A very neat article on what the priorities of our politicians are, Just Who Do They Represent: At Hagel Hearing, Concern for Israel Tops U.S. Troops in Combat.
It has some very neat graphs to drive the point home.
When Senator Mike Lee took his turn to cross-examine defense-secretary nominee Chuck Hagel during last Thursday’s confirmation hearing, he expressed considerable concern for Israel’s security.
“Let’s say those Palestinians who have engaged in acts of terrorism, perhaps in retaliation against Israel for Israel defending itself,” the Republican from Utah asked, ”do they have a legitimate gripe?”
Hagel responded that “terrorism can never be justified under any circumstances.”
Lee continued, bringing up the possibility that Israel might withdraw to its pre-1967 borders. “Do you view that as a tenable solution?” he asked Hagel. “Do you believe such borders are militarily defensible?”
This went on and on. In fact, Lee—by himself—made reference to Israel and its security a total of 16 times.
Why is this important? It’s important because Lee never mentioned Afghanistan and the 66,000 U.S. troops at war there.
And Lee was not alone.
Freshman Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas also grilled Hagel about Israel. He mentioned the Jewish state 10 times—without ever once referring to Afghanistan or the U.S. troops in combat there.
When it was their turn to question Hagel, GOP senators Roy Blunt of Missouri and Roger Wicker of Mississippi each referred to Israel in a half dozen instances. Neither mentioned Afghanistan.
In nearly eight hours of interrogation and testimony, Israel and its interests were referred to by the Senate Armed Services Committee a total of 106 times. On the other hand, there were a mere 24 references made to Afghanistan and the Americans fighting there—most by Democratic Senator Carl Levin, chairman of the committee.
Nuclear-armed Pakistan—where the U.S. frequently targets militants with drone-launched Hellfire missiles—barely merited mention at all.
The thing to notice is that this is very much a bipartisan thing - concern for Israel runs in both the Republican and Democratic parties, and is a priority, far ahead of any concern for American troops or American citizens.
Food for thought, n'est-ce pas?
Another thing, since this just happens to be a political theater blog post, here's some good political theater:
There seems to be a... certain disconnect... between our, public, er, um, hmm, servants... and us, the tax paying, working our butts off citizens.