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Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Tom Friedman's pettiest column ever

Judging by Tom Friedman's reaction, Americans must be seeing Mitt Romney as having been resoundingly successful during his trip to Israel. As you read Friedman's column, you can see that he's just seething that Romney may actually pull votes away from the anti-Israel Barack Hussein Obama. It's almost as if Republicans are not allowed to compete for pro-Israel votes in Friedman's book. And perhaps, they're not.
The observation is this: Much of what is wrong with the U.S.-Israel relationship today can be found in that Romney trip. In recent years, the Republican Party has decided to make Israel a wedge issue. In order to garner more Jewish (and evangelical) votes and money, the G.O.P. decided to “out-pro-Israel” the Democrats by being even more unquestioning of Israel. This arms race has pulled the Democratic Party to the right on the Middle East and has basically forced the Obama team to shut down the peace process and drop any demands that Israel freeze settlements. This, in turn, has created a culture in Washington where State Department officials, not to mention politicians, are reluctant to even state publicly what is U.S. policy — that settlements are “an obstacle to peace” — for fear of being denounced as anti-Israel.

Add on top of that, the increasing role of money in U.S. politics and the importance of single donors who can write megachecks to “super PACs” — and the fact that the main Israel lobby, Aipac, has made itself the feared arbiter of which lawmakers are “pro” and which are “anti-Israel” and, therefore, who should get donations and who should not — and you have a situation in which there are almost no brakes, no red lights, around Israel coming from America anymore. No wonder settlers now boast on op-ed pages that the game is over, they’ve won, the West Bank will remain with Israel forever — and they don’t care what absorbing all of its Palestinians will mean for Israel’s future as a Jewish democracy.
Hey Tom - it wasn't the Republicans who decided to make Israel a wedge issue. Support for Israel used to be bipartisan until the Democratic party fell under the control of the Radical Left and the split between Democrats and Republicans who support Israel reached crisis stage.

As to megachecks and super PAC's, we should all be reminded that a candidate named Barack Hussein Obama was the first candidate to turn down the McCain-Feingold money and spend a billion dollars on a campaign. If Friedman has complaints, they should be addressed to Obama, who killed public financing of Presidential campaigns four years ago.

I should also note that the two paragraphs quoted above could have been written by Stephen Walt. Walt's delusions also include AIPAC as a 'feared arbiter' of who is and who is not pro-Israel.

There's one small problem: Barack Hussein Obama is clearly not pro-Israel.

Read the whole thing.

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