January 15, 2007 -- Has a former president of the United States - a Nobel Peace Prize winner, no less - given his blessing to wanton murder and terrorist assaults against Israel?
Sure looks that way.
How else to read that astonishing statement on page 213 of Jimmy Carter's new anti-Israel screed, "Palestine: Peace, Not Apartheid"?
To wit: "It is imperative that the general Arab community and all significant Palestinian groups make it clear that they will end the suicide bombings and other acts of terrorism when international laws and the ultimate goals of the Roadmap for Peace are accepted by Israel." (Emphasis added.)
You don't have to read between the lines here.
Carter isn't calling on the Palestinians to give up terror and murder now as a way to convince Israel they are serious about peace. Rather, he says they can wait until they've achieved their goals at the bargaining table. No need, says Carter, to give up terrorism until then.
Certainly, that's how 14 members of the Carter Center's advisory board read that paragraph. Indeed, it's why they angrily submitted their resignations last week.
That's also how Melvin Konner read it. He's a respected anthropology professor at Emory University and had been asked to be part of an academic group meant to advise the former president and the Carter Center on how to respond to criticism of the book.
And he's understandably offended by Carter's "repeated public insinuations that the Jews control the media and the Congress - well-worn anti-Semitic slurs that, especially coming from President Carter, present a clear and present danger to American Jews."
UPDATE: The above shouldn't cause one to lose sight of Mr. Carter's humanitarian instincts. For example, Neil Sher explains that Jimmy Carter expressed humanitarian concern for Martin Bartesch, a Nazi death camp guard who was deported from the US. UPDATE II: On the other hand, Scott Johnson says the story may be true but that Neil Sher should not be regarded as a reliable source.
UPDATE III: Jimmy Carter apologizes about the book passage.
UPDATE IV: Jimmy Carter continues to "clarify" his anti-semitism.