Many Voices Singing One Song
(AntiWar.com) -- by Philip Giraldi --
Several weeks ago the redoubtable Charles Schumer of New York announced the Yahweh himself had anointed him Israel’s defender in the US Senate. In a radio interview Schumer explained "You know, my name …. comes from the word shomer, guardian, watcher. My ancestors were guardians of the ghetto wall in Chortkov. And I believe Hashem (God) actually gave me that name. One of my roles, very important in the United States senate, is to be a shomer — to be the shomer Yisrael. And I will continue to be that with every bone in my body …"
Schumer’s very interesting comments, suggesting that he has a rather narrow view of his responsibility to represent all the people of New York State, were not reported anywhere in the mainstream media. It was apparently not considered newsworthy that a Senator from the Empire State had pledged love and loyalty to a foreign country. Schumer’s affections are particularly noteworthy as he is being spoken of as the next Senate Majority leader if Harry Reid takes a well deserved fall in the midterm elections. Schumer is, of course, not alone in his sentiments. His colleague from New Jersey Frank Lautenberg, who has traveled to Israel more than 80 times, has also been called Israel’s Senator, though perhaps it should be one of Israel’s Senators as there are clearly multiple candidates. Who could exclude Joe Lieberman of Connecticut? If one includes only Schumer, Lieberman, and Lautenberg Israel still has more senators representing its interests than any state in the union.
Both Joe Biden and Sarah Palin effused about their love for Israel during their vice presidential debate in 2008. Many lower house federal legislators could rightly be termed Congressmen from Israel, including Howard Berman, Eric Cantor, Jerrold Nadler, Anthony Weiner, Shelley Berkley, and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. Eliot Engel recently described Israel as the "best ally the United States has in the Middle East, but I would argue the best ally in the world"…adding that if the US pressures Israel "you’re going to hear it from me." Congresswoman Jane Harman actually agreed to help an Israeli intelligence officer by using her influence to derail the trial of two American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) officials. Harman is still sitting in her plush office on Capitol Hill instead of in jail, where she belongs.
But there is another category of Israel firster that differs from the homegrown variety. Has anyone wondered at the large number of foreigners who have somehow made their way into Washington’s think tank and media punditry industry? They are found most commonly at places like the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), the Hudson Institute, the Heritage Foundation, the Saban Center at Brookings, and, of course at the AIPAC-founded Washington Institute for Near Eastern Policy (WINEP). They come from Australia, Europe, and Israel itself but the one thing they all have in common is that they, like Schumer, love and protect Israel. If one were suspicious, it might be possible to wonder whether there is some kind of mechanism operating whereby advocates of Israel are hand-picked and godfathered through the system. With unusual persistence and a high level of resiliency, many of them eventually become the dominant voices at the various think tanks so that eventually no dissenting opinions are allowed. Hollywood billionaire Haim Saban’s money has turned the once moderate Brookings into an Israeli mouthpiece while AEI and Heritage, which used to be traditionally conservative bastions, have now become home bases for the neocon foreign policy...
Are these people dangerous? Well, maybe. Many foreigners have come to the United States to make their fortunes and there is nothing wrong with that. But, in this case, there would appear to be a certain unanimity of viewpoint and a marching in lock step that is just a tad disconcerting, particularly as it has helped shape the foreign policy narrative. There is no deviation from hard right Likud positions, never any criticism of Israel, and always complete agreement on the need to confront Iran militarily. One might reasonably ask to what extent it is a coordinated effort to steer Washington in a certain direction, not unlike the neocons in the Pentagon under President George W. Bush. In any event, the presence of so many self-styled agenda-driven "experts" possessing regular media access raises questions about the objectivity of the policy-making process in Washington. If you seed enough partisans into the system and they are all singing the same tune that is then played and replayed in the media even a whole parcel of lies can eventually seem to be the truth...MORE...LINK
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