Yesterday the New York Times ran an op-ed piece co-authored by the chairman of the leading Israel lobby group, AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, calling for congressional sanctions on Iran till it dismantles its centrifuges. Lee Rosenberg wrote:
Our message to Tehran should be clear: It will not achieve its objectives unless it satisfies ours…
the United States Congress should proclaim that Iran will pay a steep price for its recklessness
You wouldn’t know this from The New York Times, but Lee Rosenberg, a music executive, cultivated Obama in Chicago years ago on the part of the pro-Israel community, and introduced him at AIPAC in 2008, above. I heard Obama call him “Rosey” at one AIPAC conference and put his arms around his friend. This is AIPAC’s method. In the video here Rosenberg explains that Israel supporters must contribute to aspirants for higher office with the message: “I support you because you are pro-Israel.”
The Washington Post offers this background on Rosenberg:
Chicago entrepreneur Lee “Rosy” Rosenberg was one of President Barack Obama’s staunchest Jewish allies during his 2008 presidential campaign. He advised the president on foreign policy in the Middle East and Israel and delivered speeches to Jewish groups around the country…
Rosenberg has ties to several of Obama’s Chicago associates in the Jewish community including Lester Crowne, a local billionaire whose son, Jim, was Obama’s 2008 Illinois finance chairman; Penny Pritzker, the campaign’s national finance chairwoman; and Abner Mikva, a former congressman and federal judge and Obama mentor.
And you wonder why Obama was said to be “absolutely livid” in 2012 when the Democratic platform as drafted failed to call Jerusalem Israel’s capital.
Rosenberg is AIPAC’s chair because he is close to Obama. He has repeatedly held Obama’s feet to the fire on Israel. In 2010 he stood up for Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and against the Obama administration after Netanyahu announced new settlements when Vice President Biden was visiting the country. At the time both Biden and Hillary Clinton criticized Israel for the move. Rosenberg says that the settlement was not a settlement but a neighborhood of Jerusalem.
“Allies should work out their differences privately. History shows that when American pressures Israel publicly, it provides an opportunity for those who wish to derail the peace process to have their way…”
AIPAC’s policy conference begins in a week. Should be pretty interesting. Thanks to Ira Glunts.