David Frum admits that his vote is all about Israel

US Politics
on 8 Comments

David Frum is a former Bush aide who pushed the Iraq war and is said to have coined the Axis of Evil formulation. I’ve always thought that he is Israel-centric but like other smarting/hunted neocons he’s cagey about it. Once when he gave a sermon in a synagogue and called the United States "this new Israel, this America," I wrote about it as a confession but Frum bridled, and said it was a biblical metaphor. Well the fancy metaphors are over. Here’s Frum writing about Tom Campbell, the leader in the Republican race to take on Barbara Boxer in California and endorsing him "since he is the candidate with the clearest and most detailed pro-Israel platform in the California Senate race". Excerpts:

Former U.S. Congressman Tom Campbell has stepped into the lead in the polls. Campbell is a superb candidate: a brilliant intellect, a protégé of Milton Friedman’s, a principled and sophisticated free marketer.

In recent weeks, however, a whispering campaign against Campbell has burst into fuller view. Campbell – it’s charged – has an “Israel problem.” He is unsympathetic to Israel, or worse. He is soft on terror – or worse.

I am a national security voter, with a special concern for Israel. If I thought for a minute that Tom Campbell had a “national security problem” or an “Israel problem,” I would not care if he were the most brilliant mind in American politics, the most consistent free marketer in the entire state of California: I’d never support him.

But on the basis of Campbell’s proven public record, such aspersions seem to have arrived from somewhere outside the space-time continuum, in some outer dimension created by wild and unchecked oppo research.

Against the aspersions and insinuations, measure these facts:

When Saddam Hussein was firing Scud missiles at Israel in 1990, Campbell flew to Israel (on El Al by the way) to put his own safety on the line.

The column concludes with a battery of questions that Campbell had to answer, including, Do you believe in the Israel lobby? Says Scott McConnell, "This is revealing about the state of play on the right–Frum’s declaration, combined with his defense of someone accused of being tepid for Israel… The neocon whispering campaign against a candidate early on…   Judging from Campbell’s own quotes (‘I have not read the Goldstone Report, and would need to do so before offering an informed opinion’) he’d probably be an improvement on Boxer. One of the interesting things is the comments on the American Spectator blog post attacking Campbell.  A lot of ‘what the f— do we care what his views on Israel are, he’s supposed to represent us.’" Great thread; check it out.

8 Responses

  1. Citizen
    February 22, 2010, 4:18 pm

    Frum did come up with the idea of the axis of evil. He is TOTALLY supportive of the USA having the same enemies as Israel. By using the term “axis” he equated arabs with Nazis and Japanese racial war mongers. Throw in Mussolini’s Italy.

    • Chaos4700
      February 22, 2010, 4:29 pm

      Also intriguing is how our relationship with Israel has been steadily eroding our relationship with Europeans in general. Remember the whole “freedom fries” nonsense? I’m thinking the assassins’ passports flap will be the final nail in that coffin. It’s one thing when US and Israel can indulge in war crimes and not involve Europeans directly… it’ll be a whole other ball of wax now that we are endangering European citizens and government ministries with fraud.

      • Leper Colonialist
        February 22, 2010, 7:16 pm

        Not so much intriguing as tragic and predictable.

        Exactly how much can the US be expected to sacrifice bi-lateral and multi-lateral relationships on behalf of Israel? When do we reach the liits of our self-respect, if nor self-interest?

        We’ve pretty much burned our bridges with most tofthe Arab world on behalf of Israel. Europe thinks we’re insane to follow these pro-Israel policies to the self-destructive extent that we do.

        Next to go, our relationship with Turkey? It looks obvious that a showdown with Turkey re Israel is in the making. No doubt in my mind, though, as to which party the US gov’t will be willing to wave bye-bye to. No doubt more in sorrow and regret than in anger.

        I think you are way too optimistic aboutthe long-tern importance ofthe forged passport flap. I suspect it will be totally forgotten bythe end of March 2010.

    • DICKERSON3870
      February 22, 2010, 4:59 pm

      RE: ‘Frum did come up with the idea of the axis of evil. ” – Citizen

      EXCERPT: The “Axis of Evil” phrase originated from then-Bush speechwriter David Frum. Frum described Iraq, Iran and North Korea in the written speech as an “Axis of Hatred.” The term was then altered during the oral speech by George W. Bush to “Axis of Evil.”…
      SOURCE – link to wisegeek.com

      EXCERPT: …More interesting than whether Frum jumped or was pushed is Frum’s assertion to John Ibbitson in the Feb. 26 Toronto Globe and Mail that the phrase he coined was not “axis of evil,” but “axis of hate,” and that someone changed “hate” to “evil.” In a Feb. 10 column, Novak reported that it was White House chief speechwriter Michael Gerson who made the change. That would lend credence to Time magazine’s version of events, which is that Frum and Gerson coined “axis of evil.” In the Globe and Mail interview, Frum now says, “I think it was actually the president” who scratched out “hate” and scribbled in “evil.” Is this a gracious fib? Quite possibly.
      SOURCE – link to slate.msn.com

  2. DICKERSON3870
    February 22, 2010, 5:13 pm

    RE: “Campbell flew to Israel (on El Al by the way)” ~ Fee-fi-fo-Frum!*
    ME: Well that settles it, goddammit! He’s kosher ‘through and through’! Frum uses logic almost as much as Pat Robertson and “Reverend” John Hagee use it.
    * h/t Phillip Weis

  3. Leper Colonialist
    February 22, 2010, 7:10 pm

    Ohmigod !!!


    David Frum [finally?] admits that his vote is all about Israel!!!!!

    Nextthingyou know, we’ll be toldthat the sun rises in the east, and sets in the west. And can be relied upon to repeat this act every single day without exception.

  4. jan_gdyn
    February 23, 2010, 10:44 am

    Is Israel-bashing anti-Semitic? by David Frum on CNN.com
    link to edition.cnn.com

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