The tour of shame continues.
Yesterday Mitt proved that he would perform whatever tricks Bibi asked him to perform. He also rejected any viable peace plan for the I/P conflict through an embrace of a one-sided solution to the Jerusalem Question. He had one last event in Israel–a fundraiser. It had been planned for Sunday, but it turned out that Team Mitt scheduled his visit to fall on a Jewish day of fasting and mourning (some thought that Mitt turning Tisha b’Av into a photo opp was yet another misstep).
And Mitt being Mitt could not avoid turning his remarks to donors into a fresh new controversy:
Mitt Romney Palestinian comments ‘racist and out of touch’
In a breakfast meeting this morning, the Republican presidential candidate told about 40 wealthy donors who breakfasted at the King David Hotel: “As you come here and you see the GDP per capita, for instance, in Israel which is about $21,000 dollars, and compare that with the GDP per capita just across the areas managed by the Palestinian Authority, which is more like $10,000 per capita, you notice such a dramatically stark difference in economic vitality.”
He did not mention the crippling restrictions that Israel imposes on Palestinian trade and movement. The reaction of Palestinian leaders was swift and pointed [snip]
“It is a racist statement and this man doesn’t realize that the Palestinian economy cannot reach its potential because there is an Israeli occupation,” said Saeb Erekat, a senior aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
“It seems to me this man (Romney) lacks information, knowledge, vision and understanding of this region and its people,” Erekat added. “He also lacks knowledge about the Israelis themselves. I have not heard any Israeli official speak about cultural superiority.” [snip]
Israel had a per capita gross domestic product of about $31,000 in 2011, while the West Bank and Gaza had a per capita GDP of just over $1,500, according to the World Bank.
Mitt went on to explain to the assembled Galtian potentates that the difference between Israeli and Palestinian economic progress was because of divine intervention and the “hand of providence.”
Today he is bound for Poland. While there, I suppose that Mitt will try to restart The Cold War with more saber-rattling about the Soviet Union. Perhaps he’ll ask Mr. Putin to tear down a wall or something…