Although the existence of individuals and groups lobbying on Israel's behalf does not prove that unconditional U.S. support for Israel is contrary to the national interest, it does suggest that this support would not be provided if the lobby were less powerful. If unconditional support were obviously the right policy, it probably would not take constant efforts by a powerful special-interest group to bring it about. As Richard Gephardt, the former House Minority Leader, told the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), “Without [your] constant support… and all your fighting on a daily basis to strengthen that relationship, it would not be.” Moreover, if the lobby were weaker, U.S. policy towards the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, Iran, Iraq and Syria would almost certainly be different. The Gephardt quotation was downloaded from the AIPAC website http://www.aipac.org/ on January 12, 2004. Also see Michael Kinsley, “J'Accuse, Sort Of,”Slate.com, March 12, 2003.
The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy
Article first published online: 14 SEP 2006
Middle East Policy
Volume 13, Issue 3, pages 29–87, September 2006
How to Cite
Mearsheimer, J. J. and Walt, S. M. (2006), The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. Middle East Policy, 13: 29–87. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-4967.2006.00260.x
- Issue published online: 14 SEP 2006
- Article first published online: 14 SEP 2006
According to the “Greenbook” of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), which reports “overseas loans and grants,” Israel has received $140,142,800,000 (in constant 2003 dollars) from the United States through 2003. “Greenbook” web site http://qesdb.cdie.org/gbk/, November 8, 2005.
According to the “Greenbook,” Israel received about $3.7 billion in direct aid from the United States in 2003. Israel's population according to the International Institute for Strategic Studies [IISS] and the CIA is 6,276,883. IISS, The Military Balance: 2005–2006 (Routledge, 2005), p. 192; http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/. That averages out to $589 per Israeli. If one assumes the same population size and $3 billion in total aid, each Israeli receives $478.
See http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/; World Bank Atlas (Development Data Group, World Bank, September 2004), pp. 64–65.
For a discussion of the various special deals that Israel receives, see Clyde R. Mark, “Israel: U.S. Foreign Assistance,” Issue Brief for Congress (Congressional Research Service, April 26, 2005).
Avner Cohen, Israel and the Bomb (Columbia University Press, 1999); Seymour M. Hersh, The Samson Option: Israel's Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy (Random House, 1991).
“Report of the Open-Ended Working Group on the Question of Equitable Representation on and Increase in the Membership of the Security Council and Other Matters Related to the Security Council,” Annex III, U.N. General Assembly Official Records, 58th Session, Supplement No. 47, 2004, pp. 13–14; Donald Neff, “An Updated List of Vetoes Cast by the United States to Shield Israel from Criticism by the U.N. Security Council,”Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, May/June 2005; Stephen Zunes, “U.S. Declares Open Season on UN Workers,”CommonDreams.org, January 10, 2003; “Meetings conducted / Actions taken by the Security Council in 2006,” United Nations, June 26, 2006; from http://www.un.org/Depts/dhl/resguide/scact2006.htm. There were also many resolutions that never came to a vote because Security Council members knew that the United States would veto them. Given the difficulty of criticizing specific Israeli actions in the Security Council, criticism has often come from the UN General Assembly, where no state has a veto. In these instances, the United States invariably finds itself on the short end of lopsided votes on the order of say 133–4, where the dissenters include Micronesia and the Marshall Islands as well as Israel and the United States. In response, Forward reported in November 2003 that the Bush administration, at the instigation of the American Jewish Committee, was “embarking on the most comprehensive campaign in years to reduce the number of anti-Israel resolutions routinely passed by the United Nations General Assembly.” Marc Perelman, “Washington Seeking to Reduce Number of Anti-Israel Votes at U.N.,”Forward, November 14, 2003.
Marc Perelman, “International Agency Eyes Israeli Nukes,”Forward, September 5, 2003.
William B. Quandt, Peace Process: American Diplomacy and the Arab-Israeli Conflict since 1967, 3rd ed. (Brookings Institution Press, 2005), chapters 5–7, 10–12.
Nathan Guttman, “U.S. Accused of Pro-Israel Bias at 2000 Camp David,”Ha'aretz, April 29, 2005. Also see Aaron D. Miller, “Israel's Lawyer,”The Washington Post, May 23, 2005; “Lessons of Arab-Israeli Negotiating: Four Negotiators Look Back and Ahead,” Transcript of panel discussion, Middle East Institute, April 25, 2005. For general discussions of how the United States consistently favors Israel over the Palestinians, see Noam Chomsky, The Fateful Triangle: The United States, Israel and the Palestinians (South End Press, 1999); Kathleen Christison, Perceptions of Palestine: Their Influence on U.S. Middle East Policy (University of California Press, 2001); Naseer H. Aruri, Dishonest Broker: The U.S. Role in Israel and Palestine (South End Press, 2003). It is also worth noting that the British favored the Zionists over the Palestinians during the period of the British Mandate (1919–48). See Tom Segev, One Palestine, Complete: Jews and Arabs under the British Mandate (Henry Holt, 2000).
Downloaded from AIPAC's website http://aipac.org/documents/unitedefforts.html on January 12, 2006.
See, for example, Warren Bass, Support Any Friend: Kennedy's Middle East and the Making of the US-Israel Alliance (Oxford University Press, 2003); A.F.K. Organski, The $36 Billion Bargain: Strategy and Politics in U.S. Assistance to Israel (Columbia University Press, 1990); Steven L. Spiegel, “Israel as a Strategic Asset,”Commentary, June 1983, pp. 51–55; Idem, The Other Arab-Israeli Conflict: Making America's Middle East Policy, from Truman to Reagan (University of Chicago Press, 1985).
This point was not lost on Moshe Dayan, who, remembering a talk he had with Henry Kissinger at the time of the October 1973 War, noted, “Though I happened to remark that the United States was the only country that was ready to stand by us, my silent reflection was that the United States would really rather support the Arabs.” Moshe Dayan, Moshe Dayan: Story of My Life (William Morrow, 1976), pp. 512–513. Also see Zach Levey, “The United States' Skyhawk Sale to Israel, 1966: Strategic Exigencies of an Arms Deal,”Diplomatic History, Vol. 28, No. 2 (April 2004), pp. 255–276.
Bernard Lewis wrote in 1992, “Whatever value Israel might have had as a strategic asset during the Cold War, that value obviously ended when the Cold War itself came to a close. The change was clearly manifested in the Gulf War last year, when what the United States most desired from Israel was to keep out of the conflict — to be silent, inactive and, as far as possible, invisible …. Israel was not an asset, but an irrelevance — some even said a nuisance. Some of the things that the Israeli government later said and did were unlikely to change this perception.”“Rethinking the Middle East,”Foreign Affairs, Vol. 71, No. 4 (Fall 1992), pp. 110–111.
According to Middle East expert Shibley Telhami, “No other issue resonates with the public in the Arab world, and many other parts of the Muslim world, more deeply than Palestine. No other issue shapes the regional perceptions of America more fundamentally than the issue of Palestine.”The Stakes: America and the Middle East (Westview Press, 2002), p. 96. Lakhdar Brahimi, the former UN special envoy to Iraq, whom the Bush administration enlisted to help form an interim Iraqi government in June 2004, said that Israeli policy toward the Palestinians is “the great poison in the region,” and that “in the region, and beyond” people recognized the “injustice of this policy and the equally unjust support of the United States for this policy.” See Warren Hoge, “U.N. Moves to Disassociate Itself from Remarks by Envoy to Iraq,”The New York Times, April 23, 2004; “Brahimi's Israel Comments Draw Annan, Israel Ire,”Ha'aretz, April 24, 2004. Also see the comments of Egyptian President Husni Mubarak in “Mubarak: Arab Hatred of America Growing,”The Washington Post, April 20, 2004. Finally, see Ami Eden, “9/11 Commission Finds Anger at Israel Fueling Islamic Terrorism Wave,”Forward, July 30, 2004.
National Commission on Terrorist Attacks against the United States, “Outline of the 9/11 Plot,” Staff Statement No. 16, June 16, 2004. Also see Nathan Guttman, “Al-Qaida Planned Attacks during PM's Visit to White House,”Ha'aretz, June 17, 2004; Marc Perelman, “Bin Laden Aimed to Link Plot to Israel,”Forward, June 25, 2004. Pro-Israel supporters often argue that Bin Laden only became interested in the Israel-Palestinian conflict after 9/11, and only because he thought that it was good for recruiting purposes. In this view, there is virtually no connection between what happened on 9/11 and U.S. support for Israel. See Andrea Levin, “Don't Scapegoat Israel,”The Boston Globe, October 6, 2001; Norman Podhoretz, “Israel Isn't the Issue,”The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2001. Note that both of these pieces were published right after the Twin Towers fell. However, we now have a substantial number of Bin Laden's writings and talks from the 1980s and 1990s, and it is clear that he cared deeply about matters relating to Jerusalem and the Palestinians long before 9/11. See, for example, “Jihad against Jews and Crusaders,” World Islamic Front Statement, February 23, 1998; Transcript of Osama bin Laden's March 20, 1997, interview with Peter Arnett of CNN (first broadcast May 10,1997). Also “New Osama bin Laden Video Contains Anti-Israel and Anti-American Statements,” downloaded from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) website http://www.adl.org/terrorism_america/bin_1_print.asp on March 8, 2004.
Changing Minds, Winning Peace: A New Strategic Direction for U.S. Public Diplomacy in the Arab and Muslim World, Report of the Advisory Group on Public Diplomacy for the Arab and Muslim World, Submitted to the Committee on Appropriations, U.S. House of Representatives, October 1, 2003, p. 18. Also see The Pew Global Attitudes Project, Views of a Changing World 2003: War With Iraq Further Divides Global Publics (Pew Research Center for the People and the Press, June 3, 2003); Report of the Defense Science Board Task Force on Strategic Communication (Office of the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics, September 2004); Shibley Telhami, “Arab Public Opinion: A Survey in Six Countries,”The San Jose Mercury, March 16, 2003; John Zogby, The Ten Nation Impressions of America Poll (Zogby International, April 11, 2002); Idem, Impressions of America 2004: How Arabs View America, How Arabs Learn about America (Six Nation Survey), (Zogby International, 2004).
“President Discusses War on Terror and Operation Iraqi Freedom,” speech delivered at Renaissance Cleveland Hotel, March 20, 2006, Office of the White House Press Secretary.
See The Pew Global Attitudes Project, America Admired, Yet Its New Vulnerability Seen As Good Thing, Say Opinion Leaders (The Pew Research Center for the People and the Press, December 19, 2001); Pew Global Attitudes Project, Views of a Changing World 2003, p. 5.
For a copy of the letter, see “Doomed to Failure in the Middle East,”The Guardian, April 27, 2004. Also see Nicholas Blanford, “US Moves Inflame Arab Moderates,”The Christian Science Monitor, April 26, 2004; Rupert Cornwell, “Allies Warn Bush that Stability in Iraq Demands Arab-Israeli Deal,”The Independent, June 10, 2004; Glenn Kessler and Robin Wright, “Arabs and Europeans Question ‘Greater Middle East’ Plan,”The Washington Post, February 22, 2004; Paul Richter, “U.S. Has Fresh Hope for Mideast,”The Los Angeles Times, November 7, 2004; Robin Wright and Glenn Kessler, “U.S. Goals for Middle East Falter,”The Washington Post, April 21, 2004. Even some Israelis understand that “the continuation of this conflict, including the Israeli occupation, will most certainly lead to new waves of terror; international terrorism, which the Americans fear so much, will spread.” Ze'ev Schiff, “Fitting into America's Strategy,”Ha'aretz, August 1, 2003. It is also worth noting that some 50 retired American diplomats wrote a letter in May 2004 to President Bush similar to the letter that the British diplomats sent to Tony Blair. A copy of the American letter was published in The New York Review of Books, November 18, 2004.
Consider, for example, the controversy that erupted in 2005 over Israel's decision to expand its settlements in the West Bank. See Aluf Benn, “We Can't Expect Explicit U.S. Okay to Build in Settlements,”Ha'aretz, March 28, 2005; Akiva Eldar, “Bush: End Expansion of Settlements,”Ha'aretz, May 27, 2005; “Bush Warns Israel over West Bank,”BBC News Online, April 11, 2005; Donald Macintyre, “Sharon Vows to Defy Bush over Expansion of Israeli Settlements,”The Independent, April 22,2005; “Sharon Brushes Off Warning from Bush,”MSNBC.com, April 12, 2005; Amy Teibel, “U.S. to Israel: Stop Expanding Settlements,”The Washington Post, June 26,2005; Ze'ev Schiff, “U.S.: Israel Shirking Its Promises on Settlement Boundaries,”Ha'aretz, March 15, 2005. Regarding targeted assassinations, Prime Minister Sharon promised Secretary of State Colin Powell in May 2003 that Israel would refrain from killing Palestinian leaders unless there was a “ticking bomb” (an imminent attack). Ze'ev Schiff, “Focus/Americans Fear Abu Mazen Is Further Weakened,”Ha'aretz, June 12, 2003. But one month later, after Bush made a high-profile visit to the Middle East and the prospects for negotiations between the warring parties looked promising, Sharon launched seven assassination missions in five days, none involving a “ticking bomb.” Bradley Burston, “Background: Has Sharon's Hamas Hitlist Converted Bush?”Ha'aretz, June 17, 2003. Also see Uri Avnery, “Avoiding a Road Map to the Abyss,”Arab News (online), August 26, 2003; Glenn Kessler, “White House Backs Latest Israeli Attacks,”The Washington Post, June 13, 2003; Laura King, “Sharon Lauds Hebron Killing,”The Los Angeles Times, June 23, 2003; Gideon Levy, “Who Violated the Hudna?”Tikkun (online), August 17, 2003. In March 2004, the IDF killed Hamas spiritual leader Sheik Yassin, even though he was not an imminent threat, and even though his death damaged America's position in the Middle East. Georgie Anne Geyer, “Ariel Sharon Complicates U.S. Mission,”The Chicago Tribune, March 26, 2004; H.D.S. Greenway, “Assassination Fallout Bodes Ill for US,”The Boston Globe, March 26, 2004; Tony Karon, “How Israel's Hamas Killing Affects the U.S.,”Time, March 23, 2004; David R. Sands, “Israel's Killing of Yassin Puts US in Line of Fire,”The Washington Times, March 23, 2004. As Jim Hoagland said in the wake of Yassin's killing, “With the possible exception of Charles de Gaulle, no friendly foreign leader has complicated modern American diplomacy more consistently or gravely than Ariel Sharon. He pursues Israel's interests with a warrior's tenacity and directness that takes away the breath, and the options, of everyone else.” See “Consequences for Sharon — and the U.S.,”The Chicago Tribune, March 26, 2004.
Quoted in Duncan L. Clarke, “Israel's Unauthorized Arms Transfers,”Foreign Policy, No. 99 (Summer 1995), p. 94. This article provides an excellent discussion of the problem. There was a bitter controversy in 2004–2005 between the United States and Israel over Israeli arms sales to China. See Aluf Benn and Amnon Barzilai, “Pentagon Official Wants Yaron Fired,”Ha'aretz, December 16, 2004; Aluf Benn, “U.S. Keeps Israel Out of New Fighter-Jet Development Program,”Ha'aretz, October 12, 2005; Nina Gilbert, “Yaron Won't Give Info on Arms Sales to China,”The Jerusalem Post, December 30, 2004; “Israeli, U.S. Talks on Weapons Deals with China End without Result,”Ha'aretz, June 29, 2005; Marc Perelman, “Spat Over Sales of Weapons Chilling Ties between Jerusalem and Beijing,”Forward, December 23, 2004; Marc Perelman, “China Crisis Straining U.S.-Israel Ties,”Forward, August 5, 2005; Marc Perelman, “Israel Miffed over Lingering China Flap,”Forward, October 7, 2005; Ze'ev Schiff, “U.S.-Israel Crisis Deepens over Defense Exports to China,”Ha'aretz, July 27, 2005.
Quoted in Duncan L. Clarke, “Israel's Economic Espionage in the United States,”Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 27, No. 4 (Summer 1998), p. 21. Also see Bob Drogin and Greg Miller, “Israel Has Long Spied on U.S. Say Officials,”The Los Angeles Times, September 3, 2004; “FBI Says Israel a Major Player in Industrial Espionage,”Jewish Bulletin, January 16, 1998; Clyde R. Mark, “Israeli-United States Relations,” Issue Brief for Congress (Congressional Research Service, November 9, 2004), pp. 14–15; Joshua Mitnick, “U.S. Accuses Officials of Spying,”The Washington Times, December 16, 2004.
On the Pollard affair, see Hersh, Samson Option, pp. 285–305; Idem, “The Traitor: Why Pollard Should Never Be Released,”The New Yorker, Vol. 74, issue 42 (January 18, 1999), pp. 26–33. There are a huge number of articles on the internet dealing with the Franklin Affair. For a good overview of the case, see Jeffrey Goldberg, “Real Insiders: A Pro-Israel Lobby and an F.B.I. Sting,”The New Yorker, Vol. 81, Issue 19 (July 4, 2005), pp. 34–40.
Trevor N. Dupuy, Elusive Victory: The Arab-Israeli Wars, 1947–1974 (Harper and Row, 1978), pp. 3–19, 121–125, 146–147, 212–214, 231–244, 333–340, 388–390, 597–605, 623–633; Simha Flapan, The Birth of Israel: Myths and Realities (Pantheon Books, 1987), pp. 189–199; Rashid Khalidi, “The Palestinians and 1948: The Underlying Causes of Failure,” in Eugene L. Rogan and Avi Shlaim, eds., The War for Palestine: Rewriting the History of 1948 (Cambridge University Press, 2001), pp. 12–36; Haim Levenberg, Military Preparations of the Arab Community in Palestine, 1945–1948 (Frank Cass, 1993); Benny Morris, The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited (Cambridge University Press, 2004), chapters 1, 3; Idem, Righteous Victims: A History of the Zionist-Arab Conflict, 1881–1999 (Alfred Knopf, 1999), pp. 187–189, 191–196, 217–223,235–236, 241–242, 286–291, 311–313, 393–395; Idem, 1948 and After: Israel and the Palestinians (Clarendon Press, 1990), pp. 13–16; Martin Van Creveld, The Sword and the Olive: A Critical History of the Israeli Defense Forces (Public Affairs, 1998), pp. 77–82, 137–138, 179–182.
Amos Harel, “Israel Maintains Its Strategic Advantage, Says Jaffee Center,”Ha'aretz, November 23, 2005. Also see, Uri Bar-Joseph, “The Paradox of Israeli Power,”Survival, Vol. 46, No. 4 (Winter 2004–05), pp. 137–156; Martin Van Creveld, “Opportunity Beckons,”The Jerusalem Post, May 15, 2003.
For three instructive pieces on this matter from the Israeli press, see Amiram Barkat, “Majority of Israelis Are Opposed to Intermarriage, Survey Finds,”Ha'aretz, September 15, 2003; Nicky Blackburn, “Better a Jew,”Ha'aretz, April 21, 2004; Lily Galili, “Hitting Below the Belt,”Ha'aretz, August 8, 2004.
See “The Official Summation of the Or Commission Report,” published in Ha'aretz, September 2, 2003. For evidence of how hostile many Israelis were to the report's findings and recommendations, see “No Avoiding the Commission Recommendations,”Ha'aretz, September 4, 2003; Molly Moore, “Israeli Report Is Welcomed, Dismissed,”The Washington Post, September 3,2003. Also see Bernard Avishai, “Saving Israel from Itself: A Secular Future for the Jewish State,”Harper's Magazine, January 2005. It is also worth noting that the Israel Democracy Institute reported in May 2003 that: 53 percent of Israeli Jews “are against full equality for the Arabs”; 77 percent of Israeli Jews believe that “there should be a Jewish majority on crucial political decisions”; only 31 percent “support having Arab political parties in the government 57 percent “think that the Arabs should be encouraged to emigrate.” See “The Democracy Index: Major Findings 2003.” Imagine the outcry that would occur if a majority of white Americans declared that blacks, Hispanics, and Asians “should be encouraged” to leave the United States. For more recent surveys, which show little change in Israeli attitudes, see Yulie Khromchenko, “Survey: Most Jewish Israelis Support Transfer of Arabs,”Ha'aretz, June 22, 2004; Yoav Stern, “Poll: Most Israeli Jews Say Israeli Arabs Should Emigrate,”Ha'aretz, April 4, 2005. For additional background on the origins of these policies, see Ian Lustick, Arabs in the Jewish State: Israel's Control of a National Minority (University of Texas Press, 1982).
Quoted in Justin Huggler, “Israel Imposes ‘Racist’ Marriage Law,”The Guardian, August 1, 2003. Also see James Bennet, “Israel Blocks Palestinians from Marrying into Residency,”The New York Times, July 31, 2003; “Racist Legislation,”Ha'aretz editorial, July, 19, 2004; “Racist Legislation,”Ha'aretz editorial, January 18, 2005. Even the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) criticized the legislation, albeit mildly. Nathan Guttman, Yair Ettinger, Sharon Sadeh, “ADL Criticizes Law Denying Citizenship to Palestinians,”Ha'aretz, August 5, 2003.
Israel formally withdrew from Gaza in the summer of 2005, but continued to maintain substantial control over its residents. Specifically, Israel controls air, sea and land access, which means that the Palestinians are in effect prisoners within Gaza, able to enter or leave only with Israeli approval. Escalating violence in the summer of 2006 led Israel to reoccupy Gaza, and Israeli airstrikes and artillery fire have destroyed key buildings and bridges there.
The first wave of European Jews to come to Palestine is known as the First Aliyah, and it covers the years from 1882 to 1903. There were slightly more than 15,000 Jews in Palestine in 1882. Justin McCarthy, The Population of Palestine: Population History and Statistics of the Late Ottoman Period and the Mandate (Columbia University Press, 1990), p. 10, which has excellent data for the years from 1850 to 1915. McCarthy's numbers are based on Ottoman census figures, which exclude “an unknown number of Jewish immigrants who had kept their original citizenship.” He notes further that “there would have been relatively few non-citizen Jews at that early date,” and estimates the number as “perhaps one to two thousand” (p. 13). Also see Mark Tessler, A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (Indiana University Press, 1994), p. 124.
The total population of Palestine in 1893 was roughly 530,000, of whom about 19,000 were Jewish (3.6 percent). Arabs comprised the vast majority of the remaining population. McCarthy, Population of Palestine, p. 10.
Flapan, Birth of Israel, p. 44; Morris, Righteous Victims, p. 186.
Flapan, Birth of Israel, p. 22. Similarly, Ben-Gurion told his son, “Erect a Jewish State at once, even if it is not in the whole of the land. The rest will come in the course of time. It must come.” Avi Shlaim, The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World (Norton, 2000), p. 21. Also see Flapan, Birth of Israel, pp. 13–53; Nur Masalah, Expulsion of the Palestinians: The Concept of Transfer in Zionist Political Thought, 1882–1948 (Institute for Palestine Studies, 1992), chapter 2; Morris, Righteous Victims, pp. 138–139; Avi Shlaim, The Politics of Partition: King Abdullah, the Zionists, and Palestine, 1921–1951 (Oxford University Press, 1999).
Benny Morris, Israel's Border Wars, 1949–1956 (Oxford University Press, 1997), p. 11. According to Shabtai Teveth, “[M]ass immigration and military strength would serve still another purpose, at which Ben-Gurion only hinted. Only initiates knew that Ben-Gurion regarded the creation of a Jewish state in part of Palestine as a stage in the longer process toward a Jewish state in all of Palestine….And so Ben-Gurion spoke in ambiguous tones about a state being but a step toward ‘a complete solution for the Jewish people and a powerful instrument for the total fulfillment of Zionism, an instrument for the redemption of all the Land of Israel’….In October 1938, he wrote to his children that ‘I don't regard a state in part of Palestine as the final aim of Zionism, but as a means toward that aim’.” See Shabtai Teveth, Ben-Gurion and the Palestinian Arabs: From Peace to War (Oxford University Press, 1985), pp. 187–188. Ben-Gurion retained this view after independence, saying in early 1949 that “Before the founding of the state, on the eve of its creation, our main interest was self-defense… but now the issue at hand is conquest, not self defense. As for setting the borders — it's an open-ended matter. In the Bible as well as in our history there are all kinds of definitions of the country's borders, so there's no real limit.” Quoted in Tom Segev, 1949: The First Israelis (Henry Holt & Co., 1998) p. 6.
Masalha, Expulsion of the Palestinians, p. 128. Also see Morris, Righteous Victims, pp. 140, 142, 168–169. This statement is from a memorandum Ben-Gurion wrote prior to the Extraordinary Zionist Conference at New York's Biltmore Hotel in May 1942. After outlining the need for “brutal compulsion,” Ben-Gurion also noted that “we should in no way make it part of our programme.” Ben-Gurion was not rejecting this policy, however, he was simply noting that the Zionists should not openly proclaim it. Indeed, he went on to say that the Zionists should not “discourage other people, British or American, who favour transfer from advocating this course, but we should in no way make it part of our programme.” Ben-Gurion would have preferred to consolidate Jewish control over Palestine in agreement with the Arabs, but he recognized that this was unlikely and that the Zionists would have to acquire a strong military force in order to achieve their aims. As he wrote Moshe Sharett in June 1937, “Were I an Arab…an Arab politically, nationally minded…I would rebel even more vigorously, bitterly, and desperately against the immigration that will one day turn Palestine and all its Arab residents over to Jewish rule.” Quoted in Shabtai Teveth, Ben-Gurion: The Burning Ground, 1886–1948 (Houghton Mifflin, 1987), p. 544. When combined with his other statements on this topic, it is clear that Ben-Gurion understood that a predominantly Jewish state was unlikely to be established without forcefully removing the Arab population.
Quoted in Michael Bar-Zohar, Facing a Cruel Mirror: Israel's Moment of Truth (Charles Scribner's Sons, 1990), p. 16.
Benny Morris, “Revisiting the Palestinian Exodus of 1948,” in Rogan and Shlaim, War for Palestine, p 44. On the pervasiveness of transfer thinking among Zionists before Israel was established in 1948, see Masalha, Expulsion of the Palestinians; Morris, Birth Revisited, chapter 2; Idem, “A New Exodus for the Middle East?”The Guardian, October 3, 2002; Ari Shavit, “Survival of the Fittest,”Ha'aretz, January 9, 2004.
Morris, Birth Revisited, provides a detailed account of this event. Also see Meron Benvenisti, Sacred Landscape: The Buried History of the Holy Land since 1948, trans. Maxine Kaufman-Lacusta (University of California Press, 2000), chapters 3–4. The only remaining debate of real significance regarding the expulsion of the Palestinians from their homeland is whether it was “born of war,” as Morris argues, or by design, as Norman Finkelstein argues in Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict (London: Verso, 1995), chapter 3.
Erskine Childers, “The Other Exodus,”The Spectator, May 12, 1961; Flapan, Birth of Israel, pp. 81–118; Walid Khalidi, “Why Did the Palestinians Leave Revisited,”Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 34, No. 2 (Winter 2005), pp. 42–54; Idem, “The Fall of Haifa,”Middle East Forum, Vol. 35, No. 10 (December, 1959), pp. 22–32; Morris, Birth Revisited.
Nahum Goldmann, The Jewish Paradox, trans. Steve Cox (Grosset and Dunlap, 1978), p. 99. Ze'ev Jabotinsky, the founding father of the Israeli right, made essentially the same point when he wrote, “Colonization is self-explanatory and what it implies is fully understood by every sensible Jew and Arab. There can only be one purpose in colonization. For the country's Arabs that purpose is essentially unacceptable. This is a natural reaction and nothing will change it.” Quoted in Ian Lustick, “To Build and To Be Built By: Israel and the Hidden Logic of the Iron Wall,”Israel Studies, Vol. 1, No. 1 (Spring 1996), p. 200.
See Geoffrey Aronson, Israel, Palestinians, and the Intifada: Creating Facts on the West Bank (Kegan Paul International, 1990); Amnon Barzilai, “A Brief History of the Missed Opportunity,”Ha'aretz, June 5, 2002; Idem, “Some Saw the Refugees as the Key to Peace,”Ha'aretz, June 11, 2002; Moshe Behar, “The Peace Process and Israeli Domestic Politics in the 1990s,”Socialism and Democracy, Current Issue Number 32, Vol. 16, No. 2 (Summer-Fall 2002), pp. 34–47; Adam Hanieh and Catherine Cook, “A Road Map to the Oslo Culde-Sac,”Middle East Report Online, May 15, 2003; “Israel's Interests Take Primacy: An Interview with Dore Gold,” in bitterlemons.org, “What Constitutes a Viable Palestinian State?” March 15, 2004, Edition 10; Nur Masalha, Imperial Israel and the Palestinians: The Politics of Expansion (Pluto Press, 2000); Sara Roy, “Erasing the ‘Optics’ of Gaza,”The Daily Star Online, February 14, 2004; “36 Years, and Still Counting,”Ha'aretz, September 26, 2003.
Rashid Khalidi, Palestinian Identity: The Construction of Modern National Consciousness (Columbia University Press, 1997), p. 147. Meir also said, “It was not as though there was a Palestinian people in Palestine considering itself as a Palestinian people and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.” Masalha, Imperial Israel, p. 47. Rabin said in 1995, two years after signing the Oslo accords, “I seek peaceful coexistence between Israel as a Jewish state, not all over the land of Israel, or most of it; its capital, the united Jerusalem; its security border with Jordan rebuilt; next to it, a Palestinian entity, less than a state, that runs the life of Palestinians …. This is my goal, not to return to the pre-Six-Day War lines but to create two entities, a separation between Israel and the Palestinians who reside in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.” Hanieh and Cook, “Road Map.” Also see Akiva Eldar, “On the Same Page, Ten Years On,”Ha'aretz, November 5, 2005; David Grossman, “The Night Our Hope for Peace Died,”The Guardian, November 4, 2005; Michael Jansen, “A Practice that Prevents the Emergence of a Palestinian State,”Jordan Times, November 10, 2005. In the spring of 1998, Israel and its American supporters sharply criticized First Lady Hillary Clinton for saying, “It would be in the long-term interests of peace in the Middle East for there to be a state of Palestine, a functioning modern state that is on the same footing as other states.” Tom Rhodes and Christopher Walker, “Congress Tells Israel to Reject Clinton's Pullout Plan,”The New York Times, May 8, 1998; James Bennet, “Aides Disavow Mrs. Clinton on Mideast,”The New York Times, May 8, 1998.
See Charles Enderlin, Shattered Dreams: The Failure of the Peace Process in the Middle East, 1995–2002, trans. Susan Fairfield (Other Press, 2003), pp. 201, 207–208; Jeremy Pressman, “Visions in Collision: What Happened at Camp David and Taba?”International Security, Vol. 28, No. 2 (Fall 2003), p. 17; Ron Pundak, “From Oslo to Taba: What Went Wrong?”Survival, Vol. 43, No. 3 (Autumn 2001), pp. 31–45; Jerome Slater, “What Went Wrong? The Collapse of the Israeli-Palestinian Peace Process,”Political Science Quarterly, Vol. 116, No. 2 (July 2001), p. 184; Deborah Sontag, “Quest for Mideast Peace: How and Why It Failed,”The New York Times, July 26, 2001; Clayton E. Swisher, The Truth about Camp David: The Untold Story about the Collapse of the Peace Process (Nation Books, 2004), pp. 284, 318, 325. Barak himself said after Camp David that “the Palestinians were promised a continuous piece of sovereign territory except for a razor-thin Israeli wedge running from Jerusalem through from Maale Adumim to the Jordan River,” which effectively would have been under Israel's control. Benny Morris, “Camp David and After: An Exchange (1. An Interview with Ehud Barak)”, The New York Review of Books, Vol. 49, No. 10 (June 13, 2002), p. 44. Also see the map Israeli negotiators presented to the Palestinians during the early rounds at Camp David, a copy of which can be found in Roane Carey, ed., The New Intifada: Resisting Israel's Apartheid (Verso, 2001), p. 36. For other accounts of Camp David, see Shlomo Ben-Ami, Scars of War: Wounds of Peace: The Israeli-Palestinian Tragedy, (Oxford University Press, 2006); Dennis Ross, The Missing Peace: The Inside Story of the Fight for Middle East Peace (Farrar Straus Giroux, 2004). Ben-Ami was a key participant at Camp David and is sharply critical of Yasser Arafat's handling of the negotiations. But even he later admitted, “If I were a Palestinian I would have rejected Camp David, as well.” See “Norman Finkelstein & Former Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben-Ami Debate: Complete Transcript,”Democracy Now! Radio and TV broadcast, February 14, 2006.
In a speech in October 2005, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad reportedly called for Israel to be “wiped off the map,” a statement widely interpreted as threatening the physical destruction of the Jewish state and its inhabitants. A more accurate translation of Ahmadinejad's statement is “the occupation regime over Jerusalem should vanish from the page of time” (or alternatively, “be eliminated from the pages of history”). Instead of calling for the physical destruction of Israel, Ahmadinejad was suggesting that Israel's control over Jerusalem should be seen as a temporary condition, like Soviet control of Eastern Europe or the shah's regime in Iran. While still provocative and highly objectionable, it was not a call for the physical liquidation of Israel or its population. See Ethan Bronner and Nazila Fathi, “Just How Far Did They Go, Those Words Against Israel?”The New York Times, June 11, 2006; Jonathan Steele, “Lost in Translation,”The Guardian, June 14, 2006; “Iranian President at Tehran Conference: ‘Very Soon, This Stain of Disgrace [i.e. Israel] Will Be Purged From the Center of the Islamic World — and This is Attainable’,” Middle East Media Research Institute, Special Dispatch Series No. 1013, October 25, 2005.
See Alan Dershowitz, The Case for Israel (John Wiley & Sons, 2003). For a telling critique of Dershowitz's book, see Norman G. Finkelstein, Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History (University of California Press, 2005). Also see “Dershowitz v. Desch,”American Conservative, January 16, 2005.
Morris, Righteous Victims, chapters 2–5.
Morris, Birth Revisited. It should be noted that many Israeli documents concerning the events of 1948 remain classified; Morris expects “that with respect to both expulsions and atrocities, we can expect additional revelations as the years pass and more Israeli records become available.” Morris, “Revisiting the Palestinian Exodus,” in Rogan and Shlaim, War for Palestine, p. 49. In fact, he maintains that the reported cases of rape he knows about are “just the tip of the iceberg.” See Shavit, “Survival of the Fittest.”
Morris, Israel's Border Wars, p. 432. Also see ibid., pp. 126–153, 178–184. For evidence of similar behavior after the 1967 War, see Uri Avnery, “Crying Wolf?”Counter Punch, March 15, 2003; Ami Kronfeld, “Avnery on Ethnic Cleansing and a Personal Note,” in Jewish Voice for Peace, Jewish Peace News, March 17, 2003; Katherine M. Metres, “As Evidence Mounts, Toll of Israeli Prisoner of War Massacres Grows,”Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, February/March 1996, pp. 17, 104–105.
During his negotiations with the British and French governments over the launching of the 1956 war, Ben-Gurion proposed a grand plan for reordering the region that would have divided Jordan between Israel and Iraq, transferred all of Lebanon south of the Litani River to Israel, and given Israel portions of the Sinai as well. On Israel's policies in the 1950s, see Morris, Israel's Border Wars; Morris, Righteous Victims, chapter 6, especially pp. 289–290; Shlaim, Iron Wall, chapters 3–4, especially pp. 184–185; Kennett Love, Suez: the Twice Fought War (McGraw-Hill, 1969), pp. 589–638; Michael Brecher, Decisions in Israel's Foreign Policy (Yale University Press, 1975), pp. 282–283.
Gabby Bron, “Egyptian POWs Ordered to Dig Graves, Then Shot by Israeli Army,”Yedioth Ahronoth, August 17, 1995; Ronal Fisher, “Mass Murder in the 1956 Sinai War,”Ma'ariv, August 8, 1995 [Copies of these two pieces can be found in Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 25, No. 3 (Spring 1996), pp. 148–155]; Galal Bana, “Egypt: We Will Turn to the International War Crimes Tribunal in the Hague if Israel Will Not Compensate Murdered Prisoners of War,”Ha'aretz, July 24, 2002; Zehavat Friedman, “Personal Reminiscence: Remembering Ami Kronfeld,” in Jewish Voice for Peace, Jewish Peace News, September 25, 2005; Metres, “As Evidence Mounts.”
Avnery, “Crying Wolf”; Robert Blecher, Living on the Edge: The Threat of ‘Transfer’ in Israel and Palestine,” MERIP, Middle East Report 225, Winter 2002; Baruch Kimmerling, Politicide: Ariel Sharon's War against the Palestinians (Verso, 2003), p. 28. Also see Chomsky, Fateful Triangle, p. 97; Morris, Righteous Victims, pp. 328–329; Tanya Reinhart, Israel/Palestine: How to End the War of 1948 (Seven Stories Press, 2002), p. 8. Morris reports (p. 329) that 120,000 Palestinians applied to return to their homes right after the 1967 War, but Israel allowed only about 17,000 to come back. Amnesty International estimated in mid-2003 that in the years since Israel had acquired the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, it had destroyed more than 10,000 Palestinian homes in those areas. Danny Rubinstein, “Roads, Fences and Outposts Maintain Control in the Territories,”Ha'aretz, August 12, 2003.
“Report of the Commission of Inquiry into the Events at the Refugee Camps in Beirut,” February 7, 1983. The report is commonly called “The Kahan Commission Report” after its chairman, Yitzhak Kahan.
Swedish Save the Children, “The Status of Palestinian Children during the Uprising in the Occupied Territories,” Excerpted Summary Material, Jerusalem, 1990, in Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 19, No. 4 (Summer 1990), pp. 136–146. Also see Joshua Brilliant, “Officer Tells Court Villagers Were Bound, Gagged and Beaten. ‘Not Guilty’ Plea at ‘Break Bones’ Trial,”Jerusalem Post, March 30, 1990; Joshua Brilliant, “‘Rabin Ordered Beatings’, Meir Tells Military Court,”Jerusalem Post, June 22, 1990; Jackson Diehl, “Rights Group Accuses Israel of Violence Against Children in Palestinian Uprising,”The Washington Post, May 17, 1990; James A. Graff, “Crippling a People: Palestinian Children and Israeli State Violence,”Alif, No. 13 (1993), pp. 46–63; Ronald R. Stockton, “Intifada Deaths,”Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 19, No. 4 (Summer 1990), pp. 86–95. Ehud Barak, the IDF's Deputy Chief of Staff during the First Intifada, said at the time, “We do not want children to be shot under any circumstances …. When you see a child you don't shoot.” Nevertheless, the Swedish Save the Children report estimated that 6,500 to 8,000 children were wounded by gunfire during the first two years of the Intifada. Researchers investigated 66 of the 106 recorded cases of “child gunshot deaths.” They concluded that almost all of them “were hit by directed — not random or ricochet — gunfire”; nearly twenty percent suffered multiple gunshot wounds; twelve percent were shot from behind; fifteen percent of the children were ten years of age or younger; “most children were not participating in a stone-throwing demonstration when shot dead”; and “nearly one-fifth of the children were shot dead while at home or within ten meters of their homes.”
“Unbridled Force,”Ha'aretz editorial, March 16, 2003. For other evidence, see Jonathan Cook, “Impunity on Both Sides of the Green Line,” MERIP, Middle East Report Online, November 23, 2005; “When Everything Is Permissible,”Ha'aretz editorial, June 6, 2005; “It Can Happen Here,”Ha'aretz editorial, November 22, 2004; Chris McGreal, “Snipers with Children in Their Sights,”The Guardian, June 28, 2005; Idem, “Israel Shocked by Image of Soldiers Forcing Violinist to Play at Roadblock,”The Guardian, November 29,2004; Greg Myre, “Former Israeli Soldiers Tell of Harassment of Palestinians,”The New York Times, June 24, 2004; Reuven Pedatzur, “The Message to the Soldiers Was Clear,”Ha'aretz, December 13, 2004; Conal Urquhart, “Israeli Soldiers Tell of Indiscriminate Killings by Army and A Culture of Impunity,”The Guardian, September 6, 2005.
See Swisher, Truth about Camp David, p. 387.
According to B'tselem, between September 29, 2000, and December 31, 2005, 3,386 Palestinians were killed by the Israelis, of whom 676 were children. Of those 3,386 deaths, 1,185 were bystanders, 1,008 were killed while fighting the Israelis, and the circumstances of 563 deaths are unknown. During the same period, 992 Israelis were killed by the Palestinians, 118 of whom were children. Of those 992 deaths, 683 were civilians and 309 belonged to Israeli security forces. B'tselem press release, January 4, 2006.
Nathan Guttman, “‘It's a Terrible Thing, Living with the Knowledge that You Crushed Our Daughter’,”Ha'aretz, April 30, 2004; Adam Shapiro, “Remembering Rachel Corrie,”The Nation, March 18, 2004; Tsahar Rotem, “British Peace Activist Shot by IDF Troops in Gaza Strip,”Ha'aretz, April 11, 2003.
Molly Moore, “Ex-Security Chiefs Turn on Sharon,”The Washington Post, November 15, 2003; “Ex-Shin Bet Heads Warn of ‘Catastrophe’ without Peace Deal,”Ha'aretz, November 15, 2003. These comments were based on an interview in the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth on November 14, 2003. Fora copy of that interview, see “We Are Seriously Concerned about the Fate of the State of Israel,” The Alternative Information Center, December 1, 2003.
Bill Maxwell, “U.S. Should Reconsider Aid to Israel,”St. Petersburg Times, December 16, 2001.
See J. Bowyer Bell, Terror Out of Zion: The Fight for Israeli Independence (Transaction Publishers, 1996); Joseph Heller, The Stern Gang: Ideology, Politics and Terror, 1940–1949 (Frank Cass, 1995); Bruce Hoffmann, The Failure of British Military Strategy within Palestine, 1939–1947 (Bar-Ilan University, 1983); Morris, Righteous Victims, pp. 173–180; Segev, One Palestine, pp. 468–486. According to Haim Levenberg, 210 of the 429 casualties from Jewish terrorism in Palestine during 1946 were civilians. The other 219 were police and soldiers. Levenberg, Military Preparations, p. 72. Furthermore, it was Jewish terrorists from the infamous Irgun who in late 1937 introduced the practice of placing bombs in buses and large crowds. Benny Morris speculates that, “The Arabs may well have learned the value of terrorist bombings from the Jews.”Righteous Victims, pp. 147, 201. Also see Lenni Brenner, The Iron Wall: Zionist Revisionism from Jabotinsky to Shamir (Zed Books, 1984), p. 100; Yehoshua Porath, The Palestinian Arab National Movement: from Riots to Rebellion, Vol. II, 1929–1939 (Frank Cass, 1977), p. 238. Finally, Morris notes that during the 1948 war the main Jewish terrorist groups “knowingly planted bombs in bus stops with the aim of killing non-combatants, including women and children.”Birth Revisited, p. 80.
Bell, Terror Out of Zion, pp. 336–340.
Quoted in Chomsky, Fateful Triangle, pp. 485–486. Israeli Prime Minister Levi Eshkol used to call Menachem Begin “the terrorist.” Barzilai, “Brief History.” On Shamir, see Avishai Margalit, “The Violent Life of Yitzhak Shamir,”The New York Review of Books, May 14, 1992, pp. 18–24.
Moreover, Israel's claim to a morally superior status is undermined by some of its other policies. Israel once cultivated close ties with apartheid-era South Africa and aided the white minority government's nuclear weapons program. Peter Liberman, “Israel and the South African Bomb,”The Nonproliferation Review, Vol. 11, No. 2 (Summer 2004), pp. 46–80. In 1954, Israeli intelligence forces bombed a U.S. diplomatic facility in Cairo in a bungled attempt to sow discord between Egypt and the United States. Shlaim, Iron Wall, pp. 110–113.
As with other special-interest groups, the boundaries of the Israel lobby cannot be defined precisely, which underscores the fact that it is not a hierarchical organization with a defined membership list. It has a core consisting of organizations whose declared purpose is to influence the U.S. government on Israel's behalf, but it also draws support from a penumbra of groups and individuals who are committed to steadfast U.S. support for Israel but who are not as energetically or consistently engaged as the core. Thus, an AIPAC lobbyist or an analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) is part of the core, but an individual who occasionally writes pro-Israel letters to his or her Congressional representative or local newspaper is part of the broader network of supporters.
Steven M. Cohen, The 2004 National Survey of American Jews, sponsored by the Jewish Agency for Israel's Department of Jewish-Zionist Education, February 24, 2005. The figure two years earlier was 28 percent. See Steven M. Cohen, The 2002 National Survey of American Jews, sponsored by the Jewish Agency for Israel's Department of Jewish-Zionist Education, conducted in November-December 2002. Also see Amiran Barkat, “Young American Jews Are More Ambivalent Toward Israel, Study Shows,”Ha'aretz, March 7, 2005; Steven M. Cohen, “Poll: Attachment of U.S. Jews to Israel Falls in Past 2 Years,”Forward, March 4, 2005; M.J. Rosenberg, “Letting Israel Sell Itself,” Israel Policy Forum Issue Brief #218, March 18, 2005.
J. J. Goldberg, “Old Friend, Shattered Dreams,”Forward, December 24, 2004; Esther Kaplan, “The Jewish Divide on Israel,”The Nation, July 12, 2004; Michael Massing, “Conservative Jewish Groups Have Clout,”The Los Angeles Times, March 10, 2002; Eric Yoffie, “Reform the Conference,”Forward, August 2, 2002.
Ori Nir, “FBI Probe: More Questions Than Answers,”Forward, May 13, 2005.
Inigo Gilmore, “U.S. Jewish Leader Hit over Letter,”The London Sunday Telegraph, August 12, 2003; Isi Liebler, “When Seymour Met Condi,”The Jerusalem Post, November 24, 2005. Also see Sarah Bronson, “Orthodox Leader: U.S. Jews Have No Right to Criticize Israel,”Ha'aretz, August 2, 2004.
Liebler, “When Seymour Met Condi”; Ori Nir, “O.U. Chief Decries American Pressure on Israel,”Forward, December 2, 2005; Idem, “Rice Trip Raises Concern over U.S. Pressure on Israel,”Forward, November 18, 2005; Seymour D. Reich, “Listen to America,”The Jerusalem Post, November 13, 2005.
Jeffrey H. Birnbaum, “Washington's Power 25,”Fortune, December 8, 1997. AIPAC was ranked number 4 in a similar study conducted in 2001. See Jeffrey H. Birnbaum and Russell Newell, “Fat and Happy in D.C.,”Fortune, May 28, 2001.
Richard E. Cohen and Peter Bell, “Congressional Insiders Poll,”National Journal, March 5, 2005; James D. Besser, “Most Muscle? It's NRA, Then AIPAC and AARP,”The Chicago Jewish Star, March 11–24, 2005.
See Max Blumenthal, “Born-Agains for Sharon,”Salon.com, October 30,2004; Darrell L. Bock, “Some Christians See a ‘Road Map’ to End Times,”The Los Angeles Times, June 18, 2003; Nathan Guttman, “Wiping Out Terror, Bringing On Redemption,”Ha'aretz, April 29, 2002; Tom Hamburger and Jim VandeHei, “Chosen People: How Israel Became a Favorite Cause of Christian Right,”The Wall Street Journal, May 23, 2002; Paul Nussbaum, “Israel Finds an Ally in American Evangelicals,”The Philadelphia Inquirer, November 17, 2005. Daniel Pipes maintains that, “other than the Israel Defense Forces, America's Christian Zionists may be the Jewish state's ultimate strategic asset.”“[Christian Zionism:] Israel's Best Weapon?”The New York Post, July 15, 2003.
On the role of interest groups in American politics, see David B. Truman, The Governmental Process: Political Interests and Public Opinion (Alfred Knopf, 1951); James Q. Wilson, Political Organizations (Basic Books, 1973); Frank R. Baumgartner and Beth L. Leech, Basic Interests: The Importance of Groups in Politics and in Political Science (Princeton University Press, 1998).
The weakness of the “Palestinian lobby” in the United States is captured in the headlines of these two articles: Nora Boustany, “Palestinians' Lone Hand in Washington,”The Washington Post, April, 19, 2002; George Gedda, “PLO Loses D.C. Office Because of Unpaid Rent,”The Chicago Tribune, April 12, 2002. On the weak impact of the “Arab lobby,” see Ali A. Mazrui, “Between the Crescent and the Star-Spangled Banner: American Muslims and U.S. Foreign Policy,”International Affairs, Vol. 72, No. 3 (July 1996), pp. 493–506; Nabeel A. Khoury, “The Arab Lobby: Problems and Prospects,”The Middle East Journal, Vol. 41, No. 3 (Summer 1987), pp. 379–396; Andrea Barron, “Jewish and Arab Diasporas in the United States and Their Impact on U. S. Middle East Policy,” in Yehuda Lukacs and Abdalla M. Battah, eds., The Arab-Israeli Conflict: Two Decades of Change (Westview, 1988), pp. 238–259.
Jake Tapper, “Questions for Dick Armey: Retiring, Not Shy,”The New York Times Magazine, September 1, 2002. Also, former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay has called himself “an Israeli at heart.” See James Bennet, “DeLay Says Palestinians Bear Burden for Achieving Peace,”The New York Times, July 30, 2003.
Quoted in Mitchell Bard, “Israeli Lobby Power,”Midstream, Vol. 33, No. 1 (January 1987), pp. 6–8.
For a detailed analysis of AIPAC's structure and operations, which complements the arguments offered here, see Michael Massing, “The Storm over the Israel Lobby,”The New York Review of Books, Vol. 53, No. 10 (June 8, 2006). Also see Paul Findley, They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel's Lobby, 3rd ed. (Lawrence Hill Books, 2003); Michael Lind, “The Israel Lobby,”Prospect, Issue No. 73 (April 2002).
Quoted in Edward Tivnan, The Lobby: Jewish Political Power and American Foreign Policy (Simon and Schuster, 1987), p. 191. J. J. Goldberg, the editor of Forward, said in 2002, “There is this image in Congress that you don't cross these people or they take you down.” Quoted in John Diamond and Brianna B. Piec, “Pro-Israel Groups Intensify Political Front in U.S.,”The Chicago Tribune, April 16, 2002.
See Findley, They Dare to Speak Out, chapter 3.
After Clinton appeared at a pro-Israel rally in July 2006 and expressed unqualified support for Israel's highly destructive retaliation in Lebanon, Helen Freedman, executive director of Americans for a Safe Israel, declared that “I thought her remarks were very good, especially in light of her history, and we can't forget her kiss to Suha.” See Patrick Healy, “Clinton Vows to Back Israel in Latest Mideast Conflict,”The New York Times, July 18, 2006.
Quoted in Camille Mansour, Beyond Alliance: Israel in U.S. Foreign Policy, trans. James A. Cohen (Columbia University Press, 1994), p. 242.
Although AIPAC has been able to use its political muscle to avoid having to register as a foreign agent for another government, it is especially concerned about that problem today because of the Larry Franklin spy scandal, and thus it is going to considerable lengths to emphasize its “American side.” See Ori Nir, “Leaders Fear Probe Will Force Pro-Israel Lobby to File as ‘Foreign Agent’ Could Fuel Dual Loyalty Talk,”Forward, December 31, 2004; Idem, “Leaders Stress American Side of AIPAC,”Forward, May 27, 2005.
“Sen. Hollings Floor Statement Setting the Record Straight on His Mideast Newspaper Column,” May 20, 2004, originally posted on the former Senator's web site (now defunct) but still available at http://www.shalomctr.org/node/620.
The Sharon quotation was printed in an AIPAC advertisement in The Chicago Jewish Star, August 29-September 11, 2000; the Olmert quotation is from “To Israel With Love,”The Economist, August 5, 2006, p. 37. Sharon and Olmert are not alone in their appraisals of AIPAC's power. Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid says, “I can't think of a policy organization in the country as well-organized or respected [as AIPAC],” and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich called it “the most effective general-interest group … across the entire planet.” Former President Bill Clinton described AIPAC as “stunningly effective” and “better than anyone else lobbying in this town.” Quotations downloaded from the AIPAC website on January 14, 2005 [http://www.aipac.org/documents/whoweare.html#say].
Thomas B. Edsall and Alan Cooperman, “GOP Uses Remarks to Court Jews,”The Washington Post, March 13, 2003. Also see James D. Besser, “Jews' Primary Role Expanding,”Jewish Week, January 23, 2004; Alexander Bolton, “Jewish Defections Irk Democrats,”The Hill, March 30, 2004; E.J. Kessler, “Ancient Woes Resurfacing as Dean Eyes Top Dem Post,”Forward, January 28, 2005. Hamilton Jordan wrote a memorandum to President Jimmy Carter in June 1977, in which he said: “Out of 125 members of the Democratic National Finance Council, over 70 are Jewish; In 1976, over 60% of the large donors to the Democratic Party were Jewish; Over 60% of the monies raised by Nixon in 1972 was from Jewish contributors; Over 75% of the monies raised in Humphrey's 1968 campaign was from Jewish contributors; Over 90% of the monies raised by Scoop Jackson in the Democratic primaries was from Jewish contributors; In spite of the fact that you were a long shot and came from an area of the country where there is a smaller Jewish community, approximately 35% of our primary funds were from Jewish supporters. Wherever there is major political fundraising in this country, you will find American Jews playing a significant role.” Hamilton Jordan, Confidential File, Box 34, File “Foreign Policy/Domestic Politics Memo, HJ Memo, 6/77,” declassified June 12, 1990.
Douglas Brinkley, “Out of the Loop,”The New York Times, December 29, 2002. Lawrence Kaplan reports that after Bruce Riedel, the Middle East expert on the National Security Council, left his job at the end of 2001, the Pentagon “held up the appointment of Riedel's designated successor, Middle East expert Alina Romanowski, whom Pentagon officials suspect of being insufficiently supportive of the Jewish state.”“Torpedo Boat: How Bush Turned on Arafat,”The New Republic, February 18, 2003. The position was eventually filled by Elliot Abrams, a fervent supporter of Israel. “Indeed, for the government of Israel,” Nathan Guttman wrote, “it is a gift from heaven.” See “From Clemency to a Senior Post,”Ha'aretz, December 16, 2002.
E. J. Kessler, “Lieberman and Dean Spar Over Israel,”Forward, September 9, 2003; Stephen Zunes, “Attacks on Dean Expose Democrats' Shift to the Right,”Tikkun, November/December 2003.
Zunes, “Attacks on Dean”; James D. Besser, “Dean's Jewish Problem,”The Chicago Jewish Star, December 19, 2003 - January 8, 2004.
E. J. Kessler, “Dean Plans to Visit Israel, Political Baggage in Tow,”Forward, July 8, 2005; Zunes, “Attacks on Dean.”
Laura Blumenfeld, “Three Peace Suits; For These Passionate American Diplomats, a Middle East Settlement is the Goal of a Lifetime,”The Washington Post, February 24, 1997.
Samuel (“Sandy”) Berger, President Clinton's National Security Adviser, reports that at one point during the negotiations at Camp David (July 2000), Dennis Ross made the remarkable comment, “If Barak offers anything more, I'll be against this agreement.” Unedited transcript of “Comments by Sandy Berger at the Launch of How Israelis and Palestinians Negotiate (USIP Press, 2005),” U.S. Institute of Peace, Washington, DC, June 7, 2005.
Quoted in Blumenfeld, “Three Peace Suits.”
Eric Alterman, “Intractable Foes, Warring Narratives,”MSNBC.com, March 28, 2002.
Quoted in Bret Stephens, “Eye on the Media by Bret Stephens: Bartley's Journal,”The Jerusalem Post, November 21, 2002.
See Jerome N. Slater, “Muting the Alarm: The New York Times and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, 2000–2006,” unpublished ms., State University of New York, Buffalo, 2006.
Max Frankel, The Times of My Life And My Life with the Times (Random House, 1999), pp. 401–403.
Felicity Barringer, “Some U.S. Backers of Israel Boycott Dailies Over Mideast Coverage That They Deplore,”The New York Times, May 23, 2002.
Barringer, “Some U.S. Backers”; Gaby Wenig, “NPR Israel Coverage Sparks Protests,”The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles, May 9, 2003; Gila Wertheimer, “NPR Dismisses Protest Rallies,”The Chicago Jewish Star, May 30 - June 12, 2003. Also see James D. Besser, “NPR Radio Wars Putting Jewish Groups in a Bind,”Jewish Week, May 20, 2005; Samuel Freedman, “From ‘Balance’ to Censorship: Bush's Cynical Plan for NPR,”Forward, May 27, 2005; Nathan Guttman, “Enough Already from Those Pro-Israel Nudniks,”Ha'aretz, February 1, 2005; E.J. Kessler, “Hot Seat Expected for New Chair of Corporation for Public Broadcasting,”Forward, October 28, 2005.
Joel Beinin, “Money, Media and Policy Consensus: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy,”Middle East Report, January-February 1993, pp. 10–15; Mark H. Milstein, “Washington Institute for Near East Policy: An AIPAC ‘Image Problem’,”Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, July 1991.
Quoted in Milstein, “Washington Institute.”
“Brookings Announces New Saban Center for Middle East Policy,” Brookings Institution Press Release, May 9, 2002; Andrew Ross Sorkin, “Schlepping to Moguldom,”The New York Times, September 5, 2004.
James D. Besser, “Turning up Heat in Campus Wars,”Jewish Week, July 25, 2003; Ronald S. Lauder and Jay Schottenstein, “Back to School for Israel Advocacy,”Forward, November 14, 2003; Rachel Pomerance, “Israel Forces Winning Campus Battle, Say Students Attending AIPAC Meeting,”JTA, December 31, 2002. Jewish groups are also targeting high schools. See Max Gross, “Israel Advocacy Coalition Targeting High Schools,”Forward, January 23, 2004; “New Pro-Israel Campaign Targets High School Students,”JTA, June 2, 2004.
Besser, “Turning up Heat.” In 2002 and 2003, AIPAC brought 240 college students to Washington, DC for intensive advocacy training, sending them back to school to win over campus leaders to Israel's cause. Besser, “Turning up Heat”; Pomerance, “Israel Forces Winning.” In the spring of 2005, it hosted 100 student government presidents (80 of whom were not Jewish) at its annual conference. Nathaniel Popper, “Pro-Israel Groups: Campuses Improving,”Forward, June 24, 2005.
Michael Dobbs, “Middle East Studies under Scrutiny in U.S.,”The Washington Post, January 13, 2004; Michelle Goldberg, “Osama University?”Salon.com, November 6, 2003; Kristine McNeil, “The War on Academic Freedom,”The Nation, November 11, 2002; Zachary Lockman, “Behind the Battle over US Middle East Policy,”Middle East Report Online, January 2004.
Jonathan R. Cole, “The Patriot Act on Campus: Defending the University Post–9/11,”The Boston Review, Summer 2003.
Chanakya Sethi, “Khalidi Candidacy for New Chair Draws Fire,”The Daily Princetonian, April 22, 2005; Idem, “Debate Grows over Khalidi Candidacy,”The Daily Princetonian, April 28, 2005.
See Philip Weiss, “Burning Cole,”The Nation, July 3, 2006; Liel Liebovitz, “Middle East Wars Flare Up at Yale,”Jewish Week, June 2, 2006; and the symposium entitled “Posting Mortem,” in The Chronicle of Higher Education, July 28, 2006.
Robert Gaines, “The Battle at Columbia University,”Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, April 2005, pp. 56–57; Caroline Glick, “Our World: The Columbia Disaster,”The Jerusalem Post, April 4, 2005; Joseph Massad, “Witch Hunt at Columbia: Targeting the University,”Counter Punch, June 3, 2005; Nathaniel Popper, “Columbia Students Say Firestorm Blurs Campus Reality,”Forward, February 11, 2005; Scott Sherman, “The Mideast Comes to Columbia,”The Nation, April 4, 2005; Chanan Weissman, “Columbia Unbecoming,”The Jerusalem Post, February 6, 2005.
“Columbia University Ad Hoc Grievance Committee, Final Report, New York, 28 March 2005 (excerpts),” in The Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 34, No. 4 (Summer 2005), pp. 90–100.
Goldberg, “Osama University?”; Ron Kampeas, “Campus Oversight Passes Senate as Review Effort Scores a Victory,”JTA, November 22, 2005; Stanley Kurtz, “Reforming the Campus: Congress Targets Title VI,”National Review Online, October 14, 2003; McNeil, “War on Academic Freedom”; Ori Nir, “Groups Back Bill to Monitor Universities,”Forward, March 12, 2004; Sara Roy, “Short Cuts,”The London Review of Books, April 1, 2004; Anders Strindberg, “The New Commissars,”The American Conservative, February 2, 2004.
The number 130 comes from Mitchell G. Bard, “Tenured or Tenuous: Defining the Role of Faculty in Supporting Israel on Campus,” report published by The Israel on Campus Coalition and The American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise, May 2004, p. 11. Also see Nacha Cattan, “NYU Center: New Addition to Growing Academic Field,”Forward, May 2, 2003; Samuel G. Freedman, “Separating the Political Myths from the Facts in Israel Studies,”The New York Times, February 16, 2005; Jennifer Jacobson, “The Politics of Israel Studies,”The Chronicle of Higher Education, June 24, 2005, pp. 10–12; Michael C. Kotzin, “The Jewish Community and the Ivory Tower: An Urgent Need for Israel Studies,”Forward, January 30, 2004; Nathaniel Popper, “Israel Studies Gain on Campus as Disputes Grow,”Forward, March 25, 2005.
Quoted in Cattan, “NYU Center.”
Jonathan Kessler, “Pro-Israel Activism Makes Comeback on Campus,”Forward, December 26, 2003; Popper, “Campuses Improving”; Barry Silverman and Randall Kaplan, “Pro-Israel College Activists Quietly Successful on Campus,”JTA, May 9, 2005; Chanan Tigay, “As Students Return to Campus, Activists Prepare a New Approach,”JTA, September 1, 2005. Nevertheless, there are limits to the lobby's effectiveness on campuses. See Joe Eskenazi, “Book: College Campuses Quiet, but Anti-Israel Feeling Is Growing,”JTA, November 29, 2005; Gary Rosenblatt, “U.S. Grad Students Seen Hostile to Israel,”Jewish Week, June 17, 2005.
Not surprisingly, the baseless claim that we are antisemites was a common theme in a number of early responses to our original article and Working Paper.
Quoted in Tony Judt, “Goodbye to All That?”The Nation, January 3, 2005.
Anti-Defamation League (ADL), “Attitudes toward Jews, Israel and the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict in Ten European Countries,” April 2004; The Pew Global Attitudes Project, A Year After Iraq War: Mistrust of America in Europe Even Higher, Muslim Anger Persists (The Pew Research Center for the People and the Press, March 16, 2004), pp. 4–5, 26. On the ADL survey, see “ADL Survey Finds Some Decrease in Anti-Semitic Attitudes in Ten European Countries,” ADL Press Release, April 26, 2004; Shlomo Shamir, “Poll Shows Decrease in Anti-Semitic Views in Europe,”Ha'aretz, April 27, 2004. These findings had virtually no effect on pro-Israel pundits, who continued to argue that antisemitism was rampant in Europe. See, for example, Daniel J. Goldhagen, “Europe's Toothless Reply to Anti-Semitism: Conference Fails to Build Tools to Fight a Rising Sickness,”The Los Angeles Times, April 30, 2004; Charles Krauthammer, “The Real Mideast ‘Poison’,”The Washington Post, April 30, 2004.
Martin Peretz, the editor-in-chief of The New Republic, says, “The headquarters of anti-Semitic Europe today, just as during the Third Republic, is Paris.”“Cambridge Diarist: Regrets,”The New Republic, April 22, 2002, p. 50. The data in this paragraph are from “Anti-Semitism in Europe: Is It Really Rising?”The Economist, May 4, 2002.
Quoted in Marc Perelman, “Community Head: France No More Antisemitic Than U.S.,”Forward, August 1,2003. Also see Francois Bujon de l'Estang, “A Slander on France,”The Washington Post, June 22, 2002; “French President Accuses Israel of Conducting Anti-French Campaign,”Ha'aretz, May 12, 2002.
“French Police: Anti-Semitism in France Sharply Decreased in 2005,”Ha'aretz, January 19, 2006. m “French Protest for Murdered Jew,”BBC News Online, February 26, 2006; Michel Zlotowski, “Large Memorial Held for Parisian Jew,”The Jerusalem Post, February 23, 2006.
Avi Beker, “The Eternally Open Gate,”Ha'aretz, January 11, 2005; Josef Joffe, “A Boom, if Not A Renaissance, in Modern-Day Germany,”Forward, July 25, 2003; Nathaniel Popper, “Immigrant Policy Eyed as German Community Swells,”Forward, July 25, 2003; Eliahu Salpeter, “Jews from the CIS Prefer Germany to the Jewish State,”Ha'aretz, May 28, 2005. Also, The Times of London reported in the spring of 2005, that, “An estimated 100,000 Jews have returned to Russia in the past few years, sparking a dramatic renaissance of Jewish life in a country with a long history of anti-Semitism.” Jeremy Page, “Once Desperate to Leave, Now Jews Are Returning to Russia, Land of Opportunity,”The Times, April 28, 2005. Also see Lev Krichevsky, “Poll: Russians Don't Dislike Jews, and More Are against Anti-Semitism,”JTA, February 2, 2006.
The chairman of the Education Department of the Jewish Agency recently said that “present day violent anti-Semitism originates from two separate sources: radical Islamists in the Middle East and Western Europe as well as the neo-Nazi youth element in Eastern Europe and Latin America.” Jonathan Schneider, “Anti-Semitism Still a World Problem,”The Jerusalem Post, January 26, 2006.
In the ADL's April 2004 survey, “Attitudes toward Jews, Israel and the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict in Ten European Countries,” the following question was asked: “In your opinion, is it very important, somewhat important, somewhat unimportant or not important at all for our government to take a role in combating anti-Semitism in our country?” The percentages for those who strongly agree or somewhat agree were Italy (92), Britain (83), Netherlands (83), France (82), Germany (81), Belgium (81), Denmark (79), Austria (76), Switzerland (74), Spain (73). See p. 19.
Phyllis Chesler, The New Anti-Semitism: The Current Crisis and What We Must Do about It (Jossey-Bass, 2003); Hillel Halkin, “The Return of Anti-Semitism: To Be against Israel Is to Be against the Jews,”The Wall Street Journal, February 5, 2002; Barry Kosmin and Paul Iganski, “Judeophobia - Not Your Parent's Anti-Semitism,”Ha'aretz, June 3, 2003; Amnon Rubinstein, “Fighting the New Anti-Semitism,”Ha'aretz, December 2, 2003; Gabriel Schoenfeld, The Return of Anti-Semitism (Encounter Books, 2003); Natan Sharansky, “Anti-Semitism Is Our Problem,”Ha'aretz, August 10, 2003; Yair Sheleg. “A World Cleansed of the Jewish State,”Ha'aretz, April 18, 2002; Yair Sheleg, “Enemies, a Post-National Story,”Ha'aretz, March 8, 2003. For criticism of this perspective, see Akiva Eldar, “Anti-Semitism Can Be Self-Serving,”Ha'aretz, May 3, 2002; Brian Klug, “The Myth of the New Anti-Semitism,”The Nation, February 2, 2004; Ralph Nader, “Criticizing Israel is Not Anti-Semitism,”Counter Punch, October 16/17, 2004; Henri Picciotto and Mitchell Plitnick, eds., Reframing Anti-Semitism: Alternative Jewish Perspectives (Jewish Voice for Peace, 2004); and especially Finkelstein, Beyond Chutzpah, chapters 1–3.
Helen Nugent, “Chief Rabbi Flays Church over Vote on Israel Assets,”Times Online, February 17, 2006. Also see Bill Bowder, “Sacks Seeks Talks after Synod Vote on Disinvestment,”Church Times, February 24, 2006; “Bulldozer Motion ‘Based on Ignorance’,” in ibid; Ruth Gledhill, “Church Urged to Reconsider Investments with Israel,”Times Online, May 28, 2005; Irene Lancaster, “Anglicans Have Betrayed the Jews,” Downloaded from Moriel Ministries (UK) website, February 20, 2006; “U.K. Chief Rabbi Attacks Anglicans over Israel Divestment Vote,”Ha'aretz, February 17, 2006.
That the Church of England was merely criticizing Israeli policy and not engaging in antisemitism is clearly reflected in the February 10, 2006, letter that the Archbishop of Canterbury (Rowan Williams) sent to England's Chief Rabbi (Jonathan Sacks) explaining the Church's decision on divestment. For a copy of the letter, see “Archbishop: Synod Call Was Expression of Concern,” February 10, 2006. Downloaded from Church of England website, February 20, 2006.
Quoted in Michael Massing, “Deal Breakers,”The American Prospect, Vol. 13, No. 5 (March 11, 2002).
Steven Kull (Principal Investigator), Americans on the Middle East Road Map (Program on International Policy Attitudes, University of Maryland, May 30, 2003), pp. 9–11, 18–19. Also see Steven Kull et al., Americans on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (Program on International Policy Attitudes, University of Maryland, May 6, 2002). A 2005 Anti-Defamation League public opinion survey found that 78 percent of Americans believe that their government should favor neither Israel nor the Palestinians. “American Attitudes toward Israel and the Middle East,” Survey conducted on March 18–25, 2005, and June 19–23, 2005, by the Marttila Communications Group for the Anti-Defamation League.
Robert G. Kaiser, “Bush and Sharon Nearly Identical on Mideast Policy,”The Washington Post, February 9, 2003.
Lee Hockstader and Daniel Williams, “Israel Says It Won't ‘Pay Price’ of Coalition,”The Washington Post, September 18, 2001; Jonathan Karp, “Sharon Cancels Peace Talks in Rebuff to U.S. Concerns,”The Wall Street Journal, September 24, 2001; Thomas Oliphant, “A Delicate Balance,”The Boston Globe, September 18, 2001: “Israel's Opportunity,”The Los Angeles Times editorial, September 18, 2001.
Kurt Eichenwald, “U.S. Jews Split on Washington's Shift on Palestinian State,”The New York Times, October 5, 2001. At the same time, Prime Minister Tony Blair made “Britain's strongest endorsement yet of Palestinian statehood.” Michael Dobbs, “Blair Backs Creation of Palestinian State,”The Washington Post, October 16, 2001.
James Bennet, “Sharon Invokes Munich in Warning U.S. on ‘Appeasement’,”The New York Times, October 5, 2001; Jane Perlez and Katharine Q. Seelye, “U.S. Strongly Rebukes Sharon for Criticism of Bush, Calling it ‘Unacceptable’.”The New York Times, October 6, 2001; Shlomo Shamir, “U.S. Jews: Sharon is ‘Worried’ by Terrorism Distinction,”Ha'aretz, September 18, 2001; Alan Sipress and Lee Hockstader, “Sharon Speech Riles U.S.,”The Washington Post, October 6, 2001. For evidence that other Israelis shared Sharon's fears, see Israel Harel, “Lessons from the Next War,”Ha'aretz, October 6, 2001.
Jack Donnelly, “Nation Set to Push Sharon on Agreement,”The Boston Globe, October 10, 2001; Hockstader and Sipress, “Sharon Speech Riles U.S.”; Perlez and Seelye, “U.S. Strongly Rebukes Sharon.”
Lee Hockstader, “Sharon Apologetic over Row with U.S.,”The Washington Post, October 7, 2001; Serge Schmemann, “Raising Munich, Sharon Reveals Israeli Qualms,”The New York Times, October 6, 2001.
Aluf Benn, “Analysis: Clutching at Straws,”Ha'aretz, September 18, 2001; “Excerpts from Talk by Sharon,”The New York Times, December 4, 2001; William Safire, “‘Israel or Arafat’,”The New York Times, December 3, 2001.
Elaine Sciolino, “Senators Urge Bush Not to Hamper Israel,”The New York Times, November 17, 2001.
Dana Milbank, “Bush Spokesman Gentle on Israeli Assault,”The Washington Post, December 3, 2001; Safire, “Israel or Arafat”; David Sanger, “U.S. Walks a Tightrope on Terrorism in Israel,”The New York Times, December 4, 2001.
Keith B. Richburg and Molly Moore, “Israel Rejects Demands to Withdraw Troops,”The Washington Post, April 11, 2002. All quotes in this paragraph are from Fareed Zakaria, “Colin Powell's Humiliation: Bush Should Clearly Support His Secretary of State - Otherwise He Should Get a New One,”Newsweek, April 29, 2002. Also see Mike Allen and John Lancaster, “Defiant Sharon Losing Support in White House,”The Washington Post, April 11, 2002, which describes the Bush administration's anger with Sharon.
It is worth noting that the American people were generally supportive of Bush's efforts to put pressure on Israel in the spring of 2002. A Time/CNN poll taken on April 10–11 found that 60 percent of Americans felt that U.S. aid to Israel should be cut off or reduced if Sharon refused to withdraw from the Palestinian areas he had recently occupied. “Poll: Americans Support Cutting Aid to Israel,” Reuters News Release, April 12, 2002; AFP News Release, April 13, 2002. Also see Israel and the Palestinians (Program on International Policy Attitudes, University of Maryland, last updated on August 15, 2002). Moreover, 75 percent of those surveyed thought that Powell should meet with Arafat when he visited Israel. Regarding Sharon, only 35 percent found him trustworthy, while 35 percent thought he was a warmonger, 20 percent saw him as a terrorist, and 25 percent considered him an enemy of the United States.
William Kristol and Robert Kagan, “‘Senior White House Aides:’ Speak Up!”The Weekly Standard, April 11, 2002. For a graphic description of the heat that the lobby put on Powell when he was in the Middle East, see Bob Woodward, Bush at War (New York: Simon and Schuster, 2002), pp. 323–326. Also see John Simpson, “Israeli Leader Has More Power in Washington than Powell,”The Sunday Telegraph (London), April 14, 2002, which describes a joint press conference Powell and Sharon conducted by noting, “The Secretary of State's language, body and verbal, certainly were not that of the paymaster coming to call a client to account. Far from it. Mr. Powell seemed ingratiating, deferential; no doubt he realizes how much support Mr. Sharon has back in Washington and how much influence his friends have there with the President.” It is also worth noting that former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was making Israel's case in the United States at the time, said even before Powell arrived in Israel that his trip “won't amount to anything.” Elaine Sciolino, “Netanyahu Says Powell Mission ‘Won't Amount to Anything’ and Urges Arafat's Exile,”The New York Times, April 11, 2002.
James D. Besser, “No Tennessee Waltz,”Jewish Week, December 27, 2002. Also see Mike Allen and Juliet Eilperin, “White House and DeLay at Odds,”The Washington Post, April 26, 2002; Judith Eilperin and Helen Dewar, “Lawmakers Endorse Israel's Offensive,”The Washington Post, May 3, 2002. Bush was feeling intense pressure not just from lawmakers, but from Jewish leaders and Christian evangelicals. See Mike Allen and John Lancaster, “Defiant Sharon Losing Support in White House,”The Washington Post, April 11, 2002; Dan Balz, “Bush Statement on Mideast Reflects Tension in GOP,”The Washington Post, April 7, 2003; Elisabeth Bumiller, “Bush Sends Aide to Speak at Rally to Quell a Growing Furor,”The New York Times, April 16, 2002; Bradley Burston, “Background: Can Bush Afford to Press Sharon for Peace?”Ha'aretz, May 6, 2002; Akiva Eldar, “Bush and Israel, 1991 and 2002,”Ha'aretz, May 6, 2002; Alison Mitchell, “U.S. Political Leaders Seek Unity on Mideast, for Now,”The Washington Post, April 12, 2002; William Safire, “On Being an Ally,”The New York Times, April 11, 2002; Alan Sipress, “Policy Divide Thwarts Powell in Mideast Effort,”The Washington Post, April 26, 2002; and Alan Sipress and Karen DeYoung, “U.S. Presses Ahead with Peace Efforts,”The Washington Post, May 9, 2002.
Randall Mikkelsen, “White House Calls Sharon ‘Man of Peace’,” Reuters, April 11, 2002; Bill Sammon, “White House Softens Tone with Israel,”The Washington Times, April 12, 2002.
Peter Slevin and Mike Allen, “Bush: Sharon A ‘Man of Peace’,”The Washington Post, April 19, 2002; David Sanger, “President Praises Effort by Powell in the Middle East,”The New York Times, April 19, 2002. For a transcript of the press conference, see “President Bush, Secretary Powell Discuss Middle East,” White House, Office of the Press Secretary, April 18, 2002.
Eilperin and Dewar, “Lawmakers Endorse Israel's Offensive”; Juliet Eilperin and Mike Allen, “Hill Leaders Plan Votes on Pro-Israel Relations,”The Washington Post, May 2, 2002; Alison Mitchell, “House and Senate Support Israel in Strong Resolutions,”The New York Times, May 3, 2002. For copies of the two resolutions, see “2 Resolutions ‘Expressing Solidarity with Israel’,”The New York Times, May 3, 2002. Also see Matthew E. Berger, “Bills in Congress Boost Israel, Treat Arafat as Terrorist,”The Jewish Bulletin, April 26, 2002.
Arieh O'Sullivan, “Visiting Congressmen Advise Israel to Resist Administration Pressure to Deal with Arafat,”The Jerusalem Post, May 6, 2002.
Eli Lake, “Israeli Lobby Wins $200 Million Fight,” United Press International, May 11, 2002.
Quoted in Jefferson Morley, “Who's in Charge?”The Washington Post, April 26, 2002. As Akiva Eldar noted just before Sharon steamrolled Bush, Sharon has a lot of experience sticking it to the Americans …. Ultimately, whether it was Palestinian terror, Arafat's mistakes, or domestic politics, the Americans were sent to the peanut gallery. See his “Words Are Not Enough,”Ha'aretz, April 8, 2002. Nor was Bush's humiliation lost on commentators around the world. Spain's leading daily, El Pais, expressed the views of many outside observers when it commented, “If a country's weight is measured by its degree of influence on events, the superpower is not the USA but Israel.” Quoted in Morley, “Who's in Charge?”
Bradley Burston, “Hamas ‘R’ Us,”Ha'aretz, January 18, 2006; Akiva Eldar, “Kadima to A New Middle East,”Ha'aretz, December 19, 2005; Idem, “Who Needs Abu Mazen?”Ha'aretz, November 7, 2005; Ran HaCohen, “Hamas and Israel: Rival Twins,”AntiWar.com, February 6, 2006; M.J. Rosenberg, “No Partner -As Always,”IPF Friday, Issue No. 260, February 3, 2006; Danny Rubenstein, “All We Did Was Switch the Non-Partner,”Ha'aretz, February 5, 2006; “Disarray Among the Palestinians,”The New York Times editorial, January 17, 2006.
Regarding the views of previous Presidents, see Clyde R. Mark, “Israeli-United States Relations,” Issue Brief for Congress (Congressional Research Service, August 29, 2002), p. 7. On April 14, 2004, Bush broke with his predecessors and proclaimed that Israel would not have to return all of the territories that it occupied in 1967, and that Palestinian refugees would not be allowed to return to their former homes in Israel, but would have to settle in a new Palestinian state. See “Statement by the President Regarding Israel-Arab Peace Process,” April 14, 2004; and “President Bush's Letter to Prime Minister Sharon,” April 14, 2004.
“US Scowcroft Criticizes Bush Admin's Foreign Policy,”The Financial Times, October 13, 2004. Also see Glenn Kessler, “Scowcroft is Critical of Bush,”The Washington Post, October 16, 2004.
On Kerry, see Gadi Dechter, “Analysis: President Kerry on Israel,” United Press International press release, July 9, 2004; Nathan Guttman, “Kerry Position Paper Outlines Support for Israel,”Ha'aretz, July 2, 2004: Nathan Guttman, “Kerry Jumps on Sharon Bandwagon in Favoring Gaza Disengagement Plan,”Ha'aretz, April 25, 2004. On Clinton, see Adam Dickter, “Hillary: ‘I Had A Lot to Prove’,”Jewish Week, November 18,2005; Kristen Lombardi, “Hillary Calls Israel a ‘Beacon’ of Democracy,”The Village Voice, December 11,2005; Sonia Verma, “Clinton Stressed U.S.-Israel Coalition,”Newsday, November 15,2005; Rachel Zabarkes Friedman, “Senator Israel,”National Review Online, May 25, 2005.
Emad Mekay, “Iraq Was Invaded ‘to Protect Israel’ - US Official,”Asia Times Online, March 31, 2004. Zelikow also served with Rice on the National Security Council when George H. W. Bush was President, and co-authored a book with her on German reunification. He was also one of the principal authors of the second Bush administration's 2002 National Security Strategy, the most comprehensive official presentation of the so-called Bush Doctrine.
Following publication of our original article, Zelikow challenged our use of this quotation and claimed that we had taken his remarks out of context. In particular, he suggested that he had been speaking primarily about the first Gulf War in 1990–91, and not about the 2003 war that was then being contemplated. A full record of his remarks shows that this claim is false and that he was clearly referring to the debate on whether the United States should launch a preventive war against Iraq in 2002–03. For the exchange, which includes the text of the key passages of his September 2002 remarks, see the “Letters” section of The London Review of Books, Vol. 28, No. 10 (May 25, 2006).
Jason Keyser, “Israel Urges U. S. to Attack,”The Washington Post, August 16, 2002. Also see Aluf Benn, “PM Urging U.S. Not to Delay Strike against Iraq,”Ha'aretz, August 16, 2002; Idem, “PM Aide: Delay in U.S. Attack Lets Iraq Speed Up Arms Program,”Ha'aretz, August 16, 2002; Reuven Pedhatzur, “Israel's Interest in the War on Saddam,”Ha'aretz, August 4, 2002; Ze'ev Schiff, “Into the Rough,”Ha'aretz, August 16, 2002.
Gideon Alon, “Sharon to Panel: Iraq is Our Biggest Danger,”Ha'aretz, August 13, 2002. At a White House press conference with President Bush on October 16, 2002, Sharon said: “I would like to thank you, Mr. President, for the friendship and cooperation. And as far as I remember, as we look back towards many years now, I think that we never had such relations with any President of the United States as we have with you, and we never had such cooperation in everything as we have with the current administration.” For a transcript of the press conference, see “President Bush Welcomes Prime Minister Sharon to White House; Question and Answer Session with the Press,” U.S. Department of State, October 16, 2002. Also see Kaiser, “Bush and Sharon Nearly Identical on Mideast Policy.”
Shlomo Brom, “An Intelligence Failure,”Strategic Assessment (Jaffee Center for Strategic Studies, Tel Aviv University), Vol. 6, No. 3 (November 2003), p. 9. Also see “Intelligence Assessment: Selections from the Media, 1998–2003,” in ibid., pp. 17–19; Gideon Alon, “Report Slams Assessment of Dangers Posed by Libya, Iraq,”Ha'aretz, March 28, 2004; Dan Baron, “Israeli Report Blasts Intelligence for Exaggerating the Iraqi Threat,”JTA, March 28, 2004; Greg Myre, “Israeli Report Faults Intelligence on Iraq,”The New York Times, March 28,2004; James Risen, State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration (Simon & Schuster, 2006), pp. 72–73.
Marc Perelman, “Iraqi Move Puts Israel in Lonely U.S. Corner,”Forward, September 20, 2002. This article begins, “Saddam Hussein's surprise acceptance of ‘unconditional’ United Nations weapons inspections put Israel on the hot seat this week, forcing it into the open as the only nation actively supporting the Bush administration's goal of Iraqi regime change.” Peres became so frustrated with the UN process in the following months that in mid-February 2003 he lashed out at the French by questioning France's status as a permanent member of the Security Council. “Peres Questions France Permanent Status on Security Council,”Ha'aretz, February 20, 2003. On a visit to Moscow in late September 2002, Sharon made it clear to Russian President Putin, who was leading the charge for new inspections, that “the time when these inspectors could have been effective has passed.” Herb Keinon, “Sharon to Putin: Too Late for Iraq Arms Inspection,”The Jerusalem Post, October 1, 2002.
Ehud Barak, “Taking Apart Iraq's Nuclear Threat,”The New York Times, September 4, 2002.
Benjamin Netanyahu, “The Case for Toppling Saddam,”The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2002. The Jerusalem Post was particularly hawkish on Iraq, frequently running editorials and op-eds promoting the war, and hardly ever running pieces against it. Representative editorials include “Next Stop Baghdad,”The Jerusalem Post, November 15, 2001; “Don't Wait for Saddam,”The Jerusalem Post, August 18, 2002; “Making the Case for War,”The Jerusalem Post, September 9, 2002. For some representative op-eds, see Ron Dermer, “The March to Baghdad,”The Jerusalem Post, December 21, 2001; Efraim Inbar, “Ousting Saddam, Instilling Stability,”The Jerusalem Post, October 8, 2002; Gerald M. Steinberg, “Imagining the Liberation of Iraq,”The Jerusalem Post, November 18, 2001.
Aluf Benn, “Background: Enthusiastic IDF Awaits War in Iraq,”Ha'aretz, February 17, 2002. Also see James Bennet, “Israel Says War on Iraq Would Benefit the Region,”The New York Times, February 27, 2003; Chemi Shalev, “Jerusalem Frets As U.S. Battles Iraq War Delays,”Forward, March 7, 2003.
Indeed, a February 2003 poll reported that 77.5 percent of Israeli Jews wanted the United States to attack Iraq. Ephraim Yaar and Tamar Hermann, “Peace Index: Most Israelis Support the Attack on Iraq,”Ha'aretz, March 6, 2003. Regarding Kuwait, a public opinion poll released in March 2003 found that 89.6 percent of Kuwaitis favored the impending war against Iraq. James Morrison, “Kuwaitis Support War,”The Washington Times, March 18, 2003.
Gideon Levy, “A Deafening Silence,”Ha'aretz, October 6, 2002.
See Dan Izenberg, “Foreign Ministry Warns Israeli War Talk Fuels US Anti-Semitism,”The Jerusalem Post, March 10, 2003, which makes clear that “the Foreign Ministry has received reports from the US” telling Israelis to cool their jets because “the US media” is portraying Israel as “trying to goad the administration into war.” There is also evidence that Israel itself was concerned about being seen as driving American policy toward Iraq. See Benn, “PM Urging U.S. Not to Delay Strike”; Perelman, “Iraq Move Puts Israel in Lonely U.S. Corner.” Finally, in late September 2002, a group of political consultants known as the “Israel Project” told pro-Israel leaders in the United States “to keep quiet while the Bush administration pursues a possible war with Iraq.” Dana Milbank, “Group Urges Pro-Israel Leaders Silence on Iraq,”The Washington Post, November 27, 2002.
The influence of the neoconservatives and their allies is clearly reflected in the following articles: Joel Beinin, “Pro-Israel Hawks and the Second Gulf War,”Middle East Report Online, April 6, 2003; Elisabeth Bumiller and Eric Schmitt, “On the Job and at Home, Influential Hawks' 30-Year Friendship Evolves,”The New York Times, September 11, 2002; Kathleen and William Christison, “A Rose by Another Name: The Bush Administration's Dual Loyalties,”Counter Punch, December 13, 2002; Robert Dreyfuss, “The Pentagon Muzzles the CIA,”The American Prospect, December 16, 2002; Michael Elliott and James Carney, “First Stop, Iraq,”Time, March 31, 2003; Seymour Hersh, “The Iraq Hawks,”The New Yorker, Vol. 77, issue 41 (December 24–31, 2001), pp. 58–63; Glenn Kessler, “U.S. Decision on Iraq Has Puzzling Past,”The Washington Post, January 12, 2003; Joshua M. Marshall, “Bomb Saddam?”The Washington Monthly, June 2002; Dana Milbank, “White House Push for Iraqi Strike Is on Hold,”The Washington Post, August 18, 2002; Susan Page, “Showdown with Saddam: The Decision to Act,”USA Today, September 11, 2002; Sam Tanenhaus, “Bush's Brain Trust,”Vanity Fair, July 2003. Note that all these articles are from before the war started.
See Mortimer B. Zuckerman, “No Time for Equivocation,”U.S. News & World Report, August 26/September 2, 2002; Idem, “Clear and Compelling Proof,”U.S. News & World Report, February 10, 2003; Idem, “The High Price of Waiting,”U.S. News & World Report, March 10, 2003.
“An Unseemly Silence,”Forward, May 7, 2004. Also see Gary Rosenblatt, “Hussein Asylum,”Jewish Week, August 23, 2002; Idem, “The Case for War against Saddam,”Jewish Week, December 13, 2002.
Just before the U.S. military invaded Iraq, Congressman James P. Moran (D-VA) created a stir when he said, “If it were not for the strong support of the Jewish community for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing this.” Spencer S. Hsu, “Moran Said Jews Are Pushing War,”The Washington Post, March 11, 2003. Moran misspoke, however, because there was not widespread support for the war in the Jewish community. He should have said, “If it were not for the strong support of the neoconservatives and the leadership of the Israel lobby for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing this.”
Samuel G. Freedman, “Don't Blame Jews for This War,”USA Today, April 2, 2003. Also see Ori Nir, “Poll Finds Jewish Political Gap,”Forward, February 4, 2005.
It is no exaggeration to say that in the wake of 9/11, the neoconservatives were not just determined, but were obsessed with removing Saddam from power. As one senior administration figure put it in January 2003, “I do believe certain people have grown theological about this. It's almost a religion — that it will be the end of our society if we don't take action now.” Kessler, “U.S. Decision on Iraq Has Puzzling Past.” Kessler also describes Colin Powell returning from White House meetings on Iraq, “rolling his eyes” and saying, “Jeez, what a fixation about Iraq.” Bob Woodward reports in Plan of Attack (Simon and Schuster, 2004), p. 410, that Kenneth Adelman “said he had worried to death as time went on and support seemed to wane that there would be no war.” Also see ibid., pp. 164–165.
The first letter (January 26, 1998) was written under the auspices of the Project for the New American Century and can be found on its website. The second letter (February 19, 1998) was written under the auspices of the Committee for Peace and Security in the Gulf and can be found on the Iraq Watch website. Also see the May 29, 1998, letter to Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott written under the auspices of the Project for the New American Century and found on its website. The neoconservatives, it should be emphasized, advocated invading Iraq to topple Saddam. See “The End of Containment,”The Weekly Standard, December 1, 1997, pp. 13–14; Zalmay M. Khalizad and Paul Wolfowitz, “Overthrow Him,” in ibid., pp. 14–15; Frederick W. Kagan, “Not by Air Alone,” in ibid., pp. 15–16.
See Clinton's comments after he signed the “Iraq Liberation Act of 1998.” Statement by the President, White House Press Office, October 31, 1998.
One might think from the publicity and controversy surrounding two books published in 2004 — Richard Clarke's Against All Enemies: Inside America's War on Terror (Free Press, 2004) and Ron Suskind, The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O'Neill (Simon and Schuster, 2004) — that Bush and Cheney were bent on invading Iraq when they assumed office in late January 2001. However, this interpretation is wrong. They were deeply interested in toppling Saddam, just as Bill Clinton and Al Gore had been. But there is no evidence in the public record showing that Bush and Cheney were seriously contemplating war against Iraq before 9/11. In fact, Bush made it clear to Bob Woodward that he was not thinking about going to war against Saddam before 9/11. See Plan of Attack, p. 12. Also see Nicholas Lehmann, “The Iraq Factor,”The New Yorker, Vol. 76, issue 43 (January 22, 2001), pp. 34–48; Eric Schmitt and Steven Lee Meyers, “Bush Administration Warns Iraq on Weapons Programs,”The New York Times, January 23, 2001. And Cheney had defended the decision not to go to Baghdad throughout the 1990s and during the 2000 campaign. See Timothy Noah, “Dick Cheney, Dove,”Slate.com, October 16, 2002; “Calm after Desert Storm,” An Interview with Dick Cheney, Policy Review, No. 65 (Summer 1993). In short, even though the neoconservatives held important positions in the Bush administration, they were unable to generate much enthusiasm for attacking Iraq before 9/11. Thus, The New York Times reported in March 2001 that “some Republicans” were complaining that Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz “are failing to live up to their preelection advocacy of stepping up efforts to overthrow President Hussein.” At the same time, a Washington Times editorial asked, “Have Hawks Become Doves?” See Jane Perlez, “Capitol Hawks Seek Tougher Line on Iraq,”The New York Times, March 7, 2001; “Have Hawks Become Doves?”The Washington Times, March 8, 2001.
Woodward, Plan of Attack, pp. 25–26. Wolfowitz was so insistent on conquering Iraq that five days later Cheney had to tell him to “stop agitating for targeting Saddam.” Page, “Showdown with Saddam.” According to one Republican lawmaker, he “was like a parrot bringing [Iraq] up all the time. It was getting on the President's nerves.” Elliot and Carney, “First Stop, Iraq.” Woodward describes Wolfowitz as “like a drum that would not stop.”Plan of Attack, p. 22.
Woodward, Plan of Attack, pp. 1–44.
Regarding the neoconservatives' influence on Cheney, see Elliott and Carney, “First Stop, Iraq”; Page, “Showdown with Saddam”; Michael Hirsh, “Bernard Lewis Revisited,”Washington Monthly, November 2004, pp.13–19; Frederick Kempe, “Lewis's ‘Liberation’ Doctrine for Mideast Faces New Tests,”The Wall Street Journal, December 13, 2005; Carla Anne Robbins and Jeanne Cummings, “How Bush Decided that Hussein Must Be Ousted from Atop Iraq,”The Wall Street Journal, June 14, 2002. On Cheney's critical role in the decision-making process, see Glenn Kessler and Peter Slevin, “Cheney is Fulcrum of Foreign Policy,”The Washington Post, October 13, 2002; Barbara Slavin and Susan Page, “Cheney Rewrites Roles in Foreign Policy,”USA Today, July 29, 2002.
The New York Times reported shortly after 9/11 that, “Some senior administration officials, led by Paul D. Wolfowitz … and I. Lewis Libby … are pressing for the earliest and broadest military campaign against not only the Osama bin Laden network in Afghanistan, but also against other suspected terrorist bases in Iraq and in Lebanon's Bekaa region.” Patrick E. Tyler and Elaine Sciolino, “Bush Advisers Split on Scope of Retaliation,”The New York Times, September 20, 2001. Also see William Safire, “Phony War II,”The New York Times, November 28, 2002. Woodward succinctly describes Libby's influence in Plan of Attack (pp. 48–49): “Libby had three formal titles. He was chief of staff to Vice President Cheney; he was also national security adviser to the vice president; and he was finally an assistant to President Bush. It was a trifecta of positions probably never held before by a single person. Scooter was a power center unto himself …. Libby was one of only two people who were not principals to attend the National Security Council meetings with the president and the separate principals meetings chaired by Rice.” Also see ibid., pp 50–51, 288–292, 300–301, 409–410; Bumiller and Schmitt, “On the Job and at Home”; Karen Kwiatkowski, “The New Pentagon Papers,”Salon.com, March 10, 2004; Patrick E. Tyler and Elaine Sciolino, “Bush Advisers Split on Scope of Retaliation,”The New York Times, September 20, 2001. On Libby's relationship to Israel, an article in Forward reports that “Israeli officials liked Libby. They described him as an important contact who was accessible, genuinely interested in Israel-related issues and very sympathetic to their cause.” Ori Nir, “Libby Played Leading Role on Foreign Policy Decisions,”Forward, November 4, 2005.
This letter was published in The Weekly Standard, October 1, 2001.
Robert Kagan and William Kristol, “The Right War,”The Weekly Standard, October 1, 2001; Charles Krauthammer, “Our First Move: Take Out the Taliban,”The Washington Post, October 1, 2001. Also see “War Aims,”The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2001.
Even before the dust had settled at the World Trade Center, pro-Israel forces were making the case that Saddam was responsible for 9/11. See Michael Barone, “War by Ultimatum,”U.S. News & World Report, October 1, 2001; Bill Gertz, “Iraq Suspected of Sponsoring Terrorist Attacks,”The Washington Times, September 21, 2001; “Drain the Pond of Terror,”The Jerusalem Post editorial, September 25, 2001; William Safire, “The Ultimate Enemy,”The New York Times, September 24, 2001.
See James Bamford, A Pretext to War (Doubleday, 2004); chaps. 13–14; Woodward, Plan of Attack, pp. 288–292, 297–306.
Woodward, Plan of Attack, p. 290.
See Bamford, Pretext to War, pp. 287–291, 307–331; David S. Cloud, “Prewar Intelligence Inquiry Zeroes In On Pentagon,”The Wall Street Journal, March 11, 2004; Seymour M. Hersh, “Selective Intelligence,”The New Yorker, Vol. 79, issue 11 (May 12, 2003), pp. 44–50; Kwiatkowski, “New Pentagon Papers”; Jim Lobe, “Pentagon Office Home to Neo-Con Network,”Inter Press Service News Agency, August 7, 2003; Greg Miller, “Spy Unit Skirted CIA on Iraq,”The Los Angeles Times, March 10, 2004; Paul R. Pillar, “Intelligence, Policy, and the War in Iraq,”Foreign Affairs, Vol. 85, No. 2 (March-April 2006), pp. 15–27; James Risen, “How Pair's Finding on Terror Led to Clash on Shaping Intelligence,”The New York Times, April 28, 2004; Eric Schmitt and Thom Shanker, “Threats and Responses: A C.I.A. Rival; Pentagon Sets Up Intelligence Unit,”The New York Times, October 24, 2002.
The Office of Special Plans relied heavily on information from Ahmed Chalabi and other Iraqi exiles and it had close links with various Israeli sources. Indeed, The Guardian reports that it “forged close ties to a parallel, ad hoc intelligence operation inside Ariel Sharon's office in Israel specifically to bypass Mossad and provide the Bush administration with more alarmist reports on Saddam's Iraq than Mossad was prepared to authorize.” Julian Borger, “The Spies Who Pushed for War,”The Guardian, July 17, 2003.
See, for example, Douglas J. Feith, “The Inner Logic of Israel's Negotiations: Withdrawal Process, Not Peace Process,”Middle East Quarterly, March 1996. For useful discussions of Feith's views, see Jeffrey Goldberg, “A Little Learning: What Douglas Feith Knew and When He Knew It,”The New Yorker, Vol. 81, issue 12 (May 9, 2005), pp. 36–41; Jim Lobe, “Losing Feith, or is the Bush Team Shedding Its Sharper Edges?”The Daily Star, January 31, 2005; James J. Zogby, “A Dangerous Appointment: Profile of Douglas Feith, Undersecretary of Defense under Bush,” Middle East Information Center, April 18, 2001; “Israeli Settlements: Legitimate, Democratically Mandated, Vital to Israel's Security and, Therefore, in U.S. Interest,” The Center for Security Policy, Transition Brief No. 96-T 130, December 17, 1996. Note that the title of the latter piece, which was published by an organization in the lobby, says that what is in Israel's interest is therefore in America's national interest. In “Losing Feith,” Lobe writes: In 2003, when Feith, who was standing in for Rumsfeld at an interagency ‘Principals' Meeting’ on the Middle East, concluded his remarks on behalf of the Pentagon, according to the Washington insider newsletter, The Nelson Report, [National Security Adviser Condoleezza] Rice said, ‘Thanks Doug, but when we want the Israeli position we'll invite the ambassador’.
The “Clean Break” study was prepared for The Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies in Jerusalem and published in June 1996. A copy can be found on the Institute's web site.
Akiva Eldar, “Perles of Wisdom for the Feithful,”Ha'aretz, October 1, 2002.
“Rally Unites Anguished Factions under Flag of ‘Stand with Israel’,”Forward, April 19, 2002; “Forward 50,”Forward, November 15, 2002.
John McCaslin, “Israeli-Trained Cops,”The Washington Times, November 5, 2002; Bret Stephens, “Man of the Year,”The Jerusalem Post (Rosh Hashana Supplement), September 26, 2003; Janine Zacharia, “Invasive Treatment,” in ibid. Other useful pieces on Wolfowitz include Michael Dobbs, “For Wolfowitz, A Vision May Be Realized,”The Washington Post, April 7, 2003; James Fallows, “The Unilateralist,”The Atlantic Monthly, March 2002, pp. 26–29; Bill Keller, “The Sunshine Warrior,”The New York Times Magazine, September 22, 2002; “Paul Wolfowitz, Velociraptor,”The Economist, February 9–15, 2002.
According to Feith's former law partner, L. Marc Zell, Chalabi also promised to re-build the pipeline that once ran from Haifa in Israel to Mosul in Iraq. See John Dizard, “How Ahmed Chalabi Conned the Neocons,”Salon.com, May 4, 2004. In mid-June 2003, Benjamin Netanyahu announced that, “It won't be long before you will see Iraqi oil flowing to Haifa.” Reuters, “Netanyahu Says Iraq-Israel Oil Line Not Pipe-Dream,”Ha'aretz, June 20, 2003. Of course, this did not happen and it is unlikely to happen in the foreseeable future.
Matthew E. Berger, “New Chances to Build Israel-Iraq Ties,”Jewish Journal, April 28, 2003. Also see Bamford, Pretext to War, p. 293; Ed Blanche, “Securing Iraqi Oil for Israel: The Plot Thickens,” Lebanonwire.com, April 25, 2003. Nathan Guttman reports that “the American Jewish community and the Iraqi opposition” had for years “taken pains to conceal” the links between them. “Mutual Wariness: AIPAC and the Iraqi Opposition,”Ha'aretz, April 8, 2003.
Nir, “FBI Probe.” On the eve of the war, Bill Keller, who is now the executive editor of The New York Times, wrote: “The idea that this war is about Israel is persistent and more widely held than you think.” Keller, “Is It Good for the Jews?”The New York Times, March 8, 2003.
In an op-ed written in mid-2004, Hollings asked why the Bush administration invaded Iraq when it was not a direct threat to the United States. “The answer,” which he says, “everyone knows,” is “because we want to secure our friend Israel.” Senator Ernest F. Hollings, “Bush's Failed Mideast Policy Is Creating More Terrorism,”The Charleston Post and Courier, May 6, 2004; “Sen. Hollings Floor Statement.” Not surprisingly, Hollings was called an antisemite, a charge he furiously rejected. See Matthew E. Berger, “Not So Gentle Rhetoric from the Gentleman from South Carolina,”JTA, May 23, 2004; “Senator Lautenberg's Floor Statement in Support of Senator Hollings,” June 3, 2004, at http://www.lautenberg.senate.gov/newsroom/video.cfm; Hsu, “Moran Said Jews are Pushing War.” A handful of other public figures — Patrick Buchanan, Maureen Dowd, Georgie Anne Geyer, Gary Hart, Chris Matthews, and General Anthony Zinni — have either said or strongly hinted that pro-Israel forces in the United States were the principal movers behind the Iraq war. See Aluf Benn, “Scapegoat for Israel,”Ha'aretz, May 13, 2004; Matthew Berger, “Will Some Jews' Backing for War in Iraq Have Repercussions for All?”JTA, June 10, 2004; Patrick J. Buchanan, “Whose War?”The American Conservative, March 24, 2003; Ami Eden, “Israel's Role: The ‘Elephant’ They're Talking About,”Forward, February 28, 2003; “The Ground Shifts,”Forward, May 28, 2004; Nathan Guttman, “Prominent U.S. Jews, Israel Blamed for Start of Iraq War,”Ha'aretz, May 31, 2004; Lawrence F. Kaplan, “Toxic Talk on War,”The Washington Post, February 18, 2003; E.J. Kessler, “Gary Hart Says ‘Dual Loyalty’ Barb Was Not Aimed at Jews,”Forward, February 21, 2003; Ori Nir and Ami Eden, “Ex-Mideast Envoy Zinni Charges Neocons Pushed Iraq War to Benefit Israel,”Forward, May 28, 2004.
Michael Kinsley, “What Bush Isn't Saying about Iraq,”Slate.com, October 24, 2002. Also see idem, “J' Accuse.”
Robert S. Greenberger and Karby Leggett, “President's Dream: Changing Not Just Regime but a Region: A Pro-U.S., Democratic Area Is a Goal That Has Israeli and Neoconservative Roots,”The Wall Street Journal, March 21, 2003. Also see George Packer, “Dreaming of Democracy,”The New York Times Magazine, March 2, 2003. Although not all neoconservatives are Jewish, most of the founders were and virtually all were strong supporters of Israel. According to Gal Beckerman in Forward, “If there is an intellectual movement in America to whose invention Jews can lay sole claim, neoconservatism is it.” See “The Neoconservative Persuasion,”Forward, January 6, 2006.
See, for example, Rebuilding America's Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century, A Report for the New American Century, September 2000, p. 14.
Martin Indyk, “The Clinton Administration's Approach to the Middle East,” Speech to Soref Symposium, Washington Institute for Near East Policy, May 18, 1993. Also see Anthony Lake, “Confronting Backlash States,”Foreign Affairs, Vol. 73. No. 2 (March/April 1994), pp. 45–53.
Barbara Conry, “America's Misguided Policy of Dual Containment in the Persian Gulf,” Foreign Policy Briefing No. 33, CATO Institute, November 10, 1994; Gregory F. Gause III, “The Illogic of Dual Containment,”Foreign Affairs, Vol. 73. No. 2 (March/April 1994), pp. 56–66; Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft, Differentiated Containment: U.S. Policy Toward Iran and Iraq, Report of an Independent Study Group on Gulf Stability and Security, Council on Foreign Relations, New York, 1997.
Brzezinski and Scowcroft, Differentiated Containment, p. 6.
Brzezinski and Scowcroft, Differentiated Containment, p. 130.
For example, The Jerusalem Post noted in an editorial (September 9, 2002) that “according to Middle East expert Bernard Lewis, a post-Saddam Iraq is one that would be more likely to make peace with Israel, defang Arab radicalism, and perhaps even catalyze revolutionary forces in present-day Iran.” Similarly, Michael Ledeen wrote on August 6, 2002 in National Review Online (“Scowcroft Strikes Out”), “If ever there was a region that richly deserved being cauldronized, it is the Middle East today. If we wage the war effectively, we will bring down the terror regimes in Iraq, Iran and Syria, and either bring down the Saudi monarchy or force it to abandon its global assembly line to indoctrinate young terrorists.” On August 19, Joshua Muravchik argued in The New York Times (“Democracy's Quiet Victory”), “Change toward democratic regimes in Tehran and Baghdad would unleash a tsunami across the Islamic world.” Also see Marina Ottaway et al., “Democratic Mirage in the Middle East,”Policy Brief #20 (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, October 2002).
Charles Krauthammer, “Peace through Democracy,”The Washington Post, June 28, 2002.
Benn, “Background.” Also, The New York Times reported that Halevy gave a speech in Munich in February 2003 in which he said, “The shock waves emerging from post-Saddam Baghdad could have wide-ranging effects in Tehran, Damascus and in Ramallah.” The Times article went on to say that Israel “is hoping that once Saddam Hussein is dispensed with, the dominoes will start to tumble. According to this hope … moderates and reformers throughout the region would be encouraged to put new pressure on their own governments, not excepting the Palestinian Authority of Yasir Arafat.” Bennet, “Israel Says War on Iraq Would Benefit the Region.” This same theme is reflected in a Forward article from early March 2003, which said that “Israel's top political, military and economic echelons have come to regard the looming war as a virtual deus ex machina that will turn the political and economic tables and extricate Israel from its current morass.” Shalev, “Jerusalem Frets.” Finally, this line of thinking was apparent in former Prime Minister Ehud Barak's previously discussed September 4, 2002, op-ed in The New York Times. Barak maintained that “putting an end to Saddam Hussein's regime will change the geopolitical landscape of the Arab world.” He claimed, “An Arab world without Saddam Hussein would enable many from this generation [leaders about to come into power] to embrace the gradual democratic opening that some of the Persian Gulf states and Jordan have begun to enjoy.” Barak also maintained that toppling Saddam would “create an opening for forward movement on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
See Seymour M. Hersh, “The Syrian Bet,”The New Yorker, Vol. 79, issue 20 (July 28, 2003), pp. 32–36; Molly Moore, “Sharon Asks U.S. to Pressure Syria on Militants,”The Washington Post, April 17, 2003; Ori Nir, “Jerusalem Urges Bush: Next Target Hezbollah,”Forward, April 11, 2003; Idem, “Sharon Aide Makes the Case for U.S. Action against Syria,”Forward, April 18, 2003; Marc Perelman, “Behind Warnings to Damascus: Reassessment of Younger Assad,”Forward, April 18, 2004; Daniel Sobelman and Nathan Guttman, “PM Urges U.S. to Keep Heat on Syria, Calls Assad ‘Dangerous’,”Ha'aretz, April 15, 2003.
Moore, “Sharon Asks U.S.”
Nir, “Sharon Aide.” Also see Karen DeYoung, “U.S. Toughens Warnings to Syria on Iraq, Other Issues,”The Washington Post, April 15, 2003.
Nir, “Sharon Aide.” Also see Perelman, “Behind Warnings.” In their efforts to demonize Syria and bait the United States into attacking it, Israelis have said that Damascus was harboring high-level Iraqis from Saddam's regime and, even worse, hiding Iraq's WMD. Perelman, “Behind Warnings”; Laurie Copans, Israeli Military Boss Claims Iraq Had Chemical Weapons,” Associated Press news release, April 26, 2004; Ira Stoll, “Saddam's WMD Moved to Syria, An Israeli Says,”The New York Sun, December 15, 2005; Idem, “Iraq's WMD Secreted in Syria, Sada Says,”The New York Sun, January 26, 2006. In August 2003, when a suicide truck bomber blew up UN headquarters in Baghdad, Israel's UN ambassador caused a diplomatic spat by suggesting that Syria had provided the truck, thereby implying that Syria was partly responsible. Michael Casey, “Israeli Ambassador Believes Truck Used in UN Bombing Came from Syria,” Associated Press news release, August 21, 2003; “Israeli Envoy Links Syria to UN Blast, Stirs Flap,” Reuters news release, August 21, 2003. Itamar Rabinovich, the former Israeli ambassador to the United States, told Seymour Hersh that he “wondered … whether, given the quality of their sources, the Syrians had had advance information about the September 11th plot — and failed to warn the United States.” Hersh, “The Syrian Bet.” There was little evidence to support these charges, but Israel's willingness to make them shows how eager they were to get the United States embroiled with yet another Arab regime.
Syria had been in the lobby's gunsights well before 9/11. In fact, Syria, not Iraq, was the main target in the “Clean Break” study that Feith, Perle and Wurmser wrote for Netanyahu in 1996. And Daniel Pipes and Ziad Abdelnour, the head of the U.S. Committee for a Free Lebanon (USCFL), had co-authored a 2000 report calling for the United States to use military threats to force Syria to remove its troops from Lebanon, get rid of any WMD it might have, and stop supporting terrorism. (“Ending Syria's Occupation of Lebanon: The U.S. Role,” Report of the Middle East Study Group, Middle East Forum, May 2000.) The UCSFL is a close cousin of the lobby, and it includes numerous neoconservatives (Abrams, Feith, Ledeen, Perle and Wurmser) among its “official core supporters.” Jordan Green, “Neocons Dream of Lebanon,”ZNet, July 23, 2003; David R. Sands, “Hawks Recycle Arguments for Iraq War against Syria,”The Washington Times, April 16, 2003. Except for Ledeen, they all signed the 2000 report, as did pro-Israel Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY), another core supporter of UCSFL.
Nathan Guttman, “Some Senior U.S. Figures Say Syria Has Crossed the Red Line,”Ha'aretz, Aril 14, 2004; Michael Flynn, “The War Hawks: The Right Flexes Muscle with New U.S. Agenda,”The Chicago Tribune, April 13, 2003. In addition to Perle and Wolfowitz, John Bolton pushed hard from inside the administration for regime change in Syria. He had told Israeli leaders a month before the Iraq war that the Bush administration would deal with Syria, as well as Iran and North Korea, right after Saddam fell from power. Flynn, “The Right Flexes Muscle.” In pursuit of that goal, Bolton reportedly prepared to tell Congress in mid-July that Syria's WMD programs had reached the point where they were a serious threat to stability in the Middle East and had to be dealt with sooner rather than later. However, the CIA and other government agencies objected, claiming that Bolton's analysis greatly inflated the Syrian threat. Consequently, the administration did not allow Bolton to give his testimony on Syria at that time. Douglas Jehl, “New Warning Was Put Off on Weapons Syria Plans,”The New York Times, July 18, 2003; Marc Perelman, “State Department Hawk under Fire in Intelligence Flap over Syria,” Forward, July 25, 2003; Warren P. Strobel and Jonathan S. Landay, “Intelligence Data on Syria Now Disputed,”The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 17, 2003. Yet Bolton was not put off for long. He appeared before Congress in September 2003 and described Syria as a growing threat to U.S. interests in the Middle East. Nathan Guttman, “US: Syria Supporting Terror, Developing Weapons of Mass Destruction,”Ha'aretz, September 16, 2003.
Quoted in Robin Wright, “U.S. Insists Syria Alter Its Course,”The Los Angeles Times, April 14, 2003. Also see Martin Indyk's and Dennis Ross's tough rhetoric about Syria in Hersh, “The Syrian Bet.”
Lawrence F. Kaplan, “White Lie,”The New Republic, April 21 & 28, 2003. Also see William Kristol and Lawrence F. Kaplan, The War over Iraq: Saddam's Tyranny and America's Mission (Encounter Books, 2003).
De Young, “U.S. Toughens Stance.” There was a story in Ha'aretz (“NY Congressman Says Will Push Bill to Pressure Syria”) on August 19, 2003, which reported that Engel had just met with Sharon in his Jerusalem Office for 90 minutes, and the Israeli leader had endorsed Engel's efforts to push the Syria Accountability Act. Regarding the specifics of that legislation, see Zvi Bar'el, Deciphering the Syrians, Ha'aretz, July 9, 2003; “The Return of the Syria Accountability Act,”http://www.NewsMax.com, April 19, 2003; Claude Salhani, “The Syria Accountability Act: Taking the Wrong Road to Damascus,”Policy Analysis, No. 512, CATO Institute, March 18, 2004. Not surprisingly, Richard Perle called on Congress to pass the Syria Accountability Act shortly after Engel reintroduced the legislation. Sands, “Hawks Recycle Arguments.”
Ron Kampeas, “Bush, Once Reluctant on Sanctions, Prepares to Take a Tough Line with Syria,”JTA, March 16, 2004.
Salhani, “The Syria Accountability Act,” p. 5.
Julian Borger, “Bush Vetoes Syria War Plan,”The Guardian, April 15, 2003; Kampeas, “Bush, Once Reluctant.”
See Hersh, “The Syrian Bet.” Other pieces discussing the advantages for the United States of cooperating with Syria include Spencer Ackerman, “Rough Trade,”The New Repulic, January 13, 2003; Susan Taylor Martin, “Experts Disagree on Dangers of Syria,”The St. Petersburg Times, November 3, 2002; Salhani, “The Syria Accountability Act”; Stephen Zunes, “Bush Has Clear Run at Syria,”Asia Times Online, March 2, 2005.
Two articles that appeared in Forward after Baghdad fell describe the driving forces behind the new U.S. policy toward Syria. In a piece in mid-April, the author noted: “A sudden flurry of U.S. warnings to Syria in recent days indicates that Washington has undertaken what Israel and its supporters here have been urging for months: a comprehensive reassessment of Syrian ruler Bashar Assad.” Perelman, “Behind Warnings.” A few months later in mid-July, another author noted: “During the past several months, top Israeli officials have warned their American counterparts and audiences about Assad's unreliability. American officials have echoed the stance and press reports have speculated about possible American military intervention in Syria.” Marc Perelman, “Syria Makes Overture over Negotiations,”Forward, July 11, 2003.
Quoted in Alan Sipress, “Israel Emphasizes Iranian Threat,”The Washington Post, February 7, 2002. This article, which was written as Sharon was arriving in Washington, makes clear that Tel Aviv was “redoubling its efforts to warn the Bush administration that Iran poses a greater threat than the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein.” Also see Seymour Hersh, “The Iran Game,”The New Yorker, Vol. 77, issue 38 (December 3, 2001), pp. 42–49; Peter Hirschberg, “Background/Peres Raises Iranian Threat,”Ha'aretz, February 5, 2002; David Hirst, “Israel Thrusts Iran in Line of US Fire,”The Guardian, February 2, 2002; “Israel Once Again Sees Iran as A Cause for Concern,”Ha'aretz, May 7, 2001.
Stephen Farrell, Robert Thomson and Danielle Haas, “Attack Iran the Day Iraq War Ends, Demands Israel,”The Times (London), September 5, 2002; Stephen Farrell and Robert Thomson, “The Times Interview with Ariel Sharon,” in ibid.
“Ambassador to U.S. Calls for ‘Regime Change’ in Iran, Syria,”Ha'aretz, April 28, 2003. Ten days later The New York Times reported that Washington was growing increasingly concerned about Iran's nuclear ambitions, and that there is “a lot of hammering from the Israelis for us to take this position seriously.” Steven R. Weisman, “New U.S. Concerns on Iran's Pursuit of Nuclear Arms,”The New York Times, May 8, 2003. Shimon Peres then published an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal on June 25 entitled, “We Must Unite to Prevent an Ayatollah Nuke.” His description of the Iranian threat sounded just like his earlier description of the threat from Saddam, even including a ritual reference to the lessons of appeasement in the 1930s. Iran, he emphasized, must be told in no uncertain terms that the United States and Israel will not tolerate its going nuclear.
In late May 2003, Inter Press Service reported that, “The neo-cons' efforts to now focus US attention on ‘regime change’ in Iran has become much more intense since early May and already has borne substantial fruit.” Jim Lobe, “U.S. Neo-Cons Move Quickly on Iran,” Inter Press Service, May 28, 2003. In early June, Forward reported, “Neoconservatives inside and outside the administration have been urging an active effort to promote regime change in Tehran. Reports of possible covert actions have surfaced in recent weeks.” Marc Perelman, “Pentagon Team on Iran Comes under Fire,”Forward, June 6,2003. Also see idem, “White House Is Aiming to Raise Iranian Nukes at U.N. Security Council,”Forward, May 9, 2003; Idem, “New Front Sets Sights on Toppling Iran Regime,”Forward, May 16, 2003. Finally, the lobby has established close relations with Reza Pahlavi, the son of the late shah of Iran. He is even reported to have had meetings with Netanyahu and Sharon. This relationship is similar to the lobby's relationship with Ahmed Chalabi. Specifically, pro-Israel forces promote Pahlavi, and in return, he makes clear that if he comes to power in Iran, it will have good relations with Israel. Connie Bruck, “Exiles: How Iran's Expatriates Are Gaming the Nuclear Threat,”The New Yorker, Vol. 82, issue 2 (March 6, 2006), pp. 48–63; Perelman, “New Front.”
The flyer advertising the conference, which was entitled “The Future of Iran: Mullahcracy, Democracy and the War on Terror,” can be found at a number of sites on the web. Also see Green, “Neocons Dream of Lebanon”; Lobe, “U.S. Neo-Cons Move Quickly.”
William Kristol, “The End of the Beginning,”The Weekly Standard, February 12, 2003. Others writing articles at the time include Daniel Pipes and Patrick Clawson, who wrote a piece on May 20 for The Jerusalem Post entitled, “Turn up the Pressure on Iran.” They called for the Bush administration to support the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, a terrorist organization based in Iraq that was bent on overthrowing the ayatollahs running Iran. Lawrence Kaplan argued in the New Republic (“Iranamok”) on June 9 that the United States needed to get tougher with Iran over its nuclear programs, which he feared were further along than most American policymakers recognized. Michael Ledeen, one of the leading hawks on Iran, wrote in The National Review Online (“The Others”) on April 4: “There is no more time for diplomatic ‘solutions.’ We will have to deal with the terror masters, here and now. Iran, at least, offers us the possibility of a memorable victory, because the Iranian people openly loathe the regime, and will enthusiastically combat it, if only the United States supports them in their just struggle.”
For evidence of the lobby's intensified efforts to get the Bush administration to deal with the Iranian nuclear problem, see Stewart Ain, “Israel Urging U.S. to Stop Iran Nukes,”Jewish Week, October 7, 2005; Efraim Inbar, “The Imperatives to Use Force against Iranian Nuclearization,” BESA Center [Bar-Ilan University, Israel] Perspectives, Number 12, December 1, 2005; Martin S. Indyk, “Iran's Bluster Isn't A Bluff,”The Los Angeles Times, November 1, 2005; Ron Kampeas, “With Time Short on Iran Nukes, AIPAC Criticizes Bush Approach,”JTA, December 2, 2005; Charles Krauthammer, “In Iran, Arming for Armageddon,”The Washington Post, December 16, 2005; Dafna Linzer, “Pro-Israel Group Criticizes White House Policy on Iran,”The Washington Post, December 25, 2005; Ori Nir, “New Sanction Bill Loses Momentum as Administration Presses Diplomacy,”Forward, June 10, 2005; Idem, “Jewish Groups Push for Iran Sanctions,”Forward, September 23, 2005; Idem, “Israeli Aides Warn U.S. Not to Drop Ball on Iran,”Forward, December 9, 2005; Michael Rubin et al., “War Footing: 10 Steps America Must Take to Prevail in the War for the Free World,” American Enterprise Institute, November 30, 2005; Rowan Scarborough, “Israel Pushes U.S. on Iran Nuke Solution,”The Washington Times, February 21, 2005.
Some neoconservatives even welcome this outcome. For example, Robert Kagan and William Kristol wrote in the aftermath of 9/11, “Afghanistan will prove but an opening battle, …. this war will not end in Afghanistan. It is going to spread and engulf a number of countries in conflicts of varying intensity. It could well require the use of American military power in multiple places simultaneously. It is going to resemble the clash of civilizations that everyone has hoped to avoid.”“The Gathering Storm,”The Weekly Standard, October 29, 2002. Also see Eliot A. Cohen, “World War IV,”The Wall Street Journal, November 20, 2001; Phil McCombs, “The Fire This Time,”The Washington Post, April 13, 2003; Norman Podhoretz, “How to Win World War IV,”Commentary, February 2002; Idem, “World War IV: How It Started, What It Means, and Why We Have to Win,”Commentary, September 2004; Brian Whitaker, “Playing Skittles with Saddam,”The Guardian, September 3, 2002.
The imbalance of influence in Israel's favor was again demonstrated after the outbreak of fighting in Lebanon. See Laurie Goodstein, “As Mideast Churns, U.S. Jews and Arabs Alike Swing Into Action,”The New York Times, July 28, 2006.
Ron Kampeas, “After Restructuring, AIPAC Plans to Focus on Wider Range of Issues,”JTA, September 26, 2005.