Thursday, October 7, 2010

Israel and U.S. foreign policy

How much influence does Israel and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) have on U.S. foreign policy?  See the analysis given by Colin Powell's former chief of staff and William and Mary professor Colonel Wilkerson in the VPRO Backlight documentary "The Israel Lobby." Colonel Wilkerson says “There is an enormous very, very powerful machine out there that notes immediately when someone takes anti-Israel positions and moves out on the attack.” Also see the Russia Today piece on Israeli money being spent to influence U.S. media coverage.  See the book "The Israel Lobby and U.S. foreign Policy" by Harvard professor Stephen Walt and University of Chicago professor John Mearsheimer or the book by Binghampton University professor James Petras "The Power of Israel in the United States."  Colonel Wilkerson says of the Mearsheimer-Walt book "now they're right from a strictly Geo-political, Geo-strategic point of view, that is to say what I spent my life studying.  Israel no longer provides the Unites States a strategic value like it did during the cold war, not only that, Israel is a strategic burden on the United States.  That's a big difference from cold war days....  Geo-strategy, political-strategy, grand-strategy is of no consequence here.... America simply cannot say Israel you are on your own, it just wouldn't work and one of the reasons it wouldn't work is because we have a very powerful Jewish lobby in America."  Professor Mearsheimer says “the lobby, what it’s doing is going after people in a really hard hitting will pay a serious price for your transgressions.  It’s a deterrence model.”  In the Mearsheimer-Walt book the Israel lobby is considered to include conservative Christian groups along with AIPAC and other groups.  AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby has consistently been ranked as one of the top two most influential lobbies by congress, is it just me or is it messed up that a lobby representing a foreign country is arguably the most powerful lobby in the United States?  In a 1992 recorded conversation with David Steiner, then president of AIPAC, Steiner noted that the National Security Agency was one of the two most important government institutions to AIPAC, the other being the Secretary of State.  Steiner went on to brag about over three billion dollars the U.S. was giving to Israel per year, three times more U.S. foreign aid goes to Israel per year than any other country.  Besides the foreign aid many U.S. defense department contracts are awarded to Israeli based firms.  There is also substantial Jewish influence at the National Security Agency (NSA).  From my own experience working at the NSA I would estimate that about 20% of the mathematicians at the NSA have substantial Jewish ancestry while Jews account for only 2% of the U.S. population.  Asian Americans, African Americans and Hispanic Americans are underrepresented at the NSA.  There is similar disparity in other parts of the U.S. government, for instance the supreme court is 33% Jewish (Ginsberg, Breyer, Kagan) while the remaining 66% are catholic.  There is a similar disparity at the Federal reserve and treasury(Greenspan, Rubin and Bernake have substantial Jewish heritage as well as Lawrence Summers a prominent economic adviser).  The Senate is 10% Jewish, only five times over representing the Jewish population of the U.S.  About 30% of U.S. billionaires are Jewish, nepotism is the primary method through which this inequality is maintained, there is a powerful Jewish mafia in the U.S. (here is a U.S. embassy cable on Israeli organized crime infiltrating the U.S.).   Earlier writings of Johns Hopkins university professor Benjamin Ginsberg have made similar observations to the Mearsheimer-Walt book.  Ginsberg states in his 1993 book "Fatal Embrace" that "Jews played a central role in American finance during the 1980s, and they were among the chief beneficiaries of that decade’s corporate mergers and reorganizations. Today, though barely two percent of the nation’s population is Jewish, close to half its billionaires are Jews."  The financial deregulation that started in the 1980's that triggered the corporate mergers is partially to blame for the recent financial crisisIf one looks at the thirty wealthiest U.S. citizens on Forbes 2010 wealthiest Americans list there are 12 (Larry Ellison, Michael Bloomberg, Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Sheldon Adelson, George Soros, Michael Dell, Steve Ballmer, John Paulson, Carl Icahn, Ronald Perelman, James Simons) that have substantial Jewish heritage based on publicly available information, 40%.  The most fundamental methods of fraud detection look for statistical anomalies like those outlined above.  The over representation of Jews in positions of power cannot be explained by educational attainment, Jews have about twice the college graduation rates of the general U.S. population.  27% of the U.S. population hold a bachelor degree or higher while about 55% of U.S. Jews do.   On the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) tests Israel, a country that is 75% Jewish scores substantially below the U.S. which itself has mediocre results.  Mother Jones magazine compiled a listing of the 400 leading contributors to the 2000 US national elections. Seven of the first ten were Jewish, as were twelve of the top 20, and 125 of the top 250.  The Bush administration had an extreme pro-Israel position, Dick Cheney and many others in the Bush administration were on JINSA's board, a pro-Israel group.  Why is the U.S. foreign policy so important to Jews?  Because the vast majority of the Jewish population of the world is either in the U.S. or in Israel and Israel does have serious security issues.  Israel is 6 million Jews surrounded by 300 million Muslims in the middle east and those Muslims tend to be a little upset over the strategies used by the Jews to found the state of Israel (see Arab-Israeli conflict and the Palestinian perspective) and the U.S. has the most powerful military in the world.

VPRO backlight 'the Israel Lobby'

wikipedia article on Israel lobby

Quotes about Israel by world leaders

Also see Jane Harman, U.S. congresswoman, who was taped making a deal with the Israel lobby to influence the "Justice" department on the Lawrence Franklin espionage case. Franklin was found guilty of passing top secret classified documents about U.S. policy on Iran to Israel and sentenced to over 12 years in prison. His sentence was later reduced to only 10 months house arrest.  Bradley Manning on the other hand is only accused of handing over secret documents, no top secret ones, to wikileaks and yet is facing far more severe punishment and his motives are arguably to expose illegal acts rather than to aid a foreign power.  A clear example of double standards in the U.S. "justice" system.  How much control does AIPAC have over the U.S. justice system? 


1 comment:

  1. You know what dozens of old European kings did in the past? Deportation. King Longshanks of Braveheart famously did so in 1290 A.D. I think the Rothschild dynasty carried that grudge through the ages when they essentially bought the first Jewish peerage in the British House of Lords in 1847. If you want to understand Israel, it's actually even more important to understand London. Strangely enough, I have faith in the House of Windsor's wiles.