Having already torpedoed his candidacy with his atrocious response to a question about same-sex attraction on CNN, it seems Dr. Ben Carson—once a bright light among conservatives—wants to fire out one last torpedo on the off chance the first didn’t sink his ship entirely.
Speaking to Bloomberg politics, Ben Carson admitted he doesn’t know all he needs to know regarding foreign policy, and then proceeded to offer a “fresh idea” about how to solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:
“We need to look at fresh ideas…I don’t have any problem with the Palestinians having a state, but does it need to be within the confines of Israeli territory? Is that necessary, or can you sort of slip that area down into Egypt? Right below Israel, they have some amount of territory, and it can be adjacent. They can benefit from the many agricultural advances that were made by Israel, because if you fly over that area, you can easily see the demarcation between Egypt and Israel, in terms of one being desert and one being verdant. Technology could transform that area. So why does it need to be in an area where there’s going to be temptation for Hamas to continue firing missiles at relatively close range to Israel?”
Yep. He said those words—in that order. At this point, it almost seems like he’s going out of his way to say stupid things.
In his suggestion, Carson fails to understand the context of the conflict. Palestinian territory is largely run by Hamas, which is a terrorist organization. Hamas wants what every other radical Islamist group wants, which is to destroy Israel. It’s not a matter of proximity, or a desire to have free, open land that drives Hamas, it is a desire to see Israel as ashes.
On multiple occasions, Israel has offered large portions of land to the Palestinians, but at every turn, their offers have been rejected.
In a 2003 piece for Town Hall, Ben Shapiro wrote:
“The Arab enmity for Jews and the state of Israel allows for no peace process…Half measures merely postpone our realization that the Arabs dream of Israel’s destruction.”
Then in 2014, in a pice for Breitbart called “Top 9 Facts The Media Wouldn’t Tell You About Hamas,” Shapiro repeated the sentiment:
“Hamas’ goal is the total destruction of Israel and the murder of Jews everywhere.”
What is well known about Hamas-controlled Palestinian territory is that this fight isn’t about land; this fight is about the elimination of the Jewish people. For Ben Carson to suggest that Hamas would willingly relocate (without forceful expulsion) to another land, far away from Israel, is naive, and it shows that Ben Carson—while brilliant in his own field—is not savvy enough to run a political campaign.
Carson’s last question is the final nail in the naïveté coffin: “So why does it need to be in an area where there’s going to be temptation for Hamas to continue firing missiles at relatively close range to Israel?”
The answer is that Hamas needs to be close to Israel because the entirety of their mission is to eliminate it from the map. Why would they move far away?
Perhaps the Palestinians who aren’t aligned with Hamas—the ones used as human shields, or shot for protesting Hamas’ actions—would gladly relocate to another land, but so long as a radical Islamic terrorist organization is in control of the Palestinian world, that will never happen.
Maybe Ben Carson knows this. Maybe he was speaking of the peaceful Palestinians–that he misinterpreted the situation in the same way that some allege he misinterpreted the question regarding same-sex attraction. Regardless, his ability to navigate the complexities of such questions and to answer them in ways that are at once truthful, yet artful is severely lacking. As such, he is no contender for the leader of the free world.
I wonder if he’ll go for a third strike.