Lowell Ponte kicks off his May 20 Newsmax column by mischaracterizing what President Obama said about Israel and the Palestinians, claiming that Obama "called for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to be based on Israel retreating to its pre-1967 borders, a boundary to be altered only by 'a few swaps' of land between the parties" and claiming that this was a "tectonic shift."
In fact, Obama's policy is keeping in line with previous presidents and even former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert, who have stated like Obama that the pre-1967 borders are a starting point, not the end point, for future negotiations. It's not clear whom Ponte is quoting as saying "a few swaps," but it isn't Obama, who referenced "mutually agreed swaps" but did not suggest a number.
Ponte then went off into conspiracy land, claiming that Obama is eyeing "he mountain of cash an American president who turned against Israel might harvest from donors in oil-rich Muslim nations," adding, "In 2012, do not weep over how much Jewish money the president might have lost. Instead, watch to see how much Islamist and Muslim money Obama might gain by turning against Israel."
Ponte wasn't the only Newsmax columnist to go into freak-out mode over Obama's speech. Wayne Allyn Root dramatically began his column this way: "Mark the date — Thursday May 19. It’s the day the leopard showed his spots. It’s the day Obama stabbed Israel in the back." He went on to rant:
Obama wants to redistribute your taxpayer money to radicals who attack churches and murder Christians. He wants more foreign aid for Egypt, a country headed for domination by the Muslim Brotherhood, an ally of Nazis in World War II. That is who Obama has chosen to side with over a modern, capitalist, American-loving Israeli society with democracy, freedom and equality for men, women, gays, and Arabs.
Obama no longer speaks for the American people. Jewish voters will never again feel the same about Obama. And while Jews make up only 2 percent of America’s population, they provide a majority of the donations to Democratic politicians.
Obama lost many crucial Democratic donors on Thursday. But Obama’s biggest mistake was awakening a sleeping giant. It is Christian voters who elect presidents. And almost 100 million evangelical Christians who love Israel will now vote and donate to Obama’s opponents with a fervor and passion of a patriotic group on a mission to save America and Israel from destruction. And sadly, they will be right.
Root is also a birther, which may help explain his overheated rhetoric.