Last night at dinner my sister asked me Why if everyone and his brother is for the two-state solution is there not a real push for a two-state solution? The easy answer is that the Israel lobby in the U.S., which has virtually set policy, is dominated by the right wing. The neocons are Our Likud, and they have been in every ruling coalition in the U.S. since 92, allowing further colonization.
Again, J Street (for all my misgivings) must be seen as a powerful break with this pattern, an effort to redeem the Jewish people from neoconservatism. Rami Khouri referred to J Street hopefully in the lecture I heard the other night. And J Street seems to have licensed journalism on the Israel lobby in a way that Walt and Mearsheimer were not able to. Here is a fabulous piece by Griff Witte in the Washington Post, exposing the way that rightwingers in the U.S. have sustained Binyamin Netanyahu's wannabe restoration in Israel, to put a kibosh on the peace process. The U.S. swagmen gather at intimate events where you're told, If you like what you heard, just leave a check on your chair.
Former prime minister and Likud Party leader Binyamin Netanyahu, for instance, received approximately $400,000 -- 75 percent of his donations for a 2007 primary -- from U.S. contributors, according to the Israeli comptroller's office...
Jeremy Ben-Ami, executive director of J Street, a new U.S.-based lobbying firm that supports dovish Israeli positions, said it is no surprise that hawkish Israeli politicians benefit most from U.S. money.
"The American Jews who hold the more conservative views toward Israel are also the ones who tend to be most actively engaged with Israel," Ben-Ami said. "Liberal American Jews tend not to single out Israel as the focus of their philanthropy."
I don't understand why this isn't a scandal here, why all the interconnections in Netanyahu's network of supporters, from Sheldon Adelson to Irving Moskowitz of AEI to Dore Gold (who gets $96,000 a year as a "scholar" from the AEI) to Doug Feith are not exposed, and the dual-loyalty of the thing blasted into the sunlight. Grant Smith wrote a book about The Clean Break, the neocons' blueprint for Netanyahu in '96, and Walt and Mearsheimer wrote about the blueprint in their book, in the context of an "overlapping set of [neoconservative] Washington-based think tanks, committees and publications." Smith and W&M were called conspiracy theorists. Actually, it's just journalism. Thank God the Post is getting on the case.
P.S. Obama met with Netanyahu in Israel. Why did he do that? Who owns Obama? Why can't he shun Netanyahu? Where is J Street on that?