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Joe American, OrbStandard

March 20, 2006

An important new research paper by two distinguished professors, entitled "The Israel Lobby And U.S. Foreign Policy," was just published by Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. [1] The paper's three main conclusions are that:

(1) the pro-Israel lobby inside the U.S. has managed to convince American lawmakers, officials, and U.S. public opinion to support Israel "no matter what," even though this support runs counter to America's own national interests;

(2) pro-Israel officials inside the Bush administration - namely, neocons Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith and David Wurmser - were behind the push for war with Iraq, and pro-Israel lobbying groups were a driving force in encouraging the Bushites to invade Iraq; and

(3) the pro-Israel lobby actively suppresses American public debate about U.S. Middle East policy by disingenuously accusing everyone who disagrees with their pro-Israel positions of being "anti-Semitic." [2]

The co-authors of this 81-page research paper are Harvard University Professor of International Relations Stephen Walt and University of Chicago Professor of Political Science John Mearsheimer. Their synopsis states that "The centerpiece of U.S. Middle East policy is its intimate relationship with Israel. Though often justified as reflecting shared strategic interests or compelling moral imperatives, the U.S. commitment to Israel is primarily due to the activities of the 'Israel Lobby.' This paper describes the various activities that pro-Israel groups have undertaken in order to shift U.S. foreign policy in a pro-Israel direction." [3]

Not surprisingly, the Jerusalem Post reports that their research paper has "sparked an instant controversy" in Israel. [4] However, we shouldn't judge it on the basis of media-driven rumors, but rather should read this research paper for ourselves. People who are pressed for time should read the shorter version that was conveniently published online by the London Review of Books. [5]

Why bother to read this paper at all? Its topic is extremely important right now because pro-Israel lobbying groups like AIPAC have been advocating, and the Bush administration has been threatening, yet another U.S. war of aggression, this time against Iran. [6]

Finally, this paper raises a perfectly valid geostrategic question, upon which the American public should hold a well-informed and fair-minded nationwide debate: Will a U.S. war of aggression against Iran serve America's national interests in the Middle East, or will it be counterproductive for every nation except Israel?


[1] Professors John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt's March 2006 HU John
F. Kennedy School of Government research paper, "The Israel Lobby And U.S.
Foreign Policy": http://ksgnotes1.harvard.edu/Research/wpaper.nsf/rwp/RWP06-011

[2] Terry Walz's 3-17-06 CNI article, "Professors Take On Israel Lobby":
http://www.rescuemideastpolicy.com/modules.php?op=modload&name=News&file=artic le&sid=220&mode=thread&order=0&thold=0

[3] John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt's March 2006 Harvard University research paper, "The Israel Lobby And US Foreign Policy" [You can download their 81-page paper from North America, Europe or Asia at the following SSRN webpage.]: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=891198

[4] Nathan Guttman's 3-19-06 Jerusalem Post article, "Harvard Study: AIPAC Makes US Act Against its Own Interests" [Criticizes the Harvard study's chief conclusions.]: http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1139395630337&pagename=JPost%2FJPAr

[5] Professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt's 3-23-06 London Review of Books essay, "The Israel Lobby" [This is a shorter version of their Harvard research paper.]: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v28/n06/print/mear01_.html

[6] Fourteen recent article will help you to think clearly about Iran and the USA:

     A. Scott Bohlinger's 3-18-06 Asian Times essay, "America's Options For Iran" [This knowledgeable must-read analysis contends that the US can achieve a "win-win" outcome with Iran. While sanctions and military strikes would be counterproductive, US support for an Iranian civilian nuclear capability could produce positive results for both the US and Iran.]: http://atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/HC18Ak04.html

     B. James Klurfeld's 3-17-06 CD/Newsday essay, "Those War Drums Have A Familiar Beat: Cheney's Tough Talk on Iran And An Updated Report On Security Sound Eerily Like The Run-Up to Iraq Invasion" [It's important to understand the difference between a preventive attack and a pre-emptive attack -- although the Bush administration seems to want to confuse the two. In international law, a pre-emptive attack is when someone already has his hand on a gun and is about to fire at you, and you beat him to the draw, firing first. That's understandable and justifiable. A preventive attack is when there's no imminent danger, but you want to keep the threat from even developing. That's what the Bush administration did in Iraq. That's what it is threatening to do with Iran now.]: http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0317-25.htm

     C. William Buckley's 3-17-06 NR essay, "Hitting Iran" ["If Iran gets the bomb, the USA would be critically affected, but other nations would be more directly affected, and the question repeats itself: Why do they not take on the responsibility of intervening in Iran?" Buckley refers not to Israel, but to Saudi Arabia, Turkey, France and Germany. However, his analysis is dishonest because: (a) his three reasons why Israel couldn't do the job also apply to France and Germany; (b) he ignores the fact that a ground invasion would be necessary; (c) he assumes the very issue for which there is no evidence - namely, the unproven allegation that Tehran is seeking weaponized nukes in addition to civilian nuclear energy; and (d) even if that nonexistent ambition were true, every serious analyst says it would take Iran 10 years to produce its first nuke.]: http://www.nationalreview.com/buckley/wfb200603171430.asp

      D. Ingmar Lee's 3-17-06 CC essay, "Are You About To Nuke Iran?" [All indications are that the Bush neocon cabal has been setting up an invasion of Iran. Americans must demand that Mr. Bush promptly answer six direct questions about war with Iran.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/lee170306.htm

     E. Robert Dreyfuss' 3-15-06 CC essay, "Déjà Vu All Over Iran," [In the past few weeks, we've seen the Bush administration create a brand-new Office of Iranian Affairs at the State Department. That looks suspiciously like the Department of Defense's earlier creation of the Iraq war planning office in the Pentagon, called the "Office of Special Plans." No word yet on whether the DOD is creating a parallel Iran war planning office called "Office of Special Plans," but it can't be far behind. So that's déjà vu, for sure.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/iran-dreyfuss150306.htm

     F. Bernard Weiner's 3-15-06 CC essay, "The Middle East Muddle: Is Peace Still Possible?" [The run-up to the impending war against Iran - and make no mistake, the foundations are being laid daily by the Bush Administration - bears a remarkable resemblance to the propaganda barrage before the U.S. attacked Iraq.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/weiner150306.htm

     G. Mike Whitney's 3-15-06 CC essay, "Iran: Where Do We Go From Here?" [The Bush administration knew from the beginning that the UN Security Council would not support economic sanctions or military action. The intention was simply to increase suspicion about Iran's nuclear programs and mobilize public support for a war.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/iran-whitney150306.htm

     H. Tom Porteous' 3-13-06 TP essay, "It's Regime Change, Again" [The Bush administration is hugely miscalculating with Iran, and unnecessarily moving toward a war that can only alienate the Islamic world and lead to massive negative consequences.]: http://www.tompaine.com/articles/2006/03/10/its_regime_change_again.php

     I. Matthew Rothschild's 3-12-06 CD/TP essay, "Cooler Heads Needed in Iran" [Also needed in the USA, where the Bush administration has already begun its propaganda campaign for war.]: http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0312-32.htm

     J. Mike Whitney's 3-11-06 CC essay, "The 48-Hour Media Blitz For War With Iran" [During the past 48 hours, propagandistic statements about the "impending danger" from Iran were issued by Bush, Cheney, Rice, Bolton, Burns, Congress, and Israel. It's not a coincidence. They've begun their propaganda campaign for the next war.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/whitney110306.htm

     K. Chris Cook's 3-11-06 CC essay, "What The Iran 'Nuclear Issue' Is Really About" [The International Petroleum Exchange's former director says the USA's threatened invasion of Iran has nothing to do with nuclear weapons, and everything to do with the Bush administration's determination to use force of arms to maintain dollar dominance and energy security. Despite the myth, Iran's new oil bourse does NOT provide a legitimate basis for a US invasion. By the way, a "bourse" is a stock market in a non-English speaking country.]: http://www.countercurrents.org/iran-cook110306.htm

     L. Linda Heard's 3-9-06 OnlineJournal essay, "Iran: More Jaw And Less War" [Diplomacy is the better alternative to war, but diplomacy's in short supply where the USA and Iran are concerned. (One minor error requires correction: Rep. John Murtha is a Dem, not a Republican).]: http://onlinejournal.com/artman/publish/article_581.shtml

     M. Guardian Unlimited's 3-4-06 OEN/GU editorial, "Bush And The Bomb" [Last-ditch nuclear talks between Iran and the EU's "Big Three" did not go well, breaking up shortly after they began in Vienna. That was not surprising because there had been an impasse in negotiations for weeks. But it was more than just an unfortunate coincidence that the session was held one day after George W. Bush struck a landmark deal allowing India to develop peaceful nuclear energy outside of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the world's most important legal barrier to the spread of nuclear weapons. This smacks of double standards that will make it hard to hold the line on this issue. And it gives some substance to the charge, voiced by President Ahmadinejad, that opposition to Iran's nuclear ambitions - which he claims are for peaceful civilian energy - is politically motivated. Now this potentially disastrous confrontation will move to the UN Security Council.]: http://www.guardian.co.uk/leaders/story/0,,1723276,00.html

     N. Michel Chossudovsky's 2-22-06 GlobalResearch.ca essay, "Is The Bush Administration Planning A Nuclear Holocaust? Will The US Launch 'Mini-Nukes' Against Iran In Retaliation For Tehran's 'Non-Compliance'?" [This University of Ottawa Economics Professor's well-documented essay addresses the likelihood that the US will use nukes in Iran. His short answers to the titular questions are "yes" and "yes." Also see his 2-17-06 GR essay, "The Dangers Of A Middle East Nuclear War. New Pentagon Doctrine: Mini-Nukes Are 'Safe For The Surrounding Civilian Population'."]: http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=viewArticle&


Please forward Joe American's mini-essay to your friends, relatives and

:: Article nr. 21770 sent on 21-mar-2006 10:11 ECT


Link: orbstandard.com/News/Front/American_Pro_Israel_Lobby_Manipulates_US_Foreign_Poli

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