The Case Against Blind Support For Israel
In an attempt at insight, Rob Natelson tries to explain how the God/Jerusalem “flap” represents the friction between Democrat’s “collectivist” ideology and its lust for power. Naturally, this makes Rob think about the Russians:
The flap over “God” and “Jerusalem” in the Democratic platform reminded me of a dispute that raged when the USSR was threatening the world: Were the Soviets driven by their disproved ideology, or by more earthly motives such as corruption and lust for power?
The answer was “All of the above.” Ideology, particularly the Communist doctrine that the ends justified the means, served earthly motives, and earthly motives induced the Soviets to promote their ideology. When they were in conflict, the emphasis see-sawed back and forth.
There is a similar discussion among conservatives, moderates, and moderate liberals about weird leftism of the Democratic Party under Obama. Are they mostly about collectivist ideology? Or Chicago-style power politics?
As in the case of the Soviets, the answer is plainly “both.”
Later in the post, this ideology is described as “increasingly anti-Israel” because obviously all those ethnic-loving diversity pimps who form the ideological backbone of the Democratic Party love Muslims more than our bestest friends in the whole world, Israel.
What’s missing from Rob’s shallow analysis is the argument—which isn’t necessarily a leftist argument—that Israel is not our friend, and the relentless pressure to attack Iran is not in America’s interest.
But don’t take my word for it. Here’s the U.S. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey:
“I don’t want to be complicit if they (Israel) choose to do it,” Dempsey was quoted as saying by Britain’s Guardian newspaper on Friday, suggesting that he would view an Israeli attack as reprehensible or illegal.
He went on to repeat that although Israel could delay Iran’s nuclear project, it would not destroy it. He said that unilateral action might unravel a strong international coalition that has applied progressively stiff sanctions on Iran.
“(This) could be undone if (Iran) was attacked prematurely,” he was quoted as saying.
This isn’t the first time officials from the military establishment have gone public about what war with Iran could mean. They are, after all, the personnel tasked with fighting and dying once the bombs start flying.
Honestly, the political saber-rattlers on both sides are despicable creatures more concerned about what AIPAC can do to their cushy political careers than what a war with Iran will do to US soldiers.
Iran’s military response to an overt attack (they have already been attacked more covertly with nuclear scientists getting assassinated and cyber attacks from the US) would be significant, which is a very restrained way of saying WWIII.
It’s within the context of a looming war with Iran (being pushed by Israel) that I hope Obama gets four more years, primarily because Romney and Netanyahu are pals. And according to this NYT piece, they go way back:
The two young men had woefully little in common: one was a wealthy Mormon from Michigan, the other a middle-class Jew from Israel.
But in 1976, the lives of Mitt Romney and Benjamin Netanyahu intersected, briefly but indelibly, in the 16th-floor offices of the Boston Consulting Group, where both had been recruited as corporate advisers. At the most formative time of their careers, they sized each other up during the firm’s weekly brainstorming sessions, absorbing the same profoundly analytical view of the world.
That shared experience decades ago led to a warm friendship, little known to outsiders, that is now rich with political intrigue. Mr. Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel, is making the case for military action against Iran as Mr. Romney, the likely Republican presidential nominee, is attacking the Obama administration for not supporting Mr. Netanyahu more robustly.
Today at Counterpunch, Jonathan Cook asks if the cozy relationship between the US and Israel is The Greatest Myth of American Politics. Here’s an excerpt:
Politicians may prefer to express undying love for Israel, and hand over billions of dollars annually in aid, but the US security establishment has — at least, in private — always regarded Israel as an unfaithful partner.
The distrust has been particularly hard to hide in relation to Iran. Israel has been putting relentless pressure on Washington, apparently in the hope of manoeuvring it into supporting or joining an attack on Tehran to stop what Israel claims is an Iranian effort to build a nuclear bomb concealed beneath its civilian energy programme.
While coverage has focused on the personal animosity between Obama and the Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, the truth is that US officials generally are deeply at odds with Israel on this issue.
The conflict burst into the open this month with reports that the Pentagon had scaled back next month’s joint military exercise, Austere Challenge, with the Israeli military that had been billed as the largest and most significant in the two countries’ history.
The goal of the exercise was to test the readiness of Israel’s missile-defence shield in case of Iranian reprisals — possibly the biggest fear holding Israel back from launching a go-it-alone attack. The Pentagon’s main leverage on Israel is its X-band radar stationed in Israel but operated exclusively by a US crew, that would provide Israel with early warning of Iranian missiles.
A senior Israeli military official told Time magazine what message the Pentagon’s rethink had conveyed: “Basically what the Americans are saying is, ‘We don’t trust you’.”
Cook continues, giving specific instances of espionage and deceit. It’s worth reading.
Unless of course you think any criticism of the US relationship with Israel equates to anti-semitism, in which case, please report this post to the Anti-Defamation League for censorship.