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New Age US Foreign Policy
By Micah Halpern

Thursday November 19, 2020

I've Been Thinking:

Remember how happy you were when you discovered the words Product of Israel on Jaffa Oranges in the supermarket.

It was a great thrill to see Dead Sea products, Ahava products. Even when sick and picking up medicine from the pharmacy seeing Teva pharmaceuticals made me feel a little better.

History was made when US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visit Psagot, a winery which is situated just north of Jerusalem and near the Arab city of Ramallah. The area known as the West Bank.

It was a first. A first time ever visit by a US secretary of state and, more importantly, a first time declaration by the United States that products from the West Bank that enter the United States will be labeled “Made in Israel” or “Product of Israel”.

Pompeo said that this policy is “consistent with reality based foreign policy approach” of the US.

Palestinian leader Hanan Ashwari clearly rejected the move telling Reuters: "Pompeo is intoxicated by apartheid wine stolen from Palestinian land. It is opportunistic and self-serving, and it damages the chances for peace."

This is a last-minute change in policy which some might think can be easily reversed by a new administration. True, but not true.

Reversing this policy would be a big step and would cause huge blowback. It will cost a new administration a lot of political chits and will certainly create tension between the White House and Congress, not to mention with whichever government is in Jerusalem at the time.

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19 November 2020 09:37 PM in

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