‘Courting powerful Jewish donors,’ Christie calls for aggressive foreign policy

Christie at gala yesterday

Christie at gala yesterday

Last week Hillary Clinton sucked up to the Israel lobby in a speech questioning President Obama’s strength vis-a-vis Iran, and yesterday Chris Christie sucked up to donors Sheldon Adelson and Michael Steinhardt with his own foreign policy speech delivered at the “Champions of Jewish Values Awards” gala in NY. For all who think Zionism is the bomb of Jewish identity and American image overseas– the Associated Press doesn’t try and put any lipstick on Christie’s speech:

Courting powerful Jewish donors for the second time in two months, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie called Sunday for a more aggressive foreign policy that defends American values abroad, but he also said he is concerned about the direction America is heading in.

“The rest of the world watches in desperation and hope that America will realize and act upon once again its indispensable place in the world,” Christie, a prospective Republican presidential contender, said in a keynote address Sunday at the Champions of Jewish Values International awards gala in New York. “We must lead.”

Christie didn’t mention Israel in the speech but he overcame his earlier mistake of referring to the West Bank as “occupied territories,” for which he had had to apologize to Adelson. More of yesterday’s bellicosity, from Time Magazine:

Christie criticized Obama for failing to follow through on his threat to punish Syria for using chemical weapons on its citizens, acknowledging there may be a debate about drawing a “red line.” “Here’s something that should not be up for debate, that once you draw that red line, you enforce it, because if you don’t, America’s credibility will be at stake and will be at risk all over the world,” he said.

The evening was bipartisan. Sean Penn the wonderful liberal received an award. So did Sen Cory Booker, shown below at the taping of his speech, posing with the shrewd leader of Champions of Jewish Values, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.

Boteach and Booker

Boteach and Booker

Here is Hillary Clinton’s speech, to the American Jewish Committee, from last Thursday, saying “no deal with Iran” was better than a bad deal. Notice the tough talk about a military threat:

She said that the current negotiations on a permanent deal would test if Iran was serious about an accommodation with the West, and expressed her own skepticism. The United States, she said, “will have to be tough, clear-eyed and ready to walk away and increase the pressure if need be.” If the talks fail, Clinton noted, “Every option remains on the table.”…

And she swipes at the Palestinians, of course:

Referring to the stalled talks between Israel and the Palestinians, the former Secretary of State observed that “the parties were not ready to make the choices and compromises necessary to reach agreement on core issues,” even though it was “no mystery” what a peace agreement would look like. She considered the new cooperative arrangement between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas a blow to peace, and insisted that Hamas would remain a “pariah” until it renounced violence, recognized Israel, and accepted all existing agreements.

P.S. More from Rabbi Boteach, celebrity adorer: “I want Sean Penn to know that I have accepted his offer to be his running mate.” I.e., it’s no problem for a progressive human rights figure to team up with a defender of attacking Iran, in Boteach’s view. It’s amazing that people like Booker and Penn would even share a stage with Adelson after he called for nuking Iran, but that’s the climate of the Israel lobby. Here are the powerful rightwing donors, on stage:

Steinhardt and Adelson

Michael and Judy Steinhardt, left, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach at center, and Miriam and Sheldon Adelson, at right

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.
Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 30 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. bilal a says:

    When di humanitarian liberals merge with the military industrial complex?

    US-Ukraine ambassador with an Iraq war architect and anti-Muslim bigot Jamie Kirchick.
    link to twitter.com

    Or did basic political economy merge Zion with the MIC ?

    Track the profits from a new cold war , to whom do they flow?

  2. Woody Tanaka says:

    “‘Here’s something that should not be up for debate, that once you draw that red line, you enforce it, because if you don’t, America’s credibility will be at stake and will be at risk all over the world,’ [Christie] said.”

    This is a seriously dumb statement. Obama did the right thing and took advantage of a opportunity to remove the weapons from the Syrians. Indeed, it was Obama’s Bush-aping, stupid-cowboy-line-in-the-sand nonsense that got him in trouble and let Putin look statesmanlike by comparison.

    The problem is that the foreign policy that the neo-cons, chicken hawks and American-exceptionalist types is built on an unsustainable premise: that states with governments the US dislikes exist at the sufference of the US and that, should these unliked governments step out of line, that the US not only has ability to remove them (regardless of the feelings of the people of that state, the international community, the law, or anything), but an obligation to do so, and that, to fail to act would be to commit a greater sin (i.e., to endanger the US’s self-imposed image among its allies.) It is a dangerous and pathological mindset.

    Anyway, no one should take anything that a blowhard like Chris Christie says. To give you an example of the total lack of character of the man: he gleefully reduced the pay of public employees, saying that the state of NJ couldn’t afford it, and then wasted millions so he, himself, would not have to be on a ballet with Corey Booker in a re-election that Christie was virtually certain to win in a landslide.

    • Krauss says:

      It’s a tough position. Should the U.S. turn a blind eye when chemical weapons are being used?

      Even Hitler refused to use gas in WWII because of the horrors he saw in the trenches(of course that only applied to soldiers, he had no qualms on using it on people in concentration camps).

      At the same time, how do you stop a regime like that, unilaterally? It’s more or less impossible lest you invade, which was a no-go. Even if Obama’s orders had went through, what we’d have gotten would be a minimalistic bombing run or two.

      I view Hillary’s and Christie’s speeches as empty gestures. They both came of age when America was much stronger and that is their world view. China will pass the U.S. this year in being the world’s largest economy by the most commonly used measure to measure economies.

      By 2017, China will already be 15-20% bigger and the difference will only grow year by year.

      Christie and Hillary live in the past, and so do their donors.

      • piotr says:

        Two points: (a) there are very serious doubts concerning WHO used chemical weapons in Syria, (b) USA has some practice in “turning a blind eye when chemical weapons are used” while the user is supplied with components.

    • DaBakr says:

      Christie is worse then ‘dumb”. He is nothing but a glorified ‘Tony Soprano’ using his capos to twist arms and wring money out of not only the Port Authority (with the almost as bad Cuomo)but alos will to holf disaster relife money hostage to political endorsements at the expense of suffering NJ citizens. He was appointed as the most unqualified AG in New Jersey History solely as a reward for raising monies for Bush2 campaign. He has always functioned as a bully/arm twisting/enforcer-earner for the GOP who thought he was going to be rewarded with the top spot. F him and F his cronies. Who cares if he’s “courting” big Jewish money? Israel has just proven for the second time in so many years that it has a place for politicians like Christie. Ask our ex-pres or PM.
      How many here really believe that there is a chance in hell the Christie will pay with time for his alleged crimes? How many think he’ll skate by blaming his staff? And if there is any consolation-its that the big oaf most probably DID ruin his chance for the big spot. Though American voters can be awfully forgiving at exactly the wrong times. Israel also needs no friends like Christie-a dishonest player at his core.

    • woody, that is the exact quote about syria i just grabbed, so i won’t bother reprinting it. but lest anyone forget about aipac turning the screws on that, remember the “800 pound guerilla in the room” the nyt edited out of it’s article, referencing the lobby?

      ‘NYT’ deletes references to AIPAC’s role in pushing strike on Syria

      link to mondoweiss.net

      • what about the “bridgegate” scandal?
        he helped divert millions away from needy coastal towns severly damaged by hurricane sandy
        he’s s disgusting glutunous corrupt nj political whore

    • piotr says:

      “This is a seriously dumb statement.”

      I would say that this statement gives credit to the political acumen of Chris Christie. He laser-sharp focus he proceed with four objective.

      a. showing that he is serious (we do not want comedians in the Oval Office, although it could actually be a good idea)

      b. showing that he is a worthy successor to the mantle of Ronald Reagan, the greatest president that ever was — that requires the courage to be dumb

      c. showing the devotion to the cornerstone of freedom that is free enterprise by public kowtowing in front of the most illustrious representatives of thereof

      d. showing very deep appreciation of the greatest ally that any state ever had by choosing to kowtow in front of the greatest friend of that ally (as attested by his Champion of Jewish Values award in the category of Jewish Identity)

      And indeed, the report of the event in Fox News was quite appreciative. Apparently, “courting billionaire donors” is THE THING TO DO! Not doing that would curtail the right to free speech. And if it requires some dumbassery, a man got to do what a man got to do.

  3. HarryLaw says:

    Clinton..”insisted that Hamas would remain a “pariah” until it renounced violence, recognized Israel, and accepted all existing agreements. Has Israel renounced violence? No. Has Israel recognized Palestine? No. and has Israel accepted all existing agreements? You must be joking.

  4. Kay24 says:

    Is there any nation, or superpower out there in the world, that has almost every politician that runs for office, first pay homage and devotion to a parasitic, and condemned occupier, FIRST, court it’s wealthy donors, that gives with devious intentions, and must stand in front of their lobbies and vow to defend, and support it, forever?
    Do they FIRST stand before the American people and vow to put our nation above others, and take care of it’s own interest first? Are they so desperate to win, they will sell their soul, and integrity, to the devil?

    • HarryLaw says:

      Kay24, In one word in reply to your last sentence, yes.

    • lysias says:

      The fatal flaw of our political system is that it tends to select people who are just that desperate to win.

      There’s got to be some better way to select representatives than the way we select them. I recommend considering the ancient Athenian system of choosing officials by lot (like for our juries). But even something less radical, like elections using proportional representation, would probably choose a fair number of people who would not do anything to be re-elected.

      • Kay24 says:

        Adelson and his millions wants to “buy” the WH for Israel. I fault our Supreme court, and our political system, for allowing any third rate alien nation, to get their billionaires, purchase it for them. Without the backing of a foreign lobby, those we elect for Congress and into the WH, cannot succeed. They have to swear undying love and protection, not for their own nation, but an alien one, to get the funds and beat their opponents.
        Any candidate we vote for, will most probably do the bidding of AIPAC, against our own interests.

        • lysias says:

          Which is a lot of the reason I favor something like the Athenian system, at least for the lower houses of our legislatures (including the U.S. House), as it would give at least a veto power over government action to a body made up of average citizens, not politicians. The Athenian example shows it could work.

    • Citizen says:

      “Are they so desperate to win, they will sell their soul, and integrity, to the devil?”

      Yes, even their own naive daughter.

  5. Does Chris Christie applaud Israel’s continuing expansion of illegal colonies of Jews in the West Bank? Does he want the Palestinians to disappear, to please Sheldon Adelson and other rich and powerful Jews in the US?

  6. I can’t wait for the one-upsmanship in the GOP to engage the turbo-boost with the consequence that in one of the debates a desperate, flagging candidate announces that “leaving all options on the table” doesn’t amount to a cup of warm spit!

    It sounds like something that sissy boy Obama might say, and when I’m elected president I’m gonna put the fear of G_d back in our enemies by taking a prudent action suggested by my good friend Shelly Adelson. This action is woefully needed in order to make it clear to America’s enemies that not only is the first strike option on the table, it will be used! Shelly’s suggestion to drop a nuclear weapon of our own choosing on a desert in Iran and tell them to suck on it! And, if any of the lily-livered Washington bureaucrats make as much as a peep of objection, I’m gonna fill their briefcases with cement and throw them in then Poe-toe-mack! Did I mention that the Gucci-wearing bureaucrats would be handcuffed to their cement-filled briefcases when their briefcases are thrown in. So that should give you an idea of how I intend to treat any Washington bureaucrat who loads up our small business job creators with a bunch of forms to complete!
    Last but certainly not least, did I mention that I intend to put “In Both G_d & Sheldon Adelson We Trust” on all U.S. currency?!?! Shelly bud, you’re an American icon and we love you!
    Now let me tell you ’bout the Negro . . .
    • P.S. PLEASE IGNORE THE ABOVE ON ACCOUNT OF MY RUNNING OUT OF TIME TO EDIT. BELOW, PLEASE FIND WHAT I HOPE IS THE FULLY-EDITED, BUT “NOT QUITE READY FOR PRIME-TIME” VERSION!

      I can’t wait for the one-upsmanship in the GOP to engage the turbo-boost with the consequence that in one of the debates a desperate, flagging candidate announces that “leaving all options on the table” doesn’t amount to a cup of warm spit!

      It sounds like something that sissy boy Obama might say, and when I’m elected president I’m gonna put the fear of G_d back in our enemies by taking a prudent action suggested by my good friend Shelly Adelson. This action is woefully needed in order to make it clear to America’s enemies that not only is the nuclear first strike option on the table, it will be used at the drop of a hat or less! Shelly’s suggestion, as I understand it, is to drop a nuclear weapon of our own choosing on the desert in Iran and tell them to suck on it! This will let that President Ahmadinejad and the rest of our enemies that we have a nuke with each of their names on it, and they’re all on hair-trigger. And, if any of the lily-livered Washington bureaucrats make as much as a peep in objection, I’m gonna fill their briefcases with cement and throw them in then Poe-toe-mack! Did I mention that the Gucci-wearing bureaucrats would be handcuffed to their cement-filled briefcases when their briefcases are thrown in. That’s an important detail that should give you an idea of how I intend to treat any Washington bureaucrat who loads up our small business job creators with a bunch of forms to complete!
      Last but certainly not least, did I mention that I intend to put “In Both G_d & Sheldon Adelson We Trust” on all U.S. currency?!?! Shelly bud, you’re an American icon and we love you!
      Now let me tell you ’bout the Negro . . .

  7. ADL then decides to survey the vision and auditory function of the Gentiles and gets puzzled with some anger and anxiety over the existence of the gentile’s puzzlement,anger,and anxiety about Jewish power .
    ADL does not like the one line synopsis that conveys the essence of the Jewish behaviors at financial and political levels. To ADL the description of what Adelson or Schumer or Cantor are doing are fine,what Saban and Bennett and Liberman are doing fine and ADL is fine with quoting them or being reminded of their activities.
    ADL does not want people imbibe or understand the purpose ,the motive,the process,the end game inherent in those activities . It wants public to listen to the Jewish elite as if they were listening to music and dance to the tune.

    Using the brain becomes anti-Semite. Who knows oneday ADL will ban use of the brain in all of its press conferences or briefings by branding brain as dual-use technology .

  8. Kathleen says:

    Christie demonstrating his desperation.

    • Citizen says:

      Christie is a lump. These so called American leaders, wannabee POTUSs make my skin crawl. How many more decades will this go on? They are trying to gain control of the internet. Will they succeed?