New White House page on Israel’s security says nothing about settlements or occupation, but tons about Iran, Goldstone, slaughter of innocent Israelis, delegitimization

Israel/Palestine
on 132 Comments

The Obama White House has unfurled a new web-page, it’s called “Advancing Israel’s Security and Supporting Peace.” It’s obviously geared toward appeasing the lobby. There is one reference to the status quo being “unsustainable,” but all references to Palestinians are calls on them to advance peace and staunch terrorism. Most of the site is about Israel’s security. Iran has a whole section. The word “settlements” is not mentioned. 1967 is mentioned.

“[T]he parties themselves will negotiate a border that is different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967 to account for the changes that have taken place over the last 44 years…”

Goldstone’s scalp is brandished; we did this for you. There’s a section about the U.S. opposing the delegitimization of Israel. There are warnings about the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation and implicitly against the Palestinian statehood initiative. A lot of fearmongering:


He has made clear that “it is a sign neither of courage nor power to shoot rockets at sleeping children, or to blow up old women on a bus.  That’s not how moral authority is claimed; that’s how it is surrendered.”  At the United Nations, he emphasized that “the slaughter of innocent Israelis is not resistance — it’s injustice.”

Obama used the word occupation in his June. 2009 Cairo speech and spoke of “humiliations” experienced by Palestinians. No more. He also said:

The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements.  (Applause.)  This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace.  It is time for these settlements to stop. (Applause)

So much for the applause. The U.S. is making itself irrelevant. The center does not hold. (thanks to Ali Gharib and Jeff Blankfort)

132 Responses

  1. eljay
    June 4, 2011, 9:29 am

    >> The President believes that every state has the right to self-defense, and that Israel must be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat.

    Obama doesn’t seem to think that a Palestinian state should it also be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat. So much for a universal right of self-defense.

    >> In his speeches in Cairo, at the United Nations, and elsewhere, the President has consistently demanded that Hamas accept Israel’s right to exist, reject violence, and adhere to all existing agreements, before it can play a role in achieving Middle East peace.

    But he hasn’t demanded that Israel accept Palestine’s right to exist, reject violence, and adhere to all existing agreements, before it can play a role in achieving Middle East peace.

    >> The President has spoken out forcefully to condemn Hamas attacks against Israelis.

    But he hasn’t spoken out forcefully to condemn Israel’s attacks against Palestinians.

    >> At the United Nations, he emphasized that “the slaughter of innocent Israelis is not resistance — it’s injustice.”

    An ON-GOING campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization and destruction, couple with the slaughter of innocent Palestinians, isn’t security — it’s injustice.

    Well, it looks like Obama is officially a Zio-supremacist hypocrite.

    I wonder if he’s one of the thugs, or one of the more delicate ones who “hold their noses” while the thugs do the dirty work…

  2. DICKERSON3870
    June 4, 2011, 9:36 am

    It appears that Dennis Ross (“Israel’s lawyer”, per Aron David Miller) has been putting in a lot of overtime! Or was this new White House page actually designed in Israel?
    Whatever the case, Obama has lost my vote. I’m about ready to just give up voting entirely.

    • Taxi
      June 4, 2011, 10:07 am

      Hahahaha your new avatar is brilliant Dickerson!

      (vote green: the natural choice of every conscientious global citizen )

      • DICKERSON3870
        June 4, 2011, 6:20 pm

        RE: “your new avatar is brilliant Dickerson” – Taxi
        REPLY: Thanks. Feel free to call me Buster.
        Or even Busta (though I’m not so good with Ryhmes).
        P.S. Not that brilliant! “Aron” = Aaron (sleep deprivation) Sleepdep, dumbstep or whatever. My Circadian rhythm sucks!

    • MRW
      June 4, 2011, 2:00 pm

      Who is willing to bet me 25 cents that Obama does not know about this page?

      Do we really honestly think the President of the US approves webpages on whitehouse.gov? That he even knows their content?

      This is the action of career civil servants who have been doing this stuff behind the scenes for decades.

      I think this is an awareness campaign for Code Pink, and MJ, and W&S.

      This is also a campaign question in your area, or to run up the line.

      Edit: I’ve got an idea: 202-456-1111 on Monday morning. Ask the White House comment line why the WS publishes statements on Israel that contradict US policy…and who did it. Say it looks like AIPAC wrote it, and since when does AIPAC control the White House.

      • MRW
        June 4, 2011, 2:17 pm

        I mean W&Mear.

      • DICKERSON3870
        June 4, 2011, 6:31 pm

        RE: “since when does AIPAC control the White House” – MRW
        REPLY: At least since 2001.

      • Duscany
        June 4, 2011, 10:28 pm

        I don’t know what good it would do ask the White House long long they’ve been controlled by AIPAC. Most White Houses staffers weren’t even born when AIPAC started running the White House. That’s all they’ve ever known. In their view that’s the way it’s supposed to be. They’d probably be surprised to hear that there are Americans who remember when it was otherwise.

  3. Kathleen
    June 4, 2011, 9:39 am

    “The President has emphasized that no vote at the United Nations will ever create an independent Palestinian state.”

    I thought that vote all ready took place in 48

    Contact Obama. Let Dennis Ross and OBama know what you think
    link to whitehouse.gov

    Obama just sealed the deal with many of the members of Aipac for 2012 campaign donations.

    Obama/Ross followed Aipac’s take action section almost in order
    link to aipac.org

    Phil you folks have probably all ready covered this. But I did not know that the Obama administration had said they would not attend the conference at all
    link to aipac.org{8520A0AB-8D7B-4F26-AED1-857FD75759A1}

  4. Sumud
    June 4, 2011, 9:52 am

    I’m curious about this little sentence:

    The President believes that every state has the right to self-defense, and that Israel must be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat.

    It’s the third occurrence of that phrase about Israel defending itself, “by itself”. First in his May 19th speech (paraphrased on the new White House page, so not really a new occurrence, but still…), then a few days later he used it again at the AIPAC speech. How do others read it? There’s no chance Obama is going to withdraw the $3 billion of military aid, so what’s he talking about? Is it a veiled threat that US support for Israel isn’t unconditional?

    I also noticed in his May 19 speech he used very similar phrasing to describe the Arab Spring [my emphasis]:

    I believed then -– and I believe now -– that we have a stake not just in the stability of nations, but in the self-determination of individuals. The status quo is not sustainable. Societies held together by fear and repression may offer the illusion of stability for a time, but they are built upon fault lines that will eventually tear asunder.

    …and then the situation in Israel:

    But precisely because of our friendship, it’s important that we tell the truth: The status quo is unsustainable, and Israel too must act boldly to advance a lasting peace..

    The phrase is often heard re: Israel and Palestine, but I was surprised to hear him use it earlier in the speech to talk about the Arab Spring. It might have gone unnoticed to someone not familiar with I/P, but I thought it was so odd to hear it used twice in different contexts. He had to be drawing equivalences between oppression in other ME states and oppression of Palestinians by Israel. The first phrase about self-determination describes Israel perfectly – and it is on the verge of imploding, or “tearing asunder”.

    • braciole
      June 4, 2011, 10:37 am

      I think he is referring to the Qualitative Military Edge he believes Israel should have. However, there is no way that Israel could afford that purely on its own without bankrupting itself so it will bankrupt the United States instead.

      He could also be referring to Israel being the only country in the Middle East with nuclear weapons and he has every intention of ensuring it stays that way so that Israel can defend itself – by itself.

      If the “Arab Spring” succeeds against the United States/Israeli/Saudi organized counter-revolution and the Arab countries surrounding Israel decide to form a Middle East Treaty Organization for mutual defence purposes without US involvment so that an attack on one becomes an attack on them all, you have to wonder what the US response will be. Perhaps the NED/ACILS/CIPE/IRI/NDI (aka CIA) will go into overdrive. Or perhaps the US will just invade.

      • Kathleen
        June 4, 2011, 11:03 am

        Have been hearing that term “Qualitative Military Edge” a great deal the last year or so. How many weapons does Israel or the US need? How many people can the US and Israel kill?

        That “QME” is about billions for the defense companies

    • Jeffrey Blankfort
      June 4, 2011, 12:52 pm

      Obambi qualified the status quo as not being acceptable for Israel because of the “demographics,” that the increasing Palestinian population would present problems for Israel in the future, “in 2067.” His statement had nothing to do with Israel’s oppression of the Palestinians which he has not recognized since taking office. He couches their needs in terms that are intended to disguise both the root of the conflict and its remedy.

      • Les
        June 4, 2011, 1:03 pm

        Is 2067 some kind of deadline Obama has granted to make Aliyah?

      • sherbrsi
        June 5, 2011, 8:31 am

        His statement had nothing to do with Israel’s oppression of the Palestinians which he has not recognized since taking office.

        Correct. And anyone compare Obama’s current stance to a statement he made in one of his campaign speeches can easily see it is the lobby talking through the American president, and not himself. It is hard to believe that this is the same man who, in a small gathering in Iowa for his campaign speech, said: “Nobody is suffering more than the Palestinian people.” The Israel lobby and the American Jewish community predictably got roused and on the case of setting him straight.

        Obama started off promisingly, as perhaps the most pro-Palestinian president to take office. The fact that his position now is indistinct from that of Ross or any other of the Israel-Firster shills populating American politics means the lobby is stronger than ever and in full-force.

    • Hostage
      June 4, 2011, 11:29 pm

      I’m curious about this little sentence:

      The President believes that every state has the right to self-defense, and that Israel must be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat.

      Let me help you break the code. It means there will be no foreign peace keepers to get in Israel’s way as part of any final settlement. The idea of deploying NATO in the West Bank has been suggested in the past by President Clinton and former National Security Advisors James L. Jones, Brent Scowcroft, and Zbigniew Brzezinski.

      Obama has demanded that the “demilitarized” Palestinian state assume security responsibilities:

      As for security, every state has the right to self-defense, and Israel must be able to defend itself -– by itself -– against any threat. Provisions must also be robust enough to prevent a resurgence of terrorism, to stop the infiltration of weapons, and to provide effective border security. The full and phased withdrawal of Israeli military forces should be coordinated with the assumption of Palestinian security responsibility in a sovereign, non-militarized state. And the duration of this transition period must be agreed, and the effectiveness of security arrangements must be demonstrated.

      It goes without saying that Israel and the IDF have never been able to demonstrate their own capabilities to prevent terrorism, to stop the infiltration of weapons, and to provide effective border security. This is the customary practice of laying down an Israeli “precondition” that includes Israeli agreement regarding Palestinian effectiveness or readiness to take over security. This sort of thing has always delayed or precluded a negotiated withdrawal in the past.

    • kalithea
      June 5, 2011, 6:41 am

      Why do people still keep trying to project their hopes onto Obama? The illusion of Obama is like a halogen-filled balloon. It floated artificially at the beginning and now it’s back on earth; shrivelled up. In fact, it never floated. Our desperation set us up to think it did. You’re reading way too much into his words and taking them out of context to satisfy an illusion and your need to believe, so that you can keep on hoping that he’s on the side of good and the oppressed. OBAMA IS IN IT FOR HIMSELF. He likes the perks of power and he’ll surrender his soul if need be. Stop deluding yourself and trying to dumb-down everyone else in the process wasting time digging for hope that’s not there by reading too much into his words. I honestly find it pathetic when I see people out there who still believe Obama’s different and haven’t gotten it yet. He looks different, he sounds different and that’s what fools everyone. He’s the perfect stooge. I know-I know, you still can’t believe he’s not different; you need to hang on. Well, kindly keep your self-delusion to yourself.

      • kalithea
        June 5, 2011, 9:48 am

        Correction “helium”-filled balloon

      • Danaa
        June 5, 2011, 10:29 pm

        Good that you corrected it kalithea. Halogens are way too reactive to make a good ballon-filler. OTOH, in the context of your sentence, who knows? Illusions which turn out to be false gods do have a way of crashing and burning – think Brandenburg!

      • Sumud
        June 6, 2011, 7:31 am

        Illusions which turn out to be false gods do have a way of crashing and burning – think Brandenburg!

        Danaa ~ I have to ask sorry (and potentially expose my ignorance of European history), did you mean the airship Hindenberg? With all the talk of lightweight gases, and crashing and burning, that’s what I was thinking of…

      • Danaa
        June 7, 2011, 1:28 am

        Sumud. It was the Hindenburg I meant, of course. It’s just that I couldn’t resist mixing it up with Bilderberg, just as the Branderburg concerto was playing in the background. Sorry for speaking in codes known only to myself. Please don’t worry about your ignorance – you got it right.

  5. Kathleen
    June 4, 2011, 10:36 am

    If you dance or demonstrate you will be arrested.

    Medea Benjaman arrested for hugging

  6. Kathleen
    June 4, 2011, 11:06 am

    Just contacted the White House about the new page. Never hurts. Pile on the way Aipac does

    They make it so easy for you
    link to whitehouse.gov

    • MRW
      June 4, 2011, 2:10 pm

      Ahh, Kathleen, “great minds….” I just recommended the same thing above. I recommended calling on Monday. Because the same people that made that page can control those comments.

      I am definitely going to make it to an Obama rally and ask why groups are allowed to hijack whitehouse.gov and write policy he doesn’t approve.

      • Kathleen
        June 5, 2011, 8:18 am

        Just read through all comments. Will do on Monday.

        Do you really think OBama is completely unaware of what is up on the White House’s web page?

      • sherbrsi
        June 5, 2011, 8:33 am

        I am definitely going to make it to an Obama rally and ask why groups are allowed to hijack whitehouse.gov and write policy he doesn’t approve.

        Can you also ask while you are it how they can do the same to the Congress and American foreign policy?

    • Citizen
      June 5, 2011, 7:01 am

      Yes, thanks Kathleen. I sent them an email, pointing out the latest IT report on Iran’s nuclear activity and long-standing US policy against the illegal settlements, etc and asked them if AIPAC wrote the web page, and clicked on the spot to get a response back. They certainly got enough personal information about me before I could do that, so we will see what I get for my trouble.

  7. Les
    June 4, 2011, 11:31 am

    The White House is too busy to work on “Advancing US Security and Supporting Peace.”

    • Kathleen
      June 4, 2011, 11:46 am

      Extremely lop sided. This is 2011 and there has been a clear shift of awareness etc. Guess Obama chooses not to notice. But with Dennis Ross in there who would expect any different. I know folks who will choose not to put any time or money into Obamas campaign based on this. But Aipac fills those holes in. No problem. Possibly not the time on the ground piece..Obama tossing those who are working for real justice when it comes to this issue off the bus

    • Kathleen
      June 5, 2011, 8:25 am

      Obama did foment the Arab Spring. Hell how long have US interest been holding back those floodgates?

      The three main issues that former head of the CIA’s Bin Laden unit Micheal Scheuer, other CIA analyst, General Jones, Wesley Clark, Brezinski, 9/11 commission report focused on why so many people in that part of the world are so pissed off with the US about are
      1. Our support for dictators
      2. US support for Israel no matter what they do
      3. Military bases on their lands and sands to protect our access to oil.

      Seems like Obama and team went along with the opening of the floodgates on the dictator piece. Still going along with what ever Israel seems to want. A few words coming out early on about settlements, but no action. Status Quo

  8. Taxi
    June 4, 2011, 11:54 am

    An astrological analysis of the Arab Spring:
    link to oxford-astrologer.blogspot.com

    • Taxi
      June 4, 2011, 12:03 pm

      Here’s a full-on website on political astrology:
      link to politicalastrologyblog.com

    • MRW
      June 4, 2011, 2:13 pm

      HuffPo had a political astrologer during the primaries in 2008. He was so accurate and sarcastic, they fired him, and brought in a sugar-coater who wrote in fairy-bell talk. His first name was Philip and he was from AZ. He was also ex-Air Force and preferred astronomical, not astrological, charts to do his work.

  9. Chaos4700
    June 4, 2011, 12:33 pm

    It’s starting to look like the White House is outsourcing their PR needs directly to AIPAC in the same way they outsourced the security needs for the State Department to Blackwater, doesn’t?

    Is there anyone else who’s wondering who’s getting our tax dollars to put up this ethnocentric tripe?

  10. Kathleen
    June 4, 2011, 12:47 pm

    Obama keeps rolling over like a dog on the I/P issue. Getting his belly scratched and fed rather well.

    And why in the hell would you avoid consulting with the expert middle east analyst Flynt Leverett and former Bush administration official on Iran…who chose to quit just before the invasion because he so disagreed with the invasion? Flynt and Hillary Mann Leveretts site is a must if you want to know facts about Irans nuclear program, the historical relationship between the US and Iran etc. Incredible information and informed discussions.

    Guess Dennis Ross and the I lobby team would get pissed if Obama started consulting Flynt Leverett
    link to raceforiran.com
    AMERICAN MISREADING OF IRAN AND THE CHANGING REALITY OF THE MIDDLE EAST

    • Chaos4700
      June 4, 2011, 1:21 pm

      Obama is going to be in for a hell of a shock when AIPAC can’t deliver his second term as President.

      • MRW
        June 4, 2011, 2:14 pm

        And he gets to read online what his satraps prevented him from seeing.

    • MRW
      June 4, 2011, 2:16 pm

      Kathleen, look what they did to Chas Freeman.

      • Kathleen
        June 5, 2011, 8:27 am

        Chas was at the Move over Aipac conference (pushed hard for him) Missed what he had to say. Obama was a complete fool not to come out and fight for him. Dennis Ross in the house and then allowing Freeman to be dumped so easily. Pathetic… wienie move

  11. VR
    June 4, 2011, 12:58 pm

    One can get really confused with all the tonal differences in Mr. Weiss’s posts, one minute he praises the hell out of Obama, and the next he gives his post a dark concerned meaning. Which is it? One would think, if he did not know any better that this is nothing but a big damn game here.

    Than there are the ridiculous comments which totally ignore the entire global movement of domination, as if the USA is doing something against its interest, whatever that means here. Why don’t you people grow up and understand you are either on one side or the other?

    • Citizen
      June 4, 2011, 5:00 pm

      Mmmm, VR, that’s exactly what Bibi says.

    • Jeffrey Blankfort
      June 4, 2011, 8:36 pm

      Actually, VR, you make me want to throw up. I have already grown up and gone well beyond the mechanistic Marxist thinking that makes everything you write so predictable. What is significant is that it is only the Left, Marxist and pseudo-Marxist that agrees with AIPAC that the US support for Israel is based on it being a “strategic asset.” I have yet to find a single establishment foreign policy analyst who is not deeply entrenched in one of the pro-Israel think tanks who takes that position. If you are aware of one, perhaps you could send us his findings. While waiting, let me give you two examples of individuals who actually have had some experience dealing with this issue as it is:

      First, I give you retired Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, former Chief of Staff to Gen. Colin Powell, who told host Paul Jay on Real News, on May 28, “Let’s look at what is important strategically. It might be untenable, but Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt are important strategically. Israel is not important….In fact, most United States military officers would tell you what David Petraeus told us and then somewhat retracted, and that is that Israel is a strategic liability for the Armed Forces of the United States, not a strategic asset. I believe that is absolutely true.”

      That is not a position that the mainstream media wants to hear or circulate.

      Here’s Number Two:, Anthony Cordesman, the Arleigh A. Burke chair in strategy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the national security analyst for ABC, one of the more well known talking heads on such subjects, penning an essay Hence, when on June 2, 2010 whose title asked the question, “Israel as a Strategic Liability?” No one called to get his answer.

      That was not surprising given that Cordesman’s article led off with the statement that “America’s ties to Israel are not based primarily on U.S. strategic interests,” and went on to explain that its stubbornness in holding on to the settlements, to demanding a unified Jerusalem under its control was making Israel a liability,” as have been its “series of major strategic blunders–such as persisting in the strategic bombing of Lebanon during the Israeli-Hezbollah conflict, escalating its attack on Gaza long after it had achieved its key objectives, embarrassing the U.S. president by announcing the expansion of Israeli building programs in east Jerusalem at a critical moment in U.S. efforts to put Israeli-Palestinian peace talks back on track, or sending commandos to seize a Turkish ship in a horribly mismanaged effort to halt the “peace flotilla” going to Gaza.” But what does Cordesman know? More than you, that’s for sure.

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 3:46 am

        That is too bad Mr. Blankfort, I thought I would have caused you to do more than throw up – perhaps think. Part of you disgust is based on your refusal to accept what the USA has been since its inception to the present time, and even though I might mention some issues it can only be cursory unfortunately in this venue. I will attempt to mention what the crux of the matter is, not for your sake but for others who might read our exchange – that is because you either refuse to face the truth or have other agenda(s), none of which are healthy for the people who have decided to rest as chicks beneath your wings (“The center does not hold. (thanks to Ali Gharib and Jeff Blankfort)”, utter hogwash), it will eventually discourage them, make them worse for the wear, and who knows, perhaps this is your goal?

        You use of the buzz words “marxist or pseudo-marxist” will only satisfy those who who refuse to think, and are easily lead by surface labeling which you seem to excel at with great frequency (classic poisoning of the well) – showing the shallow and petty nature of what you call argument. I will start by saying that Israel does not necessarily need to be a “strategic asset,” to gain the support that it has from those in power in the USA because those who have always had the power in the USA has never been the government – but who they serve, and unfortunately part of that enclave has interest in Israel doing what it chooses and this servile instrument of the elite, which you call the US government, is just fulfilling its mandate that it has since the beginning – regardless of what the people think of the process. Just like kingdoms of old served its royal lordships with colonial exploits – no matter the outcome (because as I have said numerous times here, whether it is the kingdoms of old, feudalism, or capitalism it has always had one single strand running through – a small elite which it serves to the detriment of the majority).

        The focal point around the activity of any government is the will of the few, so whether one is looking at foreign or domestic policy this is its chief concern. Only those who have drunk the koolaid of the myth rage on like you do Mr Blankfort, or they do not really believe it and still try to rally the ranks of the people around the illusion. The minute you try to disconnect any segment of this elite and how it functions in the USA through the government from any policy either foreign (what you call the debacle in the Middle East, even though it is quite profitable), or domestic (delivering trillions of dollars to the few as the people literally perish) you dash yourself upon the rocks of delusion, because it certainly does not address the facts of our condition.

        The politicians in the USA have never had the interest of the people at heart, they do not give a damn about them. They live in a world of what is immediately available to them, they will enrich themselves, and that is why it has astutely been said that Patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels. So since they only serve the few there might indeed be a conflict between that which is profitable to some segment of US interest as defined as serving the few (never your interest nor mine, nor the peoples), and if there is indeed a conflict it would more than likely be between competing elite interest – but strangely I see none and that can be measured by the avalanche of support for Israel in both houses, in the judicial, the executive, etc. So something is awry with your with your view Mr. Blankfort, let me suggest that you read this which might help you understand “asset” (but only that a segment of the elite has interest in Israel) –

        HOW THE ‘TEMPORARY WEAVE’ OF ZIONISM IS STARTING TO FRAY AT THE EDGES

        So having understood what I have posted above (hopefully it is understood…), lets look at your examples Mr. Blankfort. However, lets get some context here. You say you are a champion of US interest, and what particularly do you have in common with any interest, because the USA is on an imperial quest all over the world (not just the ME). Are you saying that you have some elite faction in mind, would you rather have the imperial eye fall upon Central and South America, Africa, Asia, etc.? Who do you want to subjugate and exploit? Do you want to bring us back to the “blessed” Reagan era (because this is what W. & M. are talking about, and you as well as others on this site champion what they are saying)? Or do you think the USA will turn into the docile dominant, or some other equally spurious nonsense – I would like to know. Perhaps you have given up on any substantive change, or you never had that in mind at all because you embrace some sort of fantasy view of what the USA was, or is supposed to be – I am baffled.

        You talk about Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, who apparently is unaware that Israel and “Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt” are in bed together! Surely you could have picked a better examples than this, all of the governments are involved in the same process – serve the few and screw the people, all one has to do is a cursory examination of any of these governments and realize they are the same creature. Why do you think Petraeus silenced himself so quickly, I will give you three guesses (hint, read my previous paragraphs).

        Next you talk about Anthony Cordesman, and this has gotten long so lets make short work of it. What consequences have been forthcoming against Israel? Go back to my domestic and foreign policy statements above.

        Finally, Mr. Blankfort, my concerns are in the global arena, not merely the ME, let me assure you that little to nothing will happen to change anything in any arena involving the USA unless there is complete systemic change. Concerned about the ME, than change the system and that goes for anyplace on the planet. This is really an inadequate treatment, but about as much as this venue can afford.

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 7:14 am

        VR, why are you castigating Blankfort for pointing out that Israel is not a strategic asset for the US and only those in bed with AIPAC claim so? That’s not an argument against your thesis that nobody other than the elite of each country in the world control those countries for themselves; rather it is merely pointing out a huge aspect of it pertaining to the USA.

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 10:26 am

        Why don’t you read the argument again Citizen, because that is not the argument.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 2:12 pm

        VR, It was not surprising to see you make one of your rare appearances on this list given that the reasons for US support for Israel are being seriously discussed. Although you appear to be coming from a far different place than Robert Werdine, it would seem that you have the same purpose in mind, to deflect attention from the powerful and unique influence of the Zionist establishment in the US over its Middle East policies. This is particularly true with regard to the Israel-Palestine conflict which you treat as if it was not atypical and nothing more than a continuation of this country’s “business as usual” since its founding.

        You write that “Israel does not necessarily need to be a ‘strategic asset,’ to gain the support that it has from those in power in the USA because those who have always had the power in the USA has never been the government – but who they serve [with which I agree-JB], and unfortunately part of that enclave has interest in Israel doing what it chooses and this servile instrument of the elite, which you call the US government [more than a few others do as well-JB], is just fulfilling its mandate that it has since the beginning.”

        Perhaps, with your great knowledge of such things, you can tell us who exactly makes up that enclave that dictates our Israel policy and are there not contradictions between it and other sectors of that enclave as reflected in the comments of Col. Wilkerson and Cordesman who speak for other sectors of that enclave?

        Second, since both the president and Congress serve this enclave of elites, would you have those who wish to radically change and reverse some of the policies that the latter dictates, ignore their purported representatives or publicly challenge them and those who give them their marching orders ? Which is it, or do you believe that we have go after the entire system and that nothing anywhere can be resolved until its taken down, and if so, how are YOU going about doing that?

        You become truly Chomskylike when you put words in my mouth and write that, “You say you are a champion of US interest, and what particularly do you have in common with any interest, because the USA is on an imperial quest all over the world (not just the ME). Are you saying that you have some elite faction in mind, would you rather have the imperial eye fall upon Central and South America, Africa, Asia, etc.?” I, of course, said nor implied anything of the sort and you know it, but, as is the case with Werdine, intellectual honesty does not seem to be your strong suit. I was referring to how those who are part of the system view the US interest which is quite different. Why is your entire statement Chomskylike, with that one paragraph standing out? Because it is that great man’s nasty habit to charge those who criticize him for not supporting (1) BDS targeting Israel, (2) the academic boycott, (3) the Palestinian right of return, and (4) the “one-state” solution, with being the ones who are “hurting the Palestinian cause.”

        You dig yourself a deeper hole when you suggest that Col. Wilkerson “apparently is unaware that Israel and ‘Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt’ are in bed together! [and] are the same creature.” The same creature? That those Arab governments have quiet arrangements with Israel is irrelevant. Just ask yourself the question, which one could the US afford to do without? What exactly does Israel provide in the region or globally to the US that uniquely allows its prime ministers going back to Begin to routinely and publicly humiliate the presidents of the United States without paying any price?

        You ask, “Why do you think Petraeus silenced himself so quickly, I will give you three guesses (hint, read my previous paragraphs).” Like most of what you write those paragraphs tell me nothing but your opinion of how the world turns and are not very useful in the real world. Petraeus, who seems to have political ambitions, quickly backed off from what was in his written statement when he immediately came under attack by the ADL’s Abe Foxman and Sarah Palin. JINSA, apparently having learned of the contents of the report had already run a statement from 50 retired generals and admirals it retains for such exercises, declaring Israel to be an important ally. To get his credentials as a lover of Jews and Israel validated after the incident, Petraeus sent an email to arch neocon and chickenhawk, Max Boot, asking that Russian Jewish transplant, “Does it help if folks know that I hosted Elie Wiesel and his wife at our quarters last Sun night?! And that I will be the speaker at the 65th anniversary of the liberation of the concentration camps in mid-Apr at the Capitol Dome…” That was reported on Mondoweiss, VR and you may have missed it.

        With reference to my citing Anthony Cordesman’s comments on Israel as strategic liability, you ask, “What consequences have been forthcoming against Israel?” Clearly none and none could be expected. Since his position flies in the face of the line taken by the Zionist dominated media, acting for the segment of the enclave elite that I refer to as the Zionist establishment, it was ignored by the same media that usually rushes to get Cordesman’s opinions and it is that same establishment/elite enclave that has reduced the president of the most powerful country in the world to it’s errand boy whose main goal at the G-8 meeting was to keep the Europeans from supporting the anticipated declaration of a Palestinian state at the UN in September

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 2:54 pm

        VR, your argument seems to be that the elite in every country gain, not the masses in any country, who lose. I don’t mean to dispute such an obvious historical truth. So you have a problem with the use of the term “American interest.” You argue, now who exactly is really benefitting, in this case, among the Americans, from the fact it is the only superpower at the moment (eroding fast) and it’s elite choose to back Israel to hilt, right or wrong, and no matter the cost. I sure do not disagree with this:

        “But most of the (Palestinian) land has now been stolen, and Zionism now does different things for different people. Israel is the 2nd most unequal industrialized economy in the world, and racism keeps the rabble focused on the foreign enemy and not on the domestic one keeping them poor.
        This phenomenon is similar to how American Islamophobia keeps working and middle-class Americans focused on the external enemy, The Arab – not coincidentally the one Israel is destroying and oppressing – and not focused on the fact that the new robber-barons of Wall Street are destroying the fabric of American society while Madison Avenue bank accounts grow fatter and fatter and working class Americans die and die again in the wars that keep the arms companies plush with contracts.
        Of course, not everything is the same. For one thing, Israel needs Zionism more than America needs Islamophobia. The problems there are vaster, the racist disparities more glaring, the situation of Israel more perilous.
        What are ultimately sent are American arms alongside a 750 million dollar bundle of cash that Israel spends buying weapons from weapons manufacturers many, of which are owned by American capital anyway – most of the biggest Israeli companies are listed on the NASDAQ and are mostly owned by American investors, which is why from 2001 to 2006 92 percent of the movements in the TASE (Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange) were “explained” by movements in the NASDAQ. As Jonathan Nitzan and Shimshon Bichler explain, “since the two asset classes share similar owners, have similar sources of earnings, and float in similar pools of liquidity, there is really no reason why they shouldn’t move together.”
        As long as the Tel-Aviv Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ continue to do fine, Israel will keep on making rich Americans richer and poor Americans poorer. In the meantime, Palestinians will struggle and suffer under savage siege and occupation, and Ethiopian immigrants will get treated like human filth, even while American Zionist organizations, staffed with the deliberately ignorant, plaster their pamphlets with pictures of Israel’s multiracial society as though they were Benetton ads, incidentally diversity-talk that Senor, whom I recently saw lecture, also likes quite a lot.
        One thing that Senor said that struck me was that there are people from more than 70 countries involved in oppressing Palestinians. This was supposed to be a point of pride, hearing from the horse’s mouth that there is a world-wide Jewish conspiracy to oppress the Palestinians. Don’t tell Senor, but the notion of a world-wide Jewish people is a Zionist invention, and it won’t last.”

        link to notinhisname.blogdrive.com

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 3:16 pm

        And, VR, now please respond to this cut and paste from the url content you directed us to, and fit your response also to Blankfort’s latest comment, which tells you that in regard to the US government’s handling of the Israel-Palestine conflict to date, you are wrong to treat it as if it was typical and nothing more than a continuation of this country’s “business as usual” since its founding. In short, why do you appear to channel Chomsky? Even the US government leaders always refer to “the special relationship with Israel.” You know, the kind of enmeshment that George Washington warned Americans about in his final address to the young nation? And let’s not forget Ike’s final warning too–about the military industrial complex? Ike originally was going to refer to the academic lock down too, and today too we have our related homeland security complex. Can’t wait to hear you on all of this.

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 10:45 pm

        For who knows how many times Mr. Blankfort have I told you that I have no quarrel with the fact of Zionist influence? Yet you persist with this unmitigated BS about my and some others who post here attempt to blunt this activity, why don’t you find another instrument and tune? However, it is no different than what has historically transpired for hundreds of years by US imperials in early and present form. Don’t believe me, Here:

        “U.S. Marine Major General Smedley D. Butler. In them, Butler frankly discusses from his experience as a career military officer how business interests commercially benefit from warfare…

        “War is a racket. It always has been. It is possibly the oldest, easily the most profitable, surely the most vicious. It is the only one international in scope. It is the only one in which the profits are reckoned in dollars and the losses in lives. A racket is best described, I believe, as something that is not what it seems to the majority of the people. Only a small ‘inside’ group knows what it is about. It is conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many. Out of war a few people make huge fortunes.”

        In another often cited quote from the book Butler says:

        “I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902-1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”

        “Perhaps, with your great knowledge of such things, you can tell us who exactly makes up that enclave that dictates our Israel policy and are there not contradictions between it and other sectors of that enclave as reflected in the comments of Col. Wilkerson and Cordesman who speak for other sectors of that enclave?”

        Briefly, because there have always been disagreements between different elite interests, and this was not the first time that those in the military have not agreed with what was transpiring in regard to US policy.

        “Which is it, or do you believe that we have go after the entire system and that nothing anywhere can be resolved until its taken down, and if so, how are YOU going about doing that?”

        The system deserves to be utterly destroyed. Now we go to the old BS again about the minute plans? Give me a break, lets start with agreement, if you do not have this than why would you even want to know? You act as though I have proposed nothing in this area, since you are such an avid reader read my blog.

        “I, of course, said nor implied anything of the sort and you know it, but, as is the case with Werdine, intellectual honesty does not seem to be your strong suit.”

        I have no choice to judge what you are sharing than the sources that you use, and the sources that you use want to continue the direction of Western Hegemony, lead of course by the US. See my post – VR June 5, 2011 at 7:05 pm.

        “That those Arab governments have quiet arrangements with Israel is irrelevant.” No it is not irrelevant (you’re argument is irrelevant), you just want to hide the depth of Western Hegemony and the control in the region via the US. Why don’t you see the feverish activity of the US in trying to blunt the Arab Spring?

        I know about and the post here in regard to Petraeus, in fact I have numerous posts under that post on the site. It displays the same methodologies which have been used by other elite concerns.

        “…it is that same establishment/elite enclave that has reduced the president of the most powerful country in the world to it’s errand boy whose main goal at the G-8 meeting was to keep the Europeans from supporting the anticipated declaration of a Palestinian state at the UN in September.”

        The US government has always been the errand boy of some elite or another, there are numerous different interests over the years. It is this BS again by inference, that this has not been the case in the past and the present – you slide in and out of this crap about the “most powerful country,” as if what is transpiring is a “reduction,” no – it is the damn mission!! When are you going to get this straight?

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 11:43 pm

        Now on to your queries Citizen (in reference also to Mr. Blankfort’s). Let me say unequivocally that I do not channel Chomsky, which many are fond of saying here (it is a lame excuse for not facing what I have posted, repeatedly). As the US continues it will deteriorate on its current course, because this is what always transpires with aspiring empires. The domestic and foreign policy time clock is close to twelve, it is not business as usual because it gets worse with time. Chomsky, of course, is fond of saying this balancing act always goes on, it is called democracy, and sometimes the people are on top and at other times the interests of the few are on top – the seesaw my friend is broken. I am not proposing a perpetual state of give and take, because nothing like this is possible systemically.

        You can talk all day about George Washington, who gave his warning not because he loved all the people, but because of the dangers at the time and the desire to keep all of what the burgeoning elite had at the inception. Ike gave a final warning but not only lived in the complex, but used it during his term (see the record), and his warning was not a leftest about face, but a warning in regard to military coup which could unseat desired elites (“We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes.” Shorthand to make the people think that it is their concern which he has in mind, like the Declaration of Independence was meant to appeal to all but benefited the few).

        Now on to the post from my site, which is also a microcosm of what is transpiring throughout the world – because if you look at the part or the whole, it is the same (the whole is the sum total). I am afraid there is nothing different in regard to how the US has acted as a settler state, or how Israel is acting. You are going to have to tell me how what the USA is any different than any of the other colonial exploits it has been involved in – because I see little difference. If you say there is much difference, I have to ask on what basis you make that assumption – and than I will enumerate both domestic and foreign activity that shows you there is no difference. The USA has not only supported Israel settler colonialism over the years, but French, German, Dutch, English, etc.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 6, 2011, 1:21 am

        VR, I suspect that there is not a single reader of Mondoweiss who is not familiar with the words of Gen. Smedley Butler which I introduced to my world history class when I was teaching high school but what relevance it has to the Israel Lobby’s influence over US Middle East policy I fail to see. I also, BTW, informed my Filipino students that the Colt 45 automatic was invented to kill their great grandfathers and exposed both Vietnamese and Laotian students, whose fathers had worked for the CIA, to the horrors of what the US had done to both of those countries so I need no instruction by you as to the sordid history of US interventions dating back to the beginning of this country.

        Not surprisingly, you chose to edit out the first part of my question which apparently you have no wish to answer or no answer that won’t expose exactly where you stand, so I’ll repeat it one more time:

        Since both the president and Congress serve this enclave of elites [to which you referred earlier], would you have those who wish to radically change and reverse some of the policies that the latter dictates, ignore their purported representatives or publicly challenge them and those who give them their marching orders ? Which is it, or do you believe that we have go after the entire system and that nothing anywhere can be resolved until its taken down, and if so, how are YOU going about doing that? Frankly, I am not interested in you or your blog, just countering your efforts to bury the uniqueness of the US-Israel relationship into generalizations that may apply to other aspects of US history but not to this one.

        You question my use of sources that “want to continue the direction of Western Hegemony.” Of course, because what I am trying to show is not my support for Western hegemony which you dishonestly imply, but to illustrate the uniqueness of the US-Israel relationship with a view towards using those contradictions inherent in that relationship to build support for the Palestinians. I am not about to wait for the Second Coming or the overthrow of the system to do that.

        In response to my comment that Obama has become the errand boy for Israel, all you can come up with is, “The US government has always been the errand boy of some elite or another, there are numerous different interests over the years.” That’s true but they have been domestic elites and never before a foreign country and not just during this administration. Why do you continue to resist acknowledging this and why are you so obsessed in doing so that you keep returning to this site when the issue is being discussed?

      • Thomson Rutherford
        June 6, 2011, 3:17 am

        Why do you [VR] continue to resist acknowledging this and why are you so obsessed in doing so that you keep returning to this site when the issue is being discussed?

        You go, Jeffrey! Right on! (I’ve often wondered the same thing.)

      • Citizen
        June 6, 2011, 5:56 am

        VR, Smedley blew the whistle on powerful Nazi interests (including the Bush family’s) in the USA, and I am sure he would blow the whistle on powerful Zionist interests in the USA were he alive today. So, why are you attacking Blankfort for doing the same thing? The Declaration of Independence, Washington and Ike’s warnings as they left office are not to be dismissed by observing
        the timing of those events and reading into the mind of the verbal actors that they were only concerned to selfishly keep what they and their friends had in terms of wealth and power.
        JFK expressed his desire to speak similarly about how the government was not acting in behalf of the American people as a whole before he left office–of course he was murdered. Ike stopped Israel-English-French colonialism in its tracks, don’t you remember? Nobody here thinks War is not Big Business. And we know the Israel-US special relationship has been a big part of that business especially since 1967; only when Israel proved it was a mighty military nation did the US start throwing money at it like crazy. Concern about Israel’s security is the last thing motivating the special relationship, although that’s the sales pitch to the sheeple here and in Israel and the Jewish diaspora. Truman’s unilateral decision to go against the interests of the US as represented by the State Dept is returning again in the form of
        the Arab Spring and Obama’s recent mission to gather European support against the Palestinian move next Fall at the UN. The US is doing something different than it did both before 1948, and since 1967. That’s why everyone refers to “the special relationship” between the US and Israel no matter which side of the fence they stand on. The difference can be seen in the continued US arms-length transations between the US and every other country–except Israel, where there is a sick enmeshment of psychiatric proportion. Here is an article that partially supports what you say, but also shows that Israel is being treated very specially in a way the US has never treated any foreign country: link to loveforlife.com.au

      • Secular Animist
        June 6, 2011, 9:50 am

        That’s an easy question to answer, because it’s largely irrelevant. For example, the upper .1% of the US interests are more aligned with the average Chinese than the average American if you look at capital investment flows over the past 2 decades.

        What this site does, is essentially, deal with a symptom of an outdated and severely flawed socioeconomic-political system. The ants are going to keep coming out from under the fridge unless you clean up the mess underneath it.

        The environmental activists suffer from the same systemic misunderstanding.

        Not that I don’t enjoy the understanding I garner from Mondoweiss. On the contrary, it’s very beneficial for my systemic understanding. But, VR is largely correct. IMO

      • Citizen
        June 6, 2011, 10:24 am

        Secular Animist, why don’t you answer this question; if you think it is irrelevant, please tell us why:

        “The US government has always been the errand boy of some elite or another, there are numerous different interests over the years.” That’s true but although there have been domestic elites, there never was before a foreign country and not just during this current administration. Why do you resist acknowledging this?”

        Also, if the elite do what they want even when it harms the environment for future generations and when it makes this country a lackey of a single foreign state that does whatever it wants, no matter the growing negative consequences, that’s a reason not to pursue either matter? You sound like those political leaders of ours who poo poo taking stock of our foreign aid spending, or medicare/social security fraud, or “taxing the rich” because, they say, as to each, “that’s just a drop in the bucket.” Rome wasn’t born in a day. It didn’t fall in a day either. A giant wall will fall, even if you have to take it down brick by brick.

      • VR
        June 6, 2011, 1:19 pm

        Mr. Blankfort, I would like to reply too you, but if the censors keep defending you from my responses than there is little recourse that I have. What can I say, this is an unfortunate reality here, But i appreciate your persistence.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 6, 2011, 4:01 pm

        VR, you have been given ample opportunities to express your opinions here and I seriously doubt that had you been willing to answer those questions I asked you–and avoided the first time– that your responses would be censored. I suggest that you try again, in your words, not overlong, please, and without links.

      • Max Ajl
        June 5, 2011, 7:46 am

        Jeffrey, it would be helpful to include what the articles actually say.

        Here’s Cordesman:

        America’s ties to Israel are not based primarily on U.S. strategic interests. At the best of times, an Israeli government that pursues the path to peace provides some intelligence, some minor advances in military technology, and a potential source of stabilizing military power that could help Arab states like Jordan. Even then, however, any actual Israeli military intervention in an Arab state could prove as destabilizing as beneficial. The fact is that the real motives behind America’s commitment to Israel are moral and ethical. They are a reaction to the horrors of the Holocaust, to the entire history of Western anti-Semitism, and to the United States’ failure to help German and European Jews during the period before it entered World War II. They are a product of the fact that Israel is a democracy that shares virtually all of the same values as the United States.

        The U.S. commitment to Israel is not one that will be abandoned.

        Crap. He’s not so useful anymore, is he?

        Here’s Wilkerson:

        In fact, most United States military officers would tell you what David Petraeus told us and then somewhat retracted, and that is that Israel is a strategic liability for the Armed Forces of the United States, not a strategic asset. I believe that is absolutely true. It is a strategic asset in the sense that it’s a democracy in a region that is not replete with democracies, in the sense that there are many contacts between Jewish Americans and Israelis, in the sense that there’s a value-laden relationship between Israel and the United States. That is a strategic asset. But in terms of the Armed Forces, it’s a strategic liability.

        Now both Wilkerson and Cordesman leave much unexplained, in part because their job is not to critically analyze the intersection of politics and corporate power, but to offer advice to elites in such a way that when the public sees it, it still obscures reality. Thus the talk of “values” and so on — perhaps a proxy for Intel’s billions of dollars of investment in Israel, Israel’s subsidies for high-technology investment, the fact that the Israeli high-tech economy is owned by American investors, many of whom are “the lobby,” which could be a useful term if you ever chose to define it precisely, and Israel’s sowing of regional chaos.

        Certainly much of what Cordesman writes is non-sense, too: both oil and weapons firms profit not from regional stability but regional instability, and arguing that they do not know this essentially requires assuming (our?) enemies are idiots. Thank but no thanks.

        Nonetheless, none of us debating with you on this topic have anything to apologize for, because none of us deny the lobby’s role nor the role of Jewish money in funding the parties. You claim we “minimize” it, perhaps an argument that you’ll trot out when someone claims it’s carbon emissions and not Zionists responsible for heating up the planet, but it’s not a serious argument. There’s a difference between soberly understanding something and apologizing for it.

        The problem is that you refuse to deal honestly with contrary evidence, the best of which is that if AIPAC was so “dangerous” to American power, American power might react to that danger. I think it’s more important to look at what people do than what they say. What do you think?

        In particular, money speaks louder than words.

        So why aren’t other parts of the ruling class funding J Street? Or Jewish Voice for Peace? Why aren’t they pushing harder for a two-state prison like Walt? There is plenty of non-Jewish capital available to do so. Why don’t they directly challenge the lobby? Why do they leave it to us to do so? Don’t they know what’s in their interests? Case closed.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 3:07 pm

        Max, your obsession in shielding AIPAC and the Jewish establishment from attack has become oh so predictable for it is really nothing less than that despite your pretenses otherwise. But to get to your latest effort, both Cordesman and Wilkerson are obliged to defend or explain the US-Israel relationship on the basis of that myth of “shared values” and “moral obligations.” I have a problem explaining the latter but clearly I can the former, ethnic cleansing of the indigenous population with out apology, a sense of entitlement and God-given superiority being the first things that come to mind.
        If Cordesman and Wilkerson had not mentioned those other reasons that are given for the genuflection of US elected officials to Israel and its US supporters, they would be history.

        It is curious that you did not quote one of the most important comments by Wilkerson when speaking of Gen. Petraeus’s wilting in the face of criticism for his written statements. Here’s what I didn’t include and which you consciously left out:

        WILKERSON:….But in terms of the Armed Forces, it’s [Israel]a strategic liability.

        JAY: And do you hear this quietly? I mean–.

        WILKERSON: You don’t speak about it. You’ll be called an anti-Semite, first, and second, you will be ostracized and you won’t go much further in your career. If David Petraeus, a four-star general, retracts–or steps back, at least–from statements about how the failure to solve the Israeli-Palestinian problem is killing American soldiers on the battlefield, my God, who’s going to come forward and say anything?

        Now, I wonder, Max, why did not you include that part because it is key to why no other sector of US society that objects to the US-Israel relationship is going to open its mouth, because only one sector controls the media, yes, controls the media, either directly or through intimidation, and there it has a large stable of think tanks, talking heads and columnists whose pro-Israel propaganda is reproduced in newspapers and on TV and radio all across the country, and no company CEO, no multi-billionaire is going to take the risks of taking it on. plus, for most of them, what Israel does or doesn’t do, doesn’t affect their bottom line.

        You say that the weapons manufacturers and the oil companies prefer regional instability to stability. The fact of the matter that weapons sales are a big business in both cases. That is not so when it comes to the oil companies when it comes to the Middle East, their latest profits notwithstanding. Had they not been prevented from dealing with the oil Saddam’s Iraq and currently with Iran their profits would have been much larger. What was the major sector pushing to maintain the sanctions on Iraq and is constantly going for ever greater sanctions on Iran? You know the answer as well as I do. It’s the Zionist establishment and it has its men in the Treasury Dept. and the State Dept. doing its work for them. Methinks, Max, that thou protesteth overmuch, like your buddy, VR, when the issue of Jewish power is raised and challenged.

      • Danaa
        June 5, 2011, 3:43 pm

        Max Ajl: “So why aren’t other parts of the ruling class funding J Street? Or Jewish Voice for Peace? Why aren’t they pushing harder for a two-state prison like Walt? There is plenty of non-Jewish capital available to do so. Why don’t they directly challenge the lobby? Why do they leave it to us to do so? Don’t they know what’s in their interests?”

        May be they are not funding it because they (money bags who are not [necessarily] jewish) because:
        1. It is controversial among their similarly monied Jewish colleagues, with whom they are tied up in knots (ie, money flocks together, birds on hedge fun and all that)
        2. Money is generally conservative. The higher one goes on the income scale (especially the non-earned income), the less one finds real sympathy with the “little guys” – that’s true for jewish and non jewish alike. Where’s the surprise in that? and JVP is definitely a very “little guy”.
        3. they don’t really have a dog in the fight for America – most big money having gone global (trans-national) anyways, so what do they care about America’s strategic interests anyways?
        4. Money goes with [perceived] market winners, and israel is perceived to be more of a winner than a rag tag crew of justice-seeking later-day hippies. At least for the moment.

        Notice BTW how:

        1. Monied people who feet an obligation to contribute to the public interest chose “safe” projects: education for Bill gates (which is not all that safe, as he’s finding out), arts, water projects, disease-de-jour etc. for others.
        2. When a monied person does contribute to projects perceived as progressive – such as Soros (bear with me on that one) – they get villified beyond reason. remember the hoopla when he was outed as contributing to J Street?

        “Case closed.”

        Hardly.

        All that being said, you do have a point. Some in the American establishment no doubt feel that Israel is a “necessary evil”, ie, they support it because in the short term, it is perceived to fulfill a role, including in diverting the wrath of the masses of the ME, for example. However, the role is tactical rather than strategic because some of these very same people know that in the long run it may well be necessary to cut israel loose – like when – as expected – its bad behavior becomes so beyond the pale that it’s “usefullness” as diversion and an outlet is out-weighed by the cost. So they (people like Petraeus) play both ends.

        A an aside, this is not unlike the way the good Count Vlad Tepes was perceived by the princes and kings of Hungary at the time. A necessary evil and a useful brute. But one day, his misdeeds got to be too much for even the not-so-squeamish leaders of the middle ages to stomach (plus he wasn’t always winning his battles…). And so, they kind of damped him, and went looking for some other way of containing them brazen Turks.

        Thus it will be with israel. When that time comes is anyone’s guess, but it’ll happen when the misdeeds will reach such a level that whitewashing them will become increasingly impossible – kind of like when way too many bodies in various stages of disrepair back in the 14-15th century were getting too hard to hide in plain sight….

        I say, Max Ajl, you should listen to Jeffrey most carefully. He’s got his finger on a pulse that’s getting louder by the day.

      • Max Ajl
        June 5, 2011, 3:48 pm

        Jeff, please try not to hurt into a Paul Eisen sock puppet. Again, I have nothing to apologize for, because I know that the Zionist lobby constricts the debate about American policy regarding Israel to a very narrow range. However, I also do not consider the broader range in any way serviceable to Palestinian freedom. Do you? Do you read what Mearsheimer and Walt say about the Special Relationship? They want to maintain it. So does Cordesman. So do all the “realists” in the context of a demilitarized Palestinian state. Go read them.

        Now, please answer some questions. Why did you falsify the quotations, and why do you spit poison like a cornered snake as soon as I point that out? Why when you clearly mangle quotations to make your point, you’re just not quoting, but when I omit a totally separate passage, I’m leaving them out “consciously”? Are you capable of debating these issues with even a semblance of honesty? Or does your “theory” rely on distortion and non-sense?

        Answer the questions, Jeff, and try not to poison the well.

        Now, I am well aware of how the Zionist lobby has mobilized Jewish identity behind support for Israel. That’s why I do my work by identifying as a Jew. Don’t you publicly identify as a Jew? Right.

        Again, I asked you, why the oil companies don’t oppose the Special Relationship? They had their man in the White House from 2000 – 2008. Where was Palestinian justice? Lying dead beneath Israeli and American flags. Now, the basis, the very core of your argument, gets the basic economics of American interests in the Middle East wrong. Profits were also high from 1973 to 1987. So was instability. You can read Oppenheimer in Foreign Policy, 1976, about that, or Timothy Mitchell, Carbon Democracy. Neither, so far as I know, are Jews. Oil is a cheap commodity to produce and the politics of oil are about controlling supply and controlling profits, contrary to comforting mythologies. Israel has played an important role in helping the US manage both from 1967 onwards, as has the lobby. The oil companies don’t want cheap oil or calm. That’s why oil prices went to the floor when Clinton was in office, and the Middle East was at least a little calm. No shock, that was when AIPAC was able to push policies through that they opposed.

        Now, if you dealt with history, you’d know that the sanctions regime was crumbling, and Iraqi oil production was increasing in the late 90s. Now it’s below what it was before the war. Good war, no? Meanwhile oil has gone to the stratosphere, same way it did in the 70s when Kissinger encouraged Israeli belligerence, and the administration openly admitted that it was deliberately pushing up oil prices. Israeli belligerence is pretty useful! And what do the oil states do with those oil profits? They buy weapons. Israeli belligerence is REALLY useful!

        Now, you can continue to offer your proposals to Obama and the Republicans about how to manage empire, and continue to suggest to the petroleum and weapons companies, and behind them the finance companies that process the petro-profits and the US government that’s funded off treasuries purchased by Saudi Arabia, that their “profits would have been much larger” if not for the Zionist entity. It doesn’t seem that they are listening.

        I’m well aware of the role of Jewish money in funding the parties, constricting debate on Palestine, and weaponizing Jewish identity.

        However, the Jewish power I see is that utilized by right-wing bigots to erect straw-men, not respond to arguments, and in general prevent any reasonable discussion on these topics on this website. Of course, you and I won’t be the ones suffering from that. The people in Palestine will, something you should keep in mind while you keep reminding the managers of XOM of your strategy for securing their profits, and in the process defend your tiny podium in the Palestine solidarity movement.

      • Max Ajl
        June 5, 2011, 4:08 pm

        Danaa, you miss the point. If American elites saw Israel as a real threat to their real interests — making money — they would act against it. They do not because they don’t. Most simply don’t care, and many make money off Israel in “peace” and war: weapons, high tech, oil, finance. Frankly, that is the American economy. The remainder of American capital is mostly trans-national, and so they simply don’t care. If they don’t care, what is the point of building a movement meant to appeal to people in power to save us from the big bad yahood capitalists who are screwing both ordinary people, non-yahood capitalists, and Palestinians? You can’t build a social movement on a lie.

        Now, of course there is a Washington political culture where you don’t step on other elites’ toes unless they are really trodding on yours. That, too, is part of why the lobby remains un-confronted. You say money is “conservative,” but that’s just an odd euphemism, as is the bit about perceived “market winners.”

        Money wants to grow. When it encounters obstacles to its growth, it attacks them. When it sees paths to continued growth, it uses them. Israeli policies have been a useful vehicle for making the American rich richer, and trying to deny that is not only hallucinogenic but politically impotent.

        Obviously, a debate is now taking place on the future of American power. The lobby constricts that debate. But it wouldn’t be very big anyhow, I am sorry to say. Blankfort’s anatomies of the lobby are useful. But when he tries to understand the lobby, he is like a doctor trying to understand the role of the lungs without reference to the heart and the circulatory system. The arguments are worse-than-useless. If we want to end Israeli power, we have to understand it, and in understanding it, we have to look at how it has served other sectors of the American elite. You can’t lie to capitalists, because they know what’s in their bottom line and we don’t.

        Having understood the system we are confronting, the next step is to make alliances with others not necessarily damaged by Israeli power but by other segments of ruling class power, interlock our movements and our demands, and carry out social disruption to the point where the ruling class can either listen to us or cease to have power. If that is the social program pushed by the likes of Blankfort, please let me know. I have seen no evidence of it.

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 4:21 pm

        How does this 2005 summary of American interests, especially oil interests, and including the related value of the American dollar, fit in with your comment, Max? Israel seems to be not even relevant, which of course brings up Jeff’s point about the US-Israel “special” relationship being abnormal from ANY consideration of
        US best interests, whether you leave that at the (non-Zionist part of) the US elite, or extend it to all Americans: link to naturalhub.com

      • Max Ajl
        June 5, 2011, 4:44 pm

        Zionist ideology posits that Jews are outside of history and have an essence which inevitably produces antisemitism. Zionist ideology also posits that Jewish settler-colonialism was purely idealist, or not motivated by “material” interests. Jeff’s analysis does the same thing, just with values inverted. Now, this essay is not total non-sense — it’s much too long to respond to in detail — but these are better:
        link to 16beavergroup.org
        link to books.google.com

        the worst mistake is assuming that MAINTAINING supply is the point. rather, it’s controlling and thus constricting supply. Israel, acting out of its own interests, has helped this process. so has the lobby, acting out of their interest in bettering the growth of their investments in Israel. the job of the US government has been to mediate and manage varied interests. Israel, oil, finance, and weapons have generally lined up from 1973 to 1991, and 2001 – 2011. there have been squabbles over specific policies, capitalism is antagonistic, and different fragments have different interests and occasionally clash. a good theory of the lobby will analyze its intersection with those interests and how it has guided and constrained the debate. but we have no good theory. i am not chomsky nor ANSWER. the lobby is real, but the point that the lobby has steered American policies in the Middle East again US capitalist interests is simply absurd.

        finally, you ask about “US best interests.” this is a chimera. there are no “US” interests. different sectors of power have their interests, and the rest of us — say 85 percent of us — have an interest in a good life untrammeled by power. and those in power agree on very little but agree on the utility of our chains and the need to keep them strong and unbroken. so we have an issue. but they have an issue too: we all have an interest in breaking those chains. but perhaps we can stop begging elites to give us and Palestinians some sad scrap of freedom, and we should organize to take what was ours to begin with and is ours by right.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 9:37 pm

        Okay, Max, gloves off. I have nothing to do with Paul Eisen but you clearly fall into the category of what Gilad Atzmon describes as a Jewish tribalist, not just because you join the circle of wagons when Jews, collectively, are blamed for anything but it should be obvious to anyone just looking at your “Jewbonics”website at

        You’ve gone over to Gaza, “dodging Israeli bullets,” or so you say. and you spend some time there to get your “street credentials.” Then you come back and act like the boy with his finger in the dyke when anyone puts the blame for the Israel-Palestine relationship on the Israel Lobby be it myself, Mearsheimer and Walt, Phil Weiss, Grant Smith, Idrees Mohammed or Alison Weir. Unfair? Sorry, but that’s how I see you.

        I don’t happen to agree with Mearsheimer and Walt on a number of issues but I respect both men. They say that AIPAC is a legitimate lobbying organization that just does its job better than other lobbying organizations. It isn’t. Not only has it been involved in stealing classified information from the US government it is, as former AIPAC staffer, MJ Rosenberg wrote on June 3, an agent of a foreign government. “AARP and every other power lobby one can name (including the NRA, PhRMA, AHIP and the Chamber of Commerce) advocate for U.S. interests as they sees them. (The AARP represents tens of millions of Americans over age 50 and the NRA represents millions of American gun enthusiasts.) AIPAC, on the other hand, gets its direction from a foreign government.”

        The fact that it has not been forced to register as a foreign agent as JFK and RFK unsuccessfully tried to do in 1963 and IRmep’s Grant Smith is currently pursuing, allows its staff members complete access to congressional staff hearings, to write the legislation dealing with Israel and Palestine as well as Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Libya et al, plus draft the letters to the president that 3/4 of the members of both houses of Congress are ready if not totally willing to sign. Since you have only had words of contempt for Smith who is actually doing something, I assume whether AIPAC registers as a foreign agent is of no interest to you. Folks, check out Grant’s websites, and his Israeli Lobby Archives

        I also don’t agree with M & W’s expressed support for a two-state solution or share their concern for Israel’s welfare. What is important is that their book on the “Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy” brought the issue of the Lobby out of the shadows and made a strong case that it was the Lobby that pushed the US into the war on Iraq, a position with which I fully agree and had written about myself two years earlier. See

        You ask, “Why did you falsify the quotations, and why do you spit poison like a cornered snake as soon as I point that out? Why when you clearly mangle quotations to make your point, you’re just not quoting, but when I omit a totally separate passage, I’m leaving them out “consciously”? Are you capable of debating these issues with even a semblance of honesty? Or does your “theory” rely on distortion and non-sense?”

        Max, I did not falsify a single quotation and you know it. Did I need to quote the entire interview and article to make my point, that Israel is NOT considered a strategic asset by men who are in a position to make that judgment which you clearly are not. When you accused me of selectively quoting Wilkerson and Cordesman, was it not legit on my part to point to what you left out and yes, I will say, consciously, deliberately, because it fits neatly with your agenda. A cornered snake, Max? I think you are projecting and in over your head.

        You ask, “Why did you falsify the quotations, and why do you spit poison like a cornered snake as soon as I point that out? Why when you clearly mangle quotations to make your point, you’re just not quoting, but when I omit a totally separate passage, I’m leaving them out “consciously”? Are you capable of debating these issues with even a semblance of honesty? Or does your “theory” rely on distortion and non-sense?”

        Max, I did not falsify anything. Did I need to quote the entire interview and article to make my point, that Israel is not considered a strategic asset by men who are in a position to make that judgment which you clearly are not? When you accused me of selectively quoting Wilkerson and Cordesman, was it not legit on my part to point to what you left out and yes, I will say, consciously, deliberately, because it fits neatly with your agenda. A cornered snake, Max? I think you are projecting and in over your head.

        You write, “I am well aware of how the Zionist lobby has mobilized Jewish identity behind support for Israel. That’s why I do my work by identifying as a Jew. Don’t you publicly identify as a Jew? Right.”

        Wrong. I once did do so, back when I first became active on this issue but not any more. When I speak on my radio program, in public events, and in my writings I never mention it, nor do I when people ask me for a bio. I don’t do it for a very specific reason, quite apart from the fact that I have as little use for the religion and I do for Zionism: While the conflict in Israel-Palestine is an Arab-Jewish issue there, it is an American issue here in which Jews get no special privileges in my book when they speak out on this issue as Jews. What has, in fact, happened is that a number of Jewish organizations over the years that ostensibly support Palestinian rights and a two-state solution, beginning with New Jewish Agenda in 1987, have been able to set the acceptable parameters within which Israel can be criticized on the Left. One example of their success is that the BDS campaign in the US, as opposed to the worldwide campaign, is limited to the role of corporate investments in the West Bank while leaving Israel alone. Moreover, one did not need to be black to speak out against racism in the US or apartheid in So. Africa, Vietnamese to oppose the US war in Asia, Salvadoran or Nicaraguan to oppose US intervention in Central America and one needs to be neither Jewish, Palestinian, nor Lebanese to speak against the injustices committed by Israel and financed and politically supported by the tax dollars and political representatives of every American. In fact, with you as a prime example, my experience over several decades in this work has taught me to be wary of Jews who claim to be anti-zionist and say they support the Palestinian cause yet are the first to jump to the defense of the tribe when its Lobby is under attack. Touche!

        You ask “why the oil companies don’t oppose the Special Relationship? They had their man in the White House from 2000 – 2008. Where was Palestinian justice? Lying dead beneath Israeli and American flags.” C’mon, Max, no one is saying the oil companies are concerned with anything but profits. They actually did in the past make some efforts to challenge the special relationship, but given their reputation with the general public, they were easily beaten back. See Charles Freeman’s experience as an example of what happens to someone who is labeled an “Arabist” and you realize, well maybe not you, but people without a particular agenda, what the oil companies were up against. Why get in a propaganda war they can’t win?

        You write, “Profits were also high from 1973 to 1987. So was instability. You can read Oppenheimer in Foreign Policy, 1976, about that, or Timothy Mitchell, Carbon Democracy. Neither, so far as I know, are Jews [Oppenheimer? He was but not sure without reading it how relevant that is]. Oil is a cheap commodity to produce and the politics of oil are about controlling supply and controlling profits, contrary to comforting mythologies. Israel has played an important role in helping the US manage both from 1967 onwards, as has the lobby.” Other than the Arab oil boycott of 1973 in response to US support for Israel in the October 73 war, I am not aware of what you consider to be instability during that period but I would like to see you provide a single source for your statement that Israel has played an important role in controlling the supply of oil as well as its profits unless you are giving them “credit” for the 1973 war.

        Kissinger played a Machiavellian game during that war and throughout the 70s which is too complicated to go into here other than to note than in 1975, after a number of frustrating trips to Israel and Egypt to get Israel to disengage from the Sinai and it refused, it was reportedly Kissinger who advised Ford to make a statement publicly condemning Israel for its intransigence and announcing that he would be making a speech calling for a reassessment of US-Israel relations which would call on Israel to withdraw to the 1967 borders. Within three weeks, AIPAC got 76 senators to sign a letter to Ford warning him not to tamper with the US-Israel relationship, not much different from similar letter signed by the same number of senators to President Obama today. He never made the speech although he did withhold shipments of jet fighters to Israel for six months until Israel agreed to cooperate.

        I’ve written enough. It should be clear where you are coming from, Max, and most of those on this list know where I’m coming from. I have no hidden agendas.

      • Danaa
        June 6, 2011, 3:34 am

        Max, “a debate is now taking place on the future of American power. The lobby constricts that debate. But it wouldn’t be very big anyhow, I am sorry to say. Blankfort’s anatomies of the lobby are useful. But when he tries to understand the lobby, he is like a doctor trying to understand the role of the lungs without reference to the heart and the circulatory system. ”

        I beg to differ. The lobby’s role is, in fact, quite simple. It does not constrict debate on “power”. It constricts debate on Israeli power over America”. There are some ties between the israel lobby and financial lobbies, but they are tenuous at best, and usually it’s a one-way street. Most jews may be well off, but their hearts are not with Wall Street – even if they work in Wall Street. Strange, eh?

        The lobby acts in so many ways, reaching its tentacles into labor unions (where jews have hardly any representation), into the Black community (ditto), the immigration lobbies (same, no role for the Jews there), the Armed Forces (where hardly any Jews serve). It has something to do with Pharma only in the sense of trying to make alliance with it – or against it – take your pick – as needed to keep them on the sidelines – with threats if need be.

        The upshot is, Jeffrey Blankfort got it right on this one – the Israeli lobby IS unique. It works in tandem with the ADL to suppress free speech. It is an arm of an extreme right wing government which is trying very hard to subvert the entire American system – remaking it in its own morally cripled ultra-racist image. “shared values” – that’s what Yahoo said. He meant they’ll be shared when Americans see things his way – the zealot’s way.

        Max, here is what’s really going on: israel wants the West Bank and it does not want the Palestinians. The only question they have is how to get from here to there. This is what most Israelis want. You can see that between the lines in all the polls. Some might say “2 states” (like livni and kadima types). Then they say – but we keep the water and the air space and the boot on the economy. The zionists in the US knoiw what it’s all about, even if you pretend you don’t. They – the American zionists and their Lobby – in conjunction with israel – will do anything to get there. Anything at all. Including sacrificing you – and me – and anyone else who stands in their way. Probably the world. Probably Judaism. The Lobby is a unique tool to cow the US government, effectively castrating it. You saw the jumping yo-yos in congress. Did you see them jump for wall Street like this? for big pHARMA? even for the military? with no dissent? all clap-clap and bonhomie?

        Sorry to be so blunt, but you need to open your eyes: Israel will let you down in a heartbeat, as soon as it serves its purpose. It is not your friend. It is not America’s friend. it is not the firiend of jews anywhere. And it is not Wall Street’s friend either. They WILL threaten America with launching their nuclear weapons if they feel the need to do so – the economy and profits be damned. They ARE working on chem/bio weapons as hard as their talented so-called jewish scientists can.

        Israel is turning into an all out cult – it’s well on its way to become more like the Branch Davidians than a sane country that wants a [little more] piece of the pie. And they wield a lobby unlike any other lobby we have seen. It is a lobby with no opposition, and it has little to do with “Power” in general. It’s only concern is with Israeli power. If the banks help, then it’s “good little banks”. If the banks rebel, it’ll be bye-bye banks. Our nice little lobby serves, effectively, a doomsday cult. That’s what makes it so much more dangerous than any other lobby – ever. Don’t forget, the corporate interests need to keep enough of us alive to have a consumer base. Not so with doomsday cults. Food for thought here?

        And you have seen nothing yet. When the ethnic cleansing from the WB starts in earnest, that’s when the lobby will face its critical test: it will have to completely subvert American values as well as capitalist values, ignore power politics, spurn the profit motive. Because the dividends for the policy are not found in standard gold – or default Swaps. They are found in whatever coin messianic movements pay their devotees.

        And you won’t even have to wait too long for this little
        “debate” with Jeffrey to resolve itself. Perhaps a couple of years at the most (because the israeli expansion is on viagra). At which point I have every expectation that you’ll come to see things Jeffrey’s way. Unless, of course, you join the dark side (not for nothing have I compared the role of israel to that of the good old, the original Count, also known as Vlad the Impaler). Hopefully not.

      • Max Ajl
        June 6, 2011, 7:14 am

        Jeffrey, you have blown a great deal of smoke to avoid the points. The point is that the people you are appealing to as “critics” of the Special Relationship are in fact critics of the occupation, which is very clear when the full extracts are posted. They criticize the “strategic asset” theory but who here makes those claims with those words? You assault the life out of a straw man.

        What they are suggesting, and what you are suggesting, is that changing the Israel-American Special Relationship should only be carried out within the confines of making it workable for American power, or you know, our splendid democracy, which the lobby is about to carry into its final hour (do you believe this or does it just sound good when you clatter it out?). The lobby is a component of the system. So is big oil. Different components have different interests. Only the lobby cares about maintaining the occupation. Obama might prefer an apartheid solution under Fayyad along with token Israeli withdrawals and a land-swap in the Galilee.

        So I repeat, the lobby must be confronted, but an analysis of American policy in the Middle East that departs from the lobby and arrives at recommending profit strategies for American corporations is not only impotent but idiotic. You have to start from oil, weapons, and war, and you have to drop this axial delusion that the powers-that-be want stability. They do not. Israel contributes to that instability. You will have noticed that the Republican Party, less reliant on Jewish donors, wants more instability. Please try to “explain” that.

        But we are debating degrees of domination and degrees of instability. What is clear is that those in power care nothing about ending the occupation, let alone fulfilling the three demands of the BDS platform. This does not mean Walt et al are doing a disservice to Palestinians by challenging the lobby. Obviously not. But the logic of a movement is different from the logic of defense intellectuals. Why you want to hitch your horse to those calling for a demilitarized Palestinian state is beyond me, unless, of course, you fancy yourself in their position.

        However, this creates certain problems of interpretation and mis-understanding. So “Danaa” emits an off-kilter rant about “big pharma” not being as powerful as the lobby when it has blocked the universal health program that every other Western industrial country has, and then caterwauls about how Israel is “trying very hard to subvert the entire American system,” and you seem to think that you have a plan for managing empire but those Zionists keep screwing it up, and you falsify evidence, ignore facts, close your eyes to contrary evidence, all in the service of catapulting American power into a new American century, same as your brothers over at the PNAC.

        Then you spew “tribalist” but don’t seem to understand that there is no tribe, the “tribe” and the “people” are Zionist inventions. What you mean, and what would clarify things, is to call me a kike, so I recommend that to clarify things to the readers here.

        You ask what the instability was from 1973 to 1987. The occupation? A belligerent Israeli presence in the Middle East, keeping it in a state of constant tension? Recurrent Israeli invasions of Lebanon? I read the NY Times coverage of that Ford speech. There was no threat for a return to 1967 borders, and there was no reason to believe it would have been carried out. What Ford wanted was a peace treaty with Egypt. He didn’t care about the occupation. As I recall, the peace treaty eventually came, while Carter poured weapons into the Middle East. Those Zionists are clever! Somehow they convince the US president to babble about stability while exporting billions of weapons into an already-unstable region. Israel pursues its role, the lobby pursues its role, but what you refuse to understand, or pretend not to understand, is that not everyone loses. Just the powerless.

        What you refuse to understand is that it is a system. Different pieces play different roles in the system. Until you understand the system as a system, you will understand nothing, which is where you stand right now, and where will you remain, a ranting demagogue, enjoying his brief moment. Enjoy Jeff. You have no hidden agenda. They’re all out in the open. Your role in the system is to apologize for it. At that, if at nothing else, you do a decent job. Since it seems unlikely that you’ll get more than this end-of-days little podium, and the movement seems to be ignoring your strategy of liberating Palestine by allying with white racists, and almost no one will publish you, it seems that you must have something, so please take the last word. It’s about the only thing you’ll ever get.

      • VR
        June 6, 2011, 1:25 pm

        “Until you understand the system as a system, you will understand nothing, which is where you stand right now, and where will you remain, a ranting demagogue, enjoying his brief moment. Enjoy Jeff. ”

        That is the ticket max, glad that you got to post that, at least it gets through occasionally. As an example in the international arena perhaps we can point people to Mr. Amin’s essay about what is transpiring in Egypt. Doubtless if they read it they will learn quite a bit, it is well laid out – than they need to transfer these processes to the domestic arena to understand what they are dealing with –

        2011: THE ARAB SPRING

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 6, 2011, 3:22 pm

        Max, what I neglected to mention in my previous post is that you are doing exactly what New Jewish Agenda was formed to do in 1988, in response to the First Palestinian Intifada, to set the parameters in which Israel and its supporters in the US may be criticized. By attempting to submerge the AIPAC in the Jewish/Zionist establishment within the system and not a distinct entity that can and should be targeted, while not excluding other sectors of the system, you are not “confronting the Lobby” as you claim, but protecting it. And, Max, I have been fighting this system and for justice for Palestine, as well as charlatans like you, and not just with words, long before you were born.

        Since you insist that Israel’s settlement policies and its wars on Lebanon fit in with what you would have us believe is the US desire for instability, rather than stability in the region, pray tell us why every president since Richard Nixon has made an effort to get Israel out of the land it seized in the 1967 war not for the benefit of those whose land was stolen but because doing so has been seen by Washington as important to the national security of the US.

        With the exception of the 1978 Camp David treaty, all have failed, because the Lobby–which opposed Camp David– has been able to organize sufficient Congressional opposition on each occasion to any settlement on each occasion and no president has been willing or able to spend the amount of political capital required to push one through. Even when Clinton, a president who was as deep in the Lobby’s pockets as any, tried to push Netanyahu to give up some more land, in America’s interests, he received a letter from 81 senators telling him to lay off.

        In 2009, we saw then House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer go on Israeli television to say that he agreed with Netanyahu’s position that Jerusalem should not be divided, siding with the Israeli PM against his own president, but that was no different than Rep. Dick Gephardt, appearing at a press conference in Jerusalem in 1998, taking the side of Netanyahu in his dispute with Clinton.

        Now Max, please tell me, if you can, any other time in US history when leading politicians from the US have gone abroad and made public statements supporting the policies of a foreign country against those of the United States. If that country wasn’t Israel, there would be people calling for their heads. You can’t and you won’t even try to answer the question. You’ll come up again with some piece of nonsense, accusing me of supporting US imperialism or a demilitarized Palestinian state.

        What you would apparently have us believe, Max, is that all those plane trips and frequent flier miles, all those wasted hours of diplomatic discussion, and all those humiliations of American presidents by their Israeli counterparts have just been scenes from a big play designed to convince the Arab world and America’s European allies that the US has been serious about resolving the Israel-Arab dispute when its real goal was to maintain and encourage it because it kept the region unstable.

        Now, the question is why would you have us believe something that flies in the face of well documented history? Defending the tribe is the best scenario I can come up with and if you think that concept was invented by the Zionists and is a sham then you really don’t know Jewish history any more than you do that of this country.

      • VR
        June 6, 2011, 5:35 pm

        No doubt, this will be censored – gee wiz Mr. Blankfort, you forgot to say “god bless the USA” at the end of that strange screed. I know it was meant for Max, but I just cannot help myself…lol All those true blue, honest and hard working presidents just being beat up by that nasty lobby, that snake in the Garden of Eden. You will have to excuse me, i am expected around the campfire and we are sharing stories about John Wayne…lol

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 6, 2011, 6:56 pm

        It wasn’t censored, VR, and you still haven’t answered my questions. You do, however, further expose the intellectual dishonesty that hides behind your mechanistic verbiage when you suggest that my straight reporting of how your Israeli friends–yes, you, too, are in the damage control business-have humiliated a succession of American presidents who have tried to resolve the Israel-Arab conflict for what they perceived as national security reasons implies that I am some kind of flag waver.

        I asked you to explain how that recorded history fits in with your view of the system which is the same question I posed to your buddy, Max. Like him, you don’t have an answer so you respond with claims of censorship as well as insults. You seem to be on the ropes at this point so it might be wise to throw in the towel before they have to carry you out, metaphorically speaking, of course.

      • Citizen
        June 6, 2011, 6:58 pm

        Hey, VR, Jimmy Carter sent you a memo–why don’t you read it?

      • andrew r
        June 7, 2011, 2:10 am

        Some standout bits:

        “you clearly fall into the category of what Gilad Atzmon describes as a Jewish tribalist, not just because you join the circle of wagons when Jews, collectively, are blamed for anything”

        “Defending the tribe is the best scenario I can come up with–I’ll leave the worst to others– and if you think that concept was invented by the Zionists and is a sham then you really don’t know Jewish history any more than you do that of this country.”

        You speak way too loosely about the subject, Jeffrey. Blaming Jews collectively for anything is exactly what the ADL/AIPAC/CampusWatch want you to do. Those who want to stifle debate on the role of Jewish bourgeoisie in US policy need you to collectively blame Jews. You’re playing into their hands. Handing them a propaganda card.

        Max said the “tribe” and the “people” are Zionist inventions. That makes me want to expand on the idea a bit. “The Jewish people” is external and internal Zionist propaganda. The Zionist movement as a whole does not treat Jews as one people. I probably don’t need to remind you or the Israeli posters or anyone familiar with the demographics of Israel how the first Yemeni Jews to make aliyah were segregated from the Europeans, forced to live in special quarters away from the moshavim they worked at; how Arab Jews were placed in the most dangerous settlements (i.e. Sderot), forced to do the manual labor Palestinians weren’t around for, the racism against Ethiopian Jews, etc. etc.

        By making “Jews” the target of an analysis, you cover that up. AIPAC is an establishment for Jews who fancy themselves white. And that’s what Zionism was about from the beginning: Not the Jewish people, but European Jews joining the white race that continually rejected them. I already know there’s a Jewish bourgeoisie throwing lots of money at US politicians; singling them out as Jews, making them an element foreign to the system raises more questions than answers. They’re able to do this because the system will accept them as white people.

        “a big play designed to convince the Arab world and America’s European allies that the US has been serious about resolving the Israel-Arab dispute when its real goal was to maintain and encourage it because it kept the region unstable.”

        I don’t doubt the US wants to resolve the conflict… just not on terms that are palatable to anti-racism and anti-segregation. Reagan’s plan was to federate the West Bank with Jordan. His peace plan contained this brilliant happy medium: “So the United States will not support the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza, and we will not support annexation or permanent control by Israel. There is, however, another way to peace. The final status of these lands must, of course, be reached through the give-and-take of negotiations; but it is the firm view of the United States that self-government by the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza in association with Jordan offers the best chance for a durable, just and lasting peace.”

        Basically a variation of what Yigal Allon came up with. That’s not a peace plan — that’s a plan for protecting Israeli segregation out of the 1949 boundary and putting the Palestinians under the control of a police state (Of course those “give-and-take” negotiations don’t rule out partial annexation). Your general thesis is that if not for the Jewish establishment buying congress, the US leadership would lay down the smack on Israel until it accepts some crappy peace plan.

        If looking for better analyzes makes you tribalist, call me a bloody tribalist.

      • Danaa
        June 7, 2011, 3:18 am

        “So “Danaa” emits an off-kilter rant…”

        Hey max, didn’t like me comparing Israel to the role played by the one and only Count Dracula, back in the days? I was just trying to back you up there….after all, the Count did “it’ (broadly interpreted, but generally summarized a old fahioned mayhem) for country (if one can call his little fiedfdom that) and christianity. Isn’t that what you are arguing/ that Israel merely serve the interests of the powers-that-be? just thought I should bring up some helpful historical examples. what’s so off-kilter about that?

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 7, 2011, 4:02 am

        Andrew, I use the terms “tribal”or “tribalist” only in specific situations one of which is when when the problems created by the Zionist movement are palmed off as being first the responsibility of British imperialism and subsequently of the American variety.

        Although both played and have played important roles in assuring the success of the Jewish colonization of Palestine and the state of Israel after 1948, who else would you blame for the ethnic cleansing of the Nakba and the subsequent occupation of the West Bank and Gaza during the 1967 war?

        Both of these actions, arguably the key events in the history of that conflict, were not only planned and carried out by Jews in Israel-Palestine without urging or support from any major power, but their actions, including their wars, have been supported to this day by the majority of Jews not only in the US, but in the UK, France, Italy, So. Africa, Australia, etc. Is it wrong to point that out simply because it will play into the hands of the ADL and the rest of the Jewish establishment, the main goal of which is the perpetuation of Israel as an exclusive Jewish state and the US-Israel relationship which protects it from those who wish no harm to Jews but justice for the Palestinians?

        I use the term “tribalist” to describe those Jews who. like Max, do whatever they can to avoid focusing attention on AIPAC and the rest of the Jewish establishment for the dominant role they play and have played in shaping US policy towards the Middle East and the Israel-Palestine conflict, in particular. That resistance to acknowledging that role comes almost exclusively from Jews should make one ask the question, “Why?”

        The answer, I believe, is fairly simple. In most traditional Jewish households, children are raised to believe that Jews are the world’s leading victims, that anti-semitism is pervasive among the gentiles [goyim] and that over the years Jews have been blamed, collectively, for crimes or acts they personally had nothing to do with, such as calling for the crucifixion of Christ. So there is, understandably, a built-in reaction to the notion that Jews can properly be blamed for anything. Israel and its supporters have taken advantage of this situation to silence legitimate criticism of Israel and the Jewish establishment/lobby by labeling such criticism as anti-semitic and it is the Palestinians and Lebanese who have paid for this silence and deference to Jewish sensibilities with their lives and, in the case of the Palestinians, with the loss of their homeland.

        Again, the suggestion that the concept of a “Jewish people” is belied by any number of books in my library that predate Zionism. In fact, as a kid, back in 48, I recall being a member of something called the Jewish People’s Fraternal Order and it was left and non-Zionist which came out of the old IWO in 1944. Whereas today, Zionists love to use the term, Jewish people, they didn’t invent it.

        Re all the “peace plans.” As I mentioned, they were all intended to resolve the Arab-Israel conflict irrespective of the fact that they had nothing to do with justice but resolving that conflict and with it, achieving and maintaining regional stability, Max’s opinion not withstanding, has been an American foreign policy goal since Israel was established in 1948 and the foremost opponent to the US reaching that goal has been the organized American Jewish Establishment and its vehicle for doing that has been the US Congress over which it maintains almost total control.

    • Kathleen
      June 5, 2011, 8:30 am

      As if there are just two sides

  12. petersz
    June 4, 2011, 1:17 pm

    The USA is now an Orwellian state. Obama and Netanyahu are masters of doublespeak:- saying one thing but meaning something completely different. For Netanyahu as for Obama, as for Orwell’s Big Brother, War is Peace and Freedom is Slavery and a proposed Palestinian “state” is a state without sovereignty.

  13. justicewillprevail
    June 4, 2011, 1:18 pm

    This is so pathetic and feeble it is almost funny. A straight reprint from the Israel Propaganda Dept. With a straight face. Do these idiots read what they are handed before they rush off to print it and look eagerly at their Israeli handlers for approval? It is so devoid of any relation to what is actually happening that it looks like Disney have got involved. How can anybody take these crawling clowns seriously? Banality and evil are closely linked – here we have both. If the president actually believes this children’s story he is a candidate for looney tunes.

  14. yourstruly
    June 4, 2011, 3:10 pm

    what’s this, the government of the u. s. of a. ‘s been on the side of the oppressor?

    from the getgo

    it’s been them against us

    them, the few at the top

    us, everyone else

    how to turn things around?

    first of all, do we need to focus about the past?”

    instead?

    (so long as whatever gets done be carried out in the spirit of those eighteen magical days in tahrir square)

    what sort of world

    now that it’s up to us

    & the stars being just right

  15. Citizen
    June 4, 2011, 5:07 pm

    I think this comment is relevant–on another recent thread here we were talking about Glen Beck and his roller-coaster POV on Jews/Israel in the context of US values. I couldn’t find the thread, so I will post this comment here–it’s another take on why Glen Beck is leaving FOX News/Entertainment: link to youtube.com

    I know it will be hard, but try to ignore the Jew dressed in Greek or Ukranian orthodox Christian holy garb, that is, look at the message, not the messenger. What do you think?

    • Citizen
      June 4, 2011, 5:13 pm

      FYI, the video was sent to me by a fundamentalist American Christian woman who normally sends me stuff evoking fear that Muslims want to take away baby Jesus, and she has told me that if you want to get to heaven you need to support the Jews no matter what. Hence, the very fact that she sent this video is important–she spends her days forwarding religio-poltical data to her long email list–she sends me her stuff separately because of the havoc it caused her when I was included as just another list member–her list arose up against me..

      • Citizen
        June 4, 2011, 5:22 pm

        Here’s another video my Christian fundy sent me; ignore the goofy garb of the messenger, and listen to Orthodox Jewish American Sen Lieberman saying we need an internet censorship switch just like China has: link to mail.google.com

      • MRW
        June 4, 2011, 8:50 pm

        Citizen, this link goes into Google mail, but whose account?

        I ask because of this:
        link to ted.com

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 6:06 am

        Here’s the same video on YouTube: link to youtube.com

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 6:39 am

        MRW, thanks for the reference to automatic filtering by search engines such as Google’s and Facebook’s. This is nothing new but the automation has become ever more so due to electronic communication devices. There is an old saying from the days of Guttenberg on, “We are what we read.” Yet I feel compelled to add, the electronic search bubble we all created is much less a conscious one on our end user part.

      • Kathleen
        June 5, 2011, 9:01 am

        “filter bubbles” Zuckerberg’s comment about being concerned about the death of a squirrel vs being concerned about the death of an African child was interesting. At least the person he describes is concerned about the death of a squirrel. How about more like being more concerned about getting to the mall to buy some stuff from China vs the death of a child anywhere

      • Kathleen
        June 5, 2011, 9:02 am

        Where is that clip?

      • MRW
        June 4, 2011, 8:47 pm

        What was her follow-up, Citizen? Any? Did you ask you what she thought of it? What I mean is, did she send it because she disagreed or agreed with it?

      • Citizen
        June 5, 2011, 6:10 am

        Her forwarded email came with her comment that some people might find the video interesting. That’s all. Many times in the past, she has said she thinks the focus should be on fanatical Islam and general corruption in the US government. If you give her information on, say, the IL, she will ignore it.

  16. American
    June 4, 2011, 5:22 pm

    God almighty!
    I am speechless…well almost speechless.

    Yesterday I read the remarks of the retiring Mossad head who said basically that Israel and Netanyahu’s government is crazy, getting crazier every day and he doesn’t trust them to not do something supremely stupid.

    link to guardian.co.uk

    And Obama and congress is doing everything possible to encourage their insanity.

    • Kathleen
      June 5, 2011, 9:08 am

      “Ben Caspit of the Maariv newspaper wrote: “He is one of the most rightwing militant people ever born here … who ate Arabs for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

      “When this man says that the leadership has no vision and is irresponsible, we should stop sleeping soundly at night.”

      ouch…Israel’s back up against the wall. And they put themselves there

  17. eGuard
    June 4, 2011, 5:34 pm

    Calm down, calm down. At the level of incidents, Obama’s govt does these bad things. That is not good for persons and situations, sure.

    But he is accomplishing two major, Long Term Good Things:
    1. Current Zionistic Israel behaviour is exploding their own face (Netanyahu’s speeches, for example), and
    2. Iran is not being attacked.
    That is quite an accomplishment.

    • Taxi
      June 4, 2011, 6:32 pm

      Nice bit of untwisting and ironing-out, eGuard.

    • Jeffrey Blankfort
      June 4, 2011, 8:54 pm

      If Netanyahu’s speeches are exploding it is someplace other than Israel where his poll numbers have risen following his most recent drubbing of Obama, the criticism of his behavior in the pages of Ha’aretz notwithstanding.

      The fact that neither the US or Israel has attacked Iran is not Obama’s accomplishment. Not only are the Pentagon and the intelligence agencies strongly against it, but it is clear to almost everyone but a mentally ill Zionist fanatic (sorry for the redundancy) that such an attack would knock the global economy further off tilt than it already is and there are no other entities besides the Zionist establishment and its know-nothing Christian allies that support what would be an act of insanity.

      If there is anything positive to be said about Obama accepting the role of White House Negro for Israel and its agents in the US, is that he has surrendered his ability to convince any other nation that anything he says will be backed up by action or that any other country has anything to fear from crossing the US. Examples: Both India and Pakistan ignoring the US weapons industry and spending its billions for new fighter aircraft on companies other than Lockheed-Martin and Boeing.

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 4:11 am

        “Examples: Both India and Pakistan ignoring the US weapons industry and spending its billions for new fighter aircraft on companies other than Lockheed-Martin and Boeing.”

        Simply tragic (sarcasm) – see my post above VR June 5, 2011 at 3:46 am

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 2:22 pm

        Not tragic, VR, but simply a reflection on America’s decline and the fact that its allies have noting to fear from crossing it under the Obama presidency. Your attempts to portray me as a supporter of US imperialism/ hegemony/whathaveyou are rather pathetic, almost as much as your arguments that we should pay no attention to the White House statement surrendering US sovereignty to Israel. (Now watch with what VR does with that one. He’ll have me waving the flag and singing the Star Spangled Banana in no time.)

      • VR
        June 5, 2011, 7:05 pm

        Mr. Blankfort, one does not have to say they support something point blank, they just support options that will inevitably lead to that outcome. The people you and others on this site quote as authoritative, as an example M&W wish to perpetuate US hegemony, one just has to follow their positions in peer material (as I have done before on this site to the deafening silence of both you and Mr. Weiss).

        “SMART POLICY”

        If you wish to read the article itself, It is in The National Interest magazine –

        IMPERIAL BY DESIGN

        President Obama is making a serious mistake heading down this road. He should instead return to the grand strategy of offshore balancing, which has served this country well for most of its history and offers the best formula for dealing with the threats facing America—whether it be terrorism, nuclear proliferation or a traditional great-power rival.

        In general terms, the United States should concentrate on making sure that no state dominates Northeast Asia, Europe or the Persian Gulf, and that it remains the world’s only regional hegemon. This is the best way to ensure American primacy. We should build a robust military to intervene in those areas, but it should be stationed offshore or back in the United States. In the event a potential hegemon comes on the scene in one of those regions, Washington should rely on local forces to counter it and only come onshore to join the fight when it appears that they cannot do the job themselves. Once the potential hegemon is checked, American troops should go back over the horizon.

        Offshore balancing does not mean that the United States should ignore the rest of the world. But it should maintain a substantially lower profile outside of Northeast Asia, Europe and the Gulf, and it should rely on diplomacy and economic statecraft, not military force, to protect its interests in areas of little strategic importance. Washington should also get out of the business of trying to spread democracy around the globe, and more generally acting as if we have the right and the responsibility to interfere in the domestic politics of other countries. This behavior, which violates the all-important principle of self-determination, not only generates resentment toward the United States, but also gets us involved in nation building, which invariably leads to no end of trouble.

        Offshore balancing does not mean that the United States should ignore the rest of the world. But it should maintain a substantially lower profile outside of Northeast Asia, Europe and the Gulf, and it should rely on diplomacy and economic statecraft, not military force, to protect its interests in areas of little strategic importance. Washington should also get out of the business of trying to spread democracy around the globe, and more generally acting as if we have the right and the responsibility to interfere in the domestic politics of other countries. This behavior, which violates the all-important principle of self-determination, not only generates resentment toward the United States, but also gets us involved in nation building, which invariably leads to no end of trouble.

        Specifically, offshore balancing is the best grand strategy for ameliorating our terrorism problem. Placing American troops in the Arab and Muslim world is a major cause of terrorist attacks against the United States, as University of Chicago professor Robert Pape’s research shows. Remember what happened after President Ronald Reagan sent marines into Beirut in 1982? A suicide bomber blew up their barracks the following year, killing 241 service members. Reagan had the good sense to quickly pull the remaining marines out of Lebanon and keep them offshore. And it is worth noting that the perpetrators of this act did not pursue us after we withdrew.

        Reagan’s decision was neither surprising nor controversial, because the United States had an offshore-balancing strategy in the Middle East during this period. Washington relied on Iraq to contain Iran during the 1980s, and kept the rapid-deployment force—which was built to intervene in the Gulf if the local balance of power collapsed—at the ready should it be needed. This was smart policy.”

        Just return to the Reagan Policy, or Bush senior is the remedy – kill people, starve them, and destroy their future with a little more finesse. That is your position by default in arguing for these voices. It is like the “peaceful” Zionists who say they would not harm a hair on the head of the Palestinians, as they support Israel policy which does the deed. In holding these position I cannot see how this site even thinks it can claim to be a beacon of the left.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 10:01 pm

        VR, I admire Prof. Mearsheimer and Walt because of their ground breaking book on the Israel Lobby but that does not mean we are on the same page when it comes to US foreign policy, their support for the two-state solution, their belief that AIPAC is a legitimate lobbying group, or their expressed concern for Israel. And I need no more lectures from someone like yourself who appears so seems to believe that securing justice for the Palestinians or anyone else for that matter must take a back seat to overthrowing the system. Exactly who is going to do that he does not say but the point of this comment is to ask him why he has not answered or attempted to answer the two questions I addressed to him in my last comment. So I’ll repeat them:

        (1) Perhaps, with your great knowledge of such things, you can tell us who exactly makes up that enclave that dictates our Israel policy and are there not contradictions between it and other sectors of that enclave as reflected in the comments of Col. Wilkerson and Cordesman who speak for other sectors of that enclave?

        (2) Second, since both the president and Congress serve this enclave of elites, would you have those who wish to radically change and reverse some of the policies that the latter dictates, ignore their purported representatives or publicly challenge them and those who give them their marching orders ? Which is it, or do you believe that we have go after the entire system and that nothing anywhere can be resolved until its taken down, and if so, how are YOU going about doing that?

        I and I assume some others on this list are waiting for your response without having to link to another site.

      • VR
        June 7, 2011, 1:52 am

        “(1) Perhaps, with your great knowledge of such things, you can tell us who exactly makes up that enclave that dictates our Israel policy and are there not contradictions between it and other sectors of that enclave as reflected in the comments of Col. Wilkerson and Cordesman who speak for other sectors of that enclave?”

        Contradictions do not mean that a course will not be taken, there are always contradictions and we are on the same path. Do you want to know who dictates the policy – here is your answer:

        THE CULPRIT

        You cannot divide imperialism from capitalism, it is a system that must be faced and routed, permanently. Your second question flows from the first, no one who serves the system and benefits from it will dissent and challenge the sacred cow – after all (whether you believe it or not, it is a fact that this is what has been transpiring since the inception of the USA).

        How am I going to do it? First, you have got to know your enemy, and than you have to wake up – you qualify for neither first steps Mr. Blankfort:

        FIRST THINGS FIRST

      • VR
        June 7, 2011, 2:06 am

        Now you might ask “who is this fellow?” Everyone has a part to play to bring about the demise of this monstrous system, I choose to agitate – and I have good aim. I guess you could see me is several different lights, here is one that seems to agree with your base sentiments, try to have some sympathy –

        INTRODUCTIONS

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 7, 2011, 2:50 am

        Very enjoyable and interesting videos, VR, but they do not address my questions and I happen to have had some experience with tear gas and police clubs and arrests over the years in such places as Berkeley, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago, Rome, Paris and Athens and would have enjoyed, frankly, participating in such an event at an AIPAC conference such as took place in Washington DC, but that’s an organization of even whose existence those folks who claim to be revolutionaries or anarchists in what the Black Panthers used to refer to as Babylon seem sadly to be unaware. I wonder whose fault that is?

        I also find it a bit strange that you who seem to be, at the very least, at no loss for words when it comes to theorizing, can only provide YouTube videos that, notwithstanding their merits, do not begin to answer the questions that I raised.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 7, 2011, 3:18 am

        Well, VR, I must say I appreciate seeing my favorite Stones’ song illustrated in a fascinating video. I assume that you would like me and others on this list to see you as that devil with a good aim, be it with a rock, slingshot, or, dare I say, Molotov Cocktail.

        With all due respect, and wishing it were otherwise, I think you are being a bit romantic not to mention delusional if you think modern capitalist society is going to succumb to street protests.

        Paris May 1968 probably came the closest but the very next year those who had been in the streets were back in their Levis and CocaCola and burbling over such American movies as Butch Cassady and the Sundance Kid, an entertaining but thinly veiled homage to white supremacy and the latest John Wayne flic.

        I think something more profound is necessary and I don’t see it on the horizon. The dismal failure of the “socialist” experiment in the USSR and its bloc of satellites that quickly became police states, has robbed potential movements of what their predecessors perceived as a viable alternative to dehumanizing capitalism and it is irrelevant to argue that these failed states were not truly socialist but state capitalist because that is not the way they are remembered. Raging against the machine gives those doing the raging a momentary feeling of power and fulfillment but it provides no real solutions.

      • VR
        June 7, 2011, 9:57 am

        I don’t think you understand Mr. Blankfort, there are several elements that were wrong, and brought your activity in the past to its eventual demise. Don’t get me wrong, I have no intention of deprecating your initial designs during that era, just showing that it was unfortunately inadequate.

        First of all, timing is paramount, and what we are seeing now is more than a bump in the road of capitalism, we are watching its death – not to mourn but to celebrate, because its demise is well deserved. There is nothing on the horizon but worse conditions, and there is no one who will stop the devouring of the people – this is not necessarily bad, it is good albeit somewhat painful – but the worst is yet to come.

        Second, you will not accomplish anything if you have the wrong target(s), this was another unfortunate error in past activity. If you do not aim at the heart, and shoot the enemy in the big toe he lives another day to oppress, I do not suffer from the same bad aim.

        Third, if you have the wrong goals all is lost, there is no loss of vision that I suffer from, nor bad tactical planning. Your vision suffered because you view of history and what is transpiring is skewed, that can be seen by what you post – and what frankly, you love and embrace – I have no love for my oppressor(s) nor the systemic monstrosity.

      • Citizen
        June 7, 2011, 10:41 am

        VR, name the targets you are shooting at, so all readers here can see just how much they differ from Blankfort’s. And so we can see more clearly the extent of any connection between your recommended targets and Blankfort’s.

        BTW, do global corporatism protesters include China and India?
        And how does your macro view differ from that old popular perception of a war “between the Haves and the Have-Nots?”
        And how do you target those with vested interests in the scraps & bones tossed on the floor from the banquet table? Between a solution of a crappy job versus no job? While the elite sets the agenda and reaps most of the benefits, they are joined by their mass myriad of little helpers, each with a bit of the trickle down benefits. These people are otherwise known as everyday families, whether here or anywhere.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 7, 2011, 1:28 pm

        VR, the apparent collapse of the global economic system which has managed to outlive many earlier predictions of its demise has not been affected, even nudged in the slightest, by the protests against it that have taken place around the world. Exhilarating as they have been to those participating and will no doubt be in the future they are, however, no substitute for the grass roots genuine political work which needs to be done, just as rapping about revolution is a very far cry from making one happen. Whether or not you come to understand that in the future is not really important or of any concern to me.

        Now, since you obviously and not surprisingly have been unable to answer my earlier questions which I will not bother to repeat I will sign out of this exchange, such as it is, and give you the last word.

      • VR
        June 8, 2011, 1:05 am

        Citizen like I said if you do not know who or what the targets are you are SOL (this will also answer Mr. Blankfort), and the problem lies in the fact that people have no idea that there is a difference between the government and the state, to start with – do you? You can tell that you do not know anything about the targets, and that is because you swallow the system as it displays itself.

        When we are in a confrontational position with capitalism / globalism / imperialism / empire it is essential for us to know how this beast operates. This requires sound definitions that describe conditions as they really exist. If we do not do this our dissent will devolve into an ineffective mass of opinions.

        We must understand that we are dealing with a dual system, there are two political systems that we are involved with in America. First is the visible government – elections, people in public office, etc. You could call this the facade, the face of the state. This is what we are taught in the schools.

        Then there is the state, the state is the financial structure of the political economy, the basic interest of finance capital both domestic and international. This is typified by the multi-national corporations – this is not what is taught in the schools.

        This dual system, which empirically overlaps, is the distinction between the government and the state. The government deals with interest conflict groups and popular demands, it provides the cloak and some of the substance of democratic rule. However, the democracy which is there is because the people fought for it – it had to be extracted from the people who had wealth, property and hence power. Democracy is the system developed by the people to defend themselves from the people with wealth and property.

        The state is the means of class control. The first armed men were hired by those who had large property holdings in ancient horticultural society. The state wields a “legal” monopoly over force and violence. The goal of capitalism is not to help us or the environment, it’s goal is to transform nature into commodities and commodities into capital. It will go into all of the world (and it is doing this before your very eyes) and transform it into it’s own image.

        Why do we make this distinction between state and government? It allows us to understand that taking an office in government does not guarantee full access to state power. That is, the military, the police, the security forces, intelligence services, the courts, and the laws that rig the whole system for the propertied class – an elected leader cannot necessarily get to this. When democracy moves against those with property and privilege, this is when the state comes down and puts a stop to the process of democracy.

        Now you have a state which works powerfully against any form of democratic government, through the instrument of government. It wishes to roll back every democratic advance. It is vitally important that we understand this, that we grasp these definitions. Without a knowledge of the difference between the state and the government we will go nowhere fast! This is what we have to consider when we dissent from the capitalistic state – it should temper all the means we will employ to combat this present monstrosity that has grown before our eyes.

        However, you are not even on first base, I can tell by your dialogue – you are creatures of what you have been taught, but until you get outside of this prefabricated box you are doomed to frustration and defeat. Before you answer what I have written read it again – and think of what I said the “targets” are.

        Yes I am speaking in global terms, if you want to see an interesting template see my current post on my site, there is quite a bit that can be learned from Dr. Amin – you can translate what he sees in Egypt to the current domestic situation anywhere. The system and its elites are currently in a condition of diet, as the fat around their midsection (the so-called Middle class) melts away at alarming rate. The set of the balance scale will get heavier on the side of the few, as the peoples side of the scale gets lighter – time and conditions are on our side. Look for the revolutionary moment – when will you wake up?

        CONDITIONS

      • Citizen
        June 8, 2011, 7:48 am

        Gee, VR, thanks for the video clip singing away that “the world is a vampire.” Really explains a lot, just like your latest comment. BTW, you didn’t answer my question or Blankfort’s except to name international finance and corporations as targets, which any reader here can see I already recognized as such in my earlier comment you’ve just responded to, as well as many of my comments in the past here on MW. Yep, I, Blankfort, and everybody here really needed to know that our schools do not teach us what early Rothschild told the world over a century ago. And, my oh my, what an eye opener your distinction between the government and the state is. Why do you imagine a number of American regular commenters on this blog have repeatedly said they are not really represented by either the government or the state? Tweedle dee-Tweedle dum system? Of course. Many, many comments on this blog have echoed disenchantment with predatory capitalism and the financial system and the use of the corporate fiction to continue to exploit us & mislead us, in the context of the main subject of this blog–of course, a sign this is only growing is the continued income gap growing like Topsy and SCOTUS’s decision to treat super wealthy corporations as just like regular flesh and blood citizens who merely want to throw a couple of bucks into the campaign coffer of a candidate for public office. The oil-rich & otherwide very strategic ME & US foreign policy regarding Israel are the show case for the aggregate of PTB & their use of what you refer to as the dual system to meet their agenda. Your lecturing comments & disdain for anyone questioning what you say suggest you are, what a 19 year old kid taking Poli-Sci 101 while watching old Star Trek reruns in your parents’ basement?

      • VR
        June 8, 2011, 9:52 am

        Yes, like this has been the thrust all along here Citizen, and I have not received considerable opposition – wonderful argument, and proof positive of complete denial. Disenchantment is quite different than recognition and action to undo the process – but you probably recognize that to, and can carp on with the childish retort “I knew that.” No, you really do not know that, and if you did it would consume you to action rather than repeated silly banter.

      • eGuard
        June 5, 2011, 6:38 am

        JB: “[in] Israel [...] his poll numbers have risen” — well, that is a minor effect. The major effect I point at is that mainstream Israeli politics are getting more extreme, thereby losing blind US support.

        “… neither the US or Israel has attacked Iran is not Obama’s accomplishment.” — As for the US, it is clear the POTUS did not start that war, while he is the one that could have. For Israel, he is not in that position, but there might have been some diplomacy that prevented Israel from provoking that war on Iran.

        Both achievements (or using less big words: both current status quo’s, OK) are the result of not doing something, e.g. being silent on the topic (what could he have said?), and preventing to having shown his US muscles. This is not showmanship politics, but still effective.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 7:57 pm

        There was major push for an attack on Iran under Bush and it did not happen for the same reasons that it hasn’t and won’t under Obama. Only the narrow minded Israeli-firsters are for it and they apparently have no support within the Pentagon or the intelligence community. They are the ones who have prevented it and some senior officers reportedly have said they would resign were such an attack launched. It would, in fact, be a more impeachable offense on the part of a president than was the Iraq war.

  18. hughsansom
    June 4, 2011, 8:46 pm

    Since the border will “different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967,” perhaps the Palestinians should use the Obama language as justification for annexation of Israeli land on ground of the Palestinian facts on the ground in Israel, which Palestinians’ security is clearly not supplied by Israel.

  19. ToivoS
    June 5, 2011, 1:55 am

    The President believes that every state has the right to self-defense, and that Israel must be able to defend itself – by itself – against any threat.

    This curious statement has attracted much speculation. I doubt that Obama wrote this but it is likely that one of the AIPAC moles did. What does it mean? Perhaps it is a reminder to the rest of the world that Israel has armed itself with something like 300 to 700 nuclear warheads. This statement is not just being directed to Israel’s Arab neighbors but also to Europe. Moshe Dayan made the first reference to the “mad dog” possibility but also van Creveld said quite explicitly what that meant. Backing that threat is the fact that the US is armed with 25,000 nuclear warheads.

    Just a speculation, but if I were a European state without its own nuclear deterrent, I would be very cautious about supporting a Palestinian state in defiance of Israel. Sounds extreme but it would not be inconsistent with a Zionist policy that is infected with the Masada complex.

    • Jeffrey Blankfort
      June 5, 2011, 4:00 am

      The Van Creveld reference, if it’s one I’m thinking about, turned out to be a phoney, but it is not unlikely that Israel has atomic warheads aimed in a multiple of directions. In 1982, Ehud Olmert, while in SF to “debate” the invasion of Lebanon with Mordechai Baron of Peace Now, told my sister in front of me and a number of others that Israel had it’s missiles trained on Moscow but “it doesn’t mean we’re going to use them,” a statement he then repeated word for word. And believe me, those running the show in Israel today don’t have to be told to act like “mad dogs.” Had not Hezbollah tamed their collective butts in 2006, there is no telling what they might be doing now.

      • eGuard
        June 5, 2011, 6:55 am

        Van Creveld phoney?: “But would the world permit such ethnic cleansing [of Israel/Palestine, by Israel]? ‘That depends on who does it and how quickly it happens. We possess several hundred atomic warheads and rockets and can launch them at targets in all directions, perhaps even at Rome. Most European capitals are targets for our air force.” … “We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.”

        (Quoted in David Hirst’s newer edition of The Gun and the Olive Branch, reproduced in The Observer). Nothing phoney. This is a military historian speaking, the “we” being Zionist Israel. Todo: let’s check who gave this man all these laurels, it looks like they are weighing too heavy on his head and mind.

      • ToivoS
        June 5, 2011, 11:18 am

        This the quote that I had in mind. If it phony I would like to see the refutation.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 3:17 pm

        Don’t have the time at the moment because I am going out but there was something about that quote and the article by Van Creveld that was phoney, although it does reflect the mentality of many Israelis and has for years. I will do some more checking and get back to it.

      • eGuard
        June 5, 2011, 6:51 pm

        Jeffrey Blankfort, Van Creveld did that quote, and the quote has not been proved phoney.

      • ToivoS
        June 5, 2011, 6:54 pm

        I recall discussing this letter when it first appeared. There was never an issue that it was phony then. I remember arguing that given its context van Crevald was not advocating that position as so much as stating what he thought Israel was capable of doing. This point was disputed by others.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 5, 2011, 10:44 pm

        It may have been my error in calling the quote a phony because I have never been able to track down the original article in which it appeared and it seems David Hirst was not either, citing a German Indymedia site as his source in The Gun and Olive Branch, a site where “nicht gefunden,” it cannot be found.

        What I was also challenging was the interpretation of it, real or not, that this was Van Creveld’s expressed position as opposed to what it clearly appears to be, his opinion of what the Israel mindset was capable of and likely to do if at some point it believed it was going under, what Seymour Hersh described as the “Samson Option” in the book by that name. This does not make be a supporter of Van Creveld but simply my attempt to set the record straight.

        What one finds online is an English translation of the article which was originally published in a Dutch magazine, Holland being Van Creveld’s birthplace. In other words, there it seems there is no original source for this quote.

        There are a number of quotes out in cyberspace which are frequently repeated for which no credible source can be found, such as the one attributed to Ariel Sharon that “Jews control America,” which he is supposed to have said on Israeli army radio, but this has never been verified and no date has ever been given. What was heard by a longtime anti-zionist Israel activist at the time which may have been that broadcast was Sharon telling Peres that Israelis were not about to fight America’s wars and Washington knows it. But I have no date for that one either.

      • irishmoses
        June 5, 2011, 12:24 pm

        While van Crevald certainly is an Israeli hardliner, he is no phony and is very independent in his beliefs. For instance, he feels Israel should withdraw, unilaterally if necessary from the West Bank and the Golan Heights as neither are critical for Israel’s defense and keeping both threatens Israel’s survival. See my article in Mondoweiss:
        link to mondoweiss.net and the longer version on my blog:
        link to savingisrael.wordpress.com

      • eGuard
        June 5, 2011, 6:48 pm

        Clearly, Jeffrey Blankfort said it was a phoney quote from Van Creveld. A quote being “phoney” is not produced yet, and JB says he’s got no time to do so now. Meanwhile, I produced a quote that is not phoney. (Yes Van Creveld said somehow that Israel should leave OT. And my yes too, he said Israel should bomb Europe if Europe would oppose ethnic cleansing by Israel). Van Creveld is a war monger.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 6, 2011, 2:06 am

        As I mentioned above, Van Creveld did not say Israel should bomb Europe. If the citation is indeed accurate, what he was speaking about in the interview was the mindset of a sizable segment of Israelis, but that was not his position. Go back and read the entire citation.

      • eGuard
        June 7, 2011, 9:39 am

        JB: Van Creveld talked “we”, not 3rd person. And he says: if the world would oppose [our] ethnic cleansing, we can nuke Europe (note he’s connecting these topics).

        As for sourcing: your “turned out to be a phoney” has not been proven. You only have introduced that the source of the David Hirst quote is not yet found, which does not count as a disprove nor as a prove of phoneyness.

      • Jeffrey Blankfort
        June 7, 2011, 1:51 pm

        I will not argue, as I noted in my last post, that the interview does not exist and my use of the term “phony” was in error nor am I defender of Van Creveld, but what we have seen is an English translation from the original Dutch which seems to be unavailable and a German website that once apparently carried it with a German translation no longer does. In other words, the original article is not accessible.

        Be that as it may, if you read what does exist of that article, Van Creveld is clearly expressing his concern about the Masada or Samson like mindset that is increasingly prevailing among his fellow Israelis and that should be of more concern than whether Van Creveld did or did not say “We.” I am sure, and this is not to be perceived in Van Creveld’s defense, but are there not many Americans who despise our system and everything about it and particularly our imperialistic adventures who from time to time use the term “we,” when speaking about what the US is doing wrong? By doing so, does that mean they support US actions? Of course not.

        All of Israeli society may be considered something of suicide cult to some degree and that is obviously the intent of its founders since one of the main rituals of initiating young Israelis into the IDF is to take them to Masada, the site where Jews at the time allegedly committed suicide rather than become prisoners of the Romans. This time, we are told, and not just by Van Creveld but many ordinary Israeli Jews, (such as my sister’s late brother-in-law who fled from the horrors of the Beverly Hills ghetto and the prospects of joining his father’s furniture business to join the Haganah) is that “next time, we’ll take the whole world with us.”

        I think the prospect of them doing that if pushed is not considered a joke either in Washington or those capitals in Europe that Van Creveld referred to.

  20. American
    June 5, 2011, 2:07 am

    In light of the remarks about Iran on that WH web page —here is some info from Sy Hersh about the 2011 NIE report concluding that there is no conclusive proof or evidence that Iran’s nulcear activites are for weapons.
    You know Obama has seen the NIE.
    But the hell fire and damnation Iran sanctions continue.
    Why are we sanctioning Iran?
    Why does Obama continue this charade?
    All for the sake of politics and elections.
    Some ask a while ago about American interest?….well there aren’t any, there is only politics, parties, elections and money.
    BWTTFGASO

    Here are the major point excerpted:..the main point being obviously the report is being ignored. Just like the reports on Iraq WMD were ignored.

    “By far the most significant revelation in the piece concerns the recently-completed 2011 National Intelligence Estimate (NIE). NIEs represent the consensus judgments of the 16 agencies that make up the U.S. intelligence community, and as such their findings frequently have major political ramifications.”

    ” The biggest revelation is that despite four years of intense political pressure from Iran hawks pushing the intelligence community to renounce the 2007 NIE, the just-released 2011 NIE continues to find no clear evidence of an Iranian nuclear weapons program. According to Hersh, analysts at the military’s Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) in particular have pushed back against this political pressure; in fact, the DIA analysts suggest that Iran’s nuclear weapons program was primarily directed at Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, not Israel, and was abandoned following the fall of Saddam.”

    Typically, a declassified version of the NIE is released for public consumption. This has not been done with the 2011 NIE, however, for reasons that are unclear. It’s possible that the Obama administration fears a political backlash along the lines of the 2007 version, or that it is worried that publicizing the new NIE would undercut its relatively hard-line stance on Iran. Regardless, the fact that an declassified version of the NIE has not been released means that Hersh’s piece is the first time the public is hearing about it.
    link to lobelog.com

    • Kathleen
      June 5, 2011, 9:17 am

      Thanks so much. Was wondering where the 2011 NIE report was. Not a whisper about this report anywhere that I have been listening. Rehm show, Talk of the Nation, MSNBC, Washington Journal etc. Have you seen anything on any of the blogs?

      Why there was never an unclassified version for the public is so interesting. Must have missed this discussion over at Race for Iran

      link to commentarymagazine.com

      “New NIE on Iran: International Pressure Still Working
      J. E. Dyer 02.18.2011 – 2:23 PM

      The newest national intelligence estimate (NIE) on Iran will not be issued in an unclassified version, but administration officials disclosed its key judgments to journalists this week. The new NIE assesses that Iran has resumed some level of work on the weaponization aspect of developing nuclear weapons, a change from the assessment of the 2007 NIE that such work had been halted in 2003. But the new NIE suggests Iran’s leaders are split on whether to actually develop a bomb. The reason for this disunity is assessed to be the effect of international sanctions.

      Interestingly, in 2007, the intelligence community attributed Iran’s work stoppage of 2003 to the effects of international pressure. The 2007 NIE slipped the bonds of intelligence professionalism to issue this policy suggestion:”

    • Kathleen
      June 5, 2011, 9:23 am

      The Aipac attendees kept bringing up Iran outside of the conference

      Jamie Rubin, Christiane Amanpour, Andrea Mitchell, Rachel Maddow, Terri Gross etc can keep repeating the unsubstantiated claims about Iran without a declassified version being released, As well as Bill Kristol, Goldberg, Freidman and so many more who want the US to go after Iran for Israel. Well even if a declassified version was released they would repeat those claims about Iran . Facts do not matter. International reports do not matter to most of these folks

  21. mig
    June 5, 2011, 4:06 am

    To the topic one fine example :

    International law and the problem of enforcement

    By Lawrence Davidson

    5 June 2011

    Lawrence Davidson traces the flaws built into the International Criminal Court that allow some states to get away with crimes to the exceptionalism and superiority complexes afflicting countries such as Russia, China and the US, which is also “tied so closely to the criminal behaviour of the Israelis that it has dedicated itself to protecting Israeli nationals as well”.
    Anthropomorphizing the nation state

    One of the defining characteristics of modern Western culture is individuality. Most people in the West take it for granted that they have the right to free expression and personality development.

    However, in practice, this right is not open ended. It is fine if you want to express yourself as a musician, a painter, a film maker, a writer, etc. Equally legitimate is your desire to express yourself as an engineer, accountant, bus driver or auto mechanic.

    Things become very different if you have a great desire to express yourself as a thief or want to develop your personality as a serial killer. There are rules, in the form of laws, against these latter avenues of expression. If you choose to ignore these laws there are police forces and courts systems that will seek to force you to do so. Another way of saying this is that within states or nations, people usually must confine their right of self expression to activities that do not impinge in a harmful or unwanted way on others in the community

    It was at the end of the 18th century and throughout the19th century that Western leaders of both established nations and aspiring nationalities began to apply this language of self expression to the nation state. In other words, they claimed the same right of self expression for the collective as for the individual. This represented a melding of romanticism and politics that allowed for the anthropomorphizing of the nation. That is, something that was not a human being (the nation) was being treated as if it was.

    The French revolutionaries spoke of “France” as the growing embodiment of human freedom with a mission to export liberty to others, German nationalists such as Herder and Fichte believed that the “German nation” embodied a volkgiest, or “spirit of the people” that had to be free to create a unified and enduring state. Italian, Russian and other nationalists made the same argument for their nationalities or ethnic groups. In each case, the claim that the collective, with its unique cultural personality, had the right to unfettered development led to a serious and continuing problem.
    The problem

    One half of the problem expresses itself in the form of “exceptionalism”. That is the assertion that the nation has rights because its culture and people are, in some way, superior to others and/or because they are “God blessed”. Being superior to others means the nation, striving to realize its uniqueness, has priority claims to a “homeland” and its resources. Those who stand in the way of this goal can be evicted or otherwise persecuted.

    Or, perhaps, the nation in question has evolved a special way of life (democracy, capitalism, communism or some religion) that its leaders feel it must share with others – whether they want this gift or not. So it sends out missionaries and diplomats and then usually follows them up with gunboats.

    Empire building based on a claim of superiority often results. It turns out that almost all great powers, Western and non-Western, have expressed some form of exceptionalism.

    The second half of the problem lies in the fact that these anthropomorphized nation states, with their insistence on the right of self-expression, are acting in an arena of international relations that lacks sufficient rules to limit their behaviour. There is nothing to actually force them to confine their acts of self expression to activities that do not impinge in a harmful or unwanted way on other states or populations.

    Certainly, traditional diplomacy and the use of standard treaties has not been able to do so. Until the end of World War II there were a few Geneva conventions that, with mediocre success, sought to ameliorate the treatment of civilians and prisoners during wartime. Come the world wars of the 20th century even these were ignored. The horrors of World War II gave new impetus to establishing enforceable international rules or laws, including laws against genocide and crimes against humanity, but over time these too have been eroded. And, here again, exceptionalism has been the motivator. We can see how this has taken place by looking at the case of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
    Undermining international law

    The ICC was created in 2002 by the a founding treaty known as the Rome Statute. The court was designed to be an independent body capable of prosecuting major transgressions such as genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    However, there were also conflicting amendments built into the founding document. Among others, the court’s jurisdiction is usually limited to crimes committed by a national of a state that is party to the treaty or committed on such a state’s territory. Nonetheless, the court is also obligated to investigate any case referred to it by the United Nations Security Council, whether the nation or individuals involved are covered by the treaty or not.

    Presently, 114 countries are party to the treaty and thus subject to the jurisdiction of the ICC. Some 34 others, including Russia, have signed the treaty but are yet to ratify it. Thus, they are still outside its jurisdiction. An additional 44 states, including China, have never signed the treaty. And finally, several states, such as the United States and Israel, while having initially adhered to the treaty have subsequently “unsigned” it and thereby withdrawn from its jurisdiction.

    Just what is going on here? It would seem that the leaders of many of the major world powers – China, Russia and the United States – know that they operate in the world on the basis of exceptionalism. They actually are or likely will occupy foreign lands, pursue foreign wars, massacre civilian populations, etc. In other words, the behaviour of their nationals is very likely to transgress the laws against war crimes and crimes against humanity, and perhaps genocide as well. So they seek to stay clear of the ICC’s jurisdiction. And, in the case of the United States, the government is tied so closely to the criminal behaviour of the Israelis that it has dedicated itself to protecting Israeli nationals as well.

    That is why, if you look at the record of ICC prosecutions, all of them have to do with smaller states, mostly African, who have relatively little power and no great power patrons.

    Yet this skewed record gets worse, for the United States and other great powers, which are not even a party to the Rome Statute, have found a way to turn the court into a weapon to be directed at their assumed enemies. They have done so by taking advantage of the treaty clause requiring the ICC to pursue cases referred to it by the UN Security Council. This harmful bit of hypocrisy has recently been examined in an article by Stuart Littlewood, using information and analysis supplied by Dr. David Morrison of Ireland. Here are some of the points they make:

    1. Libya is not a party to the ICC…Yet three months ago the UN Security Council voted unanimously, in Resolution 1970, to refer the situation in Libya to the prosecutor of the ICC. Five of the states that voted for this referral [including the United States] … are not parties to the ICC and don’t accept its jurisdiction. So here we see the US among those forcing Libya to accept the jurisdiction of the ICC, when it refuses to do so itself.

    2. This is a situation that cannot happen to countries like the United States because they can “wield their veto to block any attempt by UN colleagues to extend ICC jurisdiction to their territory”.

    3. David Morrison concludes that “a court with universal jurisdiction is fair. A court whose jurisdiction you, as a state, can choose to accept or reject has some semblance of fairness. But a court like the ICC, whose jurisdiction can be targeted, at the whim of the Security Council, on certain states that have chosen not to accept it, but not others, is grossly unfair.”

    Conclusion

    It is the sad height of hypocrisy when the United States, whose leaders claim to have the secret to world salvation (both politically and economically), not only corrupts international law to target others, but simultaneously goes to extraordinary lengths to protect its own nationals from that same law.

    For instance, if Americans were to commit war crimes in the territories of states party to the Rome Statute, those states could refer the matter to the ICC and the court could then go after US citizens. Washington has negotiated bilateral agreements with over 100 nations that specifically forbid those states from doing just that. No nation can receive military aide from the US without making this pledge.

    This is the behavior of a government that knows it acts in a criminal fashion, be it on a small scale or large, and claims the exceptional right to do so with impunity. The leaders of the US do this because, as so many presidents have told us time and again, the free expression and expansion of the American way of life is best for the world. God has decreed it so. This is extraordinary hubris in action and it is why so much of the rest of the world have, at best, a love-hate relationship with the US and what it claims to stand for.

    The notable English thinker and politician, Edmund Burke (1729-97), once observed that “the greater the power, the more dangerous the abuse”. What can be more powerful, and therefore more abusive, than great powers claiming the right of free expression in an international arena devoid of restraining rules? In a world that is, like ours, mostly lawless.

    link to redress.cc

    • Citizen
      June 5, 2011, 2:23 pm

      The use of anthropomorphic lingo to justify exceptionalism has a history that goes back to the old testament bible at least. A fictional entity named G-D made a contract with a group of humans. Then GOD made a new contract with a second group of human beings–God did this through “his son.” It’s always convenient when you can enlist selected fictional characters on your side, pretending they are more or less like real human beings, preferably characters with extradordinary human attributes. Funny how the least cherished pursuit, poetry, still reigns supreme in the most lethal activites of the contemporary age when most think poetry is some version “Roses are red, violets are blue” on a Hallmark card. Figurative language. Hemingway thought he had ended it. Well, he did in literature, where it started, but the most banal examples of it today are to be found in law and real politics, and repeated endlessly by those very people who deem themselves the most hard-core realists. What difference is there between the characters in the cartoon series Teenage Aqua Hunger Force and the fictional entities that are a part of normal political rhetoric? Meh. SCOTUS says a corporation has the same 1st Amendment rights as me or any American who must take a crap every day. But I can’t live forever, and I actually bleed if you prick me. I don’t have a CEO nor interchangeable shareholders, and those aren’t buried in a tiny share of any mutual fund that is me. Meh.

  22. kalithea
    June 5, 2011, 5:38 am

    Obama’a an idiot; worse, he’s a Zio-stooge.

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