Is there any question about Romney's assertion? PLO/PA corruption is a legend. Palestinians are repelled by it. Why do you think the PA lost the 2006 (and last) free election?
Romney's point about "culture" was to highlight the improbable emergence of Israel from resourceless semi-desert to First World "startup nation," a tribute to its freedom and openness.
Look at how Romney was received. In Israel, its popular prime minister lavished on him a welcome so warm as to be a near-endorsement. In Poland, Romney received an actual endorsement from Lech Walesa, former dissident, former president, Cold War giant, Polish hero. Yet the headlines were "shove it" and "culture."
Scorecard? Romney's trip was a major substantive success: one gaffe (Britain), two triumphs (Israel and Poland) and a fine demonstration of foreign policy fluency and command — wrapped, however, in a media narrative of surpassing triviality.
Charles Krauthammer's email address is email@example.com.
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