State Department asks Americans what our foreign policy objectives should be

The newly revamped State Department website, or “America 2.0” as the Red Eye in Chicago calls the Obama administration, has a new feature called DIPNOTE, which is a State Department blog.

The question of the week is: What Foreign Policy Objectives Should the Obama Administration Establish as its Top Priorities?

Answer it!!! Several people have already mentioned the Israeli/Palestine issue, but we must be direct.

I suggest the following line items:

  1. Insist the blockade be lifted to allow humanitarian aid and items intrinsic to economic survival into Palestine immediately
  2. Immediately halt the building of all settlements and begin the dismantling of all “outposts”
  3. Immediately investigate whether the using of phosphorous bombs in civilian areas is a violation of the Arms Export Control Act and punish accordingly if it is.
  4. Immediately work to engage Hamas and Fatah and get them on the same page – without both entities, there will never be peace
  5. Immediately get assurances from both Hamas and Fatah that any violations of the ceasefire by militants on either side will result in arrests and trial in accordance with the Palestinian Constitution not tribal law
  6. Freeze all aid and arms shipments to Israel until significant progress has been made towards the first two points
  7. Engage the international community to provide security for the checkpoints and remove all access requests from Israeli control
  8. Put the international community in charge of determining what aid gets into Gaza. It should not be an Israeli decision as they state they are no longer “occupying” the country.
  9. Send Americans into Gaza to determine what aid we could provide to rebuild their country and help their people. I would suggest evaluating the role wind and solar power could play in the rebuilding process, so they are no longer completely dependent on fuel and electricity from Israel
  10. Engage the Palestinian and Israeli business communities as they have the most at stake and are the best able to assist in rebuilding decisions

The link is here. Don’t worry if you are not from the U.S., other foreign nationals have already commented, and frankly, we need to engage the world after the last eight years.

If you like my ideas, feel free to copy and paste them. If you have other ideas – please – go for it. Every little bit helps., but make it constructive, no tirades about the past or blame or anything else. You get more traction that way.

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