Its Allies’ Secrets?

by Elliott Abrams Friday, November 1, 2013

The news of the last few weeks has been filled with complaints that the United States is electronically spying not only on enemies but on allies as well. As I wrote in a previous blog post, if we have in fact targeted the cell phones of leaders of friends and allies, such as German Chancellor Angela Merkel, we should stop. Yes, the world is a dangerous place and gentlemen do read each others’ mail, but deliberately targeting the leader of an ally such as Germany is wrong and stupid. And especially so given the risk, these days, that such conduct will leak and damage important allied relationships. Read more »