A Letter to Mr. Netanyahu

Dear Sir,

Speaker Boehner’s invitation, your acceptance, and your appearance today before a Joint Session of the U.S. Congress insult the Office of President here in the U.S. and the American people.

Whether you like our President is beside the point. International protocol is clear: Heads of States deal with other Heads of States. They don’t go around them. The don’t go under them. They don’t instruct their Ambassadors to lie or hide the truth from other Ambassadors while they negotiate with a Speaker of the House. They don’t. And on rare occasions when they do, and when they get caught manipulating and invitation to the floor of the U.S. Congress, thoughtful Americans – regardless of religious persuasion – don’t like it.

Today an estimated 57 Senators and Representatives have chosen not to attend the Joint Session of Congress. Your speech will be broadcast around the world. It will come into our living rooms this morning at 10:45 a.m. EST. You will do your best to convince your listeners that you mean no disrespect for Mr. Obama, that your appearance is not partisan here in the U.S. and has nothing to do with your campaign for re-election in Israel. You will get loud applause from those in attendance because America’s support for the survival and wellbeing of the State of Israel is bi-partisan.

You will not hear criticism of your occupation of the West Bank or your sabotaging of the peace process with Palestinians. You will not hear from the President of the United States who is more attentive to international protocols and the spirit of friendship than his Israeli colleague.

You will not hear the dull thud echoing across America in the homes of those who turn on C-SPAN to watch and hear you. You will speak. But you will not hear.

With all due respect, Sir, today you deserve no respect.

Sincerely,

An American Citizen

– Gordon C. Stewart, Chaska, MN, March 3, 2015