Iran Deal update from Philip Weiss (See my posts Israeli Desires vs American Interests (17/8/15) & Made in Israel: America's Next War 1&2 (18-19/8/15)):
"You've read it already, but we had to jump on the bandwagon. Today's news that [Senator] Barbara Mikulski [Dem] supports the Iran Deal has put President Obama over the top. Hurray. He has defeated Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Netanyahu's lobby to win the most important foreign policy shift of his administration. And achieve the biggest setback to the lobby's power in a generation. Now it's all about getting to closure: 41 votes, so that the Dems can filibuster the anti-agreement vote." ('Turning point' - Obama defeats Netanyahu & 'destroyers of hope' on Iran Deal!, mondoweiss.net 2/9/15)
So far so good, but the power of Israel over American politicians is still painfully obvious. Just look at Secretary of State, John Kerry's guarded reference to the above:
"... history may judge it as a turning point, a moment when the builders of stability seized the initiative from the destroyers of hope."
In translation: History may judge it as a moment when the US got Israel and its lobby (aka "the destroyers of hope") off its back.
But for how long?
Today's battle may be going Obama's way, but doing something about the big-spending Israel lobby's financial hold over US politicians will require an even bigger battle (war?), as the following grovel by the aforementioned Ms Mikulski indicates:
"For all my time in both the House and the Senate, I have been an unabashed and unwavering supporter of Israel. I have persistently supported the sanctions that brought Iran to the table. I have been insistent on foreign aid and military assistance to Israel that maintains its qualitative military edge on missile defense. With the horrors of the Holocaust in mind, I have been deeply committed to the need for a Jewish homeland, the State of Israel, and its inherent ability to defend itself. And for the United States to be an unwavering partner in Israel's defense. I have been and always will be committed to those principles."
IOW, she hasn't given a moment's thought to what the hell Israel is really all about, and has, therefore, helped ensure that "the destroyers of hope" have, for decades, effectively held the whip hand when it comes to US Middle East policy making.
And why is this?
Is it because she's stoked on the Old Testament and can't differentiate between Israelites and Israelis?
Is it because she once read Leon Uris' Exodus and never recovered?
Or is it because between 4/1/09 and 3/31/15 she received, as a politician, US$132,175 in pro-Israel (monetary & non-monetary) contributions. (See maplight.org)
As Mearsheimer & Walt have pointed out:
"The obvious way to reduce the lobby's influence... is campaign finance reform. Public financing of all elections would seriously weaken the link between the lobby and elected officials and make it easier for the latter to pressure Israel (or simply withdraw US support) when doing so would be in America's interest." (The Israel Lobby & US Foreign Policy, 2007, p 349)
Watch this space...