Mar 23, 2006

Are You An Anti-Lobbyite?!

In this paper, John J. Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago's Department of Political Science and Stephen M.Walt of Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government contend that the centerpiece of U.S. Middle East policy is its intimate relationship with Israel.

The authors argue that although often justified as reflecting shared strategic interests or compelling moral imperatives, the U.S. commitment to Israel is due primarily to the activities of the “Israel Lobby."

This paper goes on to describe the various activities that pro-Israel groups have undertaken in order to shift U.S. foreign policy in a pro-Israel direction.

Read The Complete Harvard Research Paper Here (pdf)

Read An Edited And Reworked Version At London Review Of Books


Effwit said...

From the Mearsheimer/Walt paper:

As for so-called rogue states in the Middle East, they are not a dire threat to vital US interests, except inasmuch as they are a threat to Israel. Even if these states acquire nuclear weapons – which is obviously undesirable – neither America nor Israel could be blackmailed, because the blackmailer could not carry out the threat without suffering overwhelming retaliation. The danger of a nuclear handover to terrorists is equally remote, because a rogue state could not be sure the transfer would go undetected or that it would not be blamed and punished afterwards.

I have used the exact same argument both online and in person with national security fearmongers. I feel a sense of being avenged. The feeling will soon enough pass.

Also, today's Washington Post features the lead editorial calling the AIPAC case a Dangerous Prosecution.

They couch their objection in their fears that further criminalizing (by prosecuting Rosen and Weissman) the Washington parlor game of discussing classified information will result in the muzzling of muckrakers.

M1 said...

All good things are fleeting.
Book of Meatballs 72:43

It must obviously be conveniently considered unreasonable to suggest that we could possibly differentiate an R&W scenario from an Ellsberg before the capacities of law. Are we to believe we can only have one or the other - free the spying fucks to save the 4rth estate and democracy? ba ba ba ba ba BS

Effwit said...

The Post is carrying water now, not only for the administration, but AIPAC.


The Mearsheimer/Walt discussion reminded me about a story I heard at the time of the first Gulf war.

I heard that Israel painted some of their F-15s and F-16 with American colors. They were said to have flown a number of the "U.S." sorties against Iraq.

There was some evidence of this live on network TV in the minutes immediately following the scuds landing on Tel Aviv. During the live coverage, the unmistakable sound of fighters taking off and flying low over the city on the way to.....somewhere.

M1 said...

Not to undermine the possibilities...but those fighters could have been on local sorties - non?
Isn't it pretty much confirmed that they did indeed fly Iraq sorties under U.S. colors? Hell, I would have easily forgiven them for that if not said, "Giddy up" myself.

Effwit said...


I am not aware that they were conducting air operations against anyone else locally at the time.

Perhaps they were going out on regularly scheduled practice missions at that moment. Pilots do need to keep up the ol' proficiency rating.

I don't blame them for using the ruse. We talked them into it. They wanted to fly the blue Star of David, but we thought that some regional fussbudget(s) might get piqued.

M1 said...

It's funny ain't it. Everyone whose job it is to know what's going on knows what's going on. And yet ruses for appearances still have their roll to play. Deviation from etiquette can still cause more of a ruckus than a solid to kick to the balls.

The Swedes called it Domestic Foreign Policy. A public foreign policy for IKEAville and a covert foreign policy for everyone else and their dascha staff to secretly know of.

Effwit said...


The ruses exist so that the brainless propagandists of the media don't have to put on an Oscar-winning performance to convince the sleepers not to awaken.

That's why I love it when they slip-up and show the emperors new clothes.

Also, as you know, many actual foreign policy decisions (sans ruses) are made not for logical or strategic reasons, but for the more important considerations of domestic politics.