Wait, why would a liberal Democrat line up with Dick Cheney?

Israel/Palestine
on 17 Comments

William C. Thompson Jr. is a progressive black Democrat running for mayor of New York, and he’s courting Jewish voters, according to this profile by David Chen in the Times. Thompson went to AIPAC, the Israel lobby, and evidently agreed with Dick Cheney there.

Mr. Thompson’s courtship of Jewish voters is emblematic of calculations being made by all of the candidates: perhaps 600,000 New Yorkers are expected to participate in the Democratic primary, and many of those voters are expected to be black or Jewish….

Mr. Thompson said he was the first comptroller to make city investments in Israeli bonds. He also took part in a panel, at a 2007 conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee headlined by Vice President Dick Cheney, on financial sanctions against “Iran and other state sponsors of terror.”

This is the PEP paradox. Progressive Except Palestine. Connecticut Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal was ranked the most liberal senator in the nation, by National Journal two days ago.

But as we reported during the Chuck Hagel confirmation hearing, Blumenthal is a hawk on Israel; he called on Hagel to correct his error of 13 years ago and endorse a letter he had declined to sign in 2000, which was signed by 96 Senators affirming their solidarity with Israel during the Second Intifada. Blumenthal lectured Hagel: 

And I just want to say about that letter: I wasn’t here when the letter was circulated; I would have signed it. But I would certainly join in urging that you reconsider and commit to the statement of support in the letter for the support of Israel. And if it’s appropriate now and applicable to today’s events, I hope you will consider expressing your support for it.

Thanks to Scott McConnell. And oh: Alex Kane covered the fact that Bill Thompson has allied himself with Assemblyman Dov Hikind a couple weeks ago.

17 Responses

  1. American
    February 24, 2013, 11:54 am

    No mystery here.

    NYC= many Jewish voters + big zio donors + many benefits that can flow from NYC to Jews and Israel ….like those Isr bonds investments…..and many other things.

    Money and self serving political careers = treasonous politicians.

  2. pabelmont
    February 24, 2013, 12:11 pm

    New Yorkers! Arise! You have nothing to lose but your chains!

    Can we somehow start a “Dump Thompson the Zionist” PAC? Movement?

    How can we punish candidates (and I’m sure this includes all or most of the other Dems as well) for blatant PANDERING Zionism? How about “Jews, Palestinians, and Allies for whoever the Republican is?” or “Jews, Palestinians, and Allies for whoever refuses to perform the Zionist Pander”?

    Infuriating!

    • Scott
      February 24, 2013, 2:29 pm

      It’s interesting–I’ve never known it before to be an issue before in city politics (which I once followed closely). It could be assumed that all candidates were very pro-Zionist, and the ones about whom there might have been suspicions (David Dinkins) simply pandered more. Giuliani had to fight a headwind of suspicion after his showy arrests of Wall Street crooks who happened, mostly, to be Jewish, and of course he then compensated by speaking as if Arafat was Hitler. The single exception was Michael Bloomberg, a liberal Zionist I assume, and wealthy and self-confident to be above all of this. In retrospect, he seems like a genuine giant among pygmies. But I agree it would be quite interesting if someone said, simply, “yes I like Israel but they would be better off making a fair peace with the Palestinians” a J Street line. I suspect such a candidate might do quite well.

    • kalithea
      February 25, 2013, 3:58 am

      “whoever refuses to perform the Zionist Pander”….Uh, good luck finding someone. New York is the mecca of “liberal” Zionism.

  3. Brown-Eyed Girl
    February 24, 2013, 12:14 pm

    I am absolutely shocked that someone running for mayor of New York feels he has to go bow at the feet of AIPAC in order to be elected. It’s not as if Israel policy is a real part of cleaning the streets of NYC, stopping crime in NYC, housing in NYC, employment in NYC, public education in NYC. Oh, and by the way does he have positions on the issues that are real to the people of NYC? I really wonder how much, if anything, he knows about the history of Palestine and the roots of the Israel/Palestine conflict?

  4. Citizen
    February 24, 2013, 3:15 pm

    Yeah, it’s the PEPsi generation of liberals; has been for ages.

  5. Citizen
    February 24, 2013, 3:32 pm

    And, on a related note, ZOA has lost its tax exemption and fired one of its officers for telling donors and potential donors so: link to forward.com

    Why has ZOA been tax-exempt in the first place? And why isn’t ZOA registered as an agent of a foreign government?
    Don’t bother to ask all those Dicks and Janes recently polled who think Iran is a big threat to America.

    • irmep
      February 25, 2013, 8:41 am

      The IRS doesn’t know why ZOA was tax exempt. They couldn’t come up with an application or exemption letter when asked several years ago.

      ZOA was ordered to register as a foreign agent SEVEN TIMES. But the AG, with no statutory authority to do so, let them off the hook, undermining FARA enforcement.

      See: link to wrmea.org

  6. sardelapasti
    February 24, 2013, 4:35 pm

    “…why would a liberal Democrat line up with Dick Cheney?”
    Because liberal Democrats are worse than Cheney in matters of international aggression, warmongering, international terrorism, cancelling of all guarantees of Rule of Law and fascist measures at home, and they show way more servility than did the Cheneys to their Zionist owners. If it weren’t for our need of numbers in a 98.9% clueless country, any “Democrat” in the Antizionist solidarity movement should in fact be considered a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  7. yonah fredman
    February 24, 2013, 5:22 pm

    When democrats from colorado and north dakota pander to the Jews there is something nefarious about it. When democrats from new york city pander to the Jews, there is nothing nefarious about it. easy enough, people?

  8. ivri
    February 24, 2013, 5:51 pm

    Are people here naïve or just pretend to be so? Can anybody really believe that all those people are pandering to a super-natural force called the “Zionist lobby”. What about a far simpler explanation: they actually believe in it! Not just simpler but logical too: they see what happens in the entire Arab world and draw conclusions.

    • Cliff
      February 24, 2013, 6:31 pm

      you’re statement is typical. it’s simply another version of Arab world = dictorships and Israel = liberal democracy, hence pro-Israel sentiment.

      the logical explanation would be a mix of factors

      lobbying is part of american politics

      so is religion

      and the US has always undermined indigenous peoples self-determination

      and the US pursues it’s ‘interests’

      it is completely baseless to think that politicians make decisions on their own and in a vacuum – completely unaffected by pressures and ideology and social/political norms

    • kalithea
      February 25, 2013, 3:30 am

      “Are people here naïve or just pretend to be so?” Ohhh, becauuuuse you’d rather we all be your sheeple fools? Or maybe it would be easier for you if we behaved like good little donkeys?

      Others, like Hagel, who dared to speak the truth have come and gone, their careers DEVOURED by the Lobby. It’s easy to play a DUMB, racist mass with fear and loathing against politicians with half a brain who’s main ambition is an illusion of power when you have big bucks to throw around. The ones not so easy to control are those with a brain and integrity. Good thing for the Lobby there aren’t too many politicians with both. Zionists exploit fear and insecurity and there is a whole lot of that to exploit. But the kind of power you get from that kind of exploitation comes with an expiry date and that date is closing in.

  9. DICKERSON3870
    February 24, 2013, 8:16 pm

    RE: Mr. Thompson’s courtship of Jewish voters is emblematic of calculations being made by all of the candidates . . . Mr. Thompson [a progressive black Democrat running for mayor of N.Y.] said he was the first comptroller to make city investments in Israeli bonds. He also took part in a panel, at a 2007 conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee headlined by Vice President Dick Cheney, on financial sanctions against “Iran and other state sponsors of terror.” ~ David Chen

    FROM THE AIPAC WEBSITE (undated):

    African American Political Leaders and Activists Visit Israel

    A group of African American politicians, consultants and activists arrived in Israel this week to participate in an American Israel Education Foundation (AIEF) Seminar. The group of 18 includes eight state and local elected officials and three appointed government officials, including the presidents of the city councils of Atlanta and Detroit. The other participants are all deeply involved in political and civic life in their communities, including five who are co-chairs for the DNC’s Generation44 fundraising initiative in their cities. A number of the seminar participants have already attended pro-Israel events in their communities and have shown interest in strengthening the U.S.-Israel relationship. Atlanta City Council President Ceasar Mitchell and DeKalb County Commissioner Lee May passed Iranian divestment resolutions in their jurisdictions in 2009.

    SOURCE – link to aipac.org

  10. aiman
    February 25, 2013, 1:02 am

    “William C. Thompson Jr. is a progressive black Democrat …”

    It should now be clear to anyone that a person’s colour or his own emancipation has nothing to do with his sense of justice. People bought in to Obama’s brand too quickly, forgetting that Bush’s cabinet was perhaps the most multiracial in US history (Pilger). The right of coloured people to hold equal power against the myth of white superiority (which was enchained to technological progress) is indisputable. What is troubling is the liberal penchant to ignore human rights abuses whether in their country or abroad just for a brand utility. Case in point: consider the liberal Zionist support for Obama at the expense of the Palestinians. As for enclaves of African-American support for Obama and for power in general after continued exclusion, without reflection of its ethical merit, it should be called out for the ethnocentrism it is. The same applies to other tribal politics, including the one underway in Syria at the behest of Saudi Arabia et al. or what occurred in Libya, including the massacre of sub-Saharan workers there.

  11. kalithea
    February 25, 2013, 3:04 am

    Like I said, Zionism is the biggest con job in modern history.

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