Just finished clearing off Fox News Sunday off the DVR. Three days ago, Herman Cain was on with Chris Wallace and he did a great job. That is until he revealed his weakness, and I was taken aback. First off, I like Herman Cain. He is currently my number two for the GOP nod, anyone who has tangoed with me in the comments sections over the last five years probably knows who is my number one, and I do not want to digress. Today, I want to talk about Herman Cain’s Kryptonite that he revealed a few days ago on Fox News Sunday.
Herman Cain was weak on understanding the Palestinian and Israeli issues. He was not wrong in general and what he did say was good, but he let slip that he did not understand some very important points and frankly I was shocked. I knew more about this issue than he did and that shouldn’t be the case for someone running for President. If Mr. Cain does not brush up quick on these issues, then he is in jeopardy of getting the reputation Sarah Palin had in 2008 with foreign policy issues.
To keep this diary concise, I will limit the quotes and issues discussed. The full transcript of the interview is here. His problem is quoted below with my observation in brackets and emphasis added:
WALLACE: Where do you stand on the right of return?
CAIN: The right of return? [Cain’s blank stare due to not sure what the question was about] The right of return?
WALLACE: The Palestinian right of return.
CAIN: That is something that should be negotiated. That is something that should be negotiated.
WALLACE: Do you think the Palestinian refugees, the people who were kicked out of the land in 1948, should be able or should have any right to return to Israeli land?
CAIN: Yes. But under — but not under Palestinian conditions. Yes. They should have a right to come back if that is a decision that Israel wants to make. Back to — it’s up to Israel to determine the things they will accept. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made it real clear in his statement following the statement that President Obama made. They are wiling to make some concessions. They are willing to give on a lot of things. They are willing to be compassionate. I don’t think they have a big problem with people returning. The issue is there are some things that they simply do not want to give in on.
I’m glad Mr. Cain did not mess up the gist of the question, but he certainly revealed he has no understanding of the Palestinian Right of Return. This is a huge problem for Israel, they do not want to give millions of Palestinian refugees the right to return back to Israel. Israel would cease to be a Jewish state if this was allowed. We’re not talking about the refugees returning to the new future Palestinian state, but back into Israel. This is a major point the Palestinians want and Israel is not budging on it. For Israel, this point is not to be negotiated, and yes, they have a big problem with these people returning back. I would have thought Mr. Cain understood about this issue. It is a big part of the unsolved problems in the negotiation.
Needless to say, I hope Mr. Cain studies some of these important issues that are bound to be asked of him in future questions. I hope he has access to great resources and people that know about these issues. If not, I hope he may take a few hours and follow some simple wiki links. Wiki is easy to criticize for not totally being accurate, but at least it would give him a head start on coming up to speed about this important piece of the foreign policy puzzle.
Palestinian Right of Return
Some History of Temple Mount
Some History of Jerusalem’s Dome of the Rock
Understanding Zionism and how there are many factions of it
I’m rooting for Herman Cain and I hope he brushes up and destroys the Kryptonite that is so quickly and easily thrown during primaries.