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March 29, 2006

Op-Ed Writers Attack Study

Two American Op-Ed writers have just taken bites at Walt & Mearsheimer's study on the pro-Israel lobby.

Max Boot3.jpg
Today in the Los Angeles Times, Max Boot's punchy criticism raises some new points for consideration (and cites CAMERA's earlier work exposing factual problems). First, he writes, that Walt and Mearsheimer's

very first footnote demonstrates a terminal lack of seriousness: "Indeed, the mere existence of the Lobby suggests that unconditional support for Israel is not in the American national interest. If it was, one would not need an organized special interest group to bring it about." By that standard, Social Security, the 2nd Amendment and Roe vs. Wade must not be "in the American national interest" either, because they are all defended by even more powerful lobbies.

(See here for a skewering of the study's 40th footnote.) Boot concludes:

After finishing their magnum opus, I was left with just one question: Why would the omnipotent Israel lobby (which, they claim, works so successfully "to stifle criticism of Israel") allow such a scurrilous piece of pseudo-scholarship to be published? Then I noticed that Walt occupies a professorship endowned by Robert and Renee Belfer, Jewish philanthropists who are also supporters of Israel. The only explanation, I surmise, is that Walt must himself be an agent of those crafty Israelites, employed to make the anti-Israel case so unconvincingly that he discredits it. "The Lobby" works in mysterious ways.

Jeff-Jacoby-color.jpeIn addition, the Boston Globe ran a two-part series by Jeff Jacoby (Sunday and today) showing that the U.S. government strongly supports Israel because the American public supports Israel:

America's loyalty to Israeli isn't engineered by a Zionist cabal that dupes American citizens and hijacks their government. US policy tends to align closely with Israel's because Americans like Israel. They instinctively sympathize with Israel's fight for survival in one of the world's most dangerous neighborhoods. If public opinion weren't robustly pro-Israel in the first place, the White House and Congress would be far less inclined to give Israel's advocates the time of day. There's a name for that phenomenon. It's called democracy.

Posted by TS at March 29, 2006 05:06 AM


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