Category Archives:
US Policy in the Middle East

US feels the heat on Palestine vote at UN

Jonathan Cook on
US Secretary of State John Kerry walks past American (back) and Israeli flags at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv on January 6, 2014. (Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

The floodgates have begun to open across Europe on recognition of Palestinian statehood. On Friday the Portuguese parliament became the latest European legislature to call on its government to back statehood, joining Sweden, Britain, Ireland, France and Spain. But while Europe is tentatively finding a voice in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, silence reigns across the Atlantic. The White House appears paralysed, afraid to appear out of sync with world opinion but more afraid still of upsetting Israel and its powerful allies in the US Congress.

Caltech prof says Israeli scientist passed NASA rocket secrets to his government

Philip Weiss on
Troian with her attorney, Dan Stormer

A professor of physics at Caltech says that an Israeli scientist at the school shared secrets from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, or JPL, with Israeli government rocket scientists in violation of federal law, but that when she reported the matter to Caltech authorities, she was punished for the disclosure.

Deconstructing John Kerry’s address to the Gaza Donors Conference

Marc H. Ellis on
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks during the Gaza Donor Conference in Cairo, Egypt, Oct. 12, 2014. (Photo: AP)

John Kerry’s address to the Gaza Donors Conference in Cairo on Sunday was remarkably vacant, if not disingenuous. Reading through Kerry’s address paragraph by paragraph is an exercise in futility. Yet the political ramifications are extreme. Everyone knows that after the Gaza war a profound reckoning is needed. Yet John Kerry – and the Gaza Donors Conference – isn’t even close

It looks like Obama is checking out on Israel

Philip Weiss on
Obama in 2012

Martin Indyk says Democratic politicians are having less to do with Israel because the party base doesn’t support the country, and Obama’s recent indifference to Israel suggests he wants nothing to do with the country. He told Israel what it had to do years ago and Israelis ignored him.

Jewish New Yorkers to Schumer and Gillibrand: Enact the Leahy Law and stop US military aid to Israel

Jews Say NO! and Jewish Voice for Peace/NY on
New York Sens. Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand in 2012. (Photo: PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP)

Jews Say NO! and Jewish Voice for Peace/NY write a letter to New York Senators Charles Schumer
and Kirsten Gillibrand asking them to to enforce provisions of federal law that require the termination of aid to any unit of a foreign military for which there is credible information that the unit has committed a gross violation of human rights.

Can Schumer evolve? Finally, some pressure

Philip Weiss on
Schumer, official portrait

Did Chuck Schumer just say, ‘My opinions on Palestine are evolving’? That is the aim of a new campaign aimed at the senator’s assertion that he is Israel’s guardian in the U.S. It’s time to talk about Israeli human rights violations. Demo on Monday at his NY office.

Burke and Lincoln would have hated the special relationship

Philip Weiss on
David Brooks

Glenn Greenwald’s latest revelation, that three former Treasury officials are involved in a neoconservative Zionist lobbying outfit, combined with David Brooks’s apparent belief that he’s an Israeli parent, shows how commingled the Israel interest is in our political culture, the type of sinister influence Lincoln and Burke both warned their democracies against

No Surprise Dep’t: David Brooks’s son is in Israeli army

Philip Weiss on
David Brooks

From the Jewish Journal two days ago. “David Brooks’ son is in the Israeli army. Does it matter?” One of the more interesting nuggets buried in a long, Hebrew-language interview with New York Times columnist David Brooks in the recent Ha’aretz magazine is the revelation, toward the very end, that Brooks’s oldest son serves in […]

US guilty of war crimes in Palestine

Sam Bahour on
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv on July 23. (Photo: AFP)

The U.S. is not a neutral mediator in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict; it is an active participant and is guilty of the crimes being committed by Israel against Palestinians, most recently, the mass killings and destruction Israel wrought on the Gaza Strip during the summer. The reality that the U.S. is an active supporter of unimaginable suffering may very well be the motivating force behind the U.S.’s adamant attempts to block the Palestinians from using any of the internationally recognized tools of accountability to hold Israel responsible, such as the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court. When an indigenous, stateless population is blocked access to opportunities for justice by superpowers like the U.S., something is wrong—deadly wrong.

As Salaita’s case becomes a cause, U of Illinois issues declarations on ‘civility’

Philip Weiss on
Steven Salaita with his son

There have been several developments in the Steven Salaita firing case at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The university is obviously concerned that Salaita is becoming a cause celebre. Yesterday it issued two long statements describing Salaita’s alleged infraction as a violation of “civility.” Salaita is now without a job, a home, and health insurance. […]