Saturday, October 16, 2010

Why neocon Michael Goldfarb can speak for the Democrats: triangulating Jewish Zionist Israel-firsters keep a big footprint in each Party's camp

Neocon threatens withdrawal of “Dem Donor$’ if Obama pressures Netanyahu

(Mondoweiss) -- by Philip Weiss --

...Yesterday on twitter, [Michael] Goldfarb linked to a Politico piece saying that Obama is about to put public pressure on Netanyahu over settlements for the first time in a long time. Goldfarb tweeted:

I'm sure endangered Dems are super grateful for WH threat to attack Israel two weeks out from an election.....

Matt Duss of Thinkprogress responded to Goldfarb: "Yeah, because that's what the American people really are worried about right now. Israel."

Goldfarb responded: "don't worry -- we plan on putting our $$ where our mouths are...."

Duss: "Whose money?"

Goldfarb: "pro-Israel $$$....and you care about israel, i care about israel--why you think other people don't?"

Duss: "Of course, but we both know the US calling on Israel to honor its commitments is not really going to swing any races."

Goldfarb: "Disagree! Lots of voters care about Israel -- Jews and Christians. And Dem donor$....a lot of them care about Israel too."

Duss: "Did John Mearsheimer steal Goldfarb's twitter password?"

Goldfarb: "Accusing people who care about Israel of divided loyalties is not cool."

Duss: "That's called cognitive dissonance. It's what happens when you've been caught making an argument you've called anti-Semitic."

The exchange is significant of a few things. One is the alacrity with which neocons threaten financial blackmail when they don't like an argument. For instance, the publication of Walt and Mearsheimer's paper on the Israel lobby resulted in a lot of financial pressure on Harvard, where Walt works. Including from a rabbi there who I talked to for the Nation.

Just as important, notice that Goldfarb, who works inside the Republican fold by and large, claims to speak for Democratic Party donors. And well he can. The Israel lobby is not about party. Dennis Ross can work for Republican and Democratic administrations because he represents the Israel lobby. Alan Dershowitz is now supporting his former student in an Illinois congressional race even though he is a Republican, because of the Israel issue. Irving Kristol and Norman Podhoretz both left the Democratic Party for the Republican Party over Israel in the '70s. Michael Walzer supported Nixon during impeachment because he'd helped Israel. And some Israel lobby types flipped back to Clinton from Bush during the 90s because Bush had gone after Shamir on settlements. Party loyalty is less important than loyalty to Israel, as Goldfarb demonstrates...MORE...LINK

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