Thursday, November 30, 2006

Foreign Influence Part 2

Siber Edmonds has more on The High-Jacking of a Nation:

This article will attempt to illustrate the functioning of the above model in the case of another country, the Republic of Turkey, and its set of agents and operators in the U.S.


[T]hose subject to criticism in these articles have mastered the art of spinning when it comes to the media and propaganda. The Israeli lobby is quick to stamp all factually backed criticism as 'anti-Semitic' and attack it as such. The Turkish lobby, in this regard, as with everything else, follows its Israeli mentors; they label all dissent and criticism as anti-Turkey, or, Kurdish or Armenian propaganda; while the Saudi lobby goes around kicking and screaming 'anti-Muslim propaganda.'

Smearing is a lot easier than debating the facts.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

This is Spicy.

Clouded Judgment.

Lawrence Auster exposes the delusion and denial, as well as the revision, of neocon Charles Krauthammer latest column on "Why Iraq Is Crumbling".

(Why ANYONE would listen to another word out from any neocon is beyond me.)

Krauthammer does acknowledge that Arabs are less “prepared” for democracy than other peoples and cultures. But he does not acknowledge that he and his fellow neocons stoutly denied this idea for the last several years. The neocons repeatedly insisted that Iraq could be democratized, just as German and Japan had been. Bush and Rice said that to doubt that Iraq could be democratized was condescending and racist. The neocons never criticized Bush and Rice for saying this. The neocons and the Bush administration did not exactly encourage thoughtful debate about their Iraq policy, did they?

But why would they discourage thoughtful debate? Could it be that their judgment is clouded by an emotional attachment, a second loyalty, to a foreign nation?

For some it is clouding, for other it is deceit.


Friday, November 24, 2006

Another Myth Shattered

One stock response to the claim that Iraq war was a war for Israel is that Douglas Feith et al. were only connected to Likud, and that others in Israel were opposed or indifferent to the war, hence the formation of the Kadima party.

For example one attempt at squid ink in the NYT Magazine article I discuss here is that Ariel Sharon did not agree with the Neocons, thus Israel did not support the Iraq war.

Leaving aside the fact that is still troubling that a party within Israel could influence US foreign policy, it looks like this argument no longer holds water.

Apparently, Ehud Olmert is reading pages from the neocon playbook as well.

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - The Iraq war was a boon for Israel's security, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said on Wednesday, voicing fresh endorsement for a Bush administration sapped by the unpopularity at home of its Middle East policies.


"I stand with the president because I know that Iraq without Saddam Hussein is so much better for the security and safety of Israel, and all of the neighbors of Israel without any significance to us," added Olmert, who was speaking in English.

The argument that Israel was against the Iraq war was weak to begin with. Now , with the acting Prime Minister of Israel supporting the invasion of Iraq, it is impossible.

Yahoo News

Thursday, November 23, 2006

When no action is the best action

One of the big claims is that we can't do nothing in Iraq/Iran/latest target country) "remember what happened in WWII!"

But, is that the best model for every situation? Probably not.

For example, Bush is in Vietnam this week. Looks like Viet Nam is ready to join the capitalist world, and if the few Vietnamese people I now are any indication, watch out!

And we didn't have to fire a shot and it cost us no lives or money.

Here is an article that provides a similar point: Winning by Losing

I also note Spain as another example. Spain is now a democracy, after many years under a dictatorship. Again, it appears no action was the right decision. We didn't need to "liberate" Spain.

There are at least two examples of action failing as well. First, Cuba has been a disaster. Although we have not invaded, we probably could have made more progress by engaging them rather than the embargo we have had in place for so many years.

The second example is North Korea. If the US was not present in South Korea it is highly likely that some reconciliation would have been achieved by now. North Korea would probably be in a similar situation to Viet Nam, trying to join the capitalist world. Our presence in South Korea has probably blocked this natural evolution.

Will our presence in Iraq help resolve matters there, or are we a source of the problem? Based on events so far, it is clearly the later.

And we have paid dearly to make this mistake, and we continue to do so.

The Rise and Fall of the Neocons

A blast from the past:

PNAC released [another] letter on April 3, 2002. This second letter focused largely on US policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. PNAC chairman William Kristol, Weekly Standard editor and prominent neo-conservative scion, collected the signatures of 34 like-minded power players, including a good slice of the membership of Pentagon chief Donald Rumsfeld's Defense Policy Board (DPB).


The letter urged Bush to sever all ties with the Palestine Liberation Organization's (PLO's) Yasser Arafat and to "lend full support to Israel as it seeks to root out the terrorist network that daily threatens the lives of Israeli citizens". Said the letter: "Mr President, it can no longer be the policy of the United States to urge, much less to pressure, Israel to continue negotiating with Arafat, any more than we would be willing to be pressured to negotiate with Osama bin Laden or Mullah Omar." It added: "Israel's fight against terrorism is our fight. Israel's victory is an important part of our victory." For good measure, the letter reiterated PNAC's call "for removing Saddam Hussein from power".

Read the whole thing here:Neocon Rise and Fall.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

What is Nancy Pelosi About

Nancy Pelosi is a hard read. She has indicated strong support for Israel in speeches to AIPAC, but she has also made strong statements about getting the US out of Iraq.

She has supported Jack Murtha, who was opposed by "neocon" forces and smeared for a 23 year old ABSCAM issue that he DID NOT participate in.

Now she seems to be taking a hard line against AIPAC favorite daughter Jane Harmon heading the intelligence committee. There is an investigation regarding AIPAC attempted influence towards placing Harmon at the head of the intelligence committee.

Steve Clemons has some interesting analysis here.

Repeatedly Wrong

Joshua Muravchik is the latest Neocon crazy to demand the bombing of Iran. He does this in the LA Times. Why the LA Times would elect to publish this is beyond me.

He logic is simplistic and faulty and including the dreaded WWII "Nazi" analogies, along with the claim that we should have somehow stopped Stalin as well. Does the man have any understanding of History?

But we don't have to read long to find a real whopper of a lie. In fact it occurs in the second line:

It has been four years since that country's [Iran] secret nuclear program was brought to light, and the path of diplomacy and sanctions has led nowhere.

Ah, but what does the CIA think:

Veteran investigative reporter Seymour Hersh, writing in The New Yorker, cites a secret CIA report based on intelligence such as satellite images.

Correspondents say the alleged document appears to challenge Washington's views regarding Iranian nuclear intentions.


The CIA assessment, according to unnamed officials quoted in the article, casts doubt on how far Iran has actually progressed to making a nuclear weapon.

"The CIA found no conclusive evidence, as yet, of a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program, running parallel to the civilian operations that Iran has declared to the International Atomic Energy Agency," Mr Hersh wrote.

It says the agency based its conclusions on technical intelligence, such as satellite photography and measurements from sensors planted by US and Israeli agents.

The article says: "A current senior intelligence official confirmed the existence of the CIA analysis, and told me that the White House had been hostile to it."

So, this desk jockey in his cubicle at the AEI thnks he knows more than the CIA. And the LA Times gives him a voice!

He makes the false assertion in the second sentence of his essay, and goes down hill from there.

Bomb Iran

CIA Says No Proof

Blocking the Exit

This is as close as you are going to get to an admission that AIPAC and the 'Jewish Lobby' (his term, not mine), are working for Israel against the interests of the US.

Olmert is foiling any possible progress on peace negotiations] : On his way home from Los Angeles, the prime minister "calmed" the reporters - and perhaps even himself - by saying there is no danger of U.S. President George W. Bush accepting the expected recommendations of the Baker-Hamilton panel, and attempting to move Syria out of the axis of evil and into a coalition to extricate America from Iraq. The prime minister hopes the Jewish lobby can rally a Democratic majority in the new Congress to counter any diversion from the status quo on the Palestinians.

So, Israel's desire to postpone the peace process indefinitely is in direct conflict with our (the US') desire to resolve the situation in Iraq. Olmert is admitting as much here, and he is expressly hoping that the "Jewish Lobby" will assert pressure that is against the direct interests of the US in hopes that the interests of Israel will be upheld.

Now, if he is doing anything more than 'hoping', such as having someone from Israel mention to someone from AIPAC that they want them to oppose the Baker-Hamilton plan, then AIPAC should register as the agent of a foreign government.

And this doesn't even go into the constant drum beat from Israel and its supports to get the US involved in Iran, which is also clearly against US interests, particularly in light of the mess taking place in Iraq.


Monday, November 20, 2006

How to Stop Talk About Israel

There is an embarrassingly superficial article in the NYT Magazine this weekend that attempts to explain "How to Talk About Israel."

The article should really be called “How to Stop Talk About Israel,” but what else would you expect.

Just to pick out two huge problems with the article:

There is no doubt that Israeli lobby groups are well organized and well financed and have considerable clout in Washington. But then so do other lobbies. [Your point?] That is how the game is played. There was a time not so long ago when hefty books were written about the United States government falling into the hands of scheming Japanese lobbies.

Nice attempt at misdirection. So what if there are other strong lobbies? Others do it too is no "excuse". It is not a refutation that we should try to stop or resist this particular lobby, that their policies are bad for the US, or that they are amazing successful.

Fact is, the Israel lobby warps US policy towards the Middle East beyond anything that approaches rationality or US interests.

Moreover, however, you can freely criticize other lobbies such as the NRA or NARP without fear of being labeled an Anti-Semite. This article has no shortage of Anti-semite smears.

This is a fundamental difference between the Israeli lobby and all other lobbies. The smear tactic is employed over and over again to great success. This prevents the effective formation of a counter lobby that might be able to ameliorate some of the more negative effects of the Israel lobby.

Second, the article make the point:

It is true that some people in the Pentagon, as well as influential organizations like the American Enterprise Institute and the Project for the New American Century, have close relations with the Likud Party, and especially with Finance Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is much more in tune with American neoconservatism than Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is. Douglas Feith and Richard Perle advised Netanyahu, who was prime minister in 1996, to make ''a clean break'' from the Oslo accords with the Palestinians. They also argued that Israeli security would be served best by regime change in surrounding countries [and expressly Iraq!]. Despite the current mess in Iraq, this is still a commonplace in Washington. In Paul Wolfowitz's words, ''The road to peace in the Middle East goes through Baghdad.'' It has indeed become an article of faith (literally in some cases) in Washington that American and Israeli interests are identical, but this was not always so, and ''Jewish interests'' are not the main reason for it now. [Christian conservative are.]

After listing all the power brokers and their connection, people directly involved with the decision to attack Iraq including the bogus information presented in support thereof, the article goes on to blame Christian conservatives for America's hard line pro-Israel stance.

What a joke.

Again, the article provide no "evidence" that Christian conservative are “the” cause. Even if there are a cause, are they just a sideline player or the primary force?

And any difference between Sharon and the neo-conservatives on policy does not a dispute make. It is a questions of how far, not which direction, and never is US policy towards Israel questioned. US interests are not taken into account.

It is simplistic and overtly misleading articles like this, along with the smearing it contains, that do little to further the debate on US policy towards Israel and the Middle East.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Sibel Edmonds talks about the danger of foriegn governemnts influencing US policy.

The most important facet of this influence to consider is what happens when the active and powerful foreign entities' objectives are in direct conflict with our nation's objectives and its interests and security; and when this is the case, who pays the ultimate price and how. There is no need for assumptions of hypothetical situations to answer these questions, since throughout recent history we have repeatedly faced the dire consequences of the highjacking of our foreign and domestic policies by these so-called foreign agents of foreign influence.

But, you might be suprised as to which government she is talking about.


Saudi Arabia is a very serious example of this problem. It is too bad that we can't discuss the influence Israel has on our foreign policy as easily.

Road to Jerusalem Passes Through Bagdad

Sidney Blumenthal makes a strong statement about the neocon motivations for war in Iraq.

The neocon logic in favour of the Iraq war was that the road to Jerusalem led through Baghdad: an invasion would install an Iraqi democracy that would force the Palestinians to submit to the Israelis. Now near-unanimity exists on Baker's commission to reverse that formula. The central part of a new policy must be, they believe, that the road to Baghdad leads through Jerusalem.

I am suprised he is willing to make such a direct statement, albeit in a British newspaper.


Monday, November 13, 2006

Neocon Delusions

Lawrence Auster (who is Jewish) speculates why the Jewish neocons (who do not comrpise all neocons) refuse to believe that "freedom" is not a universal desire.

So, in the neocons' mind, if they admit that not all people can be democrats, that’s tantamount to admitting that not all people can be assimilated into America, which is tantamount to admitting that America may be justified in not admitting every type of immigrant into America, which, in their minds is tantamount to admitting that the old discrimination against Jews may have been justified.

Normal people can see that there is a difference between how well Jews fit into the West and how well Muslims fit into the West. But in the minds of many Jews in general and neocons in particular, to admit that Muslims don’t fit into the West is to say that Jews don’t fit in either. Thus, in the neocons’ mind, to say that Muslims cannot be democratized is to say that Jews don’t fit into the West. And that is why they are so absolute and unthinking and unyielding in their democratism. Their democratism is not based on evidence. It is based on an instinctive (if distorted and incorrect and destructive) notion of Jewish self-protection.


Victor Ostrovsky Video Clips

Youtube is powerful medium.

I had read some statements from former mossad agent Victor Ostrovsky, but frankly they sounded a bit incredulous. However, after having watched these Youtube clips of him I think he sounds very credible.

Take a look for yourself:

Ostrovsky on [Anti-Semitic] Labeling.

Ostrovsky on Israel.

Ostrovsky on Mossad and Jewish loyalties.

The wikipedia link for Victor Ostrovsky is here.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Real Rahm Record.

The media is giving all sorts of kudos to proclaim Rahm Emanuel one of the big "winners" of the 2006 election. But, the real record indicates otherwise:

Looking at all 22 candidates hand-picked by Rahm, we find that 13 were defeated, and only 8 won! (3) (One is still undecided.) And remember that this was the year of the Democratic tsunami and that Rahm's favorites were handsomely financed by the DCCC. Tammy Duckworth, for example, was infused with $3 million­ and was backed in the primary by HRC, Barack Obama, John Kerry, etc.

So, the record is really not that good. And three million is a lot for a house seat.

What is worse, however, is that in at least two cases Rahm spent a lot of money to drive out some anti-war candidates, with one pro-war winner going on to lose in the general election.

In two cases Rahm had to put in considerable dollars and effort in the primaries to drive out antiwar candidates. He drove out Cegelis in Illinois's 6th CD, at the cost of one million dollars, in favor of Tammy ("Stay the course") Duckworth who lost in the general election. In California's 11th CD primary, Emanuel backed the prowar Steven Filson who lost to the antiwar candidate, Jerry McNerney, who went on to win in the general election.

The anti-war folks still have a long road ahead of them.

Rahm's Losers

Monday, November 06, 2006

Jews and Arabs Should Live Apart

So, I guess the expulsion of Jews from Spain wasn't so bad after all.

Lieberman, Israel's Minister for Strategic Affairs, told The Sunday Telegraph's Jerusalem correspondent that the best way to achieve peace in the Middle East would be for Jews and Arabs - including Israeli-Arabs - to live apart.

The remarks drew a storm of protest from the left-wing. MK Dov Hanin of the joint Arab-Israeli Hadash party said that Lieberman should be fired for his racist remarks. Meretz MK Zahava Gal'on added, "Lieberman was always a Kahanist, and remains a Kahanist.


Sunday, November 05, 2006

Shameless Leeden

The Neocons are really started to embarrass themselves.

Now they are distancing themselves from the war. This distancing includes claims that some subtle point here or there was the "difference" between success and failure and that if only their magic was followed things would be going smoothly - we would be headed for the benevolent hegemony they assured us was coming so long ago.

But Michael Ledeen has taken it to a new level by now claiming he never supported the war in Iraq. But, it has not taken long for this claim to be verified as a lie.

See this.



His [non-response] response is here.

More links here.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Avigdor Lieberman Round-Up

The appointment of Avigdor Lieberman really demonstrates how low the "Jewish State" has descended in so little time.

Here is some coverage:

Making Joerg Haider Look Good

The prevalent comparison between Avigdor Lieberman and Joerg Haider does an injustice to the Austrian nationalist whose party joined the government in the winter of 2000. Haider is far from being a righteous man, but even in his most fascist days, he never called on Austria to rid itself of citizens who'd been living in the country for generations. Also, Haider never suggested standing up legislators representing these citizens in front of a firing squad.

The Lovable Man?

So he advocates transfer, the expulsion of the Arab citizens from Israel. He threatened to destroy Egypt by blowing up the Aswan Dam. He demanded the execution of the Israeli Arab Knesset members for meeting with Syrian and Hamas leaders. So what? Rehavam Ze'evi, whose memory was honored this week by a special commemoration session of the Knesset, proposed ethnic cleansing, and Gen. Effi Eytam, the chief of the National Union party, uses similar language.

A Jewish Hitler?

Lieberman's views are notoriously racist, and his rhetoric is invariably violent. He called for the execution of Israeli Arab members of the Knesset who met with Hamas or didn't celebrate Israel's Independence Day. His party, Yisrael Beytenu ("Israel is our Home"), accuses Israeli Arabs of "dual loyalty" on account of their ethnicity[*], and advocates the complete separation of the Jewish and Arab populations in Palestine – in effect, forced transfer. Lieberman and his followers vehemently oppose the peace process, support the militant settlement movement, and are proud partisans of ethnic cleansing.

*Now THAT is ironic.