The latest scaremongering from Israel

M. J. Rosenberg says that Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu is ramping up the rhetoric on US media and that Iran now plans to actually launch a military attack the US, and the Israel lobby led by AIPAC is joining him in urging that the US take military action against Iran or at the least impose even greater sanctions against that country.

It is worth noting that right after Netanyahu spoke on the show, Sen, Dick Durbin, a dovish Democrat (except on Israel), who is up for re-election in 2014, piped in to say that he is with Netanyahu. He said that “neither the American people nor Congress are seeking a war, we’re not looking for one. But the Iranian leadership shouldn’t push us to the brink.”

Will [Congress] follow AIPAC and Netanyahu’s lead and reject any possibility that the new Iranian leadership should be heard out before piling on new sanctions? Will it continue to demand that President Obama reject the idea of relaxing sanctions no matter what Iran offers?

To those questions the answers are yes, yes and yes. The 2014 election season has begun and those donors close to AIPAC are of critical importance to Democrats. As for Republicans, they believe military force is the answer to most foreign problems and, unlike Democrats, don’t make Israel the big exception to their overall approach to foreign policy.

Obama, on the other hand, clearly does not want war. As I’ve written before, I believe that he allows Israel to do whatever it wants to in the West Bank to make it easier to say no to attacking Iran. All his appeasing of Netanyahu is designed to build up the credit with the Israeli people, if not Netanyahu, so he is both able to resist Netanyahu’s pleas that we go to war and to forbid Israel (our largest aid recipient) from doing so itself. That is unfortunate but it’s better than both enabling the oppression of the Palestinians and becoming embroiled in another Middle East war.

Meanwhile, Philip Weiss describes how Samantha Power, Obama’s nominee for Ambassador to the UN, had to grovel to appease the lobby in order not to jeopardize her chances for the job.

Samantha Power’s climbdown from an enlightened stance on Israel/Palestine to a forcibly benighted one is a sad thing to see, but it is really about the character of the Establishment. If you aspire to higher office, you have to kiss the lobby’s ring. Ask Chuck Hagel. Ask Barack Obama. They both said enlightened things about Israel and Palestine that they had to crawl back from.

For all those who aspire to high position, another warning. It’s not all that much fun. Samantha Power is now joined at the hip to Shmuley Boteach, an orthodox rabbi, friend of Sheldon Adelson, and rightwing Republican loser in a NJ congressional race whom Power assiduously courted to get her Israel cred up, and Obama’s too, even though Adelson did all he could to defeat Obama.

Power is following in the footsteps of her predecessor in the post Susan Rice, now Obama’s National Security Advisor.

In her first appearance before the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee, Samantha Power, Obama’s pick for next U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, made clear that she will spend her time in the role much as her predecessor Susan Rice did: acting as Israel’s consummate defender, fear-mongering about Iran, and opposing any move to champion Palestinian human rights or self-determination.

Rice, who has been appointed as Obama’s National Security Adviser, has said repeatedly that the American delegation to the UN “often works in ‘lockstep’ with the Israeli delegation” and spends “an enormous amount of time defending Israel’s right to defend itself and defending Israel’s legitimacy.”

So we should not expect this administration to do anything meaningful in the Middle East but simply continue talking about the mythical ‘peace process’ while continuing to allow Israel to continue its expansion of settlements in the occupied territories and putting the screws on Iran.

We have reached the stage when what we might call a foreign policy ‘success’ is when the US does not gratuitously attack a country on some made-up pretext.


  1. resident_alien says

    Huh. I read that as “Isreal needs to get rid of Bibi and his warmongers” which is an opinion shared by many an Israeli.

  2. left0ver1under says

    To no surprise, slc is whining, lying and calling the Prof an “anti-semite”.

    Blind allegiance is impossible without blind ignorance.

  3. Tom Robbins says

    Why don’t you just admit it, SLC? Just say the only reason you support the dirty Jews over there is because without it, you won’t have your rapture. Go on. You might get some respect.

  4. thebookofdave says

    A life full of potential, tragically cut down in its prime. I’m sure Mano is as shocked as you are over the abruptness of it all.

  5. says

    I love racist appropriation tango. Yes, go on about how the pro-brown-person stance is from Stormfront. It’ll sound super convincing from a person erasing left wing and pro-peace Jews.

  6. slc1 says

    A snark I’m sure but Ms. Thomas was sick for quite a while so this was not unexpected.

  7. Corvus illustris says

    … Iran now plans to actually launch a military attack [upon] the US …

    Gee, I hate to introduce anything substantive about Mano’s topic into the lively discussion between slc1 and TR, but are we really supposed to think that a small nation-state contemplating a military assault on a major nuclear-armed power doesn’t consider the possibility of winding up as a sea of radioactive glass?

  8. slc1 says

    Te Rutee Kayreya

    Robbins used the therm “dirty Jews”, a typical comment from Stormfront.

  9. sailor1031 says

    So anyone who dares to criticise israel is sick now? I thought that was “antisemitism”.

  10. sailor1031 says

    The likelihood of Iran attacking Israel, or any other country, is zero. But if I were the leader of Iran, and I couldn’t get any kind of deal with the US, I’d certainly want some kind of deterrent against a nuclear-armed neighbour who has shown repeatedly that it respects only force.

    The odds of Israel attacking Iran OTOH – not zero.

    It’s long past time that the US evaluated the relationship with Israel, concluded that it is an enormous liability with no upside and walked away. Only then will israeli hard right successors to Irgun and the Stern gang be in a position where they will have to reach some kind of accommodations with their neighbours. Or, as you say, turn most of the ME into a sea of radioactive glass. As it now stands, the israelis think that the west are hostages to their Samson strategy……time to say ‘no”.

  11. slc1 says

    You are an asshole. Ms. Thomas; was in kidney failure for several months and was on dialysis. Absolutely nothing to do with her views on Israel or anything else for that matter.

  12. slc1 says

    Iran is already at war with Israel. It is the biggest backer of Hizbollah in Lebanon and is also the biggest backer of the Assad regime in Syria. We may sum up sailor1031’s comment very simply, stand aside and allow the Islamic extremists in the Middle East to give the Jews in Israel the Eichmann treatment.

  13. left0ver1under says

    Given that the goal of harassing Iran is to steal its oil (first “justify” an invasion, then install a puppet dictatorship), it’s highly unlikely that nuclear weapons will be used, not even the 200 illegally obtained ones in Israel.

    Iran wants nuclear electricity to reduce its dependency on oil imports because it doesn’t have and can’t get refining equipment. Reduced imports will mean reduced exports of raw crude and thus higher oil prices. That’s what this is all about, and always has been.

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