Media Analysis

Supporting Israel is now ‘liability’ for Democrats, but ’60 Minutes’ doesn’t trouble Pelosi about it

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Yesterday in a surprising move, Nancy Pelosi met with three British members of Parliament who have left the Labour Party over its position on Israel, which they say is anti-Semitic. Pelosi tweeted the meeting with the message that we must fight anti-semitism everywhere.

The meeting was another sign that Pelosi is going to lay down the law on support for Israel. Remember, she has said that the Capitol will crumble and fall before the Democratic Party abandons its support for Israel. Remember, that she groveled at AIPAC 3 weeks ago without a word of criticism of Netanyahu, despite appeals by liberal Zionists to do so.

Then last night “60 Minutes” did a glowing profile of Nancy Pelosi as the progressive dragonslayer opposed to Donald Trump, the force that will keep the Democratic Party unified, and Israel was never mentioned. There was brief reference to the new progressive wave in the party. Pelosi got to dismiss those women out of hand and claim the mantle for herself:

Lesley Stahl: You have these wings– AOC, and her group on one side–

Speaker Nancy Pelosi: That’s like five people.

Lesley Stahl: No, it’s– the progressive group is more than five.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi: Well, the progressive– I’m a progressive. Yeah.

This is an evasion. In addition to Pelosi’s meeting yesterday, there are other signs that the Israel issue is going to be a big one in the Democrat races in 2020.

Megan McCain says that Israel is going to be the “battleground” in the Democratic Party (in a discussion with Mayor Pete Buttigieg on the View on January 19). And last week Adam Garfinkle, a foreign policy prof and former State Department aide, published an article at Tablet saying that support for Israel has become “a liability” for mainstream Democratic politicians, due to the changing demographics of the American Jewish community (in a word, intermarriage):

[L]eft-of-center Jews will become ever more alienated from Israel, because they seem unable to understand (or credit) the existence of liberal forms of nationalism… [T]o the extent they remain involved in politics, the Israel portfolio will decline in relative significance. This is already a well-advanced phenomenon, as the nontrivial number of American Jews rallying behind Ilhan Omar clearly shows. Support for Israel will become a liability even for mainstream politicians within the Democratic Party. Arguably, it already is.

And of course right along with the British Labour Party’s pushback, there is a new Democratic Party-aligned AIPAC-style lobby group doing its utmost to shore up support for Pelosi and keep the issue from becoming politicized. Or more precisely, they want Democrats to continue to be identified as the pro-Israel party.

Even NPR is taking notice, in its way. Nadine Epstein of Moment Magazine said on Saturday (to Michel Martin) that the reelection of Netanyahu and his plans to annex portions of the West Bank have sent “shivers” through the liberal American Jewish community, and given politicians greater freedom to criticize Israel.

You see a number of high-ranking members of Congress who are actually normally very close to AIPAC speaking out against annexation. You see center-establishment organizations very concerned and publicly speaking out against annexation. So annexation is sort of like the new fear among, I think, many in the Jewish community. And again, I’m speaking for the middle, not so much for the right or for the left here.

The ones really feeling the shivers here are establishment supporters of Israel. That consensus defined a generation or more, the only democracy in the Middle East and an example to other nations. “60 Minutes” needs to ignore all the challenges to that ideal because it too is in the tank.

H/t Donald Johnson.

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PHIL- ” Pelosi tweeted the meeting with the message that we must fight anti-semitism everywhere.” The Clinton’s and the “New Democrats” turned the party of Roosevelt into the party of Wall Street, successfully competing with the Republicans for corporate sponsorship. Trump and the Republicans are now competing against the Democrats for Jewish Zionist dollars. This meeting with the British Jewish anti-Corbynites is intended to shore up Jewish fat-cat support for the Democrats. The Democrats no… Read more »

I have to wonder how compromised these ‘israel first’ congressmen and women are to give unwaivering support for this shithole apartheid state before being asked. What does the zionist enterprise have on these people for them to do anything they can not to offend the zionist swine and offer up the newest and brightest of the freshman class (Ilhan Omar) as a sacrifice to their idol? Or is it just all about the benjamins after… Read more »

Feeling the heat of increasing criticism of the criminal “Jewish State” within the electorate, along with other super rich scheming fellow Zionists, billionaire contributor Haim Saban (the Democrat’s Sheldon Adelson), has made it clear to Pelosi, et al, that criticism of “Israel” will not be tolerated. A reminder: Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Nov. 9/14 EXCERPT: WASHINGTON (JTA) — “Haim Saban, a top Democratic Party donor and backer of Hillary Rodham Clinton, slammed President Obama’s Iran… Read more »

Donald Trump will run against two Democrats in November of 2020, the nominee and Ilhan Omar. Is that the fault of the Zionists? Not really. that is the reality of a president who used islamophobia in the past and will use it in the future. is there an overlap between zionism and islamophobia? yes. are they identical? no. Trump feels that enough centrists recoil at Ilhan Omar’s rhetoric that there is no down side to… Read more »

“[L]eft-of-center Jews will become ever more alienated from Israel, because they seem unable to understand (or credit) the existence of liberal forms of nationalism…” Phil – There’s no need to worry about the issue. The American Jews are not going to become alienated from Israel. It’s really quite a simple matter. Jewish life in America will be so boring without Israel, hence we can all relax and stop giving the matter another thought. Here’s reality.… Read more »