President Biden.

EDITORIAL: Two Wrongs....

If only it was just two wrongs. But what we have been seeing in the Middle East of late tests the saying that two wrongs don't make a right.

We have lost count of the wrongs and, amid the fog of war, it is all but impossible to see the right.

President Biden stepped into that fog last week with remarks in the White House that focused on one aspect of the current crisis, that being the numerous campus protests across the country, mostly in support of the Palestinian position.

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"We’ve all seen the images. And they put to the test two fundamental American principles. The first is the right to free speech and for people to peacefully assemble and make their voices heard. The second is the rule of law. Both must be upheld," the president said in the Roosevelt Room.

Biden was walking the line when he continued: "We are not an authoritarian nation where we silence people or squash dissent. The American people are heard. In fact, peaceful protest is in the best tradition of how Americans respond to consequential issues. But neither are we a lawless country. We are a civil society, and order must prevail. 
"Throughout our history, we’ve often faced moments like this because we are a big, diverse, free-thinking, and freedom-loving nation. In moments like this, there are always those who rush in to score political points. But this isn’t a moment for politics. It’s a moment for clarity. 
"So, let me be clear. Peaceful protest in America — violent protest is not protected; peaceful protest is.  It’s against the law when violence occurs. Destroying property is not a peaceful protest. It’s against the law.
"Vandalism, trespassing, breaking windows, shutting down campuses, forcing the cancellation of classes and graduations — none of this is a peaceful protest. Threatening people, intimidating people, instilling fear in people is not peaceful protest. It’s against the law. Dissent is essential to democracy. But dissent must never lead to disorder or to denying the rights of others so students can finish the semester and their college education.
"Look, it’s basically a matter of fairness.  It’s a matter of what’s right.  There’s the right to protest but not the right to cause chaos. People have the right to get an education, the right to get a degree, the right to walk across the campus safely without fear of being attacked.
"But let’s be clear about this as well. There should be no place on any campus, no place in America for antisemitism or threats of violence against Jewish students. There is no place for hate speech or violence of any kind, whether it’s antisemitism, Islamophobia, or discrimination against Arab Americans or Palestinian Americans.
"It’s simply wrong.  There is no place for racism in America. It’s all wrong. It’s un-American. I understand people have strong feelings and deep convictions. In America, we respect the right and protect the right for them to express that. But it doesn’t mean anything goes. It needs to be done without violence, without destruction, without hate, and within the law."

That last line, whether President Biden intended it or not, pretty much describes the situation in Gaza - only minus the words "without" and "within."

Biden is in a bind with regard to Gaza. He is between the proverbial rock and a hard place and facing into the fact that, even with the best efforts of American diplomacy, the dogs of war have been let loose and it doesn't look like they will be reined in anytime soon.

Campus protests, in truth, are not the greatest of his worries.