“In terms of Bernie and others who talk about dealing with Zionism, I strongly support Israel as an independent Jewish state,” said Biden, “The idea that I’d withdraw military aid, as others have suggested, from Israel, is bizarre. I would not do that. It’s like saying to France, ’Because you don’t agree with us, we’re going to kick you out of NATO.”
Insofar as the subject of conditioning Israel’s aid has permeated mainstream political discourse, it’s remained largely hypothetical. Now activists are calling on progressive Senators who have voiced support for conditioning aid to Israel to get behind a policy with actual teeth.
Pandering to two pro-Israel groups, Nikki Haley calls Sheldon and Miriam Adelson “national treasures.” She says the Obama administration “led” the UN Security Council resolution against settlements in 2016, pressuring other countries that did not want to vote for it, and making other ambassadors “uncomfortable.”
Gerard Araud, the outgoing French ambassador to the US, says Jared Kushner has “no guts” and his peace plan is “very close” to what Israel wants. “He is so pro-Israeli he may neglect the point that if you offer the Palestinians the choice between surrendering and committing suicide, they may decide the latter.”
American liberal Zionists and rightwing Zionists wrote opposing letters to Trump this week over Netanyahu’s plans to annex West Bank settlements. The open squabbling is a result of Trump’s extreme support for Israel and also the 52-year-long occupation, which has at last brought a crisis to the Jewish establishment’s consensus, that to be Jewish means to support Israel.
Journalists have relied on Wikileaks for years to show readers in riveting detail the extent of the State Department and the Democratic Party’s catering to Israel, for instance to undermine the Iran deal. Whatever you think of him personally, Julian Assange has been a critical journalistic source, allowing news organizations to show the public how our government makes policy.
The Palestine issue is going to be hot on the Democratic campaign trail. Solidarity activists disrupted Booker and Buttigieg launch rallies, while Beto O Rourke congratulated Netanyahu but said his alignment with “hateful” parties threatens two-state solution. And Kamala Harris is doubling down on her AIPAC support, her spox saying support for Israel is “central to who she is.”
“Anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism. That will be our rallying cry as we fight this ancient scourge that sadly is on the rise today,” says Elan Carr, State Department anti-Semitism envoy. The Trump administration has officially lost its mind and is playing into the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign.
Since Netanyahu’s reelection, mainstream Democrats have taken up ardent opposition to his plan to annex parts of West Bank. Sec’y of State Mike Pompeo won’t say what Trump will do, but MD’s Chris Van Hollen dares to imagine one state with equal rights: “Would you agree that in a one state solution Palestinians should have full and equal political and legal rights with other citizens of that state?”
Even NPR believes that Trump’s designation of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization was a gift to the embattled Benjamin Netanyahu, who said it was one of his “requests” to Trump. How many other “requests” has Trump followed through on? He is surely doing so at the urging of his biggest donor, Sheldon Adelson.