Heading Home: Miami to DC

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Many thanks to friends and fellow bloggers at TWN for covering for me this last week as I was away traveling and offline.
I am back in Miami today — heading back to Washington, DC this morning. More soon.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

42 comments on “Heading Home: Miami to DC

  1. Kathleen G says:

    Welcome back Steve. Hey wondering if Charles Freeman would visit your site as a guest? Will you be interviewing him?
    POA/others.
    This one is interesting
    Israel’s National Security Aide Barred From U.S.
    By Eli Lake
    March 17, 2009 “Washington Times” — Uzi Arad, who is expected to serve as national security adviser in the next Israeli government, has been barred from entering the United States for nearly two years on the grounds that he is an intelligence risk.
    Mr. Arad, a former member and director of intelligence for the Mossad, Israel’s spy service, is mentioned in the indictment of Lawrence Franklin, a former Pentagon analyst who pleaded guilty in 2005 to providing classified information about Iran in a conversation with two employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
    Beyond Mr. Arad’s status, Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu is likely to face difficulties abroad because of his choice, announced Monday, of Avigdor Lieberman to serve as foreign minister in a narrow new rightist government. Mr. Lieberman, head of the Israel Is Our Home party, has advocated requiring Israel’s 1.46 million Arabs to take a loyalty test or risk expulsion.
    The choice of Mr. Arad for national security adviser has been reported in the Israeli press and was confirmed by sources close to Mr. Netanyahu, who has been tasked with forming the next government.
    Mr. Arad acknowledged to The Washington Times that he has not been able to obtain a visa to come to the United States but said the Israeli government is trying to change that.
    “The director general of the Israel Foreign Ministry did tell his American counterparts that there has been no cause to deny me a visa,” Mr. Arad told The Times.
    Israeli and U.S. officials said Mr. Arad has been denied a U.S. visa since June 2007 under section 212 3(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. This gives consular officers and the Justice Department authority to bar people who may seek “to violate any law of the United States relating to espionage or sabotage” from entering the country.
    Mr. Arad was a member of the Mossad spy service from 1975 to 1997. After retiring, he became Mr. Netanyahu’s foreign policy adviser. While in the Mossad, Mr. Arad worked mainly on analysis, but he also served as a liaison for intelligence operations with allied services such as the CIA.
    In the past 21 months, prominent Israelis and Americans have quietly but unsuccessfully pressed U.S. officials to grant Mr. Arad a visa.
    “Overtures were made, and, by and large, there was not a satisfactory answer,” said Herb London, president of the Hudson Institute, where Mr. Arad worked from 1972 to 1975 after obtaining a doctorate from Princeton University.
    “He has invited luminaries from around the world to talk about foreign policy at the annual Herzliya conference,” Mr. London said. “There are people from the left and the right who recognize that he has extraordinary insight into the foreign policy issues of our time.”
    In a June 18, 2007, letter to U.S. officials, the president of the Interdisciplinary Center at Herzliya, Uriel Reichman, wrote, “I very much hope that such visa will indeed be granted as expeditiously as possible since professor Arad’s travels to the United States are essential for his work at the Interdisciplinary Center.”
    One mystery about Mr. Arad’s difficulties in obtaining a visa is that Mr. Franklin did not plead guilty to spying.
    Indeed, the U.S. attorney handling the case against Mr. Franklin and two former AIPAC employees, Steven J. Rosen and Keith Weissman, charged all three men with mishandling national defense information, a count listed in the U.S. code under the Espionage Act but less serious than being an agent of a foreign power. Mr. Rosen and Mr. Weissman are fighting the charges, which are controversial because they are the first private citizens to be accused of leaking classified information.
    The indictment against Mr. Franklin makes two references to “a person previously associated with an intelligence agency of [foreign official’s] country.” Two former U.S. officials and a former Israeli official have confirmed that Mr. Arad is the “person.”
    The passage refers to a meeting between Mr. Franklin and Mr. Arad on Feb. 20, 2004, at the Pentagon cafeteria and an earlier recommendation by an Israeli diplomat that Mr. Franklin meet with Mr. Arad.
    In his letter, Mr. Reichman referenced the section of the Immigration and Nationality Act that deals with espionage issues, saying, “it being absolutely certain to me and to all who know him, that none of the causes specified … apply to him.”
    A Washington immigration lawyer, Glen Wasserstein, said Mr. Arad was being barred under the section of law that “allows the government to deny entry to those foreign nationals it deems as spies or saboteurs, and those who help or assist in such spying or sabotage.”
    Mr. Wasserstein said the president or attorney general could waive the restriction on the visa.

    Reply

  2. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “By the way, how about if … = “ellipses” or “elliptical”? or “dotdotdot”?”
    Well, personally, I’m leaning towards “ThreeNips” or “Totaltrick”.

    Reply

  3. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Freeman’s Fight
    The Israel lobby gets its man—and tips its hand.
    By Philip Weiss
    Charles Freeman Jr.’s withdrawal of his acceptance of a high-level intelligence position in the Obama administration was a national-security drama more riveting than an episode of “24.” The moral was clear: even a president who owes his job to a progressive movement in American politics could not support a longtime public servant who had made the mistake of criticizing Israel. Fierce advocates of the Jewish state, notably Sens. Chuck Schumer and Joe Lieberman and Reps. Eric Cantor and Steve Israel, played important roles in Freeman’s exit, while present and former officials of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee flitted in and out of the wings.
    The message to all office-seekers is obvious. “They want to kill the chicken to scare the monkeys. They want other people to be intimidated,” Freeman told The American Conservative just before he withdrew his name to be chairman of the National Intelligence Council. He went on, “If the administration does not stick with me, then it’s destroying the argument that the Israel lobby is only a mythic entity and does not control the public space. … It will show the world that it is not able to exercise independent thinking on these issues.”
    If there was encouraging news in the administration’s collapse, there it was. When Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair announced Freeman’s withdrawal late on the afternoon of March 10, the matter was on center stage, in plain sight of what Freeman calls “the American political class.”
    Three hours later, Freeman issued a statement directly accusing the Israel lobby of “doing widening damage to the national security of the United States.” He wrote that its tactics “plumb the depths of dishonor and indecency and include character assassination, selective misquotation, the willful distortion of the record, the fabrication of falsehoods, and an utter disregard for the truth.” He continued:
    I believe that the inability of the American public to discuss, or the government to consider, any option for U.S. policies in the Middle East opposed by the ruling faction in Israeli politics has allowed that faction to adopt and sustain policies that ultimately threaten the existence of the state of Israel. It is not permitted for anyone in the United States to say so.
    Freeman’s ability to say so to a wide audience was electrifying and unique. His charge was soon mentioned in the chief boroughs of liberal opinion, National Public Radio, the Washington Post, and the New York Times. Time’s Joe Klein called his exit “an assassination,” and The Atlantic’s Andrew Sullivan said it was a “scalping.” Unlike countless other incidents in which American policy on the Middle East has been compromised behind closed doors, this time the Israel lobby was seen fleeing the scene of the crime.
    The drama began on Feb. 19, when the Foreign Policy blog reported that Blair, a retired Navy admiral, was planning to name Freeman to chair the National Intelligence Council, which sorts out the reports of the many intelligence agencies and presents them to the White House. In 2007, one of its assessments, concluding that Iran had halted its nuclear-weapons program following the invasion of Iraq, chilled the neoconservative drive to attack Iran. “No one has ever made the case that it’s a primary policy-making role,” says William Quandt, the longtime expert on the Middle East.
    Freeman is hardly a cipher. An outspoken and formidable thinker firmly in the realist camp, he spent four decades in the State Department marked by his poise in the presence of heads of state. In 1972, at age 29, having mastered Mandarin, he was saving Richard Nixon, whom he regarded as “totally lacking in personal grace, with no sense of the proper distance to keep in human relations,” from embarrassment with Zhou En-Lai on the famous trip to China. Twenty years later, as an Arabic speaker, he was interpreting George H.W. Bush—a fellow Yaleman and blueblood who fixed his name forever as “Chas”—to King Fahd as ambassador to Saudi Arabia during the Gulf War. Freeman is a throwback. He celebrates his Puritan roots and the idea of wide historical reading for its own sake. He is also completely dedicated. He lost his third son in India because of poor medical treatment. He lost a 30-year marriage in Saudi Arabia during the long hours of the Gulf War.
    “Frankly I was hoping to see him become a secretary of state,” says Edward Kane, a former CIA official who heads the Cosmos Club’s program on foreign affairs.
    Freeman’s position on the Middle East made such ambitions pointless. In fact, he had resisted being sent to the region in the 1980s because of the “totalitarian” character of debate over American policies there—the lobby’s “virtual hammerlock on American foreign policy,” as he told an interviewer in the mid-’90s. He went on bluntly:
    The American Jewish community, which had always been extremely suspicious of people who trafficked with the Arabs … became increasingly hostile to Arabists in the State Department. It essentially became difficult, if not impossible, for Foreign Service officers dealing with the Arab world, or with the Middle East generally, to take anything other than a stance that was assertively loyal to causes espoused by the Israelis… By the ’80s, as AIPAC … achieved the transcendent influence in the Congress that it did, there was an atmosphere of intimidation, worthy of the McCarthy era, in many respects, imposed on Arabists.
    Following his retirement from government in 1995, Freeman took over from George McGovern as head of the Middle East Policy Council, a think tank that gets Saudi support and seeks to educate Americans about the Arab and Muslim world.
    I asked him whether he is an Arabist. “What is an Arabist?” he countered. “Maybe it’s just someone who speaks Arabic. Someone who understands the Arabs. Obviously, that’s a bad thing. We shouldn’t understand the Arabs. We might actually think they have justice on their side. We might want to negotiate with them rather than clobber them.”
    Freeman openly admires Israel: “The good has outweighed the bad in Israel for a long time. I would like to see Israel survive and prosper. Right now it is doing itself in and taking us with it.” Years ago, he became aware of how fierce adherence to Israel in our political class was damaging both nations. “I came to all this really very late,” he says. “I was an admirer of what I thought was a humane society in Israel. What really got me was when I was in Abu Dhabi many years ago and turned on the local TV. There was a home video of two Israeli plainclothesmen pulling a Palestinian teenager out of his house and kicking him in the head, and when he was semiconscious, they shot him in the back of the head. And the same story was on the back page of the English language newspaper, with six panels from the video. I thought, when this hits the U.S. press, all hell will break loose. Well, it didn’t ever hit our press. The self-censorship extended to a point that it was really dangerous to our society.”
    Freeman made no secret of these views at the Middle East Policy Council. After the cancellation of the Dubai ports contract in 2006, he denounced the political class for exploiting the popular prejudice of “Arabophobia.” Soon after, when the London Review of Books published Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer’s bombshell essay on the Israel lobby, Freeman unapologetically celebrated the scholars.
    “He does not hide his light under a bushel, and we’ve been waiting a long time for these ideas,” Edward Kane says. Adds Jim Lobe, a foreign-policy correspondent for Interpress, “I can tell you from personal experience that he is absolutely brilliant and incredibly well-rounded in his knowledge.”
    In 2005, Freeman’s friend Boyden Gray saw his appointment to be ambassador to the EU held up for months because of his association with realist thinking on the Middle East, and he had to visit with AIPAC before he could take the job. Freeman’s case was far more serious. His appointment had only been leaked when it drew the wrath of the Israel lobby. Steve Rosen, a former AIPAC staffer who is under indictment for allegedly passing secrets to the Israelis, immediately attacked Freeman on the website of the Middle East Forum, a neoconservative think tank. “Freeman is a strident critic of Israel and a textbook case of the old-line Arabism that afflicted American diplomacy at the time the state of Israel was born,” Rosen said. He quoted this horrifying statement by Freeman: “Israeli occupation and settlement of Arab lands is inherently violent. … And as long as such Israeli violence against Palestinians continues, it is utterly unrealistic to expect that Palestinians will stand down from violent resistance and retaliation against Israelis.”
    At least Rosen was straightforward about his concern with Israel. The same cannot be said of the pack that followed him. They focused on the money that the Middle East Policy Council receives from Saudi Arabia and several cold-blooded statements that Freeman had made justifying Chinese repression in Tiananmen Square and Tibet (which his supporters attempted to dignify, not always persuasively, as “realist”). The group included Gabriel Schoenfeld at the Wall Street Journal, Jonathan Chait and Martin Peretz at The New Republic, Jeffrey Goldberg at The Atlantic, and Michael Goldfarb at the Weekly Standard. All Jewish, all supporters of the Iraq War, which Freeman vigorously opposed.
    The focus on the China and Saudi connections is typical of the Israel lobby’s work. While it quietly spreads the word about its ability to take scalps, it does not like to do so publicly. That might force Americans to debate the slaughter in Gaza or the ongoing oppression of Palestinians in the West Bank. Far better for Freeman’s critics in Congress—notably Joe Lieberman in the Senate and Eric Cantor, Shelly Berkley, and Mark Kirk in the House—to talk about Saudi Arabian money, which was never an impediment to Hillary Clinton’s appointment to be secretary of state, though her husband’s library was showered in it.
    The good news in the Freeman case is that he was even named in the first place and that he got a public defense. Writers Joe Klein, Richard Silverstein, M.J. Rosenberg, and Glenn Greenwald, all Jews, said that the issue was whether there was any room in the discourse for critics of Israel. Klein called the attackers a “mob.” Robert Dreyfuss at the Nation denounced the “thunderous, coordinated assault.” Steve Walt characterized the campaign as a McCarthyite witchhunt with an important negative function: making ambitious public servants afraid to say anything about Israel. “Freeman might be too smart, too senior, and too well-qualified to stop,” he wrote before the appointment was scuttled, “but there are plenty of younger people eager to rise in the foreign policy establishment and they need to be reminded that their careers could be jeopardized if they followed in Freeman’s footsteps and said what they thought.”
    There could be little doubt what was at stake. Jim Lobe said on Scott Horton’s radio show that the fight was the “first big test of the influence of the so-called Israel lobby in the Administration.” Freeman wrote to friends, “I suspect that my appointment won’t be final till the fat lady at AIPAC sighs.”
    The fight dragged on for nearly three weeks. Freeman’s critics circulated e-mailed comments he had made about China on a foreign-policy listserv, and eight congressmen, including House Minority Leader John Boehner, called on Blair to investigate Freeman’s links to Saudi Arabia. Blair wrote back that Freeman had his “full support” and said that he “has never received any income directly from Saudi Arabia or any Saudi-controlled entity.” He defended him against angry questioning by Joe Lieberman on the morning of March 10. But by then, several Republican senators were demanding answers from the White House. Dianne Feinstein reportedly called for a meeting of senators with Freeman. He was gaining endorsements from influential journalists like Andrew Sullivan and James Fallows, but no congressman was lifting his head above the melee to support Freeman.
    As for Obama, he said not a word, just as he said nothing about Gaza. Finally, by the afternoon of March 10, Blair had changed his mind. “I came to a conclusion, as did Denny Blair at the same time,” Freeman told TAC, “that I couldn’t accomplish what I wanted to do.” Yes, he could come up with quality intelligence products, but his presence would hurt their credibility. “I left for the same reason that I accepted the job, for the best interests of my country.”
    Chuck Schumer quickly made clear that this was a White House decision, and it was all about Israel. “Charles Freeman was the wrong guy for this position,” Schumer said. “His statements against Israel were way over the top and severely out of step with the administration. I repeatedly urged the White House to reject him, and I am glad they did the right thing.”
    Then Freeman issued his barnburner of a statement saying it was all about “a Lobby intent on enforcing the will and interests of a foreign government.” “There is a special irony in having been accused of improper regard for the opinions of foreign governments and societies by a group so clearly intent on enforcing adherence to the policies of a foreign government—in this case, the government of Israel,” he wrote. “This is not just a tragedy for Israelis and their neighbors in the Middle East; it is doing widening damage to the national security of the United States.”
    National Public Radio’s Robert Siegel described Freeman’s charge as “angry” and suggested that he was merely the Marty Peretz of the Arabs. The Washington Post called it a “crackpot” conspiracy theory and tirade. Meanwhile, Freeman’s supporters rallied to his side. Steve Walt called Obama a “wimp.” “Caving on Freeman was a blunder that could come back to haunt any subsequent effort to address the deteriorating situation in the region,” he wrote. Andrew Sullivan said that the affair showed that when push comes to shove, Obama is behind AIPAC “110 percent.” Joe Klein noted that Schumer and company have made Washington “even less hospitable for those who aren’t afraid to speak their minds, for those who are reflexively contentious, who would defy the conventional wisdom.”
    This is where I differ from Chas Freeman’s new friends. Years ago, he understood that the Israel lobby produced secret resentment among its victims throughout Washington. More recently, John Mearsheimer told me that Israel’s critics are engaged in a kind of “mortal combat” in which career and reputation are at stake. Having long battled the Israel lobby, these men have no illusions about how it operates and still dare to speak out. Others—for instance those who say that it just controls Congress, not the White House—are now awaking to its methods. This is the great lesson, and even joy, of Chas Freeman’s mugging. A lobby operates best as a “night flower,” Steve Rosen once said. The Freeman takedown happened in broad daylight. Sunshine means everything in a democracy. Now the diverse political forces who want to change our Mideast policy can find one another.
    Speaking to this magazine two days after his withdrawal, a reflective Freeman framed the episode as a chance to educate Americans. He only regretted imprecision—that he had blasted the lobby rather than doing more to emphasize the reflexive organizational American support for the policies of the right-wing Israeli government.
    Of the Gaza assault, he said, “I don’t think they wanted to do anything but beat the living daylights out of the Palestinian people. Schrecklichkeit [a World War I German policy of intimidation] is the basis of this policy, and it makes it harder and harder for more and more people here to overlook.”
    Freeman was gratified by the wide support he had gotten from Jewish writers. “I think the most courageous people on this issue are those of Jewish origin or faith. They have the most at stake in this. These things are being done in their name.” He said he hoped that his withdrawal would allow Americans to talk about what Israel is doing in a historical and diplomatic light:
    I am interested in seeing the survival of a humane and not a thuggish Jewish state in the Middle East. I am interested in finding ways of coming to grips with the fact that the perpetrators of the Holocaust and those who halted it accept Israel’s right to exist, but in the region in which it does exist, no one accepts its right to exist. That’s the problem we must overcome.
    As for himself, at 66, having severed his institutional connections, Freeman has a chance to “redefine myself.” He doesn’t expect to have any role in government, directly or indirectly, “but one thing I’m not going to do is shut up.”

    Reply

  4. questions says:

    By the way, how about if … = “ellipses” or “elliptical”? or “dotdotdot”?

    Reply

  5. questions says:

    Not reading from a script….
    Anyway, …’s post should be notable for pointing out how thoughtful and personal the decions are about how to approach Israel. Why not assume that nearly everyone goes through some kind of thought process instead of assuming that THE LOBBY hits a remote control button.
    But there’s another set of issues — sometimes if you ask the wrong question, you get the wrong answer. The question shouldn’t be about dual loyalties or the US’s having “taken a hit” for support of Israel. I’ll lay out a few reasons for my view.
    First, EVERYone has multiple loyalties. Do you pick your kid over your country? Do you write your Congressperson and ask him/her to support sending US aid to Zimbabwe even though it’ll cost the US some “treasure” and maybe one day some “blood”? Do you drive, heat and cool your home, run a fridge? If so, you are an oil-using, Saudi-supporting, US involvement in the ME, anti-US selfish ME-FIRSTER. Do you use electronic gadgets? Well, then you’re demanding a huge export-import, toxic economy that endangers lives, forces the US to maintain trade relations with nasty countries, forces us to use more electricity and import energy or mine the life out of mountains in order to supply that energy. Any interest you put ahead of COUNTRY means you’re not COUNTRY FIRST. We all have mixed interests. Read Plato’s Republic — he actually thinks through beautifully what it would mean to create citizens who REALLY put country first (or at least polis first) — it’s not a lovely picture and maybe we don’t actually want country first because we all have huge split loyalties. Sometimes the loyalties are based on humanitarian concerns, sometimes on ethnic concerns, sometimes on selfish concerns. But who is there who is REALLY country first and actually knows what “country first” means? Not as a slogan but as a real motivating belief?
    Second, if you put “country first,” does that mean that you do no polluting, put no greenhouse gasses in the air, are off the grid? For if the country is related to the environment, then despoiling the environment is equally despoiling the country. It’s not so easy to say what “country” means. Is it the government? The Constitution? The land? The laws good and bad, or only GOOD (and what’s a good law– procedural or substantive?) The people (even Limbaugh)? The policies? The sports teams? My state or region? States’ rights? What really is the country such that it’s first?
    Third, to the best of my knowledge, Bin Laden had a whole host of motivations for the 9/11 bombings, including US troops on Saudi soil (oil and Bush/Saudi connections), the utter corruption of his own Saudi royal family, and deep deep religious fundamentalism. I’m not at all convinced that had Israel not existed, Bin Laden wouldn’t have done it anyway with a slightly altered pretext. The Palestinian issue is USED like a football — tossed in when it’s convenient and ignored at other times. There are broader geostrategic issues at play. And people here are really caught up in just this one. (Not to negate the very real humanitarian disaster side of it all, but that’s not what anyone means when they say “We took a hit for Israel on 9/11.)
    The US has for a very very long time pursued a policy of territorial aggrandizement, puppet governments, resource extraction, supporting “westernized” regimes in places where they aren’t entirely welcome. There are a lot of complaints against the US, Israel isn’t the only issue.
    So did the US take a hit for Israel? I seriously doubt it.
    But that’s just me. Maybe your buddy Chas Freeman has a nice out of the box, unscripted, non-LOBBIED reading of the ME situation that says if we defund Israel all will be well and there won’t be no more terrorism. Very out of the box! Daring, bold, and brilliant? Or maybe he’s even got a nuanced view? Find a passage and let me know. I don’t have huge amounts of time for Freeman-based research.
    When Freeman questions the US relationship with Israel, just what is he suggesting? What level of radical or minor change? It might be good to know if he’s your hero or not.

    Reply

  6. arthurdecco says:

    “Whats wrong with Pimples? I kinda like it.” POA
    I do too.

    Reply

  7. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well gads,…, what the hell am I supposed to call you, Pox?? Dotty? Freckles?
    Whats wrong with Pimples? I kinda like it.
    If you haven’t noticed, I use periods prolifically in my comments, and your chosen non-name does present a bit of a problem for a period addict such as myself.
    But hey, I’ll do my best to respect your non-name. But uh, gee, how do you capitalize …?

    Reply

  8. ... says:

    youre’ welcome pos…

    Reply

  9. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://www.antiwar.com/orig/giraldi.php?articleid=14411
    2009-03-17
    Washington Post Shows Its Hand
    Philip Giraldi
    The Washington Post is apparently losing lots of money and may close in the foreseeable future, barring a deus ex machina intervention by some foreign billionaire such as saved the New York Times. While the decline of newspapers worldwide is regrettable, the Post’s troubles are really good news, and bankruptcy would be a richly deserved fate for a rag that has been an enabler of every neocon fantasy for the past 20 years. Imagine no longer having to enjoy Charles Krauthammer, Fred Kagan, John Bolton, Bill Kristol, and Robert Kaplan with your morning coffee.
    The Post’s particular veneration for all things Israeli goes back quite a ways. Long-time readers can well recall the odious Herblock cartoons depicting Arabs as Dracula clones dressed in bedsheets and carrying bloody knives, while Israelis were always depicted as pleasant-looking, peaceful chaps just like you and me. It was almost like having the movie Exodus on a printed page.
    The paper’s recent editions provide a number of excellent reasons why the good old WaPo should share the fate of the dodo. A major story on March 11 was the victory of the Israeli lobby in forcing Ambassador Charles Freeman to drop out of the running for head of the National Intelligence Council (NIC). The NIC’s most important function is to supervise the production of the National Intelligence Estimates, or NIEs, which are the finished intelligence reports that policymakers can generally rely on to provide the best, most up-to-date information on specific issues and countries. Freeman, who is a polyglot with extensive experience in many parts of the world, including the Middle East and Asia, was nominated for the position by Adm. Dennis Blair, the new director of national intelligence. Freeman was eminently qualified, and the job is not particularly political, but red flags immediately went up because he had been critical of Israel, noting, for example, that the national interests of the United States and Israel might not be exactly the same. This caused major heartburn in Congress and the media. Such stalwarts of liberty and free expression as Senators Chuck Schumer and Joe Lieberman and Representatives Steve Israel and Shelley Berkley immediately scented the blood in the water. Lieberman feared that Freeman would not be able to “separate his policy views from the analysis … he’s very opinionated.”
    National Review, the Weekly Standard, the Wall Street Journal, the New Republic, and the other usual suspects all quickly climbed on board. A core group of Republican congressmen was not found wanting as the threat posed by an independent minded Freeman became evident, particularly as the congressmen in question are major recipients of pro-Israel money. And then there were the evangelicals, four-square for Israel as they wait for the Rapture. The crudity and viciousness of the attack on Freeman was unusual even for the Lobby and its friends, who are accustomed to character assassination and hardball tactics. To avoid the obvious conclusion that it was all about Israel, critics went after Freeman for his connections to Saudi Arabia, where he served as ambassador, and his views on China. It was alleged, inaccurately, that Freeman had taken Saudi money. To prove that Freeman sympathized with Chinese human rights violations, a personal e-mail he wrote some years ago was deliberately taken out of context and misquoted.
    But anyone who followed the flood of criticism knew that it really was all about Israel in spite of the smoke being generated, bringing to the fore every congressman and media pundit who places Israel first. Freeman was not exactly accused of being an anti-Semite, but make no mistake, that argument would have come out soon enough in hints and nudges. After the fact, Freeman’s resignation letter, in which he blasted the Lobby’s plumbing “the depths of dishonor and indecency,” was quickly denounced by AIPAC director William Daroff as anti-Semitic.
    In the lead-up to the resignation, Rep. Israel (Steve, not the country) and Sen. Schumer went personally to the White House to explain to Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel that the assignment would not be acceptable. When the withdrawal was announced, the congressman said the departure of Freeman would preserve the “impartiality of U.S. intelligence,” by which he presumably meant that all information would henceforth be checked in Tel Aviv for accuracy and relevance. The senator, who only occasionally recalls that his constituency is in the United States, was not to be left out. He positively crowed on his Web site about Freeman’s withdrawal, posting, “Charles Freeman was the wrong guy for this position. His statements against Israel were way over the top. … I repeatedly urged the White House to reject him, and I am glad they did the right thing.”
    So AIPAC wins big-time yet again and sticks it to the American people, or at least to those Americans who oppose an endless series of wars in the Middle East to defend Israel’s right to punish the Palestinians in perpetuity. The Washington Post placed the March 11 article on Freeman on page A4 and assigned the demolition job to Walter Pincus. Lest there be any confusion, the article was headlined “Impartiality Questioned, Intelligence Official Quits,” telling the reader that this was not a hatchet job by AIPAC but rather a question of the objectivity of the victim. In the Post’s view, both it and the U.S. government have always been scrupulously neutral on issues relating to Israel, and anyone who questions the relationship must do so because he lacks “impartiality.” The article cited numerous critics of Freeman while not once mentioning the sustained and vicious campaign that had been mounted against him by the Israel Lobby.
    As is often the case, the Lobby was the 600-pound gorilla in the room that was apparently invisible to Pincus and the Post editors. But the Internet furor about the blocked appointment was such that the Post felt it necessary to follow up the initial coverage with a second piece by Pincus, “Intelligence Pick Blames ‘Israel Lobby’ for Withdrawal,” the next day. In it, Pincus told some of the story that he studiously ignored before but maintained that the Freeman appointment was derailed due to China and Saudi Arabia: “the controversy … was broader than Middle East politics.” Pincus presented in full the Israel Lobby’s protestations that it had nothing to do with it.
    The Post featured separate editorials on the day the Freeman story broke, March 11, and the following day. The first was “Time to Call It Quits,” subtitled “The Justice Department should drop its misguided prosecution of two former AIPAC officials.” It argued that the Obama administration “should put an end to a criminal case that should never have been brought,” and it expressed no regret about AIPAC’s role in the violation of the Espionage Act through passage of information known to be classified to Israel. Ironically, with that editorial, that day’s edition successfully came full circle, as it was about the man who spearheaded the drive to nail Charles Freeman. Steve Rosen, one of the indicted ex-AIPAC officials, should be going to jail for a long time. Instead, he turned himself into a political commentator, writing 17 blog posts in 19 days attacking Freeman.
    An editorial on the following day, “Blame the Lobby,” subtitled “The Obama administration’s latest failed nominee peddles a conspiracy theory,” continued the trashing of Freeman, calling him a “poor choice” while virtually denying that there is any such thing as an Israel lobby. To make sure readers got the message, the Holocaust and a nuclear-armed Iran were cited along the way. An op-ed two days later by Republican Congressman Frank Wolf of Virginia repeated the editorial line, even alleging that Freeman is a supporter of Darfur genocide, Chinese human rights violations, and Islamic fundamentalism. This was followed by a Charles Lane opinion piece in the Sunday edition, which asserted that “the president needs to knock Freeman’s insinuations down hard.” Nowhere was there any suggestion that Freeman might have had a legitimate point about the Israel lobby and how it operates.
    It is pathetic to witness how Steve Rosen was able to lead a lynch mob that went after a good and honorable man who believes that the United States’ national interest should come before Israel’s, but there is something even worse about a sanctimonious “newspaper of record” that aids and abets the crime. The story is all too characteristic of a Washington in which AIPAC calls the shots and the media willingly becomes an accomplice.

    Reply

  10. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Thanks for the link, Pimples. What I found interesting is the fact that here you have a panel of “liberal” Jews heavily involved in the Jewish community, that have not yet recieved the script that Questions and Wig-wag would have them read.
    Note these three passages from the commentary you linked to…
    1)No wonder Alterman and Goldberg seem to want to reform the lobby from within.
    2)It was like when the lobby took out Sen. Charles Percy. “You couldn’t have a senator who called for an evenhanded policy in Israel and Palestine.” After AIPAC took him out, “They basically put his head up on a pole…. And they did that with Chas Freeman. They win ugly on purpose…. because it intimidates people.”Alterman offered the following analysis: Freeman’s views are not that different from his own. He wasn’t getting a policy position. The “organized Israel lobby” and the neocons went after him because of the danger to Iran policy. “AIPAC wants a US bombing of Iran’s nuclear capability.” It fears that it won’t get that if Freeman got into intelligence.
    3)Alterman offered the following analysis: Freeman’s views are not that different from his own. He wasn’t getting a policy position. The “organized Israel lobby” and the neocons went after him because of the danger to Iran policy. “AIPAC wants a US bombing of Iran’s nuclear capability.” It fears that it won’t get that if Freeman got into intelligence.
    END QUOTED PASSAGES
    So, here you have a panel comprised entirely of American Jews, and they accept and admit to the existence of THE LOBBY. More, they readily admit to both its CONTROL, through influence, and its tactics of influence; intimidation.
    Its a shame they didn’t get into the uncle to intimidation; bribery.
    Bribery, and intimidation. If they can’t buy you, they will bury you.

    Reply

  11. questions says:

    POA,
    First, I wouldn’t have anyone think anything in particular. Second, the issue of “control” is, in my take on the world, a little bit overstated. Influence, yes, control, no. Pelosi isn’t a robot, Schumer isn’t a robot, AIPAC doesn’t hold a remote control box. Forces align because they are mutually convenient at some level, or for a wide aray of other reasons. If Pelosi is TERRIFIED of a primary race funded IN PART by AIPAC, then is AIPAC CONTROLLING her? I don’t think it works that way. If Schumer doesn’t want negative ads on the air, is he being CONTROLLED? I don’t think so. If the NYT runs an editiorial or an op-ed piece or a news story about bad Palestinians and it ignores Tristan, is the NYT taking marching orders from AIPAC? And what would AIPAC do to the NYT to make good on a threat? I really honestly truly don’t think the language of control is the right language, any more than I think THE LOBBY is a helpful phrase, or that AIPCA et al are omni-omnium. Really, honestly truly, scouts’ honor.
    What exactly is this control that this consortium (your word) exerts? How is everyone so duped by this consortium?
    I know lots of people with lots of critical views of Israel. They haven’t had dead fish delivered to their doors.
    Again, I don’t think there’s a LOBBY. Clearly there are lobbies. I don’t think there’s control. Clearly there is influence. I don’t think the US is as unwitting and duped in its policy into harming itself as many here seem to hold. In fact, I think that the Cold War alliance system rules us and though I haven’t made my peace with the Cold War, and I tend to think it a disaster on every level, I wonder what we would have done without the USSR as an enemy — would we have invented a different one? Are there spooky forces at a distance that make us push towards alliances? Does the US hold that Israel with US is better than Israel with China or Russia? I don’t know, but I have suspicions.
    And my reading of Hobbes makes me think that maybe there really is some utterly bizarre logic underlying these bizarre alliances. But then, what do I know.
    There’s an interesting history running from Hobbes to Locke to Kant to Rawls about how more or less devious and awful people seem to be. If we’re less devious and awful, and international system that Rawls would approve of makes a lot of sense. If we’re really devious and nasty, then our current alliances make a fair amount of sense. I don’t have it worked out in my head, and if I did, likely I’d be mistaken.

    Reply

  12. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, thats a laugh. Now Questions would have us believe that the neo-con fall from grace will precipitate less Israeli control over United States policy. Does he consider Nancy Pelosi, Jane harmon, Harry Reid, Rahm Emanuel, Dennis Ross, and Hillary Clinton “neo-cons”? What about the following people, are we to call them “neo-cons”….?
    http://www.aipac.org/
    From the AIPAC website…
    Villaraigosa Confirmed for Policy Conference 2009
    Los Angeles Mayor Villaraigosa will speak at Policy Conference.
    Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa will kick off this year’s AIPAC Policy Conference with a tribute to the U.S.-Israel relationship. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, House Republican Whip Eric Cantor, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin and Republican Whip Jon Kyl have also been confirmed-they will join hundreds of their congressional colleagues at the Policy Conference Gala Banquet in celebration of the U.S.-Israel alliance. Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Newt Gingrich, former speaker of the House, will also address delegates….END EXCERPT
    Comical, isn’t it? Rosenberg does a short little ditty about the NYTs editorial section, and Questions would have us believe all is well in Camelot, our enemies are on the run. Never mind that the staunchest adherents to the designs of AIPAC could hardly be called “neo-cons” as most of us understand the term.
    But questions does manage to underscore one very important fact about THE LOBBY. It has insidiously managed to insinuate itself into both sides of the aisle, contaminating everybody from left wing so-called “moderates” to the far right fanatics known as the “neo-cons”. A requisite for ascension in Washington DC has become fealty to Israel, and it matters not what your political persuasion may be. No matter what political face a lackey to Israel wears, it is the price of admission to Washington DC.
    The veracity of my above assertion is about to become crystal clear, if the Freeman saga, and the juggling of the 900 million so called “aid” to the Palestinians hasn’t convinced you. Watch, as Uzi Arad is finally allowed a visa, despite the threat he poses to our national security and our state’s secrets. Obama will kneel down, and cower before the demands of Israel. So, questions, are we to call Barack Obama a “neo-con”? Or just another whore for the Israelis?
    http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/mar/17/israels-national-security-aide-barred-from-us/
    EXCLUSIVE: Israel’s national security aide barred from U.S.
    Former Israeli spy linked to Pentagon leak
    Uzi Arad, who is expected to serve as national security adviser in the next Israeli government, has been barred from entering the United States for nearly two years on the grounds that he is an intelligence risk.
    Mr. Arad, a former member and director of intelligence for the Mossad, Israel’s spy service, is mentioned in the indictment of Lawrence Franklin, a former Pentagon analyst who pleaded guilty in 2005 to providing classified information about Iran in a conversation with two employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).
    Beyond Mr. Arad’s status, Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu is likely to face difficulties abroad because of his choice, announced Monday, of Avigdor Lieberman to serve as foreign minister in a narrow new rightist government. Mr. Lieberman, head of the Israel Is Our Home party, has advocated requiring Israel’s 1.46 million Arabs to take a loyalty test or risk expulsion.
    The choice of Mr. Arad for national security adviser has been reported in the Israeli press and was confirmed by sources close to Mr. Netanyahu, who has been tasked with forming the next government.
    Mr. Arad acknowledged to The Washington Times that he has not been able to obtain a visa to come to the United States but said the Israeli government is trying to change that.
    “The director general of the Israel Foreign Ministry did tell his American counterparts that there has been no cause to deny me a visa,” Mr. Arad told The Times.
    Israeli and U.S. officials said Mr. Arad has been denied a U.S. visa since June 2007 under section 212 3(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. This gives consular officers and the Justice Department authority to bar people who may seek “to violate any law of the United States relating to espionage or sabotage” from entering the country.
    Mr. Arad was a member of the Mossad spy service from 1975 to 1997. After retiring, he became Mr. Netanyahu’s foreign policy adviser. While in the Mossad, Mr. Arad worked mainly on analysis, but he also served as a liaison for intelligence operations with allied services such as the CIA.
    In the past 21 months, prominent Israelis and Americans have quietly but unsuccessfully pressed U.S. officials to grant Mr. Arad a visa.
    continues…..

    Reply

  13. questions says:

    http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/2009/03/16/neocons_fade_even_at_the_new_york_times/
    The URL says it all. MJ Rosenberg at TPM.
    So if this all-powerful I-LOBBY monstrosity is losing its control over the NYT, maybe, just maybe, it’s not all-powerful and the NYT isn’t part of it? Is it possible that a confluence of opinion for a time is actually an honest assessment by some number of independent agents? How could the NYT be capable of changing if it’s under Israel’s control? And if it’s not under Israel’s control, then no I-LOBBY.
    If you counter-argue that THE LOBBY has merely FINALLY made a mistake on the Freeman thing, then you’re ignoring Rosenberg’s sense that this change in long in coming and you are still undermining the I-LOBBY meme. It’s either all-powerful and super sneaky, or it’s just another regular pressure system of some ill-defined sort. And now that the NYT is dropping out, it’s even more ill-defined.
    At least, that’s how I see it.

    Reply

  14. questions says:

    The piece you link to above was already linked to on a different thread. My response then was that the biggest spies on the planet, the US, are being spied on. The US set up the whole NSA, the monitoring of all electronic communication — and then had Israel build it. Well, when the US built an embassy in, was it the USSR (I can’t quite remember this reference), they had local contractors do the construction and it turned out the building was laced with listening devices. Spying happens. There’s no real trust between allied nations because there isn’t an overarching authority able to police the relations, there isn’t an impartial judge, there isn’t an independent court system. So nations are more in a state of nature with regards to one another than not. But, in that state of nature, nations form untrusting alliances. Better to have some version of communication than none.
    Read …’s post and you see the military sales issue — this isn’t some Israel-lobby — this is weapons sales. Amoral, money-making weapons sales. Ain’t gonna go away. Though I have to admit, what a scam it would be to arm Arab countries AND Israel, have them blow up the weapons in a bunch of small and medium wars, and then RE-ARM them — woo hoo!
    As I’ve noted before, it takes a wide range of interests coalescing around any policy to carry out that policy. There isn’t an I-lobby because what there is is: Schumer and NYC, Florida, lots of Congressional districts with arms manufacturing, an occasional editorial writer/news editor, some Holocaust survivors and children of survivors, some victims from the former USSR, some Islamophobes, AIPAC and a few other organizations and so on…. It’s a coalition of people whose views are shaped by wide ranging experiences and who come together because a particular policy answers a lot of questions for them. This is not the stuff of conspiracy. This is the stuff of coalition-building.
    If you want the coalition to shift to your view, you have to capture the imaginations and wallets of some number of people. For this purpose, again, I suggest narrative/Hollywood/film and book. Again, Kant is hard reading, a Kantian movie is easy watching.
    I have a lot of disgust for Israel’s actions. The latest exploded head (that kid Tristan) is just one more horror in a long list of horrors that you, POA, document with energy. But my feeling is that given that Israel has become a sicker society than I would want (a really sick society), we need to think about a cure, not about a feel-good “well at least it’s not MY money going there”. So what’s a cure for a sick, over-militarized, beleagured, emotionally exhausted, violent, right wing society? And since this description can fit the US at times as well, what would anyone do to stop us from, say, having re-elected Bush? When the pressure comes from other countries, the domestic feeling is to double down. When the pressure comes from utter disaster (Katrina, the economy, the Iraq War), people can change (at least some people can change). This gets to Steve’s original thought that if Israel goes super right wing, maybe it’ll see itself more clearly. It’s sad that disaster is what it takes, but the US didn’t change policies til we collapsed.
    It’s worth asking just what are the goals of disengaging with Israel? Will you get what you want? I’m not convinced.
    And as for trust and the like, I do not take directions from political groups. I read and think independently. How many Kant references has AIPAC posted? I don’t even read their website, so if I say what they say, I’m coming up with it independently and it makes sense to me. I’m sure that the AIPAC site is full of condemnations of Israel, talks about the Tristan guy’s exploded head and the like. Absolutely.
    And as for taking on WigWag or not, I don’t 100% agree, have been over the Clinton stuff, have said frequently that I don’t think Freeman is evil personified, am more critical of Israel, but at the same time, I think we both see the American political system as quite able over time to deal with faction through lobbying and pressures of many sorts. I have a shocking amount of confidence in our political system to self-correct at moments of deep outrage. And I have confidence that we will routinely have moments of deep outrage. Members of Congress are people, too.
    I don’t generally go on the attack the way some do, though I ‘fess up to some snark occasionally. So no, I’m not going to do the name-calling thing, the expletive thing, the attack thing, the oil thing. I don’t see slickness, I see good faith attempts to figure out what’s right and not. Naive? Maybe.

    Reply

  15. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Heres a rather lengthy and interesting expose about the long history of Israel spying in the USA. Of particular concern to the citizens should be the Israeli’s infiltration of our telecom industry, and its role in the illegal monitoring of citizen’s communications.
    http://www.alternet.org/audits/130891/breaking_the_taboo_on_israel%27s_spying_efforts_on_the_united_states/
    Of course, the defense offered by Wig-wag, Questions, and others of their ilk will be the ‘ol “everbody does it” defense. But no, thats not true. No other nation has so interwoven itself with our intelligence agancies and our telecommunications industry. To deny that this is a threat to our security is ludicrous, particularly in light of Israels history of being willing to sell US werapons technology to nations that are less than friendly to the United states.

    Reply

  16. ... says:

    corporate welfare for the usa’s military industry is really what it is… tinpot country called the usa giving corporate welfare to its military industry via what most folks have been deceptively led to believe is ‘aid’ to others, specifically israel!!!

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  17. ... says:

    3. Harm to the U.S. and its citizens
    Israel is required to use 75% of its military aid from the U.S. to buy arms and equipment such as Caterpillar bulldozers made in the U.S. It funnels this money to more than 1,000 U.S. arms suppliers, which in turn lobby for U.S. policies that benefit them at the expense of peace in the Middle East. As a result, the diversion of our tax dollars not only reduces funding for education and social programs but militarizes our public policy overall. U.S. military aid to Israel sets the U.S. in opposition to many Arab and European nations who recognize the horrors of the occupation. This makes U.S. citizens less safe because we are more hated. And the massive flow of arms into Israel is made even more dangerous by arms sales of lesser quality to other Middle Eastern countries such as Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. While all this business fills the coffers of arms merchants, it makes the Middle East ever more unstable. Furthermore, when our government arms proponents of massive human rights abuses, we become complicit in their crimes and hated by their victims. U.S. support of Israel?s occupation of Palestinian lands and its abuse of human rights undermines any moral authority to criticize human rights abuses in other countries. And it shreds the U.S. of any credibility in acting to promote peace in the region.
    4. Violations of U.S. and international law
    U.S. law prohibits the president from furnishing military aid to any country ?which engages in a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights.
    http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/publish/article_17.shtml

    Reply

  18. ... says:

    i would be curious to know how much of the $ that israel or palestine receives is in the form of military equipment… i am going to assume that palestine gets no military stuff, and israel gets a lot.. in a way this is a subsidy of usa’s military industry.. i am not saying israel doesn’t get a certain amount of money, but it seems to me this is a form of subsidy for the usa’s military industry…
    does anyone have any figures on this question? i would be curious how the financial support breaks down with other countries in the area like egypt as well…
    perhaps this partly explains why the military lobby is more prominent then aipac.. that is what i recall from past reading up on this type of stuff…
    i wonder what would happen if all this type of support was pulled how many american jobs would be affected…..
    i think this partly explains why israel receives as much as it does – it gets it in usa military supplies/gear/etc…. this would also explain why anyone having died from idf’s actions might be dying from supplies from the usa and thus would have issue with the usa’s role in all of this…

    Reply

  19. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Here we have a little snippet directly from the AIPAC website. Funny, isn’t it, that we place demands on the Palestinians if they are to recieve a pittant amount of 900 million, most of which WILL NOT go to rebuild the bloodied streets of Gaza, yet we demand NOTHING of these murderous bastards in Israel in exchange for giving them billions. Perhaps we demand nothing because we realize they will ignore our demands, as they have done in regards to settlement expansion. After all, if we don’t ship them our tax dollars, how the hell can they afford to bribe our politicians?
    So, we will just give them the billions with no requirements, while demanding that the Palestinians quietly withstand systematic dehumanization, the loss of their lands and livelyhoods, and mass murder, all the while paying homage to Israel’s “right to enslave”, oops, uh, I mean “right to exist”.
    And keep in mind, while this Hillary creature postures and manipulates, the Palestinian people are still living behind a blockade, with essential goods and commodities being held at the border under constantly fluctuating and ethereal excuses. Gaza has been razed, Palestinians slaughtered and cooked in white phosphorous, the infrastructure destroyed, and this despicable beast Hillary uses a paltry 900 million as a rancid carrot. She is speaking for our President who promised change, but is showing himself to be just another whore in the Israeli’s stable.
    I note, today, the Los Angeles Times has a feature piece about two Israeli policeman being killed by Palestinian militants. Try as I might, I could find nothing about the condition of Tristan Anderson, seriously injured while protesting the Israeli theft of Palestinian land, shot in the head at short range by an Israeli tear-gas gunner.
    http://www.aipac.org/130.asp#22975
    Clinton: Aid to Palestinians Tied to Recognition of Israel
    Clinton told Abbas that Hamas must meet the Quartet’s conditions.
    According to Western and Israeli diplomats, the United States will withdraw $900 million in aid to the Palestinians if a future Palestinian unity government between Fatah and Hamas does not recognize Israel’s right to exist, the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz reported. During her recent visit to the Middle East, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton reportedly warned Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas against forming a coalition with Hamas that will not meet the three core expectations of the Quartet-recognition of Israel, renunciation of violence and acceptance of all previous Israeli-Palestinian agreements. To date, Hamas has refused to meet these conditions.

    Reply

  20. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Ah yes, the “everybody does it” defense.
    But really, no. Whatever the motives for our crimes in Iraq, they are not fueled by the blatant racism upon which the Israeli treatment of the Palestinians is fueled. And most of us that have consistently damned the Israeli policies have likewise condemned this Iraq fiasco, and cried out for accountability for the monsters that formed the deception that took us to war. Unlike you, who has repeatedly argued against accountability in the form of application of the law.
    And did I attack your proffession? I don’t recall doing that, or making reference to believing you were with the bar. Although I do detect some of the smooth manipulation of fact that attorneys use to confuse, divert, and obscure. And yes, I have been quite prolific in my use of expletives to label someone I consider loathsome with the constant stream of excuses, justifications, denials and obsfucations employed in their unfailing defense of the indefensible. And your one-sided advocacies are equal only to your one-sided and feigned respect for honest debate. You are more than willing to go after Carroll or myself with your longwinded expressions of disagreement, yet the blatant deceptions, dissemblings, and out-and-out lies Wig-wag employs go ignored by you, even when they reach the outrageous degree they have on this Freeman issue. And the “alliance” you formed with that insipid little internet asshole, “varanasi”, placed great strains on your credibility.
    What I find most telling about you and Wig-wag is the timely nature of your echoing of the AIPAC talking points. The latest tactic of these slimeballs is to call into question the very existence of what has come to be known as “the lobby”. And right on cue, both you and Wig-wag launched parallel arguments. I find it hard to believe this is by mere coincidence.
    I am not saddened by this tactic, or intimidated by it. In fact, it is my opinion that it works in the interests of those of us that decry the corrosive and parasitic presence of foreign agents that dictate American policies, appointments, and political ascensions. I find this latest attempt to consign “the lobby” to the minds of a few left-wing wackjobs totally ridiculous. Although many americans, through ignorance and media irresponsibility, do not realize the scope of this insidious influence on American politics, most, if not all, realize that there is in fact a concerted Israeli effort to influence public opinion and governmental policies in a direction favorable to the state of Israel. Only a fool or a liar denies the existence of “the lobby”. And it is indeed quite comical seeing two posters here, that have for sometime now tried to tell us the Israel lobby “is like any other lobby”, now attempting to deny the existence of “the lobby”.
    So yep, I think you have earned more than your fair share of expletives. What you haven’t earned is my respect, or my trust. And that has nothing to do with what you might or might not do for a living.

    Reply

  21. Outraged American says:

    “The Rise of Avigdor Lieberman” from The Nation.
    Written in December of 2006, wow is this article prescient…
    http://www.thenation.com/doc/20070101/lynfield
    Questions, seriously, how stupid/ naive do you think the
    majority of the posters on here are?
    Barak Obama pledging fealty to AIPAC, June 4, 2008– when did
    Obama become the front-runner again?:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0cOJNC2EuJw
    Clinton goes on right after Obama, but I guess her speech to
    AIPAC wasn’t as craven as his.

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  22. questions says:

    Two quick things on very borrowed computer time — yes, you have called me an expletive lawyer (not that I am either — expletive or lawyer), you have hurled expletives at me routinely, and second thing, my mother spent quite some time doing interior finishing work (dry wall and the like) and made quite a bit of furniture. It’s in the family and gets respect, not anything else.
    And, no, Carroll, I have never come across anything like what you describe. My point is merely that there are racist underpinnings to any and every society that closes borders and lets in only some, that kicks out existing people to make room for others…. It’s in US history, so assuming Israel should be different falls back in to the exceptionalism thing and I don’t do exceptionalism.
    I also don’t think the constant accusations of bad faith here do any good. Endless distrust, assumptions that people all want the worst rather than the best. It’s over the top. And it repeats on and on. I have some serious and honest criticisms and questions about policy issues. I honestly think that a lot of seemingly clear cut concepts are significantly less clear than people typically think. Nothing is ever cut and dried for me. So that’s how I tend to approach issues. Patriotism, America first, alliances, justice, the nature of good and evil — it’s not cut and dried for me. But I guess it is for others here.
    And I don’t think AIPAC is as wily as you all would have it, but then credit claiming works for Schumer. The bigger you think your enemy is, the bigger your enemy seems. The more power you invest, the more power it has.

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  23. Outraged American says:

    Poll: Israelis think Gaza “operation” ended too early:
    ‘Israelis think Gaza op ended too early’
    Jerusalem Post
    3/16/09
    Two-thirds of Israelis believe that Operation Cast Lead against
    Hamas terrorists in Gaza finished too early, according to a
    Truman-PSR poll released Monday.
    http://tinyurl.com/cdjrv4

    Reply

  24. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Mar 16 2009, 2:30PM – Link
    Carroll,
    You left off “Manifest Destiny”, America for USA Americans, and a lot of other things as well!
    So sue me…..>>>>>>>>
    Provide a citation for the ‘Manifest Destiny’ as part of the founders notion of America.
    I have no idea what your back ground is but it appears you are reading the zionist writers who claim Geo Washington was jewish,jews founded American on zionist ideals, settlers in America championed Palestine as a homeland for Jews in the 1600’s …lol…and and other wild propaganda aimed at trying to promote Isr and America and Jews and Americans as one and the same and sharing some ‘Manifest Destiny’ ideology.
    As a card carrying DAR terrorist I have a library full of history on America and personal family papers, dairies, letters, the originals of some of them on display at the North Carolina Museum of History, going back to 1615. I can assure you the last thing on the mind of the founders and settlers of America was the kind of Manifest Destiny you try to imply or anything other than what was signed off on …equality and freedom and cobbling together a life and a country based on those. Period.
    You just don’t get the original America honey, you never will, the American concept is as foreign to you as zionism is to Americans.

    Reply

  25. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “And by the way, you’ve made man many stabs at insulting whatever it is you think I do for a living….”
    No, I haven’t.

    Reply

  26. arthurdecco says:

    While you’re at it Carroll, why not make it a crime for American citizens to contribute anything at all to anyone who lobbies in the interest of a foreign government? That would flush the bastards out of the wood work pretty quick, doancha think?
    POA said, speaking about J street; “I think they are a strategic invention of AIPAC, rather than an dissenting voice.”
    Of course they are.

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  27. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I’ve looked at J-Street. They seem to be a weak vessel of dissent, offering quite tepid criticism of AIPAC and RW Israeli behaviour. I’m not impressed in the least. I think they are a strategic invention of AIPAC, rather than an dissenting voice.

    Reply

  28. questions says:

    Actually, I meant that sincerely. But whatever. I can’t imagine you’re at all able to see me as capable of having a sincere belief in anything since you’ve been quite insectivally and excretionally (??) referring to me for ages and ages. I actually think that Congress needs to draw from a lot more ranges of people. Sunstein has done nice work on diversity in groups, and he’s likely right.
    Alliances, if you read my post down thread, are not necessarily for mutual benefit. In fact in the Cold War system, the point is merely to count them on MY side instead of on YOUR side regardless of how foolish it all is. Alliances are completely self-serving. Really, completely. One cares only for one’s version of the world. It’s not marriage, it’s not love, it’s not human rights. It’s power.
    Alliances are likely also a natural outgrowth of multiplicity — meaning more than one person requires alliances and more than one nation requires alliances. Hobbes’s point here is well-taken.
    Sorry if you took offense to my reference to your profession. (And by the way, you’ve made man many stabs at insulting whatever it is you think I do for a living….)
    As for countries that murder US citizens, I don’t have an immediate answer. But I can say that the US murders a lot of other nations’ citizens and doesn’t want to hear about it.
    Gotta run, and sadly, soon I give up the computer for the day unless I’m granted a brief reprieve. Just a couple more weeks of this….

    Reply

  29. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Mar 16 2009, 2:05PM – Link
    POA, do you want the pushback to AIPAC also to register as a foreign lobby? Do want to ban these people from contacting Congress? (Or is that more Carroll’s point — I get these distinctions confused sometimes. Sorry.) After all, they are concerned about the well-being of a foreign nation, and they would like to make US policy align with their foreign desires.>>>>>>>>>
    Carroll thinks AIPAC should be registered as a Foreign Lobby.
    So should J-Street and all other “other country’ lobbies because it too is dedicated to lobbying for Israel, still lobbies for aid to Israel and US policy for Israel, whether hawkish of dovish, it lobbies for a foreign country’s benefit.
    CANAF, the Cuban exile lobby, should be registed as foreign lobby.
    Free Iran should be registered as a foreign lobby.
    Perle’s Iraq Freedom Lobby should have been registered as a foreign lobby.
    We should also expand and update our antiquated treason and espionage laws to reflect global complexities and our modern Orwellington politics so we can clean up congress and our government agencies.
    You got a problem with that?..naming and putting all ‘other’ interest under their proper catagory for American government decision making?
    90% of the American public wouldn’t have a problem with that.
    You could still lobby for Israel but you couldn’t use your typical excuse of a “American”-hyphen other country lobby.

    Reply

  30. PissedOffAmerican says:

    questions….
    It intrigues me that you blubbering jackasses are so obssessed with my proffession. Do you think that pointing a finger at my tradesman status somehow makes your horseshit more palatable to the average reader here?
    I note with humor that you make the statement in the thread below that the accusations leveled at Freeman in regards to China and Saudi Arabia have been discredited. Yet I don’t see you taking Wig-wag to task for continuing to utilize these dishonest and low down deceptions as tools through which to assasinate Freeman’s character.
    The term “alliance” at least implies a mutually constructive system of teamwork. But as we have been shown by decades of Israeli behaviour, Israel acts in a purely self-serving manner in this “alliance”. The attack on the Liberty, the continued disregard for a myriad of UN resolutions, its refusal to roll back the settlements, a long chain of acts of espionage committed against US states secrets, the illegal selling of high tech weapons technology to nations less than friendly to the United States. And as we just saw this last week, and have seen before, disproportionate response to Americans protesting Israeli policies, resulting in serious injury, and even death. What other country do we allow to murder American citizens without censure or criticism, Questions?
    Alliance? Hardly. More like a parasite/host relationship.

    Reply

  31. ... says:

    The Rape of Washington
    Uri Avnery’s Column
    http://avnery-news.co.il/english/index.html
    here is the last paragraph of his post..
    BY THE WAY, or not by the way, a word about my trip to London. I went there to lend support to a group of Jewish personalities, well-known in academic and other circles, who have set up an organization called “Independent Jewish Voices”. Recently they published a book called “A Time To Speak Out”, in which several of them contributed to the debate about Israel, human rights and Jewish ethics. The views expressed are very close to those current in the Israeli peace camp. But when they offered their book for presentation in the Jewish Book Week, they were rudely rejected. In protest, they convened an event of their own, and that’s where I spoke. I believe that it is of utmost importance that such Jewish voices be heard. In several countries, including the US, groups of brave Jews are trying to stand up to the Jewish establishment that unconditionally supports the Israeli Right. In the US, several such groups have sprung up, some quite recently. One of them, called “J Street”, is trying to compete with the formidable and notorious AIPAC. It is important for governments and peoples to know that the unconditional support for the Israeli Right does not represent the majority of Jews in the US, the UK and other countries. The Jewish public is far from monolithic. The majority is liberal and believes in peace and human rights. Until now this was a silent majority, out of fear of a repressive establishment. It is indeed “a time to speak out”. I believe that it is in the interest of Israel to support these groups – and that their activities are somewhat more important than Mr. Katsav’s exploits.

    Reply

  32. arthurdecco says:

    Reinvigorated by your week in the sun on the water, Steve? You’re going to need all the energy you managed to tap into while you were away decompressing, judging by your welcome back. LOL
    “Isn’t it ironic that a people who use the constant accusation of racism as a defense are committing genocide, a modern day holocaust, while stifling criticism with accusations of anti-semitism?” POA
    Sure, it’s ironic this minute, POA, but there’s coming a time when it will be recognized as a serious crime deserving of harsh penalties.
    Patience…
    (Please don’t misconstrue my use of the word “Patience” as an admonition, POA. It’s nothing of the sort. Au contraire – keep shouting from your roof top! Decent, thinking, moral people of all sorts from everywhere – passionate people like you are going to have to out-shout these murderous, lying bastards to prevail – no going quietly into the night for us – not if we expect to vanquish these enemies of real freedom and real democracy. Herculean task? Of course it is. But still, patience…
    What goes up
    must come down.
    Spinning wheels
    got to go round…
    blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah…)
    questions: “Join J street.”
    Don’t be stupid, Q. How could that possibly help the Palestinians avoid their deliberate destruction at the hands of the thugs in charge of Israel?
    J street is a Placebo. Just another aspect of the smoke and mirrors manipulation of public opinion by the same nasty people whose ambitions now threaten everyone not reading from their script.
    But you knew that before you typed more of your waste-of-time advice, didn’t you?

    Reply

  33. questions says:

    Carroll,
    You left off “Manifest Destiny”, America for USA Americans, and a lot of other things as well!
    So sue me…..

    Reply

  34. Carroll says:

    I noticed that someone posted the State Department’s definition of anti semitism..which starts off with the correct definition of hating jews ‘just because’ they are Jews..then moves on to say that criticism of Israel and comparsions of the Israeli government to nazis is anti semitism.
    My reply to the State Department is..
    Nazi Master Race- Jewish Chosen People-The Motherland – Greater Israel = same mentality.
    So sue me. BWTTGSO

    Reply

  35. questions says:

    POA, do you want the pushback to AIPAC also to register as a foreign lobby? Do want to ban these people from contacting Congress? (Or is that more Carroll’s point — I get these distinctions confused sometimes. Sorry.) After all, they are concerned about the well-being of a foreign nation, and they would like to make US policy align with their foreign desires.
    And yes, again, Israeli society has a lot of dysfunctional characteristics, many of which are deeply familiar to people in the US. Racism? Check. Militarism? Check. Anger at dark-skinned immigrants and low-income laborers and people whose accents or language or religion is different? Check. Children who fantasize about doing away with one population or another? Check. Insane religiosity? Check. Waves of right wing rule? Check. Genocide against Iraqis? Well, that’s us. Coups in foreign lands? That’s us. Interventions in most Latin American nations and support of profoundly brutal rule? That’s us….
    So, yup, the pathology is familiar. And again, the question is what one does about it. You can list these horrors one after another until they reach the moon, you can match them one-to-one against US-perpetrated horrors. And still we have a world of nations that enter into alliances with each other good bad and mostly ugly. What do you do about the alliance system?
    And if you want to disempower AIPAC and its allied registered lobbies, I recommend the age-old countervailing power strategy. It works over time, it keeps the system safe for dissent. So join J-Street. Learn how to make your points in a marketplace of ideas so that you convince rather than alienate your natural allies. Make alliances. You never know, you could run for office and do something for real. Congress probably isn’t loaded with literate high-end wood-workers from California. There’s likely room for you.
    And now that the thread below is too cumbersome, I guess you won’t respond to anything there. I suppose you’re the only one who is allowed to scream about not being attended to, though.

    Reply

  36. PissedOffAmerican says:

    We hear much about Iranians, and their alleged desire to kill all the Jews. But what we don’t hear about is the blatant racism that is the foundation upon which Israel builds its policies towards the Palestinians. Note the following passage from an email sent out of Gaza by a visiting human rights attorney….
    “Her 10-year-old son showed us the shrapnel wounds in his leg and proudly displayed the large piece of shrapnel that he single-handedly pulled out of his chest that night. His cousins then gave us a tour of one of the few houses left standing — one that the soldiers had used as a base, after they rounded up all those in the neighborhood and demolished all the other houses. The house was a mess. All the family’s possessions were thrown around the outside perimeter. Bags of feces from the soldiers were strewn around outside. The inside was ransacked. The soldiers had covered nearly every surface with graffiti: “death to the Arabs”, “if it weren’t for Arabs, the world would be a better place”, “kill Arabs”. I feverishly took notes and photographs of the stories of Zeytoun, knowing I did not want to stop and think about what had happened here.”- end excerpt.
    http://tinyurl.com/dz9p9x
    A contingent of soldiers that would write “death to the Arabs”, “if it weren’t for Arabs, the world would be a better place”, and “kill Arabs” can only be described as racists. This is the face of the IDF that Israel doesn’t want you to see. This is the reason they ban journalists from chronicaling the frequent bloodbaths that are visited upon the Palestinians. How can we expect this contingent of IDF racists to treat Palestinian civilians and non-combatants after expressing the belief that the world would be a better place if they were dead?
    Isn’t it ironic that a people who use the constant accusation of racism as a defense are committing genocide, a modern day holocaust, while stifling criticism with accusations of anti-semitism?

    Reply

  37. ... says:

    Steve, i hope you had a wonderful trip!
    poa, Philip Weiss has a website with some great articles i think you would relate to… here is a quote i read this morning “…no one has called Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, the son of a member of an Israeli terrorist organization, who went off to put on an Israeli army uniform during the Gulf War I and serve on an Israeli base, on the issue of whether he’s too in the tank for Israel..””
    double standards are another hallmark of these same israeli firsters which is why some of us view them as hypocritical and dishonest in there selectivity…

    Reply

  38. PissedOffAmerican says:

    http://www.antiwar.com/avnery/?articleid=14407
    March 16, 2009
    The Rape of Washington
    by Uri Avnery
    Returning home from a very short visit to London, I found the country in the grip of uncontrollable emotions.
    No, it was not about the looming danger of the radical Right gaining control. It is now almost certain that the next government will consist of an assorted bunch of settlers, explicit racists, and perhaps even outright fascists. But that does not evoke any excitement.
    Nor was there much excitement about yet another interrogation of the (still) incumbent prime minister in his various corruption affairs. That is hardly news anymore.
    All the excitement was about a “press conference” given by the former president of Israel, Moshe Katsav, after the attorney general announced that he might be indicted for rape.
    Katsav, it may be remembered by those who remember such things, was accused by several of his female staff of persistent sexual harassment and at least one case of rape. He had to resign.
    An Iranian-born immigrant and a protégé of Menachem Begin, Katsav had made a career based on a kind of affirmative action. Begin believed that, for the sake of integration, promising young immigrants from Oriental countries should be promoted to positions of responsibility. Katsav, a rather nondescript right-wing politician with all the customary right-wing opinions, became minister of tourism and then was elected by the Knesset to the ceremonial post of president, mainly to spite the rival candidate, Shimon Peres. Wags said that the Knesset was reluctant to spoil Peres’ (then) unbroken record of lost elections.
    Since his abdication two years ago, the Katsav affair has dragged on and on, almost to the point of farce. Revelations were leaked by the police, several women disclosed lurid details, the ex-president made a plea agreement admitting to lesser offenses, he then revoked the deal, the attorney general procrastinated and now he seems to have made up his mind about the indictment.
    So Katsav called a press-conference in his remote hometown, Kiryat Malakhi (the former Arab village of Qastina, now within reach of the Qassams). It was an unprecedented performance. The ex-president spoke solo for nearly three hours, airing his grievances against the police, the attorney general, the media, the politicians, and almost everybody else. All this was, incredibly, broadcast live on all three of Israel’s TV channels, as if it had been a State of the Union address. Katsav rambled on and on, repeating himself again and again. No questions were allowed. Respected journalists, hungry for scoops, were evicted if they dared to interrupt.
    So when I came back yesterday morning, I found this feat dominating the front pages of all our newspapers. Everything else was banished to the back pages.
    ——————————————————————————–
    Because of this, Charles Freeman got hardly a mention. Yet his affair was a thousand-fold more important than all the sexual activities of our ex-president.
    Freeman was called by Barack Obama’s newly-appointed chief of national intelligence, Adm. Dennis Blair, to the post of chairman of the National Intelligence Council. In this position, he would have been in charge of the National intelligence Estimates (NIE), summarizing the reports of all the 16 U.S. intelligence agencies, which employ some 100,000 people at an annual cost of $50 billion, and composing the estimates that are put before the president.
    In Israel, this is the job of the directorate of military intelligence, and the officer in charge has a huge influence on government policy. In October 1973, the then intelligence chief disregarded all reports to the contrary and informed the government that there was only a “low probability” of an Egyptian attack. A few days later the Egyptian army crossed the canal.
    Throughout the 1990s, the man in charge of intelligence estimates, Amos Gilad, deliberately misled the government into believing that Yasser Arafat was deceiving them and was actually plotting the destruction of Israel. Gilad was later openly accused by his subordinates of suppressing their expert reports and submitting estimates of his own, which were not based on any intelligence whatsoever. Later, as the guru of Prime Minister Ehud Barak, Gilad coined the phrase “We have no Palestinian partner for peace.”
    In the U.S., the intelligence chiefs famously supplied President George W. Bush with the (false) intelligence he needed to justify his invasion of Iraq.
    All this shows how vitally important it is to have an estimates chief of intellectual integrity and wide experience and knowledge. Adm. Blair could not have chosen a better person than Charles Freeman, a man of sterling character and uncontested expertise, especially about China and the Arab world.
    And that was his undoing.
    ——————————————————————————–
    As a former ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Freeman is an expert on the Arab world and the Israeli-Arab conflict. He has strong opinions about American policy in the Middle East and makes no secret of them. In a 2005 speech, he criticized Israel’s “high-handed and self-defeating policies” originating in the “occupation and settlement of Arab lands,” which he described as “inherently violent.” In a 2007 speech he said that the U.S. had “embraced Israel’s enemies as our own” and that Arabs had “responded by equating Americans with Israelis as their enemies.” Charging the U.S. with backing Israel’s “efforts to pacify its captive and increasingly ghettoized Arab populations” and to “seize ever more Arab land for its colonists,” he added that “Israel no longer even pretends to seek peace with the Palestinians.” Another conclusion is his belief that the terrorism the United States confronts is due largely to “the brutal oppression of the Palestinians by an Israeli occupation that has lasted over 40 years and shows no signs of ending.” Naturally, the appointment of such a person was viewed with great alarm by the pro-Israel lobby in Washington. They decided on an all-out attack. No subtle behind-the-scenes intervention, no discreet protestations, but a full-scale demonstration of their might right at the beginning of the Obama era. Public denunciations were composed, senators and congressmen pressed into action, media people mobilized. Freeman’s integrity was called into question, shady connections with Arab and Chinese financial interests “disclosed” by the docile press. Adm. Blair came to his appointee’s defense, but in vain. Freeman had no choice but to withdraw.
    ——————————————————————————–
    The full meaning of this episode should not escape anyone. It was the first test of strength of the lobby in the new Obama era. And in this test, the lobby came out with flying (blue-and-white) colors. The administration was publicly humiliated. The White House did not even try to hide its abject surrender. It declared that the appointment had not been cleared with the president, that Obama had no hand in it and did not even know about it. Meaning: of course he would have objected to the appointment of any official who was not fully acceptable to the lobby. The portrayal of the power of the lobby by Professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt has been fully vindicated.
    ——————————————————————————–
    This has a significance that goes far beyond the already far-reaching implications of the affair itself. Many people in Israel who view the establishment of the new rightist government with apprehension cite as their main fear the danger of a clash with the new Obama administration. Such a clash, they believe, could be fatal for Israel’s security. But the rightists deride such arguments. They assert that no American president would ever dare to confront the Israeli lobby. The captive congressmen and senators, as well as the supporters of the Israeli government in the media and even in the White House itself, would sink on sight any American policy opposed by even the most extreme right-wing government in Israel. Now the first skirmish has taken place, and the president of the United States has blinked first. Perhaps one should not rush to conclusions, perhaps Obama needs more time to find his bearings, but the signs are ominous for any Israeli interested in peace. It may be too early to call this episode the Rape of Washington, but it is certainly vastly more important than Katsav’s sexual escapades.
    ——————————————————————————–
    By the way, or not by the way, a word about my trip to London. I went there to lend support to a group of Jewish personalities, well-known in academic and other circles, who have set up an organization called Independent Jewish Voices. Recently they published a book called A Time To Speak Out, in which several of them contributed to the debate about Israel, human rights, and Jewish ethics. The views expressed are very close to those current in the Israeli peace camp. But when they offered their book for presentation in the Jewish Book Week, they were rudely rejected. In protest, they convened an event of their own, and that’s where I spoke. I believe that it is of utmost importance that such Jewish voices be heard. In several countries, including the U.S., groups of brave Jews are trying to stand up to the Jewish establishment that unconditionally supports the Israeli Right. In the U.S., several such groups have sprung up, some quite recently. One of them, called J Street, is trying to compete with the formidable and notorious AIPAC. It is important for governments and peoples to know that the unconditional support for the Israeli Right does not represent the majority of Jews in the U.S., the UK, and other countries. The Jewish public is far from monolithic. The majority is liberal and believes in peace and human rights. Until now this was a silent majority, out of fear of a repressive establishment. It is indeed “a time to speak out.” I believe that it is in the interest of Israel to support these groups – and that their activities are somewhat more important than Mr. Katsav’s exploits.

    Reply

  39. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Am I wrong in considering this an open thread?
    I hope you enjoyed your vacation, Steve. Did you make it to Santa Lucia? Nina used to live there, and has sailed the area extensively.
    Anyway, Wig-wag, in the cumbersome thread below, has made much of the accusations concerning Freeman’s Tiananmen Square comments, which have been proven to be taken completely out of context, and his alleged fealty to Saudi Arabia.
    Heres an intersting snippet from Ken Silverstien…..
    http://www.harpers.org/archive/2009/03/hbc-90004550
    Chas Freeman and Saudi Money
    By Ken Silverstein
    One of the most common charges hurled by the opponents of Charles Freeman Jr., who yesterday withdrew as chair of the Obama administration’s National Intelligence Council, was that he “headed a Saudi-funded Middle East advocacy group in Washington.” I’ve written about the influence of money on think tanks and think it’s a valid point of concern, but let’s put this assertion in perspective.
    Freeman headed the Middle East Policy Council. I’m not sure how much Saudi money flows to the think tank, but it can’t be much. I checked the firm’s non-profit disclosure form for 2007 and its total receipts for the year were $731,000, and it had assets of $1.3 million. Freeman was paid $87,000 that year.
    Compare that to the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a conservative think tank that is overwhelmingly supportive of Israel and whose board includes Henry Kissinger, Alexander Haig and Martin Peretz. Its receipts for 2007 came to $11.9 million, and it had $26.5 million in assets. Robert Satloff, the institute’s executive director, was paid $307,000. Dennis Ross, now the Obama administration’s special adviser on Iran, was paid $208,000 for duties as a “Distinguished Fellow.”
    Then there’s the equally pro-Israel American Enterprise Institute, from where a number of prominent Bush Administration employees came. It had assets of $77 million in 2006 (the last year for which I could find its disclosure form at the Foundation Center), and receipts of $56 million.
    None of these groups list funders on their websites, nor are they required to list them on disclosure reports. (AEI says it doesn’t disclose donors; the Washington Institute’s press contact was out today.) The Israeli government doesn’t (as far as I know) back AEI or WINEP, but conservative foundations do and it’s hard to imagine that pro-Israeli organizations and individuals aren’t kicking in large sums as well.
    So why is the Middle East Policy Council any more intellectually corrupt than AEI or WINEP? And why is employment at the former a bar to government employment, but a job at the last two is not? END ARTICLE.
    So, watching Wig-wag prattle on with accusations that have been discredited has been amusing, if only to observe him live down to my low opinion of him. His insistence that Freeman “thinks” that the Chinese authorities “did the right thing” at Tiananmen is laughable when Freeman’s comments are considered in context. Besides, how can one condemn what occurred at Tiananmen, yet ignore the Israeli’s treatment of protesters in Gaza or the West Bank? Or decry and villify Freeman’s associations with China while ignoring Israel’s arms sales to China?
    Any chance of a guest blog by Freeman? Do you have the connections to reach out to him?

    Reply

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