US Foreign Policy: “No Daylight” Is Where Peace Dies In Darkness

2024 Iranian consulate airstrike in Damascus. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.
2024 Iranian consulate airstrike in Damascus. Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license.

“Absent a directed, sustained, and articulated policy of no daylight between the United States and Israel,” Matthew Continetti wrote in the Washington Free Beacon on March 29, “the rift between America and her ally will widen and the world will grow more dangerous.”

Proof that Continetti had things completely bass-ackward arrived on April 1, when Israeli aircraft attacked an Iranian consulate building in Syria, killing 16 and boosting the already not insignificant prospect of a wider regional war. The US regime disclaimed prior knowledge of the Israeli strike, but couldn’t be bothered to actually condemn it.

While occasionally, softly, and grudgingly calling for “restraint” from all parties, Washington has continued its policy of supporting the Israeli regime no matter what it does, and blaming Israel’s adversaries for every Bad Thing that happens in the Middle East.

The US and Israeli regimes remain in a bear hug through which not so much as a single ray of daylight passes. And THAT makes the world more dangerous.

If the US left Israel to its own devices, or at the very least conditioned its billions of dollars in annual aid — not to mention its support in every argument — on good behavior, we might see some progress toward peace.

How many fights would Israel pick with Iran, Syria, and Lebanon if it didn’t have the US threatening to pound anyone who doesn’t comply with its every demand?

Without the US backing its every play, might not Israel eventually consider withdrawing to within its own borders and leaving the state of Palestine to chart its own future course, instead of continuing  decades of military occupation both rooted in, and giving rise to, numerous large and small wars?

The US-Israeli relationship is, essentially, a big bully standing behind a smaller bully, routinely supporting the smaller bully’s bullying.

When, as (very) occasionally happens, Big Bully whispers “hey, you might want to take it down a notch,” Little Bully ignores the whisper.

But instead of walking away and letting Little Bully experience the full consequences of his actions, Big Bully always gives in and protects Little Bully from those consequences.

That raise the interesting question of who’s really the more powerful bully in the relationship. And, more importantly, it tells Little Bully “there are no consequences for bad behavior — do whatever you feel like doing with impunity.”

Such a policy both creates and increases the dangers of war. For everyone.

Thomas L. Knapp (Twitter: @thomaslknapp) is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism ( He lives and works in north central Florida.