AIPAC sells ‘intoxicating’ donors’ conclave with endless wine (and Brazile, Begala and Fleischer)

Israel/Palestine
on 45 Comments

AIPAC announces its next “National Summit in California wine country,” this coming October. Video features countless images of grapes and wine-glasses and “great wine”– red being poured with sloppy gusto at :40– and promises of “intoxicating” conversation about the U.S. and Israel. I noticed lib Dems Donna Brazile, who can say nothing bad about Israel, and Paul Begala; no wonder I see them on MSNBC. And Iraq war promoter Ari Fleischer. Two day summit is for those who contribute an annual minimum of $3600, and costs $195

Says MJ Rosenberg: “Theme seems to be getting drunk on power and California wine. So the kids do Birthright to have sex, and their parents do AIPAC  to drink.”

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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45 Responses

  1. just
    March 2, 2013, 10:50 am

    Perhaps they can all dress up a la Hikind @ his Purim party and make Halloween really special this year.

    “an intellectual booster shot”– highly doubtful.

  2. HarryLaw
    March 2, 2013, 10:57 am

    Why don’t they introduce some “Wine of Israel” [front label], back label “Golan Heights Winery, POB 183, Katzrin, 12900, ISRAEL. All produced [according to UNSC Resolution 497] in Syria, [Country code SY] on stolen land, with stolen water and produced by illegal settlers on illegal settlements [Geneva 49.6] and sold to the world with false labeling see European Union Regulation No 491/2009 and EU Regulation No 607/2009 Article 55, which states “Country of origin” mandatory.

  3. Kathleen
    March 2, 2013, 11:13 am

    Donna Brazille a huge such up. And let us not ever forget Fleisher’s role in outing CIA undercover agent Valerie Plame who had put her own life on the line for this country. That outing undermined US national Security and the report about the lives lost and financial cost to the US will never be released. But no doubt that Fleisher and so many others in the Bush administration should have been put on trial for purposely outing Plame

    • Kathleen
      March 2, 2013, 12:46 pm

      oops “suck up” Such up…hmmm

    • Keith
      March 2, 2013, 4:04 pm

      KATHLEEN- “And let us not ever forget Fleisher’s role in outing CIA undercover agent Valerie Plame who had put her own life on the line for this country.”

      Right you are, Kathleen. I mean, who has done more to advance truth, justice, respect for human rights, and American ‘fair play’ than those courageous straight-shooters at the CIA? What would we do without them safeguarding us from narco-terrorists? Gets a bit tricky at times, a fine line to walk, mistakes have been made, but on balance….?

      • Kathleen
        March 3, 2013, 1:18 am

        OK CIA has not always put their best foot forward. But does that make it acceptable for the Bush administration to purposely out one of them?

  4. HarryLaw
    March 2, 2013, 11:15 am

    Just to add to the above According to the World Trade Organization and the European Union rules of origin which are consistent with our own Trade Descriptions Act 1968 section 36, which states COUNTRY OF ORIGIN.. [1] For the purposes of this act, goods shall be deemed to have been manufactured or produced in the country in which they last underwent a treatment or process resulting in a substantial change. This clearly puts this imported product in breach of section 16 Trade Descriptions act 1968, PROHIBITION OF IMPORTATION OF GOODS BEARING FALSE INDICATION OF ORIGIN, ” Where a false trade description is applied to any goods outside the UK and the false indication, or one of the false indications, given, or likely to be taken as given, thereby is an indication of the place of manufacture, production, processing or reconditioning of the goods or any part thereof, the goods shall not be imported into the United Kingdom”.

    • pabelmont
      March 2, 2013, 1:00 pm

      Good luck. Legal arguments are only as useful as the integrity of the court to which they are tendered. Where the Israel Lobby has its thumb on the scale of justice, whether in UK or USA, one does not expect a court’s decision to be based on any sort of legal reasoning.

  5. Sumud
    March 2, 2013, 11:32 am

    No surprises here – viewing the video directly on YT, ratings and comments have been disabled:

    link to youtube.com

    AIPAC’s whole schtick is lipstick on a pig, and they know it, and everyone else does too…

  6. Avi_G.
    March 2, 2013, 11:57 am

    True story:

    I was in Israel last year and stayed a couple of days at a hotel. Due to a mistake on the part of hotel management, they offered me some complimentary wine in their effort to make amends.

    I examined the bottle and noticed it was ‘Israeli’ wine, made in the Golan Heights no less. Curious, I decided to open it and try it to finally see what the hubbub was/is about Israeli wine. Was it as good as wine from Italy, France, Spain, New Zealand, or California, I wondered.

    I pulled the cork out, set the bottle on the table and let it air for a few. I then grabbed a glass and poured some wine into it. First I did the smell test, inhaling deep. “Meh…nothing special” I thought. “But still, let’s have a taste, shall we?”

    I rinsed my mouth with the wine trying to give my taste buds time to absorb it all. Still, nothing spectacular. It tasted OK, but I wasn’t impressed. Later, I drank another glass and left the rest of the bottle at the hotel.

    Fast forward to the next day at which point I had already checked out of the hotel.

    I woke up, got out of bed and walked past the full-body mirror on my way to the shower. It was a quick glance, but what my eyes saw took a second or two to register. I walked back — almost in panic — and took a long hard look.

    “What the fu** is that?” I said to myself.

    My chest looked like it had been through a meat grinder, with some kind of nasty rash. I had NEVER seen anything like that on my body. Never.

    So I went to a nearby pharmacy, got some cream, special soap and medicated dressing pads. It took about three or four days before my chest was clear again. But that experience stayed with me. I will always associate Israeli wine with a nasty rash. Needless to say, I will never drink it again.

    As for the hotel, this experience sure gave meaning to the phrase, “Add insult to injury”.

    • Ramzi Jaber
      March 2, 2013, 12:52 pm

      Avi_G, did the hotel give you more wine to make amends?!!! I think hotel management reads your posts in MW ;-)

      • Avi_G.
        March 2, 2013, 4:55 pm

        Yeah, probably.

        Want to hear about another experience I had?

        In looking for place to stay, I checked out a hostel in the hope of saving some money seeing as I needed a place for a long period of time. So I walked into this hostel and asked if they had rooms available.

        The reservations book laid open on the counter with an entire day blocked off for a group.

        The receptionist was looking for a vacant room in the book for me. I peered over.

        “Ummm, I can put you here, in this room. Do you want to see it?”

        It was an isolated room in the stairwell. Pointing to another room near the yard, I said, “Well, how about this room here?”

        She said, “Oh, umm, you don’t want that one.”

        “I don’t?” I asked

        At that point I noticed that an entire block of rooms was crossed off for a group. The name listed there was the name of a Palestinian town in Israel.

        She said, “No. It’s you know, the cousins, you don’t want to be there.”

        She went on to explain something…and I zoned out as I tried to figure it out what she had just said. “Cousins?” I thought to myself. “I didn’t know that cousins were genetically predisposed to behaving badly.”

        And then it hit me, and I realized it, “Oh cousins. She means Arabs”.

        Moslems and Jews are biblical cousins. So in current day Israel they often refer to each other by the euphemism “cousins”.

        So that woman was advising me against staying in a room close to Ay-rabs.

        Between that and the wine experience, I had a ‘great’ time.

      • weindeb
        March 2, 2013, 6:24 pm

        Why were you visiting Israel in the first place, spending your money there, etc.? Given your apparent point of view, I must assume you could not do other than visit, that you had overwhelming obligations, etc., although I do think there are countries whose policies render them unworthy of receiving the compliment of being visited. Or maybe you were doing research on Israel’s notorious modus operandi called “facts-on-the-ground”? Just wondering.

      • Avi_G.
        March 3, 2013, 12:04 am

        weindeb,

        When I stay in a town or a city that has both Jewish and Palestinian population (e.g. Jerusalem), then I try to give my business to the Palestinian population. The people at hotels, restaurants and grocery stores in East Jerusalem are nicer than those in West Jerusalem; the staff is friendlier, prices are more reasonable and management actually appreciates your business unlike the businesses in West Jerusalem who take everything for granted.

        The problem with being in Israel is that in order to receive services and products, one has to give money to Israeli companies, so boycotting them becomes a challenge. That is why I try to keep my stays there as short as possible.

        The irony, however, is that due to heavy taxation and trade restrictions, it actually costs less for a Palestinian business in East Jerusalem to import goods from Tel-Aviv than it does to import goods from Amman, Jordan.

        So one feels a bit cheated when one realizes that he or she is only indirectly boycotting Israeli goods. It’s kind of like paying taxes in the US, knowing full well that one’s tax dollars are going to end up as part of the annual aid Israel receives from Uncle Sam. But I digress.

        Anyway, some people do not have the luxury of NOT going to Israel. I have family there, for example.

        The other problem is that there is a limit to the number of racists and bigots one can take on. I may reprimand the first Jewish Israeli, the second, the third, the fourth, or even the fifth. But there comes a point where one feels exhausted. So all one can do at that point is simply distance oneself from the bigots. I walked out on that woman and told her I wasn’t interested in staying at a place where there were so, so many (Here, she must had been waiting for the word “Arabs”, but instead I said….) racists.

        I got the surprise look of both shock and confusion. On the one hand she wasn’t sure why an Israeli Jew would make such a fuss about hearing a fellow compatriot speak like that about Arabs. On the other hand she wasn’t sure what to make of the criticism, as though it’s perfectly acceptable, nay a given, to express such racism about Arabs.

        Or maybe you were doing research on Israel’s notorious modus operandi called “facts-on-the-ground”? Just wondering.

        I’ve done that in the past. It gets old after a while.

      • weindeb
        March 3, 2013, 10:29 am

        Thank you for an obviously heartfelt response. I do take some exception, however, to your “It [facts-on-the-ground exposé] gets old after a while.” It’s old because it is old, before, during and after the establishment of Israel, in fact, both through legalisms and physical force, and it is an ongoing method of land theft and concomitant injustices that I truly believe must be laid bare over and over again without cessation. Whether Israel’s brilliantly choreographed land-grab of ’67 or the continuing Settler Movement largely growing out of that action, it must be exposed for the huge and seemingly endless injustice that it is. But again, Avi, my appreciation for your thoughtful response.

      • Avi_G.
        March 3, 2013, 4:17 pm

        weindeb,

        It seems you misunderstood my comment.

        When I wrote, “it gets old” I was referring to the modus operandi reference that you mentioned in your prior post. That is to say that the tactics of the Israeli government and the colonists have been the same since time immemorial, so as far as seeing something new on the ground, there is none. They are the same tactics again and again. So it gets old.

    • libra
      March 2, 2013, 5:50 pm

      Avi, that nasty rash would have cleared up in no time at all after a thorough washing with Dead Sea Body Scrub followed by a topical treatment of Dead Sea Skin Balm and, just to be on the safe side, regular application of Dead Sea Body Lotion. Well worth it at only $40/jar each – though I’m surprised there wasn’t an enterprising handcart vendor in the hotel lobby offering you all three for only $90.

      • Avi_G.
        March 2, 2013, 11:33 pm

        libra,

        I was certainly feeling the Ahava (Hebrew for Love).

      • gamal
        March 3, 2013, 4:24 am

        and a refreshing, just made, Soda, from your handy little device, perhaps you could mix a cocktail a Bloody Ester, perhaps, and some Herem Hummus of course, Jews were the first to split the chick pea, in the large Hebron collider, khalas.

  7. yourstruly
    March 2, 2013, 12:36 pm

    today’ LA Times –

    “Turkish remark on Zionism dims Syria talks”

    where turkish prime minister recep tayyip erdogan says “islamophobia was a crime against humanity, like “zionism, antisemitism and fascism”

    but the u.s. government objects

    claims zionism’s not a crime against humanity

    yet, in gaza

    ongoing

    in slow motion

    genocide

    live

    • just
      March 2, 2013, 1:04 pm

      Mr. Erdogan is correct. We are wrong and insulting.

      You should have seen the literal trash on wapo last night– the moderator finally got to work, but the damage had been done for all the world with a computer to see. There were all sorts of violations of policy, including outright obscenity and personal attacks. It was Hasbara Central, defending the indefensible.

    • yourstruly
      March 2, 2013, 1:06 pm

      & for all living beings

      that unless there’s a turnabout

      around the end of this century

      “will the last one out please turn off the lights?”

  8. Ramzi Jaber
    March 2, 2013, 12:58 pm

    What fascinates me is all the focus by Israel on US politicians and Zionist Christians. That is certainly short-sighted. Most of the world doesn’t really care about the US pols and the right, including us Palestinians. Our current and future support is being built across the world, including the next generation of US citizens that are free of Zionist domination through holocaust guilt, the next generation of US leaders who will be truly fair and balanced putting US interests and principles first.

    • just
      March 2, 2013, 1:07 pm

      I pray that this comes to pass, Ramzi– sooner than later.

    • Kathleen
      March 2, 2013, 10:03 pm

      I don’t know with young Jews taking those Birthright trips in herds the new generation of young Zionist are in training.

  9. Jan
    March 2, 2013, 1:02 pm

    How about those of us in the Bay Area telling AIPAC just what we think of them. If anyone can find out where they are meeting a unwelcoming committee should be there to greet them.

    • CloakAndDagger
      March 2, 2013, 3:54 pm

      @ Jan

      Could be fun. We could even rent a few donkeys:

      link to ponyparty.com

    • irishmoses
      March 2, 2013, 9:44 pm

      Great idea. It might attract college students and concerned adults from all over the state. They could have side-of-the-road demonstrations and maybe random traffic slowdowns with stickers slapped on the sides of car windows with catchy slogans like:

      “46 years of apartheid, but who’s counting”, or “Israel: a Blight unto Nations”, or the simpler “Fuck Israel; Free Palestine”.

      With the right organization and publicity, it could really catch on. Media would have to cover it.

      I can dream can’t I?

  10. pabelmont
    March 2, 2013, 1:10 pm

    This post suggests that the sales pitch for BIRTHRIGHT is sex and for AIPAC/Adult adventure is WINE. Assuming, arguendo, the correctness of this analysis, then BOTH are just get-togethers for schmoozing with landsmen (so to speak) where the purpose of the get-together is to, yes!, get together. (Nothing Jewish about sex or drink.)

    No purpose to wring hands about the dangers, current or future, which make the existance of Israel so important (you know, as a safe haven in times of danger to Jews), but merely a purpose to express pleasure in the fact of Jewish-Israeli possession of the Land! Yea! We got it and no-one can take it from us, and we can make it bigger whenever we want (sort of like those ads for making something else bigger that you might expect to see on a porno site), and no-one can touch us. Immunity! Impunity! We control!

    Sounds, if not out-and-out criminal, then kinda adolescent, nu?

  11. HarryLaw
    March 2, 2013, 1:24 pm

    pabelmont @.” Legal arguments are only as useful as the integrity of the court to which they are tendered”. Good point, the initial court in this instance is the magistrates court, a perverse judgement here would mean appeals to higher courts, the bottom line for a final judgement would be , is the Golan Heights part of Syria as UNSC Resolution 497, says, and the UK government affirm, or is it part of Israel as only the Israeli government claim, there is no third option, how could any court however biased come to any other conclusion?

  12. W.Jones
    March 2, 2013, 3:18 pm

    Phil,

    I am certain your conversations on Mondoweiss are more nuanced, varied, reflective, and insightful. I appreciate your friendship with us!

  13. hophmi
    March 2, 2013, 4:24 pm

    LOL. Jealous much? Go organize your own summit.

  14. dbroncos
    March 2, 2013, 9:11 pm

    I’d be curious to know if AIPAC donor/members in some way enjoy a tax break for their AIPAC contributions just as JNF contributors get a tax break on their giving.

  15. Kathleen
    March 3, 2013, 1:22 am

    AIPAC To Hill: Don’t Touch Israel Aid
    link to thejewishweek.com

    Moon of Alabama in response to the above
    link to moonofalabama.org

    “This should be a good chance to highlight the issue of rather outrageous U.S. payments to the zionist state. Israel getting its subsidizes while local school lunch programs get cut might awake some citizens’ critique. The attempt to automatically involve the U.S. in a war that Israel’s hardliners would like to start should add to the outrage.

    • Citizen
      March 3, 2013, 10:39 am

      @ Kathleen
      Looks like AIPAC is going full throttle to show even the dimmest American that only Jews are important and the rest of us are just expendable tools for this priority:
      link to tikkun.org

      If Israel gets exempted from sequestration (probably next year as congress implements cut to foreign aid), the cuts will come out of the hides of, e.g., literally starving folks in Africa.

      And if Israel gets elevated to status as America’s one and only super ally, ditto.

      Actually more than a super ally–if AIPAC gets its way Israel will dictate when America goes to war.

      link to tikkun.org

      • MK_Ultra
        March 3, 2013, 5:29 pm

        Better add this to that tab. We know for whose benefit that is:

        Kerry says US releasing millions in aid to Egypt

        link to news.yahoo.com

  16. Citizen
    March 3, 2013, 10:49 am

    Live streaming coverage of AIPAC 2013 at JP.
    Also via twitter, e.g.:

    20 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Now another standing O for the Israeli genius who created the walking device. #jpost #AIPAC2013
    Expand
    23 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Now we’re on the politically safer ground of Israeli tech miracles. Standing O as paralyzed hunter walks across stage #jpost #AIPAC2013
    Expand
    27 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    #AIPAC2013 1st act has ended. Now it’s time for some tearjerker pre-made videos. First one about hunting. Risky given the gun debate. #jpost
    Expand
    31 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Abrams: Unless MB in #Egypt changes the way it’s governing, I don’t think it will be there a year or two from now. #jpost #aipac2013
    Expand
    32 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Abrams: I’d like to see the Muslim Brotherhood fail, but not see #Egypt fail. #jpost #aipac2013
    Expand
    33 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Smattering of applause as Ross speaks of importance of “lethal assistance” to #Syrian opposition. #jpost #aipac2013
    Expand
    38 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Abrams: I’m worried that P5+1 is “weakening” stance in negotiations with #Iran in latest round of talks. #jpost #aipac2013
    Expand
    40 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Elliott Abrams puts it more colorfully: #Obama needs to go thru “delicate medical procedure” called a “kishka transplant.” #jpost #aipac2013
    Expand
    44 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Dennis Ross at #AIPAC2013: #Obama’s trip to #Israel is time for a new beginning. #jpost
    Expand
    53 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    .@ambassadororen: We hope #Abbas won’t follow through with reconciliation with #Hamas. We see that as a game blocker. #jpost #AIPAC2013
    Expand
    55 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    .@ambassadororen: #IronDome missile defense system “a game changer, not a game ender,” #aipac2013 #jpost
    Expand
    58 mins Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    .@AmbassadorOren: #Israel will start talks w/ #Palestinians right now in Jerusalem, in Ramallah, in the DC convention hall.#AIPAC2013 #jpost
    Expand
    1 hr Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    .@AmbassadorOren says #Obama trip to #Israel sends the message that Israel isn’t alone. #jpost
    Expand
    1 hr Hilary Krieger ‏@HilaryKrieger
    Standing ovation for @AmbassadorOren to open #AIPAC conference. #jpost
    Expand

  17. Citizen
    March 3, 2013, 10:55 am

    You can also watch AIPAC 2013 live here: link to israelnationalnews.com

  18. MK_Ultra
    March 3, 2013, 5:15 pm

    “AIPAC announces its next “National Summit in California wine country,” this coming October. Video features countless images of grapes and wine- glasses and “great wine”– red being poured with sloppy gusto at :40… .”

    Whut? Does that mean no “ISreali” wine from the orchards on the and stolen from the Palestinians by the settlements? Gasp! That’s almost blasphemous.

  19. IL1948
    March 4, 2013, 1:10 am

    What a beautifully inspiring video.

    What a wonderful leader.

    Look how much Israel has accomplished in commerce, science, industry, medicine and culture in 6o short years.

  20. DICKERSON3870
    March 4, 2013, 4:19 am

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