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‘Washington Post’ headline: US must reevaluate aid to Israel

Israel/Palestine
on 94 Comments

Another red line crossed, in the mainstream media. Walter Pincus in the Washington Post calls for U.S. to review all the money we give to Israel. The headline: “US must reevaluate its assistance to Israel.”

As the country reviews its spending on defense and foreign assistance, it is time to examine the funding the United States provides to Israel…. The question for the Obama administration, Congress and, in the end, perhaps the American public, is: Given present economic problems, should the United States supply the money to make up for reductions the Israelis are making in their own defense budget?

Adds a friend: My jaw dropped when I read this on the metro this morning.

Such a headline in a flagship MSM outlet. Pincus has the chops to write something like this since he’s been covering US foreign and military policy since the Vietnam war. An article like this in Wapo even 2 years ago would have been unthinkable. A very tiny oversight: he doesn’t mention the hundreds of millions of dollars tucked into the State Department budget since 1973 for refugee resettlement in Israel. This year it’s $20M. First, Israel is still resettling refugees? Second, a country with the 26th highest GDP can’t pay to resettle refugees in its own country? That’s a scandal.

A bigger scandal is that the International Aid budget is being seriously slashed, percentage wise more than any other budget. Funding to fight poverty and humanitarian assistance. The budget is only a shade over $50B. But aid to Israel remains untouched.

Here’s an excerpt from a 2002 congressional research service report to give you an idea. Link to the full report.

Aid for Soviet and Ethiopian Jewish Refugees “US aid for Soviet and other immigrants in Israel has taken two forms: first, grants through the Department of State refugee and migration account; second, through the housing loan guarantee and Soviet immigrant loan guarantee programs. The United States began providing grants to Israel under the refugee and migration account in 1973. Congress increased the funding level up to $80 million per year in 1992, when the wave of Soviet immigrants crested. H.Rept. 105-401 of November 12, 1997, on H.R. 2159, the foreign operations appropriation bill, stated that the level would decrease to $70 million in FY1999 and to $60 million in FY2000 because the declining numbers of Soviet immigrants reduced Israel’s need. The President requested $60 million for immigrant assistance for FY2003.” end

About Philip Weiss

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94 Responses

  1. Gellian
    October 18, 2011, 9:54 am

    Farewell, Mr. Pincus. It was nice knowing you.

    • seethelight
      October 18, 2011, 11:42 am

      Not so fast. It would have been farewell Mr. Pincus before Mearsheimer & Walt and The Israel Lobby article in London Review of Books in 2006, and the subsequent book. No longer. This is a very welcome change in the landscape.

    • MRW
      October 18, 2011, 12:00 pm

      Pincus is the longtime CIA court stenographer. The significance of this is that it’s a message from the US intel community that this and other things have to cease. This is the message to the Obama admin that the intel community is not going to go along with war with Iran.

      Did everyone catch Brzezinski’s interview on Morning Joe? Don’t miss it. And listen VERY CAREFULLY to what he says, and how he says it. This is a masterful diplomat at work; his choice of words is the issue.
      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036789/#44928287

      • Kathleen
        October 18, 2011, 2:10 pm

        I agree about Pincus “stenographer” Have often wondered just who he is working for. Will go to listen to Brzezinski.

        Ros Lehtinen, Rohberger, Brad Sherman, Ambassador Wendy Sherman, David Cohen were banging hard on the “lets go get Iran” drums during the hearing “Future of U.S. Policy on Iran and Syria” (CSpan)
        Rep Rohberger repeated “Irans nuclear weapons” several times. That guy is a mad man. Of course no one corrected or challenged him. Ros Lehtinen has always been more concerned about Israel’s welfare than the US’s.

        Over A Cspan
        Congress Continues to Examine Iranian and Syrian Threats
        “Washington, DC
        Friday, October 14, 2011

        Obama administration officials are testifying on Capitol Hill for a second day on Iran and its alleged involvement in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States. While President Obama has called for additional sanctions to be placed on Iran, Treasury Undersecretary David Cohen told the House panel that current sanctions are working.

        The House Foreign Affairs Committee held the second of a two-part hearing focusing on the terrorist threats from both Iran and Syria, but most of the hearing focused on Iran. U.S. authorities say the assassination plan involved two men linked to Iran’s security agencies.

        Cohen said he has seen “the economic impact of the sanctions” which has “made it increasingly difficult for Iran to engage in the outside world.”

        But concerns exist in Congress about other countries’ cooperation and business partnerships with Iran, including China and Russia. But Cohen said meetings with the international community have resulted in “a tremendous reduction” of international business transactions with Iran.

        Both witnesses at today’s hearing testified Thursday before the Senate Banking Committee. Cohen testified along with Wendy R. Sherman, undersecretary of State for Political Affairs.”

      • lysias
        October 18, 2011, 3:22 pm

        Front-page article in today’s Washington Post about Iran’s difficulties in its nuclear program. Iran’s nuclear program suffering new setbacks, diplomats and experts say.

        I suspect it is not a coincidence that this article appeared the same day as Pincus’s column.

      • Kathleen
        October 20, 2011, 10:28 am

        Iran hammering all over the place. MSNBC, CNN, CSpan Washington Journal, local and national newspapers. No challenges

      • lysias
        October 18, 2011, 3:18 pm

        Exactly. A message from the intel community.

        What was the new Director of Central Intelligence, Petraeus, saying about the Israel/Palestine conflict a year or so ago?

      • Henry Norr
        October 18, 2011, 3:55 pm

        MRW’s link to Brzezinski on Morning Joe doesn’t work now, probably because they moved the clip. I think this is now the correct location for the interview, which is indeed interesting.

      • MRW
        October 18, 2011, 5:26 pm

        Thanks, Henry. I hope they put up a transcript. Brzezinski’s speech in Normandy accepting the prize is another prize.

      • MRW
        October 18, 2011, 5:42 pm

        The original link still works for me. You just have to listen to an ad.

      • seafoid
        October 18, 2011, 4:29 pm

        Wow MRW. Amazing piece. The Republican party is morally bankrupt. Brzezinski pulls no punches. The debates are just soundbites.

        And Israel is so much part of the rotten power structure.

      • MRW
        October 18, 2011, 5:30 pm

        I know, seafoid. Brzezinski (learning to spell his name, now) mops up the Republican presidential hopefuls, skewers the ignorance of Americans, and the diplomatic language he uses to describe the Zionist hold on America is a great lesson in experienced professional statescraft.

        Mika’s hint that she’s looking forward to her father’s new book was another tell.

      • thetumta
        October 18, 2011, 8:21 pm

        It’s getting much bigger than Palestine. Watch it. If your interested, see what he said previously about what an unprovoked Israeli attack on Iran means for our future(Americans) and his recommended response.
        Hej!
        P.S. Phil, I hope you don’t delete this one. Pretty innocuous.

      • mudder
        October 18, 2011, 9:55 pm

        Zbig on Morning Joe?!? I hope he sent daughter Mika to the corner for a time-out.

    • irmep
      October 18, 2011, 3:30 pm

      Walter Pincus was lead investigator for Senator J. W. Fulbright’s hearings on the activities of the agents of foreign principles back in the early 1960s. He knew the score way back then. Consider the young lion’s outraged memo to Fulbright (declassified in 2010) complaining about how Israel was basically writing legislation for Congress while simultaneously censoring the key Fulbright findings about Israeli agents influencing the US through money laundering and subterfuge.

      http://www.irmep.org/ila/09261963pincus.pdf (Israel Lobby Archive)

      “I think this is a good example of a foreign principal — the Israeli Government– using the U.S. Senate to promote its aims.”

      Reading Pincus today, you’d think he’d forgotten everything he learned at Fulbright’s knee. What a shame.

      GFS

      • MRW
        October 18, 2011, 5:36 pm

        Grant, I think he forgot it as soon as Fulbright was outta’ there. Job protection. He carved out his little niche. [I can’t remember the name of the womanizing NYC anchor–John Something?–who told me about Pincus years ago over too many late night drinks; I plied him with them.] But this article would never have been published, especially with that headline, without behind-the-scenes maneuvering. This was an agency message.

        Thanks for the link, and all the fabulous work you do.

      • Scott
        October 18, 2011, 8:25 pm

        Interesting about Moshe Decter (the named lobbyist in Pincus’s 1963 report). He was Midge’s first husband, and she’s kept the name.

      • Kathleen
        October 20, 2011, 10:40 am

        Grant…Another big thanks for all you do for justice

  2. Bill in Maryland
    October 18, 2011, 10:04 am

    Mr. Pincus is seen as someone very close to the nation’s intelligence and defense establishment. At a time the Pentagon budget may be on the chopping block, perhaps he is reflecting some of their envy/ resentment that the huge US subsidies for the Israeli military seem politically untouchable.

  3. DBG
    October 18, 2011, 10:06 am

    the US isn’t increasing aid to Israel, Pincus is being misleading.

    • annie
      October 18, 2011, 10:14 am

      what do you mean? we increase it every year. have you checked out stop 30 billion yet? every time we hand them another 3 billion we increase it, or is that passe in your mind?

      • DBG
        October 18, 2011, 10:17 am

        annie, the 3 billion hasn’t increased since Israel said they were cutting spending has it?

        should the United States supply the money to make up for reductions the Israelis are making in their own defense budget

      • annie
        October 18, 2011, 10:32 am

        dbg, are you implying the 3 billion plus we plan on giving israel every year for the next decade as we become poorer and poorer and more mired in debt will not be spent by israel making up for any of the planned reductions in their defense budget? do you think israel doesn’t account for the billions we give them year after year when they plan cuts for themselves?

        surely you jest. and didn’t we just give them an extra bonus this year, or was it last?

      • DBG
        October 18, 2011, 10:36 am

        making up for something suggests an increase, there is no increase. that is all I am saying, nothing more, nothing less.

      • annie
        October 18, 2011, 10:44 am

        that depends on ones definition of increase. the way i look at it every year we give israel money is a year we increase the total amount we have given them. does our debt increase when we give them money? if in ten years we give them 30 billion and the first year we give them 3 does the next 27 billion amount to an increase? of course.

      • Woody Tanaka
        October 18, 2011, 10:46 am

        “making up for something suggests an increase”

        No it doesn’t. It merely suggests that one thing (American taxpayer money) is being used in place of another (Israeli deadbeats’ money).

      • American
        October 18, 2011, 10:48 am

        Doesn’t matter DGB, we shouldn’t be giving Israel any aid. And the 3 billion a year is just the public amount and the tip of the iceberg.
        Give me one good reason US taxpayers should support Israel….and don’t say because it’s a security asset to the US…that’s been debunked time and again by every military and FP expert.
        While so many American are unemployed and suffering we give Israel, who pays a large %centage of their religious not to work?
        Some day this worm is going to turn and the billlions the zionist and Israel have sucked out of us won’t be worth it to them in the end.

      • annie
        October 18, 2011, 10:48 am

        yeah, i get what you are saying. you want to frame the 3 billion a year as ‘normal’ and you want americans to think that way too, therefore the additional 3 we give them the next year and the year after that is also ‘normal’, basically like nothing. no increase etc etc. well i want the opposite. ever cent hurts our country year after year. israel thinks it can afford to make cuts because of us. it’s bs. it’s us who should be making the cuts and israel who should be stepping up to the plate and spending their expansion costs (settlements) on their defense. or better yet end their occupation altogether and start spending the money developing inside, on their side of the green line.

      • DBG
        October 18, 2011, 10:49 am

        LOL, whatever you say Annie, you are right.

      • annie
        October 18, 2011, 10:52 am

        of course i’m right.

      • Ellen
        October 18, 2011, 10:54 am

        DBG, the 3+ billion marked for “aid” to Israel does not count the:

        “For example, the House and the Senate added $129.6 million to the $106.1 million the Obama administration had in the fiscal 2012 budget for these programs. In the 2011 bill, Congress added $205 million for the Iron Dome system, which defends against short-range rockets and mortars. That was on top of $200 million the administration sought for the U.S. contribution to other cooperative missile-defense systems.” as Pincus writes.

        Nor does it even begin to touch on all the US tax deductible donations sent to Israeli NGOs every year.

        Whatever we want to call it, billions and billions are sent to Israel by the US tax payer every year, and this has only increased over the last decades.

        Pincus might openly question this because the gig is not good for Israel’s long term survival. It will destroy Israel. Just as showering your adult children with money will not help them survive in the world once you are too old and feeble to help your kids.

      • Mooser
        October 18, 2011, 12:01 pm

        “that is all I am saying, nothing”

        That’s right, and glad to hear you finally admit it.

      • DBG
        October 18, 2011, 12:04 pm

        wow Mooser, your brain must have been in over drive for the epic burn.

      • iamuglow
        October 18, 2011, 12:05 pm

        For the last couple of years they have sending a few hundred million extra over to Israe for their ‘Iron dome’ project.

        “A senior administration official set the figure at $205 million and said it was over and above the $3 billion that the United States annually allocates to Israel in defense assistance.”

        http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/05/13/2394806/obama-authorizes-205-million-for-iron-dome

        They also decided to store 800 million dollars in military equipment in Israel last year.

        “U.S. to store $800m in military gear in Israel
        Deal allows Israel to use U.S. ordnance in case of emergency; Official: Move reflects U.S. gov’t commitment to Israel’s security. ”

        http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/u-s-to-store-800m-in-military-gear-in-israel-1.261162

        Saying ‘there is no increase ‘ is a lie. That is all I am saying, nothing more, nothing less.

      • Mooser
        October 18, 2011, 12:25 pm

        Nope, just a spur of the moment sort of insult.
        But then again, it just shows how sadistic I am. Here you are, trapped at a website you hate and think is full of falsities, and you can’t get away. I should have more compassion.

        And I still wonder how Phil and Adam get away with it. Isn’t it obvious to the entire world that you wouldn’t be here unless you are coerced?

      • yourstruly
        October 18, 2011, 12:26 pm

        no increase? the settler entity shouldn’t receive one cent

      • Kathleen
        October 18, 2011, 2:45 pm

        The “in kind” interest free loans that Israel does not pay back etc etc. The US gives Israel far more than 3 billion. They also get that in one package, not broken up the way other countries who receive aid do.

        I believe the US has to borrow when they give Israel their welfare payment all at once and the US has to pay interest on that money.

      • Kathleen
        October 18, 2011, 2:46 pm

        yep

      • American
        October 18, 2011, 3:15 pm

        “Nor does it even begin to touch on all the US tax deductible donations sent to Israeli NGOs every year”

        Has anyone ever considered or tried to sue the IRS or whoever for this discrimination? …allowing donations to Isr completly tax free while all other charity donations by taxpayers are subject to a formular?
        Not fair…total discrimination against anyone not a Israel donor.

      • stevieb
        October 18, 2011, 6:05 pm

        Yes Annie is right. Although I’d just add that all that money over the years has been used to prop up a criminal state for 40 odd years – supporting an illegal military occupation of what should be a sovereign Palestinian state. A criminal occupation that the U.S has acknowleged in ‘supporting’ a Palestinian state on pre-1967 borders.

        ALL funding to Israel needs to be halted until it fulfils it’s obligations under international law. Which, in a properly functioning U.S legal system, would probably require suspending all foreign aid to Israel and the prosecution of various Israeli war criminals who carried out these crimes with American financial support..

      • Walid
        October 18, 2011, 8:12 pm

        Ellen, to that running tab of “secret” aid money that the US donates to Israel, you can add the $1.1 billion the US has spent in the last 7 years providing 500 million gallons of FREE fuel for Israel’s jets, helicopters and tanks. And all this while Israel was refining its own at Haifa and exporting it at a profit to other countries.This is really more or less of a secret since it goes throught the books of the Defense Dept’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS). Israel gets 17 times more FMS aid than the total aid received by all other countries combined. Since Israel can rely on this perpetual handout from the US, it recently privatized its Haifa refineries for $2billion.

        Another 1975 Kissinger aid item that’s hidden in the books and discretely renewed every 5 years is the guarantee that the US provides to Israel that it would stockpile oil reserves at its (US) cost to meet Israel’s needs in case Israel’s supplies run out. But in this eventuality, Israel would pay for it and for shipping it, but the actual cost of storage is on the US and this represents hundreds of millios that are tied up by the US for this item.

        There are dozens of other artifices of aid to Israel that are shoved in various books to keep the US taxpayers in the dark about them.

        http://www.salon.com/2009/01/16/gaza_invasion/

      • Hostage
        October 18, 2011, 10:05 pm

        DBG, there have been unscheduled increases in the 2011 and 2012 budgets for anti-missile technology. For example, Ynet reported that according to an agreement between the US and Israel for the next 10 years, 2011 aid was slated to grow to $3 billion (from $2.77 billion) in addition to an extra $205 million for the development of the Iron Dome system.
        http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4055093,00.html

        The aid is scheduled to increase another $150 million in fiscal year 2013, and stay at that level until 2018. In that same time frame the Congress is putting the axe to trillions of dollars in US domestic and foreign aid programs.

      • James
        October 18, 2011, 10:08 pm

        hey american, if you can respond to a post i left on the sanitation thread, i’d appreciate it.. thanks –

      • DBG
        October 18, 2011, 11:07 pm

        Hostage, you think Rafael’s partnership w/ Raytheon had anything to do with that?

        There is no other technology in the world like Iron Dome, damn right America is investing in it.

      • Hostage
        October 19, 2011, 12:22 am

        There is no other technology in the world like Iron Dome, damn right America is investing in it.

        Don’t be naive. Anti-missile technology is not new. Using it on small conventional rockets is prohibitively expensive overkill. In any event, the US government isn’t “investing” in it. It’s just giving away US tax dollars in exchange for nothing and funding development of yet another system for Israelis to peddle commercially on the international arms market.

      • Citizen
        October 19, 2011, 5:58 am

        How much does our annual underwritng of Israel’s debt add to the welfare mix? Our credit rating went down, and Israel’s went up.

        On CNN last night, the question of aid to Israel was directly asked. All GOP candidates said they wouldn’t cut it, Bachmann being the most explicit. Single exception was Ron Paul, who said foreign aid should be cut across the board. No exceptions.

      • MRW
        October 18, 2011, 6:05 pm

        $3 billion is just one part of it. That’s the military spending number. There are the loan guarantees and all sorts of other funds that go unreported except for one casual mention in a local paper.

      • Citizen
        October 19, 2011, 6:00 am

        I saw a figure of minimum 5 -6 billion total annual aid to Israel.

      • split
        October 19, 2011, 9:55 am

        Below few of them ,…
        ———————————–
        and all sorts of other funds that go unreported

        http://www.richardsilverstein.com/tikun_olam/2011/07/08/outgoing-ambassador-u-s-provided-200-million-for-iron-dome/

  4. Dan Crowther
    October 18, 2011, 10:19 am

    David Petraeus to Walter Pincus: We have decided it is ok to talk about US Aid to Israel.

    Walter Pincus: Ok, but Im going to need an exclusive with you shortly thereafter.

    Look for a David “Israeli intransigence could cost American lives” Petraeus expose sometime soon.

    • Philip Weiss
      October 18, 2011, 10:25 am

      you are way too cynical for this website dan!
      i guess we have a wager?

      • Dan Crowther
        October 18, 2011, 10:37 am

        Phil,

        HAHA. Sure. I mean, there are lobbies, and then there is the Defense Lobby.

      • American
        October 18, 2011, 10:49 am

        Someone tell Occupy Wall Street to add ‘Down with JINSA’ to their signs.

      • Dan Crowther
        October 18, 2011, 2:59 pm

        Phil,

        Interesting article on Petraeus’ CIA from Ray Mcgovern
        http://therealnews.com/t2/component/content/article/57-ray-mcgovern/772-petraeuss-cia-fuels-iran-murder-plot

        Excerpt:

        This can get very dangerous in a hurry. Israel’s leaders would require but the flimsiest of nihil obstat to encourage them to provoke hostilities with Iran. Netanyahu and his colleagues would expect the Obamas, Holders, and Petraeuses of this world to be willing to “fix the intelligence and facts” (a la Iraq) to “justify” such an attack.

        The Israeli leaders would risk sucking the United States into the kind of war with Iran that, short of a massive commitment of resources or a few tactical nuclear weapons, the U.S. and Israel could almost surely not win. It would be the kind of war that would make Iraq and Afghanistan look like minor skirmishes.

        ME:

        So, Panetta makes two trips to Israel in short order, Netanyahu declares more settlements, The Iranian Plot gets put out there, and now the Post is questioning aid to Israel.

        I cant help but thinking that the aid to Israel article is a way to deflect from the larger game being played – namely, petraeus and american intelligence is looking for anyway possible to justify an attack on Iran – but they want the Israeli’s to keep their heads down until they are ready. This is a shot across the Likud’s bow, telling them to chill out.

    • Kathleen
      October 18, 2011, 2:41 pm

      “could” has

  5. POA
    October 18, 2011, 11:04 am

    As a finish carpenter, high end, in the Central Valley of California, I deal with oil and agri money. HUGE wealth is to be found around Bakersfield, all the way up to and including Fresno, and Sacramento. People do not realize the extent of the wealth that the agricultural heavies enjoy. Also, although California is touted as a “liberal leftist” state, I can assure you that Central Cal is a hotbed of extremely wealthy right wing conservatives.

    Point being? Daily, I am amazed at the depth of the ignorance intelligent and successful people possess about our relationship with Israel, and the activities, policies, and actions that Israel engages in.

    The narrative is the enabler. The narrative MUST be changed if the actual policies are to change. Public rhetorical push back, particularly by those that have shown an inclination to tell the truth, is imperative. Case in point, Petraeus. Silenced since his intitial comments on the corrosive effect Israel has on our security and world standing, he opened the door, only to shut it again when it became clear that his carreer was threatended by his bold honesty. Obama is another such indicator of how completely the zionist narrative has been able to drown out any public criticism of Israel, and our relationship with Israel. And how many journalists have gone down in flames for daring to report the truth?

    Its changing. Israel, and the truth, are becoming acceptable targets for debate. Its about time.

    But more important than celebrating on blogs such as this one, is our work as individuals. Opening up the debate on our jobsites, in our offices, our churches, at our children’s soccer games and little league meetings, and around our dinner tables is the REAL and EFFECTIVE manner in which this narrative will change, and the truth will finally out.

    I have found my clientele, conservative and liberal alike, open to a fresh narrative, and hungry for facts. They are beginning to question the wisdom of Washington, in ALL areas of debate. And, they are beginning to see the partisan and special interest-driven nature of our modern day media. Because the media says so is no longer an accepted premise, whether they are MSNBC viewers, or Fox viewers.

    There are cracks in the ediface. Its up to you, as individuals, to bring it down.

    • Mooser
      October 18, 2011, 12:03 pm

      “There are cracks in the ediface.”

      That’s why Dylan wrote “Like a Rolling Stone”.

    • Citizen
      October 19, 2011, 6:11 am

      POA, on the lower end of carpentry, try talking to any Chrisian fundy with a personal relationship with Jesus, especially the women. If they had their wish, ALL our foreign aid would go to Israel, and they would send everybody’s kids and their kids with boots on to defend Israel at any time. Like Bachmann, says, “God told me so.”
      And there’s plenty of Dicks and Janes in the heartland who would too, to curb onslaught of Sharia law in US.

  6. hophmi
    October 18, 2011, 11:04 am

    What red line, exactly?

    Your excerpt is misleading. Pincus is not calling for an end to Israel aid. He’s asking whether it makes sense for Congress to earmark funds that Israel has no plans to spend. It makes enough sense without your political spin.

    • Chu
      October 18, 2011, 11:34 am

      Yeah, it’s not all the money on the table, it’s money they won’t spend.
      Pincus, ends the article with one great fizzle.

      • Mooser
        October 18, 2011, 12:27 pm

        “Pincus, ends the article with one great fizzle.”

        Yup, he asks the question, but he sure as hell won’t answer it. Seems like he’s basically rolling out the red carpet for hasbara.

      • Chu
        October 18, 2011, 1:23 pm

        he’s not saying much…
        It’s like donating a new car to your colleague and someone asks, should we still give them the GPS unit if they’re not going to use it.

      • MarkF
        October 18, 2011, 3:41 pm

        Right on Chu.

        Must be nice – they don’t even spend all the money we give them. I mean, not like we need the money here in the states or anything.

  7. ehrens
    October 18, 2011, 11:43 am

    In 2009 the United States gave away $11 billion dollars of direct foreign military aid (http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s1299.pdf) to dozens of foreign militaries.

    If you look at the figures, there were only eight countries which received more than $100 million: Afghanistan ($5.7 billion), Israel ($2.38 billion), Egypt ($1.3), Pakistan ($429 million), Jordan ($238 million), all of Europe combined ($201 million), and Somalia ($102 million).

    Afghanistan represents 53% of all American military foreign aid. Israel gets 22% — for doing what? The rest of U.S. allies get the remaining 25%.

    I think Pincus makes an excellent point.

    • tod
      October 18, 2011, 2:04 pm

      That’s interesting on many counts.
      First is funny how Afganistan is listed as “foreign aid”, when the money is spent for by American companies, for the US.
      Second, how much of the money for Egypt and Jordan is spent so they get along with Israel? I’ll bet most of it :D

  8. Richard Witty
    October 18, 2011, 1:25 pm

    I’ll bet Mr. Pincus is very supportive of Barney Frank’s efforts.

  9. Kathleen
    October 18, 2011, 2:14 pm

    One more thing that Israel gets away with is not having to categorize where they spend US aid…itemize the way other nations that the US gives money to. Reporting just where the money is spent. At the very least they should demand that funds not be spent on illegal settlements, wall building, illegal housing in E Jerusalem. The very least

    • American
      October 18, 2011, 2:57 pm

      Another thing they get away with is receiving the billions “up front”….they transfer it to US securities and we [pay them interest….meaning we paying them interest on money we gave them….LOL….couldn’t make up a better con game than this.

    • Citizen
      October 19, 2011, 6:30 am

      Israel is the only country the US allows to treat its aid as fungible, sans strings, and with upfront interest commencing early each year. Uncle Sam borrows the cash from China at interest, gives it to Israel, and pays Israel interest on it.

  10. DICKERSON3870
    October 18, 2011, 2:25 pm

    RE: “A bigger scandal is that the International Aid budget is being seriously slashed, percentage wise more than any other budget. Funding to fight poverty and humanitarian assistance.” ~ Weiss

    FOR INSTANCE: Note what Batista protégé, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R- FL) is doing. She and her mentor are truly the very best friends that the downtrodden have ever had. Bar none!
    AN EXAMPLE OF ILEANA’S RECENT HANDIWORK: House Foreign Affairs Committee Votes To Defund UNICEFhttp://thinkprogress.org/security/2011/10/14/343741/house-foreign-affairs-committee-votes-to-defund-unicef/

    P.S. Anyone who says that there is something wrong with Ros-Lehtinen’s being a stooge for AIPAC is either an anti-Semite or a self-hating Jew! And, you don’t get to take your pick. As Goebbels supposedly told told the German director Fritz Lang (who had one Jewish parent, his mother): “We decide who is Jewish.” That “we” being the “royal we” which in Germany at that time meant Der Fuhrer and his thugs. Ergo, “we” decide who is a self-hating Jew, and who is an anti-Semite.

    P.P.S. Don’t I look great in my dress uniform with my humongous military cap/hat? Like a proud peacock! Dressing like this really messes with your mind. I’ve fallen madly in love with my “bad” self (and Ileana, of course)! I am so on a ‘power trip’.

    • lysias
      October 18, 2011, 3:37 pm

      Speaking of who is a Jew, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s mother Amanda Ros (née Adato) was Jewish. R.I.P Amanda Ros, Mother of Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen:

      Amanda Adato was born in Cuba to Jewish parents who had immigrated from Turkey. At the age of 19 she married Enrique Ros, a catholic. Though Ros-Lehtinen notes that some felt the marriage wouldn’t last because of their mixed faiths the union lasted 65 years up until her death.

  11. Kathleen
    October 18, 2011, 2:39 pm

    Pincus testified in the Plame outing. I attended the trial for just over a week. Did not get to hear Pincus’s testimony
    “Libby Prosecutor Focuses on CIA Officer’s Status
    Network NewsX Profile

    By Walter Pincus
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Monday, May 22, 2006

    The classified status of the identity of former CIA officer Valerie Plame will be a key element in any trial of I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby, Vice President Cheney’s former chief of staff, according to special counsel Patrick J. Fitzgerald.

    Fitzgerald has said that at trial he plans to show that Libby knew Plame’s employment at the CIA was classified and that he lied to the grand jury when he said he had learned from NBC News’s Tim Russert that Plame, the wife of former ambassador Joseph C. Wilson IV, worked for the agency.

    Libby’s lawyers have said their client did not know that Plame’s job at the CIA was classified, and therefore he had no reason to remember conversations about her or lie about them to the grand jury. “

  12. DICKERSON3870
    October 18, 2011, 2:40 pm

    RE: “As the country reviews its spending on defense and foreign assistance, it is time to examine the funding the United States provides to Israel…” ~ Pincus

    MY COMMENT: Anti-Semite! …Or perhaps he’s a self-hating Jew…Pincus? Pin…cus? Walter? Hmm. I’ll have to get back to you on that.
    Now, where is that dossier on Philip Weiss? We’re going to get that bastard! We’ll make an example out of him that those BDS-loving types will long remember.

  13. American
    October 18, 2011, 3:28 pm

    I don’t know Pincus’s real motivation.
    I noticed he mentioned in the “Iran threat” in the second paragraph.
    But overall the headline of the article makes it a plus.
    A significant number of newspaper readers ‘skim”…they never get beyond the headline.
    Those that do read a article dealing with Israel are FP followers that are either pro or anti Israel or anti foreign aid period.
    So I’d say this, by the headline alone, is a red line crosser.

  14. Justice Please
    October 18, 2011, 4:44 pm

    All these alleged game changers about the I/P debate, if true, sadly raise the possibility that Mossad executes a false-flag attack against American or other Western targets, to be blamed on Muslims/Arabs/Palestinians. Like the luckily failed bombing in Egypt aka the Lavon affair.

    Such an attack would roll back much of theses purported game changes.

    • lysias
      October 18, 2011, 5:03 pm

      Brit newsman Peter Hounam argued in his book Operation Cyanide that the Israeli attack on the USS Liberty was a foiled false-flag attack, that the Israelis and LBJ planned to blame the Egyptians for the attack after the Liberty had been sunk with all hands lost. When the Liberty succeeded in getting off an SOS message, according to this account, the plot was foiled.

      • lysias
        October 18, 2011, 6:44 pm

        Retired Admiral Mullen seems to share Hounam’s interpretation of the attack on the USS Liberty: ADM. MULLEN WARNS ISRAEL: NO FALSE-FLAG INCIDENT (SUPPORT FOR CONSPIRACY THEORY ABOUT USS LIBERTY?) (from Philip Giraldi’s column in the American Conservative, May 1, 2010 issue):

        The National Security Council is increasingly concerned that Israel might attempt to involve the United States in a war against Iran. It has gamed two possible scenarios. The first involves a straightforward Israeli air attack on Iranian targets, inviting retaliation by Tehran against U.S. forces in the region. The United States’ only way to stop such a development would be to shoot down the Israeli aircraft as they cross Iraqi airspace, a step that President Obama could not possibly survive politically. The second scenario is that the Israelis might stage a false-flag clandestine operation, attacking U.S. forces in the Persian Gulf while disguised as Iranian to bring about a conflict in which Israel would ostensibly be uninvolved. As Israel has a history of such operations and there have been some intelligence indicators that its government might be thinking that way, this possibility is being taken seriously. Joint Chiefs Chairman Mike Mullen has repeatedly told the Israeli government in private and in the strongest terms that the U.S. does not want a war with Iran, and, based on intelligence suggesting a possible false-flag operation, has specifically warned that the Pentagon will be watching for a USS Liberty scenario. Mullen’s warning was intended to convey that Washington would respond by exposing Israeli involvement if such an attack were to take place. The Liberty was deliberately attacked by unmarked Israeli aircraft and warships in June 1967, killing 34 American sailors and Marines, but a cover-up inquiry engineered by President Lyndon Johnson concluded that the attack had been a case of mistaken identity.

        Retired CIA officer Philip Giraldi regularly indicates in his column that he continues to be informed by people in the intelligence community.

    • POA
      October 18, 2011, 10:12 pm

      “Such an attack would roll back much of theses purported game changes”

      Bingo.

      And judging from Israel’s past tactics and policies, such a scenario is not a “possibility”.

      Instead, it is an impending and inevitable action on their part.

  15. split
    October 18, 2011, 5:29 pm

    US isn’t increasing aid to Israel? What do you call an additional $205 million we contributed to Iron Dome ? ,…

  16. justicewillprevail
    October 18, 2011, 6:10 pm

    Simon Tisdall, in The Guardian, reports:

    “In America, it’s not only commentators who are in a stew. According to author Jeffrey Goldberg, Robert Gates – the respected former US defence secretary and CIA chief – told Obama officials this summer that Netanyahu menaced US interests. “Gates coldly laid out the many steps the administration has taken to guarantee Israel’s security – access to top-quality weapons, assistance developing missile-defence systems, high-level intelligence sharing – and then stated bluntly that the US has received nothing in return, particularly with regard to the peace process,” Goldberg reported.

    “Gates argued to the president directly that Netanyahu is not only ungrateful, but also endangering his country by refusing to grapple with Israel’s growing isolation and with the demographic challenges it faces if it keeps control of the West Bank.”

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/oct/18/gilad-shalit-binyamin-netanyahu

  17. justicewillprevail
    October 18, 2011, 6:58 pm

    Israel, as we all know, has the US taxpayer over a barrel, and is gleefully emptying his pockets in order to keep them in the style to which they are accustomed (free healthcare, subsidised housing, any amount of military toys). And they have a paid network of cronies, dual citizens and government agents to keep it that way. Nice work, Nini, means you don’t have to get a proper job, as long as you have a protection racket to run.

  18. gingershot
    October 18, 2011, 7:32 pm

    Israel and her Neocons could have just tried to pull off a false flag operation against the US – is so then it is treason (the Israeli Lobby) or a false flag operation (Israel) and it will be essentially the same thing they did with their Iraqi ‘Curveball’ and the ‘Yellowcake Uranium Fraud’ to lie us into Iraq

    Check this out from the NYT and other sources – would a ‘friend’ get America to attack first Iraq and then Iran for Israel? No way…

    Apparently the Iranian Quds force guy Gholam Shakuri has been visiting ‘Neocon and Israel Central’ at the MEK Camp in Kurdistan-Iraq (Camp Ashraf ) as well as in WASHINGTON, DC

    Currently being reported in the NYTimes http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/19/world/middleeast/iran-says-saudi-plot-defendant-belongs-to-exile-group.html
    and below
    http://www.mehrnews.com/en/NewsPrint.aspx?NewsID=1436036

    This would point to an Israeli/Neocon connection on the Iranian side of the equation – if the IsraelIS themselves can be nailed it is essentially a false flag op against the US
    =
    Interpol has found new evidence showing that the number two suspect in connection with the alleged Iranian government’s involvement in a plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to Washington is a key member of the terrorist Mojahedin Khalq Organization (MKO), the Mehr News Agency has learnt.
    Gholam Shakuri was last seen in Washington and Camp Ashraf in Iraq where MKO members are based.
    The person in question has been travelling to different countries under the names of Ali Shakuri/Gholam Shakuri/Gholam-Hossein Shakuri by using fake passports including forged Iranian passports. One passport used by the person was issued on 30/11/2006 in Washington. The passport number was K10295631.

    • annie
      October 18, 2011, 7:46 pm

      the mok is the same as the MEK. i wonder why the nyt article didn’t just call it the MEK? still, i doubt even they are that stupid.

      • gingershot
        October 18, 2011, 8:30 pm

        Here’s a Rosetta Stone I found for ‘MEK’, Annie – we can take our pick of any of the 5 aka’s we want.

        ‘Mojahedin Khalq’ aka MEK = MKO = MOK = ‘Rajavi Cult’ – take your pick

        Perhaps since the Neocons and the rest of the Israeli Lobby have been so promiently in the news of late trying so hard (oh yeah, plot thickening) to get the ‘MEK’ delisted from their terror designation for HELPING TAKE OVER the American Embassy in Iran in the ’70’s (gotta love it!) – maybe the NYT thought splashing ‘MEK’ all over the article in a way that people can easily connect the dots would be ‘counterproductive’ to rehabilitating MEK’s image.

        Can you imagine if MEK gets tagged for this and a Neocon false flag operation is unravelled – and what that will do for the whole Israeli Special Forces and US Special Forces operating base for clandestine attacks within Iran? It would be like unravelling the Niger Uranium Hoax with Micahel Ledeen and his connections to Israeli Intelligence – and finally getting the Israeli Lobby (and Israel) blamed for the the false flag operation lying us into Iraq.

        Seymour Hersh: US Training Jondollah and MEK for Bombing preparation
        ‘Preparing the Battlefield’
        http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2008/07/07/080707fa_fact_hersh

        Hopefully this whole false flag farce with Iran can be turned and used to STOP the coming Israeli/US attack on Iran – unbelieveable…

      • annie
        October 19, 2011, 12:00 am

        maybe the NYT thought splashing ‘MEK’ all over the article in a way that people can easily connect the dots would be ‘counterproductive’ to rehabilitating MEK’s image.

        yyyyyep

    • ToivoS
      October 18, 2011, 8:15 pm

      This is an exciting development. I suggested that if this was a false flag operation, then MEK was the most likely culprit. If true it is going to make Obama, Clinton, and Holder the butt of jokes galore — the reincarnation of the three stooges. If interpol had been tracking this guy, then wouldn’t it have been natural for the DOJ to also know — arn’t we linked into that organization?

      • annie
        October 20, 2011, 1:22 pm

        check this out:Former Mujahadeen Khalq Leader Confirms Alleged Iran Terror Plot Conspirator Affiliated with MEK

        a former high-ranking MEK leader, Massoud Khodabandeh (he has allowed me to use his name), writing in the Gulf2000 listserv, confirmed that Shakuri is in fact an MEK member. He cautions that there may be more than one Gholam Shakuri, and the one who is the MEK member may not be the same Shakuri the U.S. has named. While this may be true, this new development moves Shakuri a lot closer to being MEK than being IRG. And moves the entire U.S. account of this supposed crime closer to the trash heap.

        it moves the US account closer to the trash heap but raises interesting stakes, stakes of a very sloppy false flag by a group known to be funded by US/IS.

      • DBG
        October 20, 2011, 1:34 pm

        writing in the Gulf2000 listserv,

        LOL! great source Annie!

  19. dbroncos
    October 18, 2011, 8:27 pm

    As I understand it, Israelis are the only recipients of American foreign aid (cash payments) who are not required to spend it on specific projects. They receive a lump sum once a year and if they are not of a mind to spend it right away they are permitted to invest it and enjoy a return on their dollar, courtesy of American tax payers.

  20. thetumta
    October 18, 2011, 8:42 pm

    What is the end game? It was last rehearsed in October 1973. I’ll leave it to you to run it down. Shouldn’t be too hard, if your interested(5). Two days teetering on oblivion and those where with seemingly much more reasonable Israelis leaders with better options. That they were panicked into the corner on facing their own handiwork was not remarkable. That they weren’t stopped dead in their tracks by an American President was the beginning of the end we’re now facing. 5 Dolphins and 200 warheads later with a totally compromised Presidency and Congress. It not looking good.
    Hej!

  21. Nevada Ned
    October 19, 2011, 12:44 am

    Yes, Walter Pincus has excellent Establishment credentials (CIA).
    Pincus did not act alone: Mearsheimer and Walt are also very much members of the Establishment, documenting the activies and power of the Israel Lobby.
    And Jimmy Carter’s inflammatory book also. Normally ex-Presidents don’t stir up controversy. Ditto Roger Cohen’s articles in the NYT.

    Putting this all together: a significant fraction of the US Establishment thinks that US subservience to the Israelis and their lobby is excessive, and harmful to US interests. They call for re-evaluating the US/Israeli “special relationship”. This doesn’t mean “abandoning” Israel, but moving towards an even-handed policy.
    Their argument, in part, is that US support for Israel is generating fury in the Arab “street”. Until spring 2011, however, the Arab “street” could be safely ignored. Mubarak ran things in Egypt, and the Egyptian masses were ignored.
    No longer!

    • Ellen
      October 19, 2011, 12:41 pm

      Nevada,

      In the 1940 and 50’s there was a significant fraction of the US Governing Establishment that reasonably argued that it was not at all in the long term interests of the US to build up, let alone arm, a Zionist enterprise in the ME. It was thought to be a disaster. State Department professionals were strongly against it. (Research the Princeton Wilson Center archives) They were snuffed out.

      That so many, so high understood the long term damage to the US (and even to a sustainability of Israel) did not change a thing.

      What do we call it? “When fools rush in?”

      I am pessimistic. Nothing will change until both the US and Israel go off the ledge together. And then it will not matter.

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