Ten reasons why AIPAC is so dangerous

ActivismIsrael/PalestineUS Politics
on 121 Comments
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Graphic from the Occupy AIPAC website – www.occupyaipac.org

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) is one of the most powerful lobby organizations in the country. AIPAC’s clout helps fuel a never-ending cycle of violence in the Middle East.

Here are ten reasons why AIPAC is so dangerous.

1. AIPAC is lobbying Congress to promote a military confrontation with Iran. AIPAC – like the Israeli government – is demanding that the U.S. attack Iran militarily to prevent Iran from having the technological capacity to produce nuclear weapons, even though U.S. officials say Iran isn’t trying to build a weapon (and even though Israel has hundreds of undeclared nuclear weapons). AIPAC has successfully lobbied the U.S. government to adopt crippling economic sanctions on Iran, including trying to cut off Iran’s oil exports, despite the fact that these sanctions raise the price of gas and threaten the U.S. economy.

2. AIPAC promotes Israeli policies that are in direct opposition to international law. These include the establishment of colonies (settlements) in the Occupied West Bank and the confiscation of Palestinian land in its construction of the 26-foot high concrete “separation barrier” running through the West Bank. The support of these illegal practices makes to impossible to achieve a solution to the Israel/Palestine conflict.

3. AIPAC’s call for unconditional support for the Israeli government threatens our national security. The United States’ one-sided support of Israel, demanded by AIPAC, has significantly increased anti-American sentiment throughout the Middle East, thus endangering our troops and sowing the seeds of more possible terrorist attacks against us. Gen. David Petraeus on March 16, 2010 admitted that the U.S./Palestine conflict “foments anti-American sentiment, due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel.” He also said that “Arab anger over the Palestinian question limits the strength and depth of U.S. partnerships with governments and peoples in the [region] and weakens the legitimacy of moderate regimes in the Arab world. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support.”

4. AIPAC undermines American support for democracy movements in the Arab world. AIPAC looks at the entire Arab world through the lens of Israeli government interests, not the democratic aspirations of the Arab people. It has therefore supported corrupt, repressive regimes that are friendly to the Israeli government, such as Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak. Events now unfolding in the Middle East should convince U.S. policy-makers of the need to break from AIPAC’s grip and instead support democratic forces in the Arab world.

5. AIPAC makes the U.S. a pariah at the UN. AIPAC describes the UN as a body hostile to the State of Israel and has pressured the U.S. government to oppose resolutions calling Israel to account. Since 1972, the US has vetoed 44 UN Security Council resolutions condemning Israel’s actions against the Palestinians. President Obama continues that policy. Under Obama, the US vetoed UN censure of the savage Israeli assault on Gaza in January 2009 in which about 1400 Palestinians were killed; a 2011 resolution calling for a halt to the illegal Israeli West Bank settlements even though this was stated U.S. policy; a 2011 resolution calling for Israel to cease obstructing the work of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees; and another resolution calling for an end to illegal Israeli settlement building in East Jerusalem and the occupied Golan Heights.

6. AIPAC attacks politicians who question unconditional support of Israel. AIPAC demands that Congress to rubber stamp legislation drafted by AIPAC staff. It keeps a record of how members of Congress vote and this record is used by donors to make contributions to the politicians who score well. Members of Congress who fail to support AIPAC legislation have been targeted for defeat in re-election bids. These include Senators Adlai Stevenson III and Charles H. Percy, and Representatives Paul Findley, Pete McCloskey, Cynthia McKinney, and Earl F. Hilliard. AIPAC’s overwhelmingly disproportionate influence on Congress subverts our democratic system.

7. AIPAC attempts to silence all criticism of Israel by labeling critics as “anti-Semitic,” “de-legitimizers” or “self-hating Jews.” Journalists, think tanks, students and professors have been accused of anti-Semitism for merely taking stands critical of Israeli government policies. These attacks stifle the critical discussions and debates that are at the heart of democratic policy-making. The recent attacks on staffers at the Center for American Progress is but one example of AIPAC efforts to crush all dissent.

8. AIPAC feeds U.S. government officials a distorted view of the Israel/Palestine conflict. AIPAC takes U.S. representatives on sugar-coated trips to Israel. In 2011, AIPAC took one out of very five members of Congress—and many of their spouses—on a free junket to Israel to see precisely what the Israeli government wanted them to see. It is illegal for lobby groups to take Congresspeople on trips, but AIPAC gets around the law by creating a bogus educational group, AIEF, to “organize” the trips for them. AIEF has the same office address as AIPAC and the same staff. These trips help cement the ties between AIPAC and Congress, furthering their undue influence.

9. AIPAC lobbies for billions of U.S. taxdollars to go to Israel instead of rebuilding America. While our country is reeling from a prolonged financial crisis, AIPAC is pushing for no cuts in military funds for Israel, a wealthy nation. With communities across the nation slashing budgets for teachers, firefighters and police, AIPAC pushes for over $3 billion a year to Israel.

10. Money to Israel takes funds from world’s poor. Israel has the 24th largest economy in the world, but thanks to AIPAC, it gets more U.S. taxdollars than any other country. At a time when the foreign aid budget is being slashed, keeping the lion’s share of foreign assistance for Israel meaning taking funds from critical programs to feed, provide shelter and offer emergency assistance to the world’s poorest people.

The bottom line is that AIPAC, which is a de facto agent for a foreign government, has influence on U.S. policy out of all proportion to the number of Americans who support its policies. When a small group like this has disproportionate power, that hurts everyone—including Israelis and American Jews.

From stopping a catastrophic war with Iran to finally solving the Israel/Palestine conflict, an essential starting point is breaking AIPAC’s grip on U.S. policy.

About Medea Benjamin

Medea Benjamin (@medeabenjamin), cofounder of Global Exchange and CODEPINK: Women for Peace, is the author of Drone Warfare: Killing by Remote Control.

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121 Responses

  1. giladg
    February 28, 2012, 3:31 pm

    AIPAC, unlike it’s critics, wants the facts to get in the way.
    It would be nice to see the same critics of AIPAC calling on the Palestinians and their supporters to recognize and then make space for Jewish legitimate rights and history. Zap, pop, kabang ….someone has just blown a fuse with this rediculous idea.

    • Annie Robbins
      February 28, 2012, 4:03 pm

      what ‘Jewish’ legitimate rights are you referencing. and what history would you like recognized? we do recognize history around here. ‘jewish rights’ tho..i am not too familiar with them. i recognize human rights tho and am fully supportive of every person having an equal opportunity wrt them, including of course, jews..

      • giladg
        February 28, 2012, 4:30 pm

        Well Hallelujah Annie. You have touched on what is glaringly missing from the public debate. If you believe Palestinian propaganda Martians arrived one day and forced innocent, peace loving Arabs out of their homes.
        Jews have legitimate rights in their historic homeland and if you have any real desire to recognize human rights, you had better start recognizing that Jews have rights as well, especially in Jerusalem, Hebron and the rest.
        For most Palestinians and their supporters, their history books are printed in 10 separate volumes. The Palestinians only want you to read volumes 9 & 10 and forget about any of the others.
        How dare you ask the question “What Jewish legitimate rights”? You must know very little about the region.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 28, 2012, 4:48 pm

        “What Jewish legitimate rights”? You must know very little about the region.

        i have no idea what you are talking about. just link to the international law that mentions ‘jewish rights’.

      • Light
        February 28, 2012, 4:58 pm

        It wasn’t Martians. It was the Haganah, Palmach, and Irgun who forced the Palestinians off their land.

      • Light
        February 28, 2012, 5:02 pm

        It appears Mondoweiss has been assigned a new hasbara associate.

      • Cliff
        February 28, 2012, 5:22 pm

        No idea what the new hasbarat is talking about but yes, MW has been swarmed with new Zionist commentators as of late. All of whom are spouting old stale talking points.

      • Woody Tanaka
        February 28, 2012, 5:28 pm

        What bullshit giladg. You want to say that an Israeli Jew has human rights that everyone should respect? Fine. I’d agree with you (and make sure that the exact same rights and treatment are recognzed for the Palestinians by that same Jew.) But to say that simply because modern Jews claim some type of cultural continuity (of whatever strength, dubious or not) with people who lived in that area in antiquity gives those modern people some special status or some group rights is laughable.

      • Woody Tanaka
        February 28, 2012, 5:30 pm

        “It appears Mondoweiss has been assigned a new hasbara associate.”

        eee got a promotion.

      • OlegR
        February 28, 2012, 6:42 pm

        Tell me Cliff do jews as a nation get the right of self determination.
        Yes or No?

      • OlegR
        February 28, 2012, 6:45 pm

        how about palestinian rights?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 28, 2012, 7:34 pm

        looks like nobody’s taking me up on my suggestion they link to these ‘jewish rights’.

      • RoHa
        February 28, 2012, 7:53 pm

        “Jews have legitimate rights in their historic homeland ”

        Spell out what these rights are. Do they apply to all Jews, or just Israeli Jews? On what basis are they derived?

      • Shingo
        February 28, 2012, 8:06 pm

        It appears Mondoweiss has been assigned a new hasbara associate.

        He’s made such a monumental fool of himself on Steven Walt’s blog that he’s decided to sell his Hasbra here. As has been explained to him countless times, and as Hostage originally posted here:

        the reference to “historical connection”, was concocted to downplay the fact that the Zionists lack any legal standing to assert a claim to the territory of Palestine during the Post-WWI peace conferences at Versailles and San Remo. The Principle Allied Powers decided there were no bases for a legal entitlement, so Lord Balfour suggested that some polite words about the “historical connection” of the Jewish people be added to the Mandate instead. The travaux préparatoires of the British Foreign Office Committee that was tasked with drafting the Mandate reveal that the Allies did not consider the historical connection as a basis for any Jewish claim:

        “It was agreed that they had no claim, whatever might be done for them on sentimental grounds; further that all that was necessary was to make room for Zionists in Palestine, not that they should turn “it”, that is the whole country, into their home.

        – See PRO FO 371/5245, cited in Doreen Ingrams, Palestine Papers 1917-1922: Seeds of Conflict, George Brazziler, 1972, pages 99-100

        The General Assembly resolution that you cited not only excluded the bulk of Judea and Samaria from the Jewish state, it prohibited the inhabitants of the Jewish state from obtaining citizenship and moving there:
        no Arab residing in the area of the proposed Arab State shall have the right to opt for citizenship in the proposed Jewish State and no Jew residing in the proposed Jewish State shall have the right to opt for citizenship in the proposed Arab State.
        — United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181, November 29, 1947, Chapter 3: Citizenship, International Conventions and Financial Obligations

      • Citizen
        February 28, 2012, 8:33 pm

        giladg, since all humans came from a region in Africa, do all humans have A right to this historic homeland? Do we all get to go there and boot out the happenstance locals, take their homes, rob the area’s natural resources?

        Also, don’t the Palestinians have the historic (biblical) homeland rights in what once was called Canaan?

      • Charon
        February 28, 2012, 9:22 pm

        There are several groups of people in diaspora (like Chaldeans) without their historical homeland. Why is Israel an exception? G-d is not a real estate agent.

        And please, where is your proof this is even your ‘historic’ homeland anyways? Judea, Lydia (Anatolia), and India are spelled all the same in Greek and in ancient maps. Have we been played the fool?

      • talknic
        February 28, 2012, 10:23 pm

        “Jews have legitimate rights in their historic homeland”

        Problem: The historic homeland is not the same as the State of Israel accepted by the the Jewish People’s Council as the Jewish homeland state (regardless of which country or citizenship we held/hold).

        Historic means just that ‘historic’. The unreserved acceptance of the territory recommended by UNGA Res 181 (enshrined in the Declaration for the Establishment of the State of Israel) put the right of Israelis to settle in all of Palestine out of reach.

        By default, the Independence of Israel legally created two entities. One Israel. The other Palestine (whatever remained of Palestine after Israel was declared independent of Palestine) It is now illegal for Israelis of any kind to settle in Palestine, as Israelis.

        “especially in Jerusalem,” Read …. UNSC Resolution 252 (1968) of 21 May 1968 – UNSC Resolution 267 (1969) of 3 July 1969 – UNSC Resolution 271 (1969) of 15 September 1969 – UNSC Resolution 298 (1971) of 25 September 1971 – UNSC Resolution 465 (1980) of 1 March 1980 – UNSC Resolution 476 (1980) of 30 June 1980 …. oh and UNSC Res 497 BTW.

        Your rickety Hasbarrow over floweth with nonsense peddled in order to justify a Greater Israel at any cost, even sacrificing the very basic tenets of Judaism. 63 years of lies, deceit and lawlessness has resulted in breeding ignorance and arrogance peddled by the likes of yourself.

        None of the arguments you can present will hold water. They’re all holey olde Hasbara. Twaddlespiel formulated for the ignorant and those too stupid to check their ‘facts’.

        The only thing protecting Israel from the consequences of it’s illegal activities is the precious US veto vote in the UNSC.

      • giladg
        February 29, 2012, 5:54 am

        Upsets your comfort zone when you get to hear from the other side instead of the usual propaganda? You all seem to feed off each other.
        You see Cliff, the Palestinians have a weak historic case and so they have effectively been able to redirect attention away from the Jewish connection to the land now called Israel. Palestinians must be forced to accept that Jerusalem is as important to Jews as it is to anyone else. Now lets hear you call for this recognition.

      • stevieb
        February 29, 2012, 10:34 am

        Ha! No we don’t believe Martians arrived one day and forced innocent, peace loving Arabs from their homes.

        We know that European Jews arrived one day and forced innocent, peace loving Arabs from their homes. That, unfortunately for you, isnt’ missing from the public debate because it happens to be a fact.

        Which is exactly why it’s missing from the public debate.

      • dahoit
        February 29, 2012, 10:53 am

        Are you saying Jewish rights and human rights are two separate and unequal terms?Sheesh,you people are mad.

      • rensanceman
        February 29, 2012, 12:54 pm

        These are excellent references and provide much needed substance which normally lacking when the debates turn on questions of “legitimacy ” of the state of Israel.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 29, 2012, 1:35 pm

        what are you talking about giladg. i think palestinians understand jerusalem is important to jews. what if i said you needed to be forced to accept jerusalem was no more important to jews than to palestinians or christians.

        can you understand your rhetoric is inflammatory? it seems to me you are trying to force this ‘rights’ wrt ‘historical claim’ idea. i simply do not find it compelling and that’s not likely to change, ever. i think the very fact israel exists today is reason enough to recognize israelis as part of the solution and finding a resolution. i am not advocating israelis pack up and leave. but you have no ‘superior’ claim because of some continuity thread being a tiny percentage of the people who lived there since the beginning of time. as far as i know there is no recognized ‘historical’ claim of right wrt to continuity.

        i think a better approach is to simply accept all the people who live there regardless of religion or ethnicity and find a way to comply with international law. perhaps you should be addressing your frustration towards those who have closed the window (or ‘are closing’ depending on ones opinion if the time is up) and quit trying to blame the victims of zionism for not recognizing your alleged ‘superior claim based on centuries of history’. there’s just no law in the books like that outside of israel. as far as i know. there’s no special ‘jewish claim’ to inherit land except in interpretations of biblical text. if there is link to it.

      • Woody Tanaka
        February 29, 2012, 1:43 pm

        “the Palestinians have a weak historic case”

        They don’t, of course, but even if they did, so what? Having a historical connection to a place does not give someone present-day rights to that place.

        “and so they have effectively been able to redirect attention away from the Jewish connection to the land now called Israel.”

        Actually, you have it 180 degrees backwards. Because the Jews had a non-existent case for the land of Israeli from the start of the Zionism invasion, they had to resort to a phony “historical case.”

        “Palestinians must be forced to accept that Jerusalem is as important to Jews as it is to anyone else.”

        So what if it is deemed “important”?? That gives them no right to control it, nor right to take it from the Palestinians whose land it is.

      • talknic
        February 29, 2012, 11:49 pm

        giladg – “Palestinians must be forced to accept that Jerusalem is as important to Jews as it is to anyone else. “

        Uh huh. Guess where this is from …”whereby its inhabitants will enjoy complete equality before the law, [and whereby] minorities will be assured of all the guarantees recognised in democratic constitutional countries, and [whereby] the holy places will be preserved and the right of access thereto guaranteed.”

      • Danaa
        February 29, 2012, 11:53 pm

        OlegR: “do jews as a nation get the right of self determination.”

        Are jews a nation? and which jews exactly – the not-quite’s who jotted over from Russia too? the real jews (who are the Palestinians) included?

        can the Amish be a nation too? should we turn over Pennsylvania to the good Amishi people? actually, that kind of sounds interesting (especially if people get to keep their bicycles) – a whole state free of Walmarts! and iPhones! and cable TV! no FOX! no AIPAC!

        As for “self-determination” – you mean kind of like in Brooklin (at least the way it used to be)?

        “Yes or No?”

        Is that a question?

    • Shingo
      February 28, 2012, 8:02 pm

      t would be nice to see the same critics of AIPAC calling on the Palestinians and their supporters to recognize and then make space for Jewish legitimate rights and history.

      It might be nice if there was any legal relevance to such a claim in terms of Israel and it’s legitmacy or creation.

    • Exiled At Home
      February 29, 2012, 10:30 am

      If you believe Palestinian propaganda Martians arrived one day and forced innocent, peace loving Arabs out of their homes.

      Giladg,

      Hyperbole aside, you’re on the right track. What you call “Martians,” we know to be Jewish European immigrants. What you refer to as “one day” actually was a period of several decades of aggressive immigration that brought the Jewish population of Palestine (everything west of the Jordan River) from 43,000 in 1890 to 175,000 by 1931 to 630,000 by 1947 (See Sergio DellaPergola “Demography in Israel/Palestine: Trends, Prospects and Policy Implications”). Compare this to the local Arab population of Palestine at that time: 57,000 Christians and 432,000 Muslims in 1890; 89,000 Christians and 760,000 Muslims in 1931; and 143,000 Christians and 1.2 million Muslims in 1947. In other words, in 1890, before aggressive immigration by European Jews, Palestine was home to a minority of 43,000 Jews compared to 57,000 Christian Arabs and 432,000 Muslim Arabs.

      Remind me how this is Jewish land, without invoking Biblical dispensationalism or inside information as to God’s will?

      Moving on, when you point out that these immigrants “forced innocent, peace loving Arabs out of their homes,” you forget to mention the number, 700,000 forced to flee, plus you fail to mention the barbaric acts of terrorism at the hands of Jewish nationalists like the Stern Gang, Irgun and Haganah, plus you left out the British in pointing out who was the target of Jewish terrorism.

      But, all things considered, you’re well on your way to understanding history. You just have to clean up your terminology a little bit. ;)

  2. Citizen
    February 28, 2012, 3:39 pm

    Yeah, good for CodePink–I tweeted all 10 reasons earlier today when I got an email from the always courageous Ms Benjamin. Hope I get a lot of retweets.

  3. tombishop
    February 28, 2012, 3:40 pm

    A November study by the Pew Forum found that AIPAC spends three times as much as any other religious organization on political lobbying. Based on the most recently available data of Top Advocacy Expenditures, AIPAC spent $84,899,089; the second highest was the Conference of Catholic Bishops at $26,662,111; the Family Research Council spent $14,259,622; the American Jewish Committee spent $13,362,000; and Concerned Women for America spent $12,556,658.

    The full report is at http://www.pewforum.org/Government/Lobbying-for-the-faithful–exec.aspx.

  4. Dan Crowther
    February 28, 2012, 3:47 pm

    Great post from Benjamin — one thing though:

    4. AIPAC undermines American support for democracy movements in the Arab world. AIPAC looks at the entire Arab world through the lens of Israeli government interests, not the democratic aspirations of the Arab people. It has therefore supported corrupt, repressive regimes that are friendly to the Israeli government, such as Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak. Events now unfolding in the Middle East should convince U.S. policy-makers of the need to break from AIPAC’s grip and instead support democratic forces in the Arab world.
    ————————————————-
    I don’t think the US needs Israel’s help in NOT supporting “the democratic aspirations of the arab people” – let’s be honest with ourselves here. There could be a end to the conflict tomorrow and the US would still support tyranny.

    • seafoid
      February 28, 2012, 4:27 pm

      I think the US Military Industrial complex is far bigger than AIPAC. AIPAC rides on the coat tails of US corporate psychopathy. It is a little Satan.

      • Dan Crowther
        February 28, 2012, 4:49 pm

        Yea, I completely agree Seafoid.

      • piotr
        February 29, 2012, 5:03 am

        Yet, it is not easy to find a cause for all the hardware and periodic wars that the complex needs. Israel is an almost necessary invention.

      • stevieb
        February 29, 2012, 10:51 am

        Bigger than AIPAC? Sure. Bigger than Zionism in general – no. Zionism and the MIC do, however, fit hand in glove.

        Zionism, Corporate/Financial, MIC – the trifecta of ‘evil’, if you will. But for me, the first one enables the others. Zionism’s main, deviant characteristics have enabled the others to follow the same deviant immoral path. Accepting Zionism as being American as apple pie has had extreme influence on American foreign policy, and not only in the ME. Israel’s sphere of influence and control also flows well outside of the ME.

        It isn’t only Jews who have been corrupted by the ‘Chosen’ dogma. Zionism and American imperialism are willing bedmates…

      • David Green
        March 4, 2012, 10:14 am

        In spite of the qualifying last sentence, this is a blatantly anti-semitic pronouncment. Has to be said.

      • Dan Crowther
        March 4, 2012, 10:57 am

        David Green — Your saying stevieb’s comment was anti-semitic?

  5. Justice Please
    February 28, 2012, 3:48 pm

    “From stopping a catastrophic war with Iran to finally solving the Israel/Palestine conflict, an essential starting point is breaking AIPAC’s grip on U.S. policy.”

    More power to you, Medea!

  6. lysias
    February 28, 2012, 4:02 pm

    Alarming news from Richard Silverstein’s site: Obama Promises Israel Use of U.S. Bases for Iran Attack If It Will Wait.

    If this awful report is true, AIPAC bears a lot of the blame.

    • Anar Green
      February 28, 2012, 10:08 pm

      Obama lacks a spine. Still, it may be possible that he knows that that is one offer the acceptance of which would be a bad move by the Likudniks. As someone commented on the linked-to article, “IAF lacks the ability to shut down the Iranian nuclear program”. Their game-plan is only to trigger US involvement. As such, accepting the offer of a base would amount to allowing themselves to be misled.
      Obama may be hoping for them to bite.

      • dahoit
        February 29, 2012, 10:56 am

        He also seems to be lacking in the gray matter department also,a very telling tale of Ivy League graduates.

      • Chaos4700
        February 29, 2012, 7:46 pm

        I seem to recall that Bush the Lesser was an Ivy League graduate too.

      • lysias
        March 1, 2012, 10:23 am

        Bush was a legacy, of whom there are quite a few at Ivy League colleges.

        Obama is more of a mystery. It’s very suspicious that his transcripts have not been released. Which raises the question: if he was not much of a student, who paid his way through Columbia College and Harvard Law School?

      • Kathleen
        February 29, 2012, 11:25 am

        Dr, Zbigniew Brzezinski really laid out a challenge for President OBama on Fareed Zakaria’s GPS program this past Sunday. Dr. Zbig said President Obama needs to draw a clear line during his meeting with Netanyahu on March 5th. Make it clear that the US will not support an attack on Iran, will not support Israel in any way shape or form, in fact let them know that they can not fly through US controlled air space. The transcript for the Fareed interview with Dr. Brzezinksi is not up yet.
        Fareed Zakaria GPS – YouTubewww.youtube.com/show/fareedzakariagps-

  7. Kathleen
    February 28, 2012, 4:13 pm

    Hit it out of the park here Medea…..Medea one powerful force of nature. Go. Hope folks are coming to the conference.

  8. Annie Robbins
    February 28, 2012, 4:14 pm

    this is a great list. thank you medea.

    • David Green
      March 4, 2012, 10:16 am

      Annie, do you believe the U.S. would otherwise be supporting democracy in the Arab world?

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2012, 10:30 am

        democracy? i don’t think the military industrial complex is in the habit of supporting democracy. aipac keeps it on steroids tho. i think we’d be do doing things much differently without the influence of the lobby, which is why it exists.

      • David Green
        March 4, 2012, 11:00 am

        So the U.S. isn’t in the habit of supporting democracy. But things would be different if not for AIPAC. Then would we support democracy?

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2012, 12:06 pm

        not likely, we just wouldn’t be on steroids and we wouldn’t be doing it the neocon way. google michael ledeen and creative destruction. do you notice the US is getting pressured from israel over iran or not? do you notice the aipac legislation to halt diplomacy or not? why do you think the lobby is there if the US would make all the same choices without it. do you think they are benign?

        what exactly is it about my initial comment that motivated you to engage me and where are you going with this?

      • David Green
        March 4, 2012, 12:17 pm

        “what exactly is it about my initial comment that motivated you to engage me and where are you going with this?”

        You said it was a great list. I think it’s a pretty ridiculous list. I oppose AIPAC, because it’s part of the complex of forces that determines that the U.S. should rule the world. But the U.S. would still try to rule the world without AIPAC. It tries to do so in all the places that AIPAC doesn’t focus its energies.

        My point is that the U.S. doesn’t support democracy in the Arab world. My point is that without AIPAC, it still wouldn’t. Medea Benjamin seems to imply that things would be different. You seem to agree. I don’t. I think it’s pretty obvious where I’m going with this. I think Benjamin has said about 8 out of 10 things that overrate the power of the Lobby, which actually isn’t largely responsible for global poverty.

        I think she and you would make a more convincing case if you stuck to what AIPAC actually does, instead of ascribing to it the source of all evil.

        You say we wouldn’t be on steroids and in a neocon way. Does that mean we would have diminished military capabilities? I think a statement like that needs some support. You don’t offer any. Obama is just as much of a warmonger as a standard neocon. Do you get that? It’s important.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2012, 1:40 pm

        My point is that the U.S. doesn’t support democracy in the Arab world. My point is that without AIPAC, it still wouldn’t. Medea Benjamin seems to imply that things would be different. You seem to agree. I don’t.

        yeah, david..i answered straight up the first time i didn’t think the US would be supporting democracy sans aipac, and again the second time. so obviously you didn’t catch anything with your bait on that line of questioning. you engage like you are on a fishing expedition and i’m not interested in engaging with BS like instead of ascribing to it the source of all evil.

        medea didn’t say anything about the source of all evil and you will not hear me engage in that kind of discourse, ever. your point wasn’t obvious to me in the least, and if i said something you agreed with (like the US still wouldn’t be pursuing democracy sans aipac) you could try acknowledging that instead of using it against me pretending it isn’t my position.

        You say we wouldn’t be on steroids and in a neocon way. Does that mean we would have diminished military capabilities?

        yeah, i also told you to google michael ledeen and creative destruction, something you have completely ignored. i also asked you some questions about iran, which you have completely ignored. i also asked you if you thought they were benign, something you completely ignored. so you want to leap over sections of my commentary and my questions and launch into more baiting type questions.

        I think a statement like that needs some support. You don’t offer any. Obama is just as much of a warmonger as a standard neocon. Do you get that? It’s important.

        i don’t care what you think needs support. go find someone else to play grand inquisitor with. you are not directing this conversation, it’s a two way street or it’s none at all. now you can either address each one of my questions including what you think of ledeens statements or not. but i am not motivated in the least to continue this dialogue with you. you’re completely disrespectful.

      • David Green
        March 4, 2012, 3:00 pm

        Annie, your manner of dialogue is to tell people to read stuff, and refuse to take them seriously if they don’t. Nothing about this debate requires anybody to do your homework assignment. The fact that the U.S. projects its power in the world is a truism.

        You’re arguing that Ledeen is responsible for the MIC on steroids. That’s not the basis for a serious argument of any kind. You don’t have a serious argument. Neither does Benjamin. The movement needs one. Otherwise it’s just a flurry of activity.

        Annie, do you think that Obama is less of a warmonger than Bush? Do you? You didn’t respond to my question. You don’t even have to do any reading to respond. So what do you think? Is he? Is he? Is he?

        I think he is. No doubt about it. Not a neocon, but a warmonger, and a child murderer. Get it?

      • Chaos4700
        March 4, 2012, 11:41 am

        Yes, let’s talk about unicorns and leprechauns instead of what really exists, here and now.

      • Annie Robbins
        March 4, 2012, 12:08 pm

        let’s talk about unicorns and leprechauns

        or cactus. there are so many varieties.

      • Taxi
        March 4, 2012, 12:31 pm

        The Huntington Library grounds in Pasadena-California has the most mind-blowing variety of cactii on the planet – hundreds! Trrrrrrripy!

        (uhuh and you thought we couldn’t talk about cactii and other spiky topics here on mw?)

  9. BillM
    February 28, 2012, 4:25 pm

    And, of course, AIPAC engages in espionage against the US government.

    In passing, one of the more interesting tidbits from the Wikileaks’s STRATFOR dump (aside from highlighting the fact that their “intelligence,” as we all knew, is garbage), is that they are happy to pass on their internal debates and supposedly secret intelligence reports straight to AIPAC and JINSA:

    link to wikileaks.org

    On 11/14/11 9:30 AM, Fred Burton wrote:

    Yes but an intelligence agency that secures a single piece of insight
    that is then corroborated by the infamous OS leads one to believe that
    either the same source is responsible for both or perhaps there is smoke
    that indicates a fire? We tend to not believe things unless there is
    OS. The best intel never see’s the light of day. I’m more circumspect
    when it is in the OS…unless of course, we planted it.

    p.s. I’m offended that we may believe an Iranian before a Jew.

    cc: APAC, JINSA.

  10. seafoid
    February 28, 2012, 4:29 pm

    AIPAC is most dangerous to the Jewish community. Tikkun olam endures. Insane militarism doesn’t. AIPAC has all of the community’s eggs in one basket. Israel will lose that one war.

    • Chaos4700
      February 29, 2012, 1:49 am

      A lot of Americans — non-Jewish as well as Jewish — are going to suffer a lot thanks to crushing tidal force that the Lobby’s gravity inflicts on our government.

  11. Charon
    February 28, 2012, 4:57 pm

    AIPAC is public enemy #1. AIPAC has evaded registering with the Justice Department as a foreign agent since it’s inception. If memory recalls, AIPAC only exists because its former self (American Zionist Committee something or other) was heavily pressured to. I think the Kennedys were the last people who really pressured them to register. Since then, it has come up but they obviously handle it with kid gloves.

    Aside from paying taxes, this would also theoretically (which I doubt) limit their power in Congress. That’s the problem. The power they hold over Congress and the power Congress holds over the POTUS should concern every American citizen. War affects us all.

  12. radii
    February 28, 2012, 4:58 pm

    here’s my 10:

    1. they are agents for a foreign government
    2. actively participate in espionage against the US
    3. craft their activities in consultation with Mossad
    4. use money to influence US elections and policies against US self-interest
    5. is essentially an anti-American organization
    6. promotes war and death
    7. stir up racist propaganda against Palestinians, Arabs and muslims
    8. is a spin-off of an organization that was identified as an agent for a foreign government
    9. endangers American civilian lives and US soldiers’ lives
    10. drains US taxpayer funds to subsidize racist, apartheid, murder-state israel

  13. Erasmus
    February 28, 2012, 5:08 pm

    MEANWHILE, JEWISH EXTREMISTS are WORKING on their VERSION of the ONE-STATE-SOLUTION:
    MK Uri Ariel presents a political program at the Jerusalem Conference: `
    Annex all of Judea and Samaria`:
    According to this program, the entire territory will be annexed and all Judea and Samaria Arabs will have the status of permanent residents in Israel. This will give them the very same status enjoyed by 284,000 residents of East Jerusalem, of whom many opinion polls indicated that if given a choice between the State of Israel or a Palestinian state they would choose for Israel.
    This status will give them: a blue identity card, social security, health services and all other services given to every citizen in Israel, and the vote in municipal elections for the municipal authority within whose borders they live – but no right to vote in Knesset elections. : [Emphasis by translator from Hebrew = Adam Keller.]
    For further details see:
    link to kibush.co.il

    • talknic
      February 28, 2012, 11:28 pm

      The stupidity of MK Uri Ariel is to be expected. “the entire territory will be annexed”… Meaning it ISN’T now Israeli.

      It’ll never get past the UNSC. For territory to be legally annexed, there must be a referendum of the legitimate citizens of the territory to be annexed, sans illegal civilians who’re citizens of the Occupying Power.

    • Blake
      March 2, 2012, 12:52 pm

      The United Nations facility in Jerusalem is listed as being in “oPt” (occupied Palestinian territory). “Israel” should be in no part of Jerusalem at all.

  14. stevez22
    February 28, 2012, 5:19 pm

    Let me offer some balance to this article. I am a member of AIPAC and have the privilege of listening in on confidential calls with it’s leadership. These calls take place quarterly and over the past several years I have never once heard a word advocating war with Iran or any other country. It is simply not true. Was is true is that AIPAC has been tireless in an effort to gain support for sanctions. In fact, had our Government accepted these recommendations when they were first introduced years ago, we may not be in the dire situation we are today. Now we are playing catch up at best. AIPAC is very responsible in it’s lobbying efforts and I seriously doubt our President, Secretary of Defense and a whole host of Congressional leaders would be speaking at the upcoming conference if that were not the case. Even Medea will be there as she always is by rudely disrupting the speakers with her propaganda. I go to Mondoweiss because I am willing to consider an opposing view. But just throwing up this article without some understanding of the writer’s motives is irresponsible.

    • chet
      February 28, 2012, 8:32 pm

      “AIPAC is very responsible in it’s lobbying efforts and I seriously doubt our President, Secretary of Defense and a whole host of Congressional leaders would be speaking at the upcoming conference if that were not the case.”

      What a crock of complete and unadulterated bullshit!!

      As Thomas Friedman pointed out, the support of US politicians for Israel, its politicians and the vile AIPAC is “bought and paid for”.

    • kapok
      February 28, 2012, 8:34 pm

      anybody else feel a chill?

    • jimmy
      February 28, 2012, 9:11 pm

      hey steve what is so wrong with talking to the iranians….sanctions…why no sanctions on israel…it has a very hidden nuke program…double standards anyone….

      maybe this writer and many others here and other places are sick of military actions by the US gov against ME nations….

      take a look at aipac

      link to aipac.org

      on aipac’s site….iran iran iran iran iran iran iran

      why doesnt aipac show us all the house demolishes …

      talk about propaganda steve…..

      to the best of my knowledge Iran has a right to defend itself against israel too

    • anonymouscomments
      February 28, 2012, 11:13 pm

      The spineless and propagandistic Tom Friedman is infinitely more honest than you are regarding AIPAC… Or you are a naive dolt. Sorry to be so blunt, but the overt and suppressed (but documented) history of AIPAC is CLEAR. Read up on it… or go to some talks at occupy AIPAC, in between doses of biased boiler plate AIPAC BS. Good luck.

      If you think DC goes to AIPAC cause they love AIPAC and their strong armed tactics to bias US policy, you are really unschooled in the way politics works, but especially AIPAC politics.

    • talknic
      February 28, 2012, 11:20 pm

      You’ve come to the wrong place to post bullsh*te stevez22

      • Kathleen
        February 29, 2012, 11:35 am

        bingo

    • Real Jew
      February 29, 2012, 12:08 am

      Wow Steve, I dont know where to begin…
      “I am a member of AIPAC and have the privilege of listening in on confidential calls with it’s leadership…I have never once heard a word advocating war with Iran or any other country….AIPAC is very responsible in it’s lobbying efforts”

      Are you kidding? Does the Iraq war ring any bells? Or how about Weapons of Mass Destruction? AIPAC and their neocon supporters were exposed to be the main culprits behind this lie which pushed America to invade Iraq. They are anything but responsible. They are now repeating their successful scare tactic in regards to Iran.

      Do not attempt to paint AIPAC, the israeli espionage headquarters, as an innocent bystander because they are not directly, publicly or in “confidential calls” calling for war. They are indirectly calling for war with their dooms day propaganda such as “Iran is a genocidal nation ran by extremists hell bent on Israel’s destruction” or “an existential threat not only to Israel but the whole world.”

    • Taxi
      February 29, 2012, 12:12 am

      Typical aipacer! Attack the messenger!

      You’re serving a foreign rogue country with more UN resolutions against it than Saddam and mullah’s regimes have combined – you’re a servant of an Apartheid system actually, over the interests and founding principles of your own country.

      Why do you do that? Explain otherwise how aipac is around primarily for the sake of American interests.

    • stevieb
      February 29, 2012, 11:00 am

      You couldn’t be more wrong if you tried. I see you’ve left it at that, instead of engaging with the ‘others’ to make your POV. Very telling.

      Why not stick around and answer some of the questions from the people here, if you are so sure of your views?

      • stevez22
        February 29, 2012, 3:36 pm

        Thanks to all kind enough to reply. It’s good to make fast friends. I must say the vitriol in these responses is tame compared to most left wing sites I visit. On many of those I usually get borderline death threats. It is extraordinary how lethal some of the anti-Israel sentiment is with some people. It is concerning and I only imagine what will be unleashed if there is a war with Iran. But back to AIPAC, let me make the same point a little differently. I have sat with it’s leadership, met high ranking staff members, listened in and attended conferences and read their positions. I can safely conclude it is an organization made up of highly intelligent, well meaning professionals that only want the U.S.-Israel relations to be as close as possible. They well know that a divergence in those relations will mark the beginning of it’s own end. They try to influence Israel as much or more than they do us to preserve the bond. Readers can argue we shouldn’t care about Israel or support them and that is a legitimate position. But AIPAC has it’s legitimacy in it’s case for the relationship and it has been remarkably successful at it. One last personal thought, or, you might call it a prediction. The real tragedy of the mistake we made in Iraq will in time far transcend the casualities and cost of that war. Why? Because now the world will do nothing about Iran. And a nuclear Iran will strengthen the regime, all it’s proxies and perhaps most sobering, lead to certain nuclear proliferation. Just like the miniaturization of computers, you will see it with bombs. September 11th will look like a warm up act for what could be in store for us. Call it fear mongering but some fear is worth contemplating and that not a world we should risk having. I hope sanctions work or what I really hope is the regime is overthrown. War is an awful alternative. But I suspect one of two outcomes. Either they will get the bomb and this adminstration will need to live with that just like Bush lives with Iraq. Or, Israel will do us a favor and take the mission on themselves. We certainly benefited from their decision to take out Iraq’s and Syria’s nuclear plants. Can you imagine those countries with the bomb? Maybe they are not such a bad ally after all.

      • Taxi
        February 29, 2012, 4:02 pm

        Steve: “Can you imagine those countries with the bomb?”

        We don’t have to “imagine” an Aparhtied expansionist regime with a nefarious and illegal stockpile of nuke warheads, fast-friend. You guys started the nuclear arm race in the mid east years ago – and when you did, did it ever occur to any of you Einsteins that sooner or later, some other mid east country would surely, by hook or by crook, ‘acquire’ them, just like you did? Do you guys actually believe you’re supermen forever? Huh! I bet you do.

        Do you deny any of the above?

      • Annie Robbins
        February 29, 2012, 4:49 pm

        syria didn’t have a nuclear plant.

        I can safely conclude it is an organization made up of highly intelligent, well meaning professionals that only want the U.S.-Israel relations to be as close as possible.

        nah, they want a little more than that.

        They try to influence Israel as much or more than they do us to preserve the bond.

        really? do you have any evidence of that? can you perhaps point to some articles or actions taken by the lobby to influence israel to carry out obama’s wishes? for example, any evidence of the lobby pressuring israel to agree to warn the WH is israel plans to attack? because there is lots of documented evidence of the lobby pressuring the WH, the american people, and congress to support israels ptv.

      • Annie Robbins
        February 29, 2012, 4:57 pm

        ‘lethal/ borderline death threats’, it never fails to amuse me when supporters of an oppressive apartheid state like to claim the left issues death threats. not too believable. just saying. i got a kick out of it tho, can’t help my perverted soh.

      • Dan Crowther
        February 29, 2012, 4:58 pm

        the israeli’s bombed syria’s nuclear facilities in 07

      • Woody Tanaka
        February 29, 2012, 5:36 pm

        Bravo, AIPAC Steve, bravo. You must be in the PR (or is the BS??) biz to put forth such a bravura performance. Let’s look at your sales pitch, blow by blow.

        First, the sort-of-not compliment designed to both flatter the audience and garner sympathy for yourself…

        I must say the vitriol in these responses is tame compared to most left wing sites I visit. On many of those I usually get borderline death threats. It is extraordinary how lethal some of the anti-Israel sentiment is with some people.

        Bonus points for the sub silento pushing of the people-have-murderous-hatred-of-Israelis-(or-is-it-all-Jews?) meme. Bullshit though it is, that one’s always a crowd pleaser…

        But back to AIPAC

        As if poisoning the well by asserting that those opposing you aren’t doing it out of anything but bulging-forehead-style hatred for Israel. You’re a card, AIPAC Steve…

        I have sat with it’s leadership, met high ranking staff members, listened in and attended conferences and read their positions.

        And conveniently don’t give any specifics. Just generalities so that we can fill in our own ideas.

        I can safely conclude it is an organization made up of highly intelligent, well meaning professionals that only want the U.S.-Israel relations to be as close as possible.

        Wow. That IS impressive. You actually posted a content-free sentence that actually reads like it made a point. Because, as we all know, it is the CONTENT of those relations which is the problem.

        They try to influence Israel as much or more than they do us to preserve the bond.

        Hmmm. It’s interesting. I’ve searched to find the address of the AIPAC office in Israel (which, I’m sure would be all over the web, given the massive amount of influence peddling they do there) and I can’t find it anywhere. Internet must be broken.

        But, AIPAC Steve, you kind of go off the rail here:

        One last personal thought, or, you might call it a prediction. The real tragedy of the mistake we made in Iraq will in time far transcend the casualities and cost of that war. Why? Because now the world will do nothing about Iran. And a nuclear Iran will strengthen the regime, all it’s proxies and perhaps most sobering, lead to certain nuclear proliferation.

        What you’re saying here is that the real tragedy of Iraq is not be the hundreds of thousands of dead Iraqis and millions of destroyed lives, but the reduction in your ability to war monger Iran. You have to rework that part AIPAC Steve. Makes you sound like a sociopath.

        And now from me, a personal thought, or, you might call it a prediction: we’re going to see some war mongering and fear mongering:

        Just like the miniaturization of computers, you will see it with bombs.

        My prediction came true!!!

        But, oh, what an awfully stupid, stupid fear mongering. Tell us, AIPAC Steve, given the fact that the laws of physics mandate certain lower limits on the amount fissionable material and high explosives necessary in constructing a working, effective weapon, how exactly do you suppose the Iranians are going to build these supersmall weapons?? Do they have magic uranium?? I will give you points for the fear mongering… impossible weapons? Brilliant!!

        This next part is worth every penny you paid to whatever PR school you went to.

        First, make a madly fear-ridden claim; really tickle your audience’s primitive brain. Say, invoke 9/11…

        September 11th will look like a warm up act for what could be in store for us.

        …then deflect from your fear mongering, by acknowledging your fear mongering and then excusing your fear mongering by noting that sometimes things should be feared (without pointing out how unlikely the thing you’re fear mongering actually is)…

        Call it fear mongering but some fear is worth contemplating and that not a world we should risk having.

        Good PR, AIPAC Steve!!! You can use that for all kind of things.

        “Are you worried about your toilet exploding?? What if this explosion happens when you or a loved one is doing your business? How awful will that be? Call it fear mongering but some fear is worth contemplating and a world in which toilets explode is not not a world we should risk having. So for only 3 easy payments of $19.99…”

        Either they will get the bomb and this adminstration will need to live with that just like Bush lives with Iraq.

        Great. No one dies.

        Or, Israel will do us a favor and take the mission on themselves.

        Uh, oh. Not great. A lot of people die. (Bug or feature?)

        Oh, and I noticed your little PR trick, AIPAC Steve. I love how you framed it that Israel would be doing “us” a favor. As if this wasn’t Israel’s problem borne of its own actions in the region, but a threat that is primarily on the US. Nice sub silento fear mongering there…

        We certainly benefited from their decision to take out Iraq’s and Syria’s nuclear plants.

        Brilliant. I love the way you stuck that “We” in there. It has the effect of slipping in such a dubious proposition, like that the US benefits in any way by what happens to Israel’s neighbors. Why, in your deft hands, one could even reach the nonsensical conclusion that Israel did it for the US, and not to consolidate their dominance over the region.

        Maybe they are not such a bad ally after all.

        This is the only clunky portion of your brilliant snow job. Too on the money. You’re supposed to let the suckers, I mean, the readers come to this conclusion by themselves. By you putting it out there, it simply demonstrates that everthing that came before it was nothing but one big, giant con.

      • Exiled At Home
        February 29, 2012, 5:46 pm

        Stevez22,

        Your entire position lies upon a foregone conclusion that Iran having nuclear capabilities is a problem. It’s not.

        Iran is a member of the NPT. It has allowed inspections of its facilities. Iran leadership has never threatened to use nuclear weapons, were they to reach that capability. Ahmadinejad has never threatened to “wipe Israel off of the map.” His actual statements have called for the end of the Zionist regime, a perfectly reasonable and applaudable position to take considering the inhumanity of the Zionist regime. Why can the US demand regime change all over the world, but Ahmadinejad cannot call for regime change in Israel? Regimes refer to governments, not societies. Iranian leadership has never sought the elimination of the Israeli people, just a transformation of governance in Palestine, with equality for all.

        “Iran, Syria, the Palestinian Resistance and Lebanon are ready to meet any conditions, and we hope that the enemies of the nations of the region will change their course and instead walk beside regional states in cooperation. Insofar as the Zionist regime threatens Lebanon and Syria and prominent personalities of these two countries every day, it must accept its end and grant in their entirety the rights of the Palestinian nation.” -Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

        Under what mandate can the belligerent, nuclear-armed Israel demand that Iran not acquire nuclear energy?

        Under what law of reason would anyone listen to Israel, a nation that has 400 nuclear warheads and supports the “Sampson Option,” in its hypocritical derision of Iranian nuclear aspirations?

        Israels’ belligerent rhetoric actually is the a good justification for why Iran SHOULD obtain a nuclear weapon. One can certainly understand why Iran would want a MAD-deterrent when Israeli officials say the things they say.

        The hypocrisy is astounding. The US has some 8000 nuclear facilities and countless nuclear stockpiles. Israel has 400 nuclear warheads and exercises a Sampson Option. US and Israel seek regime change wherever it is deemed suitable. And yet, American and Israeli people take issue with Iran calling for regime change in Israel and seeking nuclear power? I feel as if I am in a twilight zone sometimes…

      • Dan Crowther
        February 29, 2012, 7:19 pm

        Tanaka for the WIN!!!

      • ritzl
        March 1, 2012, 12:53 am

        On “anti-Israel”… It’s pretty clear that from your perspective, it is the AIPAC advocacy position of “status quo, by all means necessary and all means possible” that is the Israeli-defined “anti-Israel” position. It leads to one state. Throw in this current “attack Iran” BS, so readily identified as AIPAC originated, for Israel, and you have a quickening recipe for the end of the relationship, and the end of Israel as perpetual/blameless/enabled Occupier. Either or both of those processes ends Israel as you know it (or believe it to be). The hard landing scenario.

        The arguments here, imo, are offering you a semi-controllable soft landing consisting of several possible outcomes. Whether it’s one state of equal rights, or a accelerated, real, and actual good-faith effort to achieve two states, you should embrace that form of change as “pro-Israel.”

      • Woody Tanaka
        March 1, 2012, 7:05 am

        “Tanaka for the WIN!!!”

        Thanks, Dan. You the man.

      • Blake
        March 2, 2012, 12:56 pm

        You get borderline death threats from human rights seekers Steve? I cannot remember the amount of times I have received death threats from zombies for zionism. Which website are we talking?

    • Kathleen
      February 29, 2012, 11:14 am

      “AIPAC is very responsible in it’s lobbying efforts and I seriously doubt our President, Secretary of Defense and a whole host of Congressional leaders would be speaking at the upcoming conference if that were not the case. ” Absolute hooey

      link to fas.org
      USA v. Steven Rosen and Keith Weissman: Selected Case Files

      Aipac as an organization that should really have been completely broken up due to two top officials Steve Rosen and Weisman being caught red handed accessing classified US intelligence on Iran as well as passing this classified information off to Israeli officials they have for decades undermined US national security by never ever taking a solid stance against continued illegal expansion of illegal settlements and illegal housing in E Jerusalem, writing and promoting legislation that isolated Hamas after a fair election, targeting elected officials who have attempted to take a fair and balanced stance on the I/P issue etc etc.

      Aipac has been extremely irresponsible in their often successful lobbying efforts. Aipac has persistently undermined US National Security and continues to do so. Aipac should be required to register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act at the very least. All of those who lobby their Reps are lobbying for a foreign nation.

      Remember that at one of the Aipac conferences they set up a Hollywood set of an alleged Iranian nuclear weapons facility. There is absolutely no hard evidence that Iran has a nuclear weapons program. Iran has a right to enrich uranium up to 20% for peaceful purposes. Iran signed the Non proliferation treaty. Israel continues to refuse to sign. It is Israel and the Israeli lobby in the states that threatens Iran daily
      http://www.raceforiran.com
      Key Documents
      Turkey-Brazil-Iran Nuclear Agreement
      UNSCRs
      IAEA Reports
      Iranian Proposals
      Western And P5+1 Proposals
      Energy and Economics
      Resources on US Policy
      Videos
      Rules and Regulations For http://www.RaceforIran.com

    • Kathleen
      February 29, 2012, 11:27 am

      Have spent a great deal of time at Aipac’s website (like so many of us) over the years. Their action alert/legislation section of the website has been pushing for a confrontation with Iran for years now.

  15. Donald
    February 28, 2012, 5:36 pm

    On a related note, Richard Silverstein just linked to this depressing (though not surprising) article written by the AP–

    link

    Note the claim near the end that the US offered to let Israel use US bases in an attack on Iran, so that they would keep us in the loop. Supposing that’s true, this is the guy that partisan Democrats claim has a good record on foreign policy. Strange.

    • Les
      February 28, 2012, 6:41 pm

      Thanks for catching this. I too shared it with the subject heading that Obama was offering US bases for Israel to use when it attacks Iran. This presumes that Obama is in charge of his policy.

      • Kathleen
        February 29, 2012, 11:35 am

        Clearly Israel would like OBama to lose the next election.

    • Kathleen
      February 29, 2012, 11:34 am

      From the article:
      “But the apparent decision to keep the U.S. in the dark also stems from Israel’s frustration with the White House. After a visit by National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, they became convinced the Americans would neither take military action, nor go along with unilateral action by Israel against Iran. The Israelis concluded they would have to conduct a strike unilaterally – a point they are likely to hammer home in a series of meetings over the next two weeks in Washington, the official said.

      Barak will meet with top administration and congressional officials during his visit. Netanyahu arrives in Washington for meetings with President Barack Obama next week.”

      Pressure on Obama to state clearly to Netanyahu that Israel can not use US air space. That we will not follow them if the situation escalates. Israel on their own. That is what Dr. Zbig Brzezinski had to say on Fareed Zakaria’s GPS sunday news program this past Sunday. And the week before the new Chairman of the Joint Chief of Staff General Dempsey said “the Iranian regime is a rational actor” That they are not convinced that Iran has decided to weaponize their nuclear program.

  16. jimmy
    February 28, 2012, 8:57 pm

    I dont really know too much about this…so I take what I read at many places as some sort of knowledge base…

    One thing I do know is that I dont like what the US congress/gov is doing for one group while ignoring the real issues in the USA..

    here many be some history of sorts phil probably knows if it is all true

    History of the US-Israel Relationship, Part I

    The beginnings
    The Israel Lobby is just the tip of an older and far larger iceberg known as “political Zionism,” an international movement that began in the late 1800s with the goal of creating a Jewish state somewhere in the world. In 1897 this movement, led by a European journalist named Theodore Herzl[3], coalesced in the First Zionist World Congress, held in Basle, Switzerland, which established the World Zionist Organization, representing approximately 120 groups the first year; 900 the next.[4]

    While Zionists considered such places as Argentina, Uganda, and Texas,[5] they eventually settled on Palestine for the location of their proposed Jewish State, even though Palestine was already inhabited by a population that was 95 percent Muslim and Christian, who owned 99 percent of the land.[6] As numerous Zionist diary entries, letters, and other documents show, these non-Jews were simply going to be pushed out – financially, if possible; by the sword if necessary

    link to councilforthenationalinterest.org

    • Exiled At Home
      February 29, 2012, 10:34 am

      Linking to the Council for the National Interest! Always a sound idea.

      Thanks for the contribution, Jimmy.

  17. talknic
    February 28, 2012, 11:15 pm

    Israel attack Iran? Doubtful. Israel can’t even stop home made rockets from Gaza. None of its stated objectives were realized in Lebanon. So, what is the game plan? A bluff? The world does not want another war the likes of which might be unleashed by an attack on Iran by Israel.

    Prediction:

    Israel will demand that in return for not attacking Iran (not that it can effectively), the US will:

    1) maintain the veto vote in the UNSC

    2) turn a blind eye to its illegal activities in Palestine.

    3) demand the US keep pushing for a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians.

    Israel must reach a negotiated deal in order to over ride the illegalities Israel has committed thus far. Were Israel made to face the consequences of its illegal activities, compensating the Palestinians would drive it into bankruptcy. One third of what Israel claims as its own, has never been legally annexed to Israel. It’s not just in the West bank, East or West Jerusalem . Hundreds of thousands of Israelis live unwittingly outside of Israel’s legal boundaries

    Even cutting a deal, Israel will still have to legally annex all the territories it has illegally acquired by war since May 15th 1948. At this point a lot of people should begin to realize A) if it needs to be annexed to Israel, it was never Israeli territory in the first place B) a vile swindle has taken place C) it’s too late, the international community has allowed the Palestinians to be drawn and quartered.

    No matter what the result, Israeli lies and deceit attempting to justify, will continue throughout history.

  18. Taxi
    February 29, 2012, 12:39 am

    Palestine don’t need mondoweiss and her new zionist bedfellows. Every Palestinian writer should think twice about writing articles for this newly annointed zionist publication. Their interests are no more about justice in the holyland, but how to please privileged American zionists who serve the brutal occupation through their willful ignorance.

    I am disappointed by this pitiful direction that mondo has chosen to take.

    The tag of ‘war of ideas’ is now false. It should really be changed to ‘no war of ideas please, we are genteel zionists’.

    Phil and Adam have set down writing rules that they themselves would not accept from others. No siree Bob, I will not live and write under the rules of a vain dictatorship.

    Goodbye.

    • Chaos4700
      February 29, 2012, 1:47 am

      I’m not leaving yet, and I wish I could ask you to stay, but I can’t bring myself to put you through this twisted mockery of an “open” forum. If this is what it takes to maintain “credibility” among the American Jewish community? There is no hope. No wonder the Palestinians have mostly abandoned this forum. It’s pointless. American Jews who REALLY care about human rights more than tribalism are a minority of a minority of a minority. There’s Medea Benjamin… and… Jewish Voice for Peace? You can just about count them on your digits.

    • Exiled At Home
      February 29, 2012, 5:14 pm

      Taxi,

      Very sorry to see you leave…

      I understand your frustration at the way things have been going around MW. You’re not alone in those sentiments. I feel compelled to stick around, though, contribute where I can, and at the very least continue to learn from the excellent commentary among the readers here.

      I wish you the best. Forza Palestina!

  19. Taxi
    February 29, 2012, 2:11 am

    Chaos,
    You and I go back a long way – back to the hufpost days. We’ve done years of blogging and I think we’ve put a dent or two in the ziorobot’s temples. This will indeed continue, with or without mondo. You, or anyone else, can always find me on: link to friendfeed.com

    … till at least Adam starts showing some respect for his regular bloggers – by actually reading the blogs! It sure don’t look to me like he even reads his own blogs – so outta touch he is.

    • Walid
      February 29, 2012, 5:29 am

      Cheer up, Taxi, it could be worse and not reason enough to get off the bus. I agree that some sort of normalization is happening here since it’s always about evil Zionists and never about Israelis, but I’m not sure it’s being done intentionally. The thing that’s clear is that this is not about the Middle East as the tag says but simply about Zionists and since most are in Israel, neverending discussions about them are covering up for Israelis in general. It’s not only Zionists that are stealing the Palestinians’ land and water but all Israelis. Discussions on Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon and so on only get fired-up inasmuch as they are incidental to Israel. Should be called the war of ideas involving Zionists. Taking Syria as an example, things have been happening there for months and it’s about to become Libya II and the only real interest in it here was the story about the bogus Syrian lesbian that came up last June. Tunis, Egypt, Libya and Bahrain are in shambles, but most discussions keep covering only what the Zionists are up to.

      I read your latest comment at the other place. None of us are as free as we’d like to be and you have to take into account that even Arabs have to watch what they say if they want to continue living and working in their own community. Plainly, it’s not realistic to expect a Jew to be more Arab than an Arab. What did you think of last Sunday’s Abbas call to Arabs and Muslims from the US and Europe to visit Jerusalem to make Palestinians there feel they are not isolated?

      • Taxi
        February 29, 2012, 6:35 am

        Walid,

        It’s not about Phil being “more Arab than an Arab”. It’s about justice. Pure and simple. Supporting justice with everything you have. I fear that mondo has lost this quintessential focus. Or rather, it has decided to willfully re-focus on pleasing them wotchamacallits oh yeah ‘liberal’ zionists. An oxymoron we’ve dissected here over the years – a label that lacks any merit or realism. Why should I allow myself to submit to verbal and intellectual censorship because of a bunch of dudes who’re interested in maintaining the status quo in Occupied Palestine, albiet a ‘cleaner, liberal’ version of the occupation? Come on, things have clearly changed around here and I see these changes as benefiting zionism and I see the mw administrators comfortable with this. My ‘karamah’ simply won’t allow me to participate under these conditions. This indeed be the last day of my posting here… till I see the ‘change’ being changed again.

        Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Egypt etc are ALL topics that directly effect zionism in the mideast, but neither editors seem to be able to grasp this and choose instead to write about the Dersh and the Shmersh and other local zionist neurotics. I’m fed up being offered by them a picture of the middle east that’s the size of a stamp. The bigger picture, the big bad picture – we never get that around here. We kinda used to. What happened? Clearly their agenda has changed and I cannot support this change.

        As to the theatrics and antics of Abu Mazin, well he’s off my radar, Walid. I never think about this inconsequential little man. And if I have to give a quick thirty second thought to his latest idea, I’d say it’s for domestic consumption, riding on the backs of the international groups who’re organizing a peaceful march to Jerusalem next month.

        Thanks Walid for all your contributions here. Always know that I am a great lover and supporter of both Palestine and Lebanon. Tis true, I really heart the beautiful and brave Lebanon.

      • seafoid
        February 29, 2012, 8:02 am

        Taxi

        khalaas ya’ni

        It is only getting interesting now. The Ziobots are all the same. Jewish exceptionalism and privilege trump Palestinian rights every time. The debate is going to happen here first. Why not be part of it ?

        Nobody doubts your integrity or commitment to the sha’ab al ‘arbi. Count to ashra and get back in there.

      • Taxi
        February 29, 2012, 10:19 am

        Hahahaha seafoid, you’re a funny brother.

        Actually it ain’t so interesting to me to be on a repeat loop of rebutting the same lowly hasbara 101 ad infinitum. Life is too short and I’ve been doing this fighting for Palestine for some thirty five years now.

        Plus I actually don’t believe USA/our words and debates here matter anything to the plight of the Palestinians. We can debate here all we like and it ain’t gonna change a damn thing. Unfortunately, only israel’s military defeat and humiliation, as Finklestien asserted, can create any meaningful change to the status quo. I was here on mw to inform and be informed and I feel I’ve done plenty of that already – but I won’t enjoy doing it further with all this weird censorphip-0-meter waving over my head.

        I feel like a bird that’s entering a cage every time I visit mondo these days. So many important topics are off limits. Why don’t they call it ‘the war of limited ideas’, instead of ‘the war of ideas’?

        Anyway, I really dig your smarts, seafoid. And I would love to be in your good company the night Palestine is liberated! Wallah wallah!

      • Dan Crowther
        February 29, 2012, 3:19 pm

        Taxi, brother — your posts are spot on. It has become the size of a stamp. Let’s do something about it! Despair not brother!

      • Taxi
        February 29, 2012, 3:44 pm

        Brother Dan, I’m a sistah hahahaha! As I freely admitted here:
        link to mondoweiss.net

      • Dan Crowther
        February 29, 2012, 4:34 pm

        HAHAHA — MAN O MAN

        IM A FOOL — IM SORRY SISTER TAXI!!!

      • Chaos4700
        February 29, 2012, 7:48 pm

        This is why I avoid gendered pronouns entirely at this point, when addressing people in the blogosphere.

  20. MHughes976
    February 29, 2012, 7:36 am

    What most attracts me to Mondoweiss is the humanity and genuine freedom from racism, even the courtesy under pressure, of most of the commenters. I’m proud to know you and hope that none of the old hands will leave. Next to that, the people who write the main posts are for the most part remarkably well informed with hearts in the right place.
    Over the last few years support for Palestinian rights in the West has gone from negligible to noticeable – I don’t think that even lobbyists would deny this – and I think that it has been a great achievement in which Phil has played a very big and creditable part. The next step, from noticeable to significant, will be very difficult. An effort was made to reach out to liberal Zionists, especially Professor Slater, and we all know that the result was to divide and distract us. That this should have chilled our Palestinian supporters, groaning under tyranny rather than engaging in polite arguments, isn’t surprising. But I think that the battle of ideas on the western front is still worth fighting. We aren’t at the centre of the story but we can help. Things that happen here, even things that are said here, have results there.
    If people are going to come here and argue for a cleaner occupation, as Taxi puts it, I think we badly need people like Taxi who will point out the plain truth that there is no such thing as clean dirt.

    • Taxi
      February 29, 2012, 9:04 am

      Thanks McHughes.

      For me it’s about the disrespect of the administrators to their blogging community – that they don’t deem us worthy of their time and clarifications after many bloggers requested them to explain the rationale behind banning JB, combined with allowing suddenly and simultaneously a whole buncha new 101 hasbarados to take us all through the same old tired argument with their lies and misinformation.

      The administrators’ willful silence over this matter means that they’d rather consigned this matter to the realms of conspiracy theory and such, instead of out and out addressing the many requests by bloggers for an explanation. Personally I hate conspiracy theories, preferring facts, facts, and more facts. Heck for all I know, I myself might accept their explanation if it were afforded me – but no explanation is evidently forthcoming and the whole weird affair is swept under the carpet.

      For a site that claims dissemination of truths and facts, the administrator’s silence in the face of the biggest controversy MW’s ever had, becomes offensive. Even suspect.

      Disrespect causes loss of trust, we all know this. And so why would I invest valuable time and creativity into a questionable internet project? I was kicking and reacting to hideous zionism before mondoweiss and before even the internet and so no doubt I’ll be kicking and kicking way after mondo times too.

      The suffering Palestinians have been stabbed in the back by so many of their so-called friends in the west that I cannot possibly bring myself to be part of the hand that holds a dagger against them. And I fear that mondo’s administrator’s silence over Jeffreygate is the sound of the pulling of a knife from it’s casing.

      Yap, this silence is a betrayal of the cause for justice in the holy land.

      Phil and Adam, I salute all the good work that they’ve done. But I cannot salute the way they’ve handled this weird and important controversy.

      • Walid
        February 29, 2012, 9:49 am

        Taxi, of course a change happened here, I think this “new look” has been imposed on the guys; sort of “change or you will be shut down.” As absurd as this may sound, it’s still a possibility, especially the way JB was suddenly cut off without prior warning or notice. What most of us are doing here to the Zionists is harmless name calling and getting stuff off our chests but with JB, he was getting at the root of this evil and this wasn’t permitted. If I’m right, I can’t be angry with Phil and Adam for it and I’d actually feel bad for them because of it but I wouldn’t want to have someone looking over my shoulder all the time as someone appears to be doing here. That’s why I said you shouldn’t be getting off the bus.

      • MHughes976
        February 29, 2012, 1:44 pm

        I don’t know about the Scottish ‘McHughes’, since I am quite a mongrel but not Scottish. The Welsh ‘Martin bach’ would suit me better.

      • Taxi
        February 29, 2012, 2:51 pm

        Sorry MHughes – my bad – typo weirdly connected to a McHughes I know who has a similar temperament to you.

  21. quercus
    February 29, 2012, 7:38 am

    I am going to keep reiterating this advice. Contact your senators/representatives and tell them that 1) Israel must declare the number of nuclear weapons in its possession, 2) must open its nuclear facility to full inspection, and 3) MUST sign the Nuclear non-proliferation Treaty. Until that is done, concern about an ALLEGED Iranian nuclear weapons program is absent.

  22. stevieb
    February 29, 2012, 10:36 am

    Occupy APAIC – awesome. Great to see people picketing in Washington against the Zionist Lobby – warms the heart, long may it grow.

  23. US Citizen
    February 29, 2012, 10:38 am

    The solution is simple – when an AIPAC endorsed candidate runs just spell out for the people in that district all the money we give to Israel that could be spend here at home. People understand dollars and cents. Make AIPAC and the people who run on a pro-Israel ticket defend giving 10 millions dollars a day to a ‘vibrant democracy’ when our own are going without. Spell it out for them and shame these AIPACers. It’s long overdue.

  24. Pat Carmeli
    February 29, 2012, 1:05 pm

    COMMENTS begin by bothering to dialogue with hackneyed arguments about ’47/’48 when we all KNOW why most Palestinians became refugees. Then the Commenters commiserate over our common agreement over the atrocities of AIPAC. Comments then morph into a tirade of activist against activist, who is purer, and who is abandoning the Mondo-ship. Frankly, dissension does nothing to further the cause of justice.

    If you’re outraged about the AIPAC folks dictating to our easily bought politicians, then PLEASE take a stand and come to DC this weekend and make your presence known. All the banter back and forth here does little to awaken the American people to the quagmire of control by a foreign entity that we are indeed in. And by the way, last year at MOVE OVER AIPAC my daughters interviewed Pamela Geller who admitted to them (Geller thought they were on HER side), that these “crowds get bigger and bigger every year and its quite disturbing”. Hey, I’m taking the drive down from Syracuse NY to “disturb” Pamela Geller. Come down and join us!

  25. ritzl
    March 1, 2012, 2:30 am

    Go Medea!! Git ‘er done!!

    Ant thank you for doing this on all the fronts you do this. Code Pink is a remarkable, leading edge group.

  26. VR
    March 1, 2012, 3:03 am

    I have one simple question – what are you going to do, even if you totally break AIPAC, and you find out that US hegemony marches on in the Middle East? What is going to be your reaction when this happens? I ask this because I don’t think that the majority here really understands the nature and function of your own system. What are you going to do when the nightmare continues?

    • lysias
      March 1, 2012, 10:57 am

      Support for Israel is a major reason why the Democratic Party basically supports U.S. hegemonism. Remove that, and perhaps one of the two major parties here will begin to oppose hegemonism.

      • seafoid
        March 1, 2012, 11:30 am

        The US takes 25% of global resource consumption annually. 5% of global population . This has very little to do with Israel. It is more about US imperialism. US waste should be a much bigger issue than it is.

        All those obese Americans who drive everywhere are self motivated. Another takeaway pizza . Israel doesn’t come into it.

        AIPAC is a political lobby that aligns Israeli goals to US imperialism. It will be a real b”tch when the US turns on Israel.

        I was skiing last week. We had a big fall of snow that melted on the Wednesday. There was one spot in the middle of a sidewalk that caught my attention. It had been joined to a big snowdrift on the edge of the sidewalk that was still huge but over the course of the day became separated. I was thinking of Israel. Distance sucks. Of course it melted faster than the snow on the edge of the sidewalk.

  27. Jim Bronke
    March 7, 2012, 8:41 am

    Medea-You are my hero for getting this in “print”.

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