I am so tired of this old canard that "Israel had nothing to do with USA's war with Iraq - in fact, it officially advised America against it".
The Right Wing, in the ascendant now.
From that AmericanGoy article, quoting the Guardian newspaper article:
The OSP was an open and largely unfiltered conduit to the White House not only for the Iraqi opposition. It also forged close ties to a parallel, ad hoc intelligence operation inside Ariel Sharon's office in Israel specifically to bypass Mossad and provide the Bush administration with more alarmist reports on Saddam's Iraq than Mossad was prepared to authorise.
"None of the Israelis who came were cleared into the Pentagon through normal channels," said one source familiar with the visits. Instead, they were waved in on Mr Feith's authority without having to fill in the usual forms.
The exchange of information continued a long-standing relationship Mr Feith and other Washington neo-conservatives had with Israel's Likud party.
What was the OSP again?
Dick Cheney's private CIA/NSA, the Office of Special Plans, designed to sort the CIA and NSA information on Iraq and only pick those which proved that Iraq had WMD. If the CIA had a report (as they did, multiple times) that Iraq was almost destroyed and had no WMD capability, no chemical, biological nor nuclear program, that information was ignored. Only information that "proved" Iraq had WMD capability was needed... and the CIA refused to supply it, because they are both patriots and professionals.
And this is where the representatives from Israel come in - they literally came to the USA and provided the OSP with the "proof" OSP required to lie to Congress, and make Colin Powell lie to the UN.
I am sorry, but when on the one hand we have newspaper articles stating that "Israel advised the USA not to invade Iraq", and on the other hand we have Israeli government officials visiting the USA to dump "proof" and "intelligence" that Iraq had WMD, what am I, a poor goy, supposed to think?
How about the fact that American citizens, who were American government employees in their previous jobs were advisers to the Israeli LIKUD government - did you know about that from the CNN? Perhaps there was no time to run the following story, as Britney Spears is much more important:
In 1996, he (Feith -AG) and Richard Perle - now an influential Pentagon figure - served as advisers to the then Likud leader, Binyamin Netanyahu. In a policy paper they wrote, entitled A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm, the two advisers said that Saddam would have to be destroyed, and Syria, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Iran would have to be overthrown or destabilised, for Israel to be truly safe.
May I again urge you to stop by the most important article on this blog; pretty please with sugar on top?
We have American citizens, who are United States government officials, who base ALL their decisions on one thing - is this good for Israel?
Here is your proof:
"He (Congressman Berman -AG) said Israel "is why I went on the Foreign Affairs Committee--" he corrected himself-- "it's part of why I went on the Foreign Affairs committee in the first place. I'm a great supporter of Israel.""
How blatant can you be? I became a member of the Foreign Affairs committee to help out Israel. And he is still a US congressman? Hello, Earth to Americans?! Anybody here still cares about this country or can we just sell it all to the highest lobby money bidder?
And of course behind the scenes experts are hard at work to make America attack Iran, because as we all know, not attacking Iran is anti-semitic and racist.
We really do live in a bizzarro world now, where up is down, war is peace, and actions that clearly harm American interests must be done because otherwise one is unpatriotic!
Says Hagel (Senator Chuck Hagel): "The political reality is that... the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people up here." Hagel then related a meeting he had in New York with a group of supporters of Israel who are pushing the U.S. to attack Iran. When Hagel said it hadn't worked out that well in Iraq, a couple of members of the group said he wasn't supportive enough of Israel.
No shit? So how does an American react to this criticism?
When Hagel said it hadn't worked out that well in Iraq, a couple of members of the group said he wasn't supportive enough of Israel.
Hagel spoke firmly: "Let me clear something up here if there's any doubt in your mind. I'm a U.S. Senator. I'm not an Israeli senator. I'm a U.S. Senator. I support Israel... But my first interest is, I take an oath to the constitution of the United States. Not to a president, not to a party, not to Israel.
Right on Mr. Hagel!
John Sununu, republican:
It's like a handful of pebbles in the shoe. It's there all the time, and this process of not permitting anything that's trying to tug in the other direction, to gain root and thrive, is almost automatic. And it's not just AIPAC, it happens all the time, everywhere. Every congressman, every senator, before they win, is being soft lobbied on the issue. Whether it's their friend that owns 40 acres down the street whose grandfather happened to have come from Kiev, goes in and talks to him about helping him, developing a social relationship on an issue that has nothing to do with the district, begins to communicate their interest. And rightly so-- pulling on their end of the rope. It happens almost invisibly. But across the board. There is nobody who has run for office in this country who has not been soft lobbied the day they announce that they are going to run and not been hard lobbied after they win.
Again, I wrote all this before, but I need to harp on this because we Americans have the attention span of a 4 year old child on a sugar high, and perhaps we need our information spoon fed us. Well, consider yourself fed, AmericanGoy style.
Our government has been hijacked by extremists, who are putting the interests of Israel above that of the United States. Something needs to be done - and the first thing is to be free to talk about it, in the open, on TV, radio, newspaper columns, blogs.
The Left Wing, the phoenix that never shall rise in America
The left wing, being as clueless as the rest of America, looks for a conspiracy theory when this is all in the open. There is no conspiracy if everything is explained, it is out there in newspaper articles, in books; it is not a conspiracy when a person can use google for 10 minutes and find this all out (like yours truly does).
So the political left in this country latched on to the idea that this was a war for oil. Looking at it from the perspective of watching CNN, MSNBC and FOX this seems a plausible theory. After all, Iraq has supposedly 2nd most oil on the planet, 2nd only to Saudi Arabia - for the lazy or naysayers, link here.
Of course, we have the incomparable Mr. Weiss to destroy another canard for us in his analysis here.
He uses an upcoming book, Wrestling with Zion and quotes it:
This is one of those very difficult moments. Certainly one would not say that Jews have 'taken control of U.S. foreign policy,' but it's certainly the case--and I think a very ominous case--that the Bush administration, to a much greater degree than any previous administration, has people in it who are ardent right-wing Zionists and who have actually been advisors in upper echelons of government. We don't want to talk about 'The Jews.' But I think it is important to talk about people with a very strong militant imperialist sort of Zionist mentality.
The fact of the matter is that these people are substantially more powerful in this administration than they have been in any other. These are also the same people who are leading the United States into a kind of preemptive mode, which is so appalling and terrifying to the whole world.
I disagree with what Mitchell [Plitnick] just said on that subject. I think we have to learn ways to speak about the actualities of Zionism without falling into the abyss of anti-Semitism. That's a very, very difficult question. It's something that's inhibited critique of Israel for many, many years. We have to be very forthright and say that this kind of rational critique of the Zionist project is really necessary. It's necessary in order to prevent anti-Semitism, among other things.
Mr. Weiss explains it all:
Plitnick has succeeded in the years since the war began. He (and Stephen Zunes, and Norman Finkelstein, and Noam Chomsky) has stemmed the belief that Zionists had a role in the Iraq war policy, I believe out of fear that Jews would be persecuted if the connection were made. Other liberal Jews have gone along with this anti-intellectual ideology. Smart guys like Jerrold Nadler and Glenn Greenwald have fingered the neocons for their authorship of the war but declined to link their fervent Zionism to the war project. Jacob Heilbrunn came close to saying that the Iraq-planning neocons were motivated by Israel's security in his book, They Knew They Were Right, but has seemed to back away from any such suggestion in his public statements on the book. Washington Post diplomatic correspondent Glenn Kessler bravely wrote, in his Condi Rice bio, that the Iraq war was planned in part to "help Israel," but has this assertion ever been explored in the pages of the Washington Post? When Walt and Mearsheimer made that claim in their groundbreaking book, the Post repeatedly attacked them as antisemites, while the liberal Forward editorialized, "In Dark Times, Blame the Jews."
Got all that?
Let me then just point out the obvious - at least to me - and analyze this for you.
The Right Wing.
The pro-Israel lobby in the USA, the hardcore LIKUD sympathizers, the people who are really far to the right of the Israeli political spectrum, actively steered the USA foreign policy into a war with Iraq. These influential people were Jews, some of them American citizens, some of them Israeli citizens (those who shuttled to and from Israel to Dick Cheney's OSP), but all working towards the same goal - to promote Israel's goal (as understood by them), which was for America to take out Israel's enemies.
The Left Wing.
The left wing in America - intellectuals like Finkelstein, Chomsky and Zunes, and many, many others promote the idea that the Iraq fiasco was an oil grab, and try to steer the discussion away from the fact that the neocon movement is mainly a Jewish-American movement, of a particual brand of American-Jew - that of a hard core pitiless right winger, whose main aim is to promote Israel's goals over any other nation's (even those that they are the citizens of - e.g. the United States).
This is done out of fear, as Mr. Weiss explains: "Plitnick has succeeded in the years since the war began. He (and Stephen Zunes, and Norman Finkelstein, and Noam Chomsky) has stemmed the belief that Zionists had a role in the Iraq war policy, I believe out of fear that Jews would be persecuted if the connection were made."
Bonus Material - the charge of anti-semitism.
I am an American; I am an American citizen. Everything I do in the political sense has one prism - just like pro-Israel people ask themselves first and foremost "Is this good for Israel", I ask myself always, first and foremost "Is this good for the United States of America".
In my view, our country's unquestioning support of Israel is not good for America.
One must realize, when reading articles such as the ones found on this blog, or Mr. Weiss' blog, or Silverstein's blog, that Americans who are Jewish have an incredible range of political opinion and it is not a monolithic blob of people, robotically following their master's voice from Israel. There are extreme right wingers (aka LIKUD supporters), there are centrists, there are left wingers, the hippies, communists, etc etc. Just like you cannot say that because America invaded Iraq, that all Americans are evil bullies, and stupid to boot.
Just like Israelis themselves represent a whole gamut of political views, from extreme right wingers thru centrists to left wingers, hippies and communists. There were Israeli Defense Force generals and lower ranks who openly advised NOT for the USA not to attack and occupy Iraq. Mossad specialists also advised the same, just like the CIA in this country.
The trouble is that the US government officials in power now, under bush jr., ARE evil, stupid bullies - hard core right wing.
The trouble is that the American Jews present in this administration, are not just sympathetic to Israel, but ARE ALSO hard core right wing LIKUD supporters type - no Finkelstein is present in that crowd, believe you me.
I believe that criticizing Israel, the country, is valid.
I believe that pointing out the influence of the pro-Israel lobby power in the United States is being a patriot and adding to the discussion.
I believe that a question needs to be posed to Clinton, Obama, John McCain, the American Congressm, in fact, all American politicians - what is your view on the United States support for Israel and what do you think the USA gets out of it?
I believe Americans need to know these facts and decide what their country should do - regarding not just Israel-Arab conflict, but a whole slew of issues.
In a democracy, secrecy is it's greatest enemy.
Lets fight it.
Let us stop being american citizens, who watch American Idol, Lost and internet porn, and start being American Citizens, who give a damn about this nation.
After all, we live here. It is our sons and daughters dying in Iraq. It is our tax money. It is our nation.
In the comments, reader greg Bacon posted a link that proves (yet again!) Israel's push of the USA to attack Iraq. From CBS News, August 16 2002, Jerusalem title: Israel To U.S.: Don't Delay Iraq Attack, subtitle Sharon Government Urges Prompt Action Against Saddam.
Seriously people, just because some newspapers NOW lie to us and tell their readers that Israel advised the USA against invading Iraq... you will believe those articles NOW, or the actual articles from just before the US attack on Iraq?
From the CBS News article, dateline August 16 2002:
(CBS) Israel is urging U.S. officials not to delay a military strike against Iraq's Saddam Hussein, an aide to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said Friday.
Israeli intelligence officials have gathered evidence that Iraq is speeding up efforts to produce biological and chemical weapons, said Sharon aide Ranaan Gissin.
"Any postponement of an attack on Iraq at this stage will serve no purpose," Gissin said. "It will only give him (Saddam) more of an opportunity to accelerate his program of weapons of mass destruction."
I rest my case.