Israel Project ‘makeover’ shows how U.S. stands between Israel and total isolation

Israel/PalestineUS Politics
on 62 Comments
The Israel Project
A photo of an Israel Project panel (The Israel Project/Flickr)

President Barack Obama’s big speech to youth in Jerusalem warned of Israel’s growing isolation around the world. But the image of Israel remains overwhelmingly positive in the U.S.–and Israel advocacy groups want to keep it that way.

A profile of The Israel Project’s (TIP) “makeover,” as the Jewish Daily Forward put it yesterday, highlights how that mainstream Israel lobby group is putting all of its eggs in the American basket. The group has closed down its international offices, and are instead focusing intently on shaping U.S. opinion and making sure that Americans’ high support for Israel stays that way.

The Israel Project seems to be admitting that Israel’s image around the world is shot irreparably; its colonial settlement project and daily human rights abuses don’t do it any favors with most people. The Arab world’s continuing changes could further shake Israel’s regional position as hegemon. But it’s the U.S., the reigning global superpower, that really matters for The Israel Project.

Here’s more from the Forward’s profile, authored by Nathan Guttman, of The Israel Project head Josh Block:

From traditional hasbara — the Hebrew term for viewpoint promotion —focused on educating the press, TIP expanded to a global operation working in Europe, China, India, Latin America and Russia, and hosting an extensive Arabic-language operation. [Founder of TIP Jennifer Laszlo] Mizrahi saw the group’s Mandarin and Arabic operations as particularly crucial to the future of pro-Israel advocacy. The group also spent $1 million a year on polling, hiring top political pollsters to examine messaging on Israel and to gauge international public opinion.

Much of this is now gone. TIP board members ultimately rejected Mizrahi’s view of China as a key arena in the battle to influence public opinion on Israel. TIP does still maintain its program in Arabic, which is based in Israel and will soon expand its publications. Funding for this program is provided mainly by one TIP donor, New York businessman Richard Perry. But beyond that board members have stressed the need to “go back to the basics” of the organization’s mission. By the time Block took over, TIP had completed the process of shutting down its other international operations in favor of focusing on the United States.

Polling numbers on how Israel is viewed around the world and in the U.S. paint two very different pictures, so TIP is on the ball on this front.

For example, an annual poll released by the British Broadcasting Corporation last May reveals that 50 percent of those interviewed globally view Israel negatively–an uptick of three points from the last year the poll was taken. In both China and India, rising powers where TIP closed offices in, the image of Israel is also negative (in China more so). The vast majority of Europeans also view Israel badly. European diplomats have started talking about sanctions on Israel over its settlement policy, though this talk has yet to translate into concrete action.

In the U.S., the disgust with Israeli conduct doesn’t translate. A Gallup poll released ahead of Obama’s trip to the Middle East shows that Americans overwhelmingly side with Israel:

As President Barack Obama prepares to visit Israel, the Palestinian West Bank, and Jordan next week — his first trip to the region as president — Americans’ sympathies lean heavily toward the Israelis over the Palestinians, 64% vs. 12%. Americans’ partiality for Israel has consistently exceeded 60% since 2010; however, today’s 64% ties the highest Gallup has recorded in a quarter century, last seen in 1991 during the Gulf War. At that time, slightly fewer than today, 7%, sympathized more with the Palestinians.

The Gallup poll is a stark reminder of how much work advocates for Palestinian rights in the U.S. have ahead of them. But those advocates are up against well-oiled and funded groups like The Israel Project, which are doubling down on protecting Israel in the U.S.

62 Responses

  1. Citizen
    April 3, 2013, 11:52 am

    How can anyone get through to America’s John Q Public? To Dick & Jane? What are they doing now? I mean beyond worrying about how to pay their monthly bills, rent or mortgage? Watching their savings evaporate under Bernake if they are seniors? Watching The Bible on TV? Playing video games? Buying shoes or handbags? Watching sports? Or Reality TV shows? American Idol? Dancing With The Stars? Is there not one mainstream media outlet that will give them a dose of hardcore reality regarding the I-P conflict and America’s big hand in it, and what that means for their future, and the future of their kids, and grand kids? The answer is NO. That’s pretty much it, isn’t it? I’m not even mentioning the Christian fundies who’s support of Israel uber alles is linked to what they imagine to be their special seat in heaven.

    • Jeff Klein
      April 3, 2013, 1:11 pm

      One way would be to sponsor and publicize a poll on aid to Israel. Worded the right way — with information about the amount, comparison to other countries and the relative prosperity of Israel — I have little doubt that the numbers would be strongly negative. Why no group has done this yet is a mystery to me. The tribute we pay to Israel thrives mainly in secret, without any public say. The mainstream media might even pick something like that up

      And despite polling which indicates much more support for Israel than for the Palestinians, this support is rather thin. Other polls show that, when given the choice, strong pluralities say to “stay out of it”.

    • ryan-o
      April 3, 2013, 1:15 pm

      Exactly, Citizen. Americans are largely too pre-occupied with distractions leaving little room for independent thinking about such things. If the media doesn’t feed it to them, they’re not going to know and the media still dispenses a pro-Israel narrative. The Christian fundies don’t care if Israel is a pariah state or if they murder even Americans, they only care about that seat. There is no arguing with people like this. Pointing out how the rapture is not in the bible and dispensationalism is a 19th century spin on Zoroastrianism-derived millennialism is fightin’ words.

    • American
      April 4, 2013, 10:10 am

      Citizen says:
      April 3, 2013 at 11:52 am
      + Show content
      How can anyone get through to America’s John Q Public? To Dick & Jane? What are they doing now? I mean beyond worrying about how to pay their monthly bills, rent or mortgage? >>>>>>>>>

      How? Get the msm and ‘talk radio’ talking about the ‘money”…..that’s how.
      There’s been a lot made of people like Chris Hayes introducing the Israel issue on msm……but it’s introduced as a FP issue….John Q. Public doesn’t care about FP…..he cares about himself, his family, ‘being cheated’ or betrayed by his government.
      Imagine if someone like Rush Limbaugh took a dislike to US ‘aid’ to Israel and ranted on it to his taxpaying listeners.
      If activist want to do something they should start calling it to some of these radio programs and talking about the ‘money’.

      • James Canning
        April 7, 2013, 2:33 pm

        Maybe HGTV should do a “Househunters International” programme, with the subject couple seeking a flat or house in the occupied West Bank.

    • Pamela Olson
      April 6, 2013, 3:05 pm

      Well, I tried to write a book about Palestine that would appeal to mainstream Americans and the general human fascination with romance, adventure, suspense, and humor. We’ll see how many people it can reach, and how many minds it can change… We just gotta keep chipping away. Luckily truth is generally a one-way valve. What is once glimpsed cannot be unseen (at least not without painful cognitive dissonance).

  2. eljay
    April 3, 2013, 11:55 am

    >> A profile of The Israel Project’s (TIP) “makeover” … highlights how that mainstream Israel lobby group is putting all of its eggs in the American basket. The group has closed down their international offices, and are instead focusing intently on shaping U.S. opinion and making sure that Americans’ high support for Israel stays that way.

    Once again, Zio-supremacists prefer to justify, support, defend and excuse “Jewish State” immorality and injustice rather than see it end.

    >> A Gallup poll released ahead of Obama’s trip to the Middle East shows that Americans overwhelmingly side with Israel …

    That’s because Americans are under-informed and overly-propagandized and -indoctrinated. No surprise there.

    • lysias
      April 3, 2013, 12:42 pm

      Rashid Khalidi suggests at one point in his new book Brokers of Deceit that another reason Americans support Israel is that they are conscious of the settler colonialist past of their own country. He says that there’s a book to be written on that subject.

      Myself, I suspect that Americans lost that vision of themselves around the time Westerns stopped being popular. Already in John Ford’s later Westerns, Hollywood could portray Indians sympathetically, and later Westerns make it clear how whites treated Indians shamefully.

      • Jeff Klein
        April 3, 2013, 1:13 pm

        From Obama’s arrival speech in Israel:

        “Why does the United States stand so strongly, so firmly with the State of Israel? And the answer is simple. We stand together because we share a common story — patriots determined to be e a free people in our land,” pioneers who forged a nation, heroes who sacrificed to preserve our freedom, and immigrants from every corner of the world who renew constantly our diverse societies.”

        Unconscious irony. . .

        • lysias
          April 3, 2013, 2:39 pm

          Ben Rhodes wrote that speech, didn’t he? Ben Rhodes was on the staff of Lee Hamilton when he cochaired the 9/11 Commission.

        • ckg
          April 3, 2013, 4:47 pm

          In Obama’s speech I am reminded of Rick Perry’s JPost/WSJ 2011 OpEd which stated “Historian T.R. Fehrenbach once observed that my home state of Texas and Israel share the experience of ‘civilized men and women thrown into new and harsh conditions, beset by enemies.’”

        • James Canning
          April 3, 2013, 7:46 pm

          Were early non-Mexican settlers in Texas “thrown into” the place? Or did they go there for economic and social gain?

        • lysias
          April 4, 2013, 10:12 am

          The real reason Texas seceded from Mexico and fought a war of independence from it was that Mexico had made slavery illegal.

          Just who was the civilized party in that conflict?

        • MK_Ultra
          April 4, 2013, 9:33 pm

          We stand together because we share a common story — patriots determined to be e a free people in our land,”

          That is so utterly racist and wrong! MLK must be rolling on his grave with this guy.

        • Citizen
          April 5, 2013, 8:56 am

          @ lysias
          Yes. Ben Rhodes also wrote Obama’s old Cairo speech. Here’s an article with a heavy Zionist slant that will make you aware of Ben Rhodes’s very heavy influence on Obama regarding foreign policy in the ME and how to market it via Rhodes’s speeches: link to frontpagemag.com
          Talk about having real power and influence without being an elected US politician, between the WH inner circle and a giant mainstream media like CBS, the Rhodes Brothers are the Dynamic Duo par excellence. Anybody know any facts about their family background?

        • James Canning
          April 7, 2013, 2:30 pm

          @lysias – - And let’s remember that the great Henry Clay of Kentucky opposed the annexation of Texas by the US. Why? He thought it would make civil war more likely.

      • ryan-o
        April 3, 2013, 1:28 pm

        I agree that vision is long past. When Obama mentions “shared values” though, I have a feeling he is alluding to this. The way I look at this is the entire history of the world has to do with colonialism. It started tribally (ex – Scythians conquering Cimmerians) and later as civilization spread so did commerce and colonies (ex – Phoenicians colonizing the Mediterranean). The Spanish, Portuguese, British, and French are among the most recent therefore we know more about them.

        Israel is recent history and there are people alive who were born before its inception. Israel was born into a world where the UN and international laws like the Geneva Conventions (minus the 4th one) existed to prevent much of what it has done. Things got much worse in 1967 which is very recent history and they haven’t really gotten better. There are more UN resolutions concerning Israel than any other state. It’s not even superficially similar to the US’ colonial past

  3. Citizen
    April 3, 2013, 12:08 pm

    Re the Forward, last August:
    “TIP relies heavily on a very small group of very large donors. It currently has six $1 million a year donors (including Seth Klarman, Richard Perry and Terry Kassel, all New York hedge fund managers) and several other major contributors who give six-figure gifts.

    Read more: link to forward.com

    Hedge fund honchos. Gee, why am I not surprised? This pattern keeps repeating itself like an anti-semitic meme straight from David Duke.

    • lysias
      April 3, 2013, 12:43 pm

      Wasn’t it at a gathering of hedge fund honchos that Romney made that “47%” comment?

    • Rusty Pipes
      April 3, 2013, 4:03 pm

      They’re “giving back.” Charles Hurwitz, the only 1980′s corporate raider who did not go to jail, continued to take over companies, strip them of their assets and drive them into the ground. But leaders of the Jewish community in his hometown defended his character because he “gave back” so generously to charities.

  4. Taxi
    April 3, 2013, 12:45 pm

    And what happens when the only basket you’ve put your eggs in catches fire?

  5. LanceThruster
    April 3, 2013, 1:08 pm

    shaping U.S. opinion

    As in making sure the US doesn’t get wise to their lies and propaganda.

  6. Les
    April 3, 2013, 1:15 pm

    According to Haaretz, Israel’s commercialization of the Holocaust has not exactly been a boon to its victims.
    92% of Israeli Holocaust survivors say country doesn’t allocate enough funds for them
    More than a fifth of the 500 survivors questioned say their treatment by government officials has worsened, survey finds.
    By Talila Nesher | 14:31 03.04.13

    Days before Israel marks its Holocaust Remembrance Day, a newly published survey reveals that 92 percent of Holocaust survivors in the country claim the state does not allocate enough funds for them.

    link to haaretz.com

  7. DICKERSON3870
    April 3, 2013, 1:19 pm

    RE: “The vast majority of Europeans also view Israel badly. . . In the U.S., the disgust with Israeli conduct doesn’t translate. A Gallup poll released ahead of Obama’s trip to the Middle East shows that Americans overwhelmingly side with Israel . . .” ~ Alex Kane

    MY COMMENT: The mainstream press/media in Europe still has actual news of the type that is conducive to critical thinking. Here in the U.S., critical thinking on the part of most Americans is largely retarded/discouraged/stymied by the infotainment/propaganda churned out (as opposed to actual, significant, educational, thought-provoking news) by the mainstream/corporate media (after it has been ‘dumbed down’ so that it can be understood by someone with only an 8th grade education).

    SEE: “The Day That TV News Died”, by Chris Hedges, Truthdig, 3/24/13

    [EXCERPTS] I am not sure exactly when the death of television news took place. The descent was gradual—a slide into the tawdry, the trivial and the inane, into the charade on cable news channels such as Fox and MSNBC in which hosts hold up corporate political puppets to laud or ridicule, and treat celebrity foibles as legitimate news. But if I had to pick a date when commercial television decided amassing corporate money and providing entertainment were its central mission, when it consciously chose to become a carnival act, it would probably be Feb. 25, 2003, when MSNBC took Phil Donahue off the air because of his opposition to the calls for war in Iraq. . .
    . . . The celebrity trolls who currently reign on commercial television, who bill themselves as liberal or conservative, read from the same corporate script. They spin the same court gossip. They ignore what the corporate state wants ignored. They champion what the corporate state wants championed. They do not challenge or acknowledge the structures of corporate power. Their role is to funnel viewer energy back into our dead political system—to make us believe that Democrats or Republicans are not corporate pawns. The cable shows, whose hyperbolic hosts work to make us afraid of self-identified liberals or self-identified conservatives, are part of a rigged political system, one in which it is impossible to vote against the interests of Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, General Electric or ExxonMobil. These corporations, in return for the fear-based propaganda, pay the lavish salaries of celebrity news people, usually in the millions of dollars. They make their shows profitable. And when there is war these news personalities assume their “patriotic” roles as cheerleaders, as Chris Matthews—who makes an estimated $5 million a year—did, along with the other MSNBC and Fox hosts. . .
    . . . It does not matter that these celebrities and their guests, usually retired generals or government officials, got the war terribly wrong. Just as it does not matter that Francis Fukuyama and Thomas Friedman were wrong on the wonders of unfettered corporate capitalism and globalization. What mattered then and what matters now is likability—known in television and advertising as the Q score—not honesty and truth. Television news celebrities are in the business of sales, not journalism. They peddle the ideology of the corporate state. And too many of us are buying.
    The lie of omission is still a lie. It is what these news celebrities do not mention that exposes their complicity with corporate power. They do not speak about Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act, a provision that allows the government to use the military to hold U.S. citizens and strip them of due process. They do not decry the trashing of our most basic civil liberties, allowing acts such as warrantless wiretapping and executive orders for the assassination of U.S. citizens. They do not devote significant time to climate scientists to explain the crisis that is enveloping our planet. They do not confront the reckless assault of the fossil fuel industry on the ecosystem. They very rarely produce long-form documentaries or news reports on our urban and rural poor, who have been rendered invisible, or on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan or on corporate corruption on Wall Street. That is not why they are paid. They are paid to stymie meaningful debate. They are paid to discredit or ignore the nation’s most astute critics of corporatism, among them Cornel West, Medea Benjamin, Ralph Nader and Noam Chomsky. They are paid to chatter mindlessly, hour after hour, filling our heads with the theater of the absurd. They play clips of their television rivals ridiculing them and ridicule their rivals in return. Television news looks as if it was lifted from Rudyard Kipling’s portrait of the Bandar-log monkeys in “The Jungle Book.” The Bandar-log, considered insane by the other animals in the jungle because of their complete self-absorption, lack of discipline and outsized vanity, chant in unison: “We are great. We are free. We are wonderful. We are the most wonderful people in all the jungle! We all say so, and so it must be true.” . . .

    ENTIRE COMMENTARY – link to truthdig.com

    • DICKERSON3870
      April 3, 2013, 10:29 pm

      P.S. ALSO SEE: “The Victory of the Noble Lie; The Neocons Won”, by Gary Leupp, Counterpunch, 3/29/13

      . . . It should be infuriating to any thinking, moral person that the war on Iraq was based on lies. One might hope that people in this country would see that, and be wary of further attempts to lead the country into wars based upon lies. But no! Their continued gullibility—more precisely, their vulnerability to media brainwashing—and the continued vitality of the neocons are shown by a recent Gallup poll showing that 99% of people in this country believe that Iran’s nuclear program is a threat “to the vital interests of the United States.”
      Talk about a propaganda success! It shows the regime-change project remains on track. . .

      Hoodwinking the 99%

      The reason for that Gallop figure of 99%—those seeing Iran’s nuclear program as a threat to the U.S.—is that the people of this country have been subjected to a massive campaign of disinformation. I don’t suggest a single coordinator or command center. The campaign includes wildly illogical (but to some, convincing) conflation of Iraq, Iran and North Korea as an “Asis of Evil” by George W. Bush in January 2002; the false story in 2001 that Rafsanjani threatened Israel with nuclear war (basically by boasting that Iran was much larger than Israel); the false story after Ahmadinejad’s election in 2005 that he had been among the students seizing hostages at the U.S. embassy in 1979; the false story that Ahmadinejad in October 2005 said “Israel must be wiped off the map”; the false news story in 2006 about the Iranian parliament planning to badge Jews; the (successful) 2010 campaign to classify the Revolutionary Guards (a division of the Iranian Army) a “terrorist organization” (something now-Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel opposed at the time, noting it was unusual to classify in such fashion a regular military force with 125,000 personnel including ground, air and naval forces). It even includes the 2007 film 300 that vilified Persians (versus Greeks) in western antiquity.
      When you read report after mainstream press report that refers matter-of-factly to “Iran’s nuclear weapons program” as though there definitely is one, and find that editors refuse to insist that reports routinely note “the entire U.S. intelligence establishment has repeatedly concluded that Iran has no operative nuclear weapons program,” and then you look at that poll figure, you can tell how the neocons and allies have won. However exposed, time and again, the lies of empire have triumphed, and continue to triumph. More than progressive honest investigative journalism, which flourishes in the interstices of the media, reaching those paying attention but scarcely impacting (or impacting too late) minds saturated with corporate media lies, we need a different system entirely.
      Recall that MSNBC, now the most “liberal” cable news network happy to run documentaries critical of the Iraq War (now that it’s over), once fired a very popular Phil Donahue in order to silence his outspoken criticism of the war on Iraq. It was not because the show wasn’t making money; indeed, it was the most popular show on MSNB. But MSNBC owner GE was deeply invested in war, and as a leaked internal memo put it, Donahue presented a “difficult public face for NBC in a time of war.” In other words, he wasn’t doing his proper job of lining up in favor war, the way fellow MSNBC talk show host Chris Matthews was doing. So he was discharged one month before the bombing of Iraq began.
      The moral? So long as profit conditions what the masses hear and believe, there will be more wars based on lies. In the end, the problem is less a cabal hell-bent on regime change throughout the Muslim Middle East than the nature of the corporate press that markets their lies in the service of the system we live under: bloodthirsty capitalist imperialism.

      ENTIRE COMMENTARY – link to counterpunch.org

  8. seafoid
    April 3, 2013, 1:43 pm

    “The Israel project” is so appropriate. Because Israel is a project.
    They still don’t know if they can pull it off or not. Which is why they have this unbreakable bollocks with the US. Why they have mass conscription. Why the army runs the country. Why they still indoctrinate the kids. Und so weiter.

    • chinese box
      April 3, 2013, 5:47 pm

      @seafoid

      I was thinking the same thing. And this “makeover” will be like a bad botox job that accentuates the underlying problems rather than covering them up.

      • Sumud
        April 3, 2013, 9:25 pm

        And this “makeover” will be like a bad botox job that accentuates the underlying problems rather than covering them up.

        Israel as Jocelyn Wildenstein – we can all see what a hideous freak she has made herself via plastic surgery , but she still looks in the mirror and thinks how lovely she is. Same with Pete Burns from Dead or Alive. Eew.

  9. yrn
    April 3, 2013, 1:46 pm

    “today’s 64% ties the highest Gallup has recorded in a quarter century, last seen in 1991 during the Gulf War. At that time”……

    Well I bet all of you think that most Americans are stupid, ignorant, blind….. etc….
    Only those up here are the open minded creatures….
    look at the numbers again, that’s the highest in 25 years, after all what you tried to show your image.
    You are total lossssss.

    • Ellen
      April 3, 2013, 4:02 pm

      Gallup polls have not proved to be a reliable monitor of much.

      For example, by late October 2012, Gallup had Romney well over Obama.

      So keep putting your beliefs and hopes into a Gallup poll.

    • Cliff
      April 3, 2013, 6:35 pm

      There are 300 m Americans.

      Not all vote obviously.

      And the poll asked flawed and vague questions.

      The methodology is important.

      Not the results.

      But if you Zionists cared what consensus thought, you’d adhere to international law and stop your colonization and war crimes in Palestine.

      You’re just superficial and infantile. So you cite the poll as gospel with nothing else to ask or learn from.

      Your total losssssss.

    • eljay
      April 3, 2013, 7:35 pm

      >> Well I bet all of you think that most Americans are stupid, ignorant, blind….. etc….

      Not so much stupid and ignorant as under-informed and overly-propagandized and -indoctrinated. They aren’t told any of the very ugly truths:
      - That “Jewish State” is an unjust, immoral and supremacist construct.
      - That Zio-supremacists used terrorism and ethnic cleansing to realize supremacist “Jewish State”.
      - That Zio-supremacists continue to oppress non-Jews both within and without supremacist “Jewish State”.
      - That Zio-supremacists continue to steal and colonize land, and destroy the lives and livelihoods of non-Jews within and without supremacist “Jewish State”.

      You are much worse than “total lossssss” – you are hateful and immoral Zio-supremacist.

    • crone
      April 4, 2013, 11:09 am

      Americans are basically DISinformed…

      If they were informed, for example told that Obama and Congress are taking the axe to Medicare and Social Security, while they are giving approximately $500 a year to Israelis… IF they knew that nugget of truth, there would be no end to the protest in the streets.

      As for US government/Empire’s support of the actions of the State of Israel… here again there is DISinformation… the US military/industrial-corporate/complex USES Israel to make sure there is chaos in the Middle East, to insure the robber barons of the Empire can continue to steal the resources…

      If the Israeli people knew that nugget of truth, that they are denied a peaceful existence with their neighbors because the Empire must have chaos in the Middle East in order to continue to steal from Israel’s neighbors ~ again there would be no end to the protests.

      “Divide and Conquer” works every time… Empire and greed is the real enemy. The masses are led to believe that the enemy is the “other”.

      Even the posters on this board fight with each other. It’s not the Israelis who are the problem… it is the government of Israel, the government of the US. World opinion is just as much against the US of A as it is against Israel. Yet the discussion on this forum focuses on when will American Jews stand against the Lobby, against zionism ~ when will the American people cease to support the State of Israel. .. when will Palestinians rise up, when will the Arab world rise up ~ there is no such monolith as “the Arab world” ~ anymore then there is such a monolith as American Jews or the American people, or Palestinians… we are individuals, all of us ‘human beings’ ~

      ‘Critical thinking’ went out of vogue decades ago in the US ~ the schools teach ‘facts’ – but never how to think. And of course the propaganda of the Empire operates 24/7 to shape our opinions. My grandson informs me that public high schools in the US are recognizing that ‘critical thinking’ is important ~ so they have begun introducing the concept ~ in of all places, English classes.

      “they” don’t want us to stop and ask ourselves why we should hate people of color or Jews or Catholics or Muslims or Buddhists or Christians… etc.

      Just imagine the ‘chaos’ if the masses ‘thought’ for themselves.

      Cannot one can be an American Catholic and still affirm that some priests are pedophiles… that the resignation of the previous Pope was a necessary thing?

      Cannot one can be an African-American and still affirm that Obama has been a disappointment?

      Cannot one can be a feminist and still affirm that Hillary Clinton would have been just as big a tool of the Empire as Obama has been?

      Cannot one can be a Jewish American and still affirm that Israel is an apartheid (any system or practice that separates people according to race, caste, etc,) state.

      Cannot one can be an American and still affirm that Americans contributed to a holocaust (1 destruction or slaughter on a mass scale, especially caused by fire or nuclear war) in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and that our ancestors were also contributors to a holocaust against Native Americans?

      However, if one bases their identity on being white or Catholic or female or American or Jewish or… a movie star ~

      … won’t one’s beliefs and opinions be subject to bias and therefore in need of some ‘critical thinking’ ?

      (unfortunately, most of us who identify so strongly with one facet of our ‘being’ are often unable to recognize the problem… existing in a state of cognitive dissonance… having another suggest one is in such a ‘state of being’ only emphasizes the problem… round and round we go)

      • James Canning
        April 7, 2013, 2:36 pm

        Crone – - The US spends scores of billions per year, protecting Israel. No need to spend this money to ensure access to oil or gas from the Middle East.

      • Citizen
        April 7, 2013, 3:34 pm

        “If they were informed, for example told that Obama and Congress are taking the axe to Medicare and Social Security, while they are giving approximately $500 a year to Israelis… IF they knew that nugget of truth, there would be no end to the protest in the streets.”

        I agree with this statement. This context is NEVER discussed in the US main media. So much for informed consent, the bedrock of democracy in America. You can bet the WH and US Congress know all about it, but they also know that America is not a referendum democracy, but has a gerrymandered and cash lobbied form of representative government. And they know the “fourth branch of government” is the main media press, owned by a few corporations, led by a handful of agents for the 1%.

    • MK_Ultra
      April 4, 2013, 9:29 pm

      Well I bet all of you think that most Americans are stupid, ignorant, blind….. etc….

      They elected Bush twice. And then his junior another twice. And they fork over 3+ BILLION of the money they don’t have to your illegitimate project. Yeah, that’s not looking too good for them nor does it say much about your argument.

  10. Cliff
    April 3, 2013, 2:00 pm

    As expected the question is posed as ‘over the Palestinians’ – which thus explains the turnout.

    The more important polling question is who supports Israel – by religion, age, education, political affiliation if any, etc.

    There’s no precedent for American’s supporting third world populations part of conflicts that are perpetuated by American foreign policy.

    I don’t think Americans cared about the Vietnamese or the Filipinos or Guatemalans or Nicaraguans.

    The only poll result that matters is do you favor a balanced approach to the conflict or do you prefer being Israel’s lawyer.

    That is a question that can be asked of AMERICANS, because the primary identifier comes into play.

    Do you want our foreign policy to be guided by ourselves or by the interests of another country and another nation?

    Americans would take into account what is best for America and vote accordingly.

    Because you can hate Arabs and Muslims and Palestinians and whatever and still support a balanced approach.

    Because personal biases – if they exist and whatever form they take – do not always cloud rational judgement.

    These polls like the one cited basically say that a segment of American society likes Israeli Jews more than Palestinian Arabs (since Israeli Arabs are Palestinians and are not part of Zionist and Israeli agency).

    • ryan-o
      April 3, 2013, 4:25 pm

      The polls are worded to produce the desired outcome. A poll asking “Do you support aiding foreign countries using American tax money?” would result in an overwhelming majority “No”. A poll asking “Do you support aiding Israel using American tax money?” would likely result in a majority “No” although it probably wouldn’t be overwhelming. The fundamentalist minority would fear the wrath of god if they responded with a “No”. Everybody else wouldn’t care. Most Americans could care less about any foreign country including Israel.

    • American
      April 4, 2013, 11:25 am

      This is the only poll not ‘paid for’ by an interest group, including corporate media , political groups and partisan think tanks.

      link to worldpublicopinion.org

      ‘’A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll of 18 countries finds that in 14 of them people mostly say their government should not take sides in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Just three countries favor taking the Palestinian side (Egypt, Iran, and Turkey) and one is divided (India). No country favors taking Israel’s side, including the United States, where 71 percent favor taking neither side. ‘’

      ‘’In no country does a majority favor taking Israel’s side. The largest percentages favoring taking Israel’s side are Indians (24%), Americans (21%), and Nigerians (15%).’’>>>>>>>>>

      link to worldpublicopinion.org

      ‘A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll finds that three-quarters of Americans think that Israel should not build settlements in the Palestinian territories. This is up 23 points from when this question was last asked in 2002‘’

      link to worldpublicopinion.org

      American Public Opposes Israel Striking Iran
      March 13, 2012
      If Israel and Iran Have Military Conflict,
      Americans Say US Should Stay Out

      Full report(PDF)
      Questionnaire with Findings (PDF)

      A new poll finds that only one in four Americans favors Israel conducting a military strike against Iran’s nuclear program. Seven in ten (69%) favor the US and other major powers continuing to pursue negotiations with Iran, a position that is supported by majorities of Republicans (58%), Democrats (79%) and Independents (67%).

      Consistent with this emphasis on a diplomatic approach, three in four say that the US should primarily act through the UN Security Council rather than acting by itself in dealing with the problem of Iran’s nuclear program.

      If Israel goes ahead with a military strike against Iran’s nuclear program and Iran retaliates, but not against American targets, only 25% favor the US providing military forces if Israel requests them (though support is a bit higher among Republicans at 41%). Another 14% favors the US providing diplomatic support only.

      Few (6%) would support open opposition. The most popular position is for the US to take a neutral stance, which is supported by 49%, including 27% who would also favor active efforts to end the hostilities and 22% who think the US should simply not get involved.

      • Citizen
        April 7, 2013, 3:20 pm

        @ American
        Thanks for that information. It’s always good to see who paid for any poll to ascertain how the poll issues were presented to the responders.

  11. James Canning
    April 3, 2013, 2:23 pm

    Israel lobby grows in power, in the US. And the damage the Israel lobby does to the national interests of the American people, grows year by year.

    • Blownaway
      April 3, 2013, 6:14 pm

      Damage to US interests is acceptable. To get a reaction it has to be framed in the context of damage to Israel…maybe then you will get someone attention

      • Sumud
        April 3, 2013, 9:35 pm

        To get a reaction it has to be framed in the context of damage to Israel…maybe then you will get someone attention

        Israel is “winning” itself into oblivion. When the inevitable push for one state begins by occupied Palestinians the game is up. Ehud Barak acknowledged this several years ago. When one-person/one-vote is enacted there will be a Palestine majority and there goes “the jewish state”. Right of return will be enacted for Palestinian refugees and the name changed back to Palestine.

        Zionists will rue the day in 1947 they ever decided to invade the Palestinian partition and even more so what I call “The Great Gamble” of 1967. Israel is not sustainable and international support for it has been based on a pack of lies – hasbara.

        Hello MLK: “The Arc of the Moral Universe Is Long, but It Bends Toward Justice”

  12. hophmi
    April 3, 2013, 4:58 pm

    This is a rosy reading. There is a lot of media in Israel; they report a lot of bad news, and therefore, the perception of Israel around the world is negative.

    My guess is that TIP decided that staying in China was a waste of resources, and it’s not really what they do best. Personally, I would have stayed; Mizrachi was correct.

    China, a country of 1.5 billion with a state media arm, has a 50 percent favorability rating, better than the EU. Does it make sense? Not really. China is a serial human rights abuser and occupies Tibet.

    The irony is that if Israel were a dictatorship, like China, and shut out negative media, it would probably have higher ratings, not lower. But it’s a democracy, with a very free press, and it suffers for that in polls like this one.

    • eljay
      April 3, 2013, 7:58 pm

      >> The irony is that if Israel were a dictatorship, like China … it would probably have higher ratings, not lower. But it’s a democracy … and it suffers for that in polls like this one.

      The reason Israel suffers is because it is never as good as the best – it’s only ever better than the worst (like, y’know, Mali and Saudi Arabia).

      Well, that and the fact that it’s an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist state.

      And the fact that it was born of terrorism and ethnic cleansing.

      Oh, and the fact that it remains engaged in a 60+ years, ON-GOING and offensive (i.e., not defensive) campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization, destruction and murder.

      Zio-supremacist sure do work hard to gloss over these terribly inconvenient facts. Or maybe they don’t: Maybe, because they are hateful and immoral, it comes very easily to them.

      Regardless, aggressor-victimhood remains a tough gig… :-(

    • Sumud
      April 3, 2013, 9:45 pm

      The irony is that if Israel were a dictatorship, like China, and shut out negative media, it would probably have higher ratings, not lower.

      Hate to burst your zio-bubble: Israel is a dictatorship for millions of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank who have lived their entire lives under the Israeli jackboot.

    • FreddyV
      April 4, 2013, 9:47 am

      Very interesting comment Hophmi.

      I was wondering about this whilst reading the article. It would certainly be in Israel’s interest to ‘limit’ the press in some way so that negative news would be given a lower profile. I understand Japan has certain restrictions in place regarding economic news so as not to alarm their public. Thing is, censoring the news in this way is only going to affect outside opinion. From an inside perspective, it’s arguably more effective for Israel to drop their Hasbara tactics around the world and concentrate their time and efforts on indoctrination within.

      ‘It’s a rough neighbourhood’ / ‘Arabs are terrorists’ / ‘The world is against us as it always has been…’ We’ve seen these kinds of tactic as far more effective. Sadly the end result with be it building walls around itself and closing off diplomatic ties with most of the world.

      It’s quite sad really.

      • Citizen
        April 7, 2013, 3:27 pm

        @ FreddyV

        Yep. Interesting how the Zionist “new Jew” creates Israel, which turns into another medieval Ghetto, just one glorified with a state sovereign helmet. The old medieval ghetto doors had handles on both sides too, didn’t they?

    • ToivoS
      April 4, 2013, 7:36 pm

      China is a serial human rights abuser and occupies Tibet.

      Wrong. Tibet is part of China as recognized during the founding of the United Nations and accepted by every nation that has diplomatic relations with China.

    • MK_Ultra
      April 4, 2013, 9:25 pm

      This is a rosy reading. There is a lot of media in Israel; they report a lot of bad news, and therefore, the perception of Israel around the world is negative.

      Of course, the international media are blind and can only repeat what ISreal ‘reports.’ They’re not capable of seeing, assessing and reporting the situation independently. Whatever world you live in, I’d love to move there. The disconnect with reality is maddening.

      China is a serial human rights abuser and occupies Tibet.

      LOL at the hypocrisy. Still, China can’t compare to Isreal in that arena. Are you proud? BTW, in your distorted view of the world, what’s worse: a dictatorship or a neo-colonialist, Apartheid, genocidal occupier?

      • Annie Robbins
        April 5, 2013, 1:33 am

        There is a lot of bad news in Israel; often the media reports it, and therefore, the perception of Israel around the world is negative.

        gee, ya think.

    • Citizen
      April 7, 2013, 3:29 pm

      @ hophmi
      China does not get tons of free cash and diplomatic cover from the lone superpower USA. Thus, it has to at least make some pretense at being a “vibrant democracy.”

  13. Abdul-Rahman
    April 3, 2013, 6:01 pm

    I would be interested if anyone has seen what the demographic figures are thought to be, within the United States that is, of right-wing Evangelical nutjobs also often known as Dispensationalists or the Rapture cult lol. Profiled in videos like this classic from Max Blumenthal link to youtube.com “Rapture Ready: The Christians United for Israel Tour ”

    These clowns, like those Max Blumenthal profiled back in that 2007 video, are certainly (and unfortunately) a quite sizable and powerful force in Republican politics in the US; but I’m not sure about their size relative to the US population as a whole. People like these “rapture” seeking buffoons are not interested in any reality; they are simply brainwashed cultists.

    • James Canning
      April 3, 2013, 7:41 pm

      CUFI Tour is a classic. Not to be missed. Not all evangelical Christians are fanatical supporters of Israel. There are scores of millions of them in the US.

    • Citizen
      April 7, 2013, 3:24 pm

      @ Abdul-Rahman
      Dunno, but 35 million strikes a bell of memory in my head.

  14. justicewillprevail
    April 3, 2013, 6:17 pm

    Oh how they love to hide behind the apron strings when it comes to international isolation, whilst of course rifling through the purse, and if not enough is forthcoming, staging a full scale tantrum and viciously kicking nanny in the shins.

  15. ToivoS
    April 3, 2013, 10:44 pm

    Alex thanks for the story, this is the best news I have heard in some time. Israeli hasbara is literally in retreat. You know they are in trouble when they feel they must withdraw their troops to defend the home castle and have abandoned the outlying provinces. Sort of like the collapse of the Roman empire — first they withdrew from the British Isles, then the Iberian pennisula, then the land of the Franks and so on until the fall of Rome itself.

    But only sort of like the Roman empire. Here the Israeli hasbarists are circling the wagons in a nation state 7 thousand miles on the other side of the planet. How is that going to help? It would be equivalent of the Roman empire drawing the last circle of defense in some far off province like Romania. Whoops, they in fact did do that. So much for the Roman empire.

  16. yourstruly
    April 4, 2013, 1:00 am

    then for the total isolation of israel?

    on the issue of israel/palestine america must stand down

    how?

    those of us supporting justice for palestine reach out to & awaken the public

    first order of business?

    to loosen the hold that the israel lobby has on everything pertaining to i/p

    focusing on what?

    where it’s most vulnerable

    the lobby’s israel firstness

    the measure of our success?

    justice for palestine

    right on time

  17. American
    April 4, 2013, 11:36 am

    Want to know what Israel aid cost your particular state?
    And what state programs that money given to Israel could fund for the citizens of your state?

    link to aidtoisrael.org

    Click on the map below to learn how much money your state will give in weapons to Israel from 2009-2018 and what that money could fund instead for community needs. Underneath, you can filter the results for your Congressional district, county, and city as well. Counties and cities with less than 20,000 people are not included in the map.

    How to Interpret the Numbers. The amount of military aid to Israel is the estimated 10-year contribution from that state, Congressional district, county, or city. That same amount of money could fund instead each year one of the following programs for the number of people indicated: affordable housing vouchers for low-income families, green jobs training for unemployed workers, early reading programs for at-risk students, or primary health care for the uninsured.

    California for instance will donate 3.5 billion over the next 10 years.Texas will donate 2.5 billion. New York will donate 2.5 billion. Flordia will donate 1.5 billion. North Carolina will donate 808 Million which could fund 10,000 affordable housing units, 13,000 jobs, 23,000 early reading progrmas for children and insure health care for 654,901 uninsured children…Every Year for 10 Years.

    • Citizen
      April 7, 2013, 3:23 pm

      @ American
      I don’t know how to get the average American I know to click on your recommended interactive map. I’ve tried many times without success.

  18. MK_Ultra
    April 4, 2013, 9:18 pm

    The group has closed down its international offices, and are instead focusing intently on shaping U.S. opinion and making sure that Americans’ high support for Israel stays that way.

    As the USan Empire continues to fall and the situation of every American deteriorates, they’ll be concentrating more and more on their own problems and not giving a rat’s ass about poor little ISreal. The fall of the empire will also mark the end of the illegal Zionist project.

  19. James Canning
    April 7, 2013, 2:40 pm

    Dickerson3870 – - We can thank the Israel lobby for preventing normal relations between the US and Iran, and we can thank the lobby for the fact Iran enriches uranium to 20%.

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