Monday, October 08, 2007

The Israel Lobby - Mearsheimer and Walt Weigh In

This is very much a must read IMHO. Jeb gives an honest, thoughtful, dispassionate look at the connection between the Israel Lobby and Washington.
Last night, I watched an interesting hour-long interview with both of the authors (I'll post it below) in which Walt gave a very compelling explanation of the [Israel] lobby's influence in Washington. He started off by noting that during the Cold War, the US maintained connections to Israel for strategic and moral reasons. Strategically speaking, Israel was considered a bulwark and a useful ally against Soviet expansion. Walt also suggested that the US felt compelled to support the Jewish homeland on moral grounds, as a response to the horrors of WWII and preceding decades of anti-Semitism.

Over time, however, both of these justifications for supporting Israel have gradually eroded. Rather than being a strategic asset, Israel has become a liability. With the fall of the Soviet Union, Israel has become less of an important partner; in fact, its continued rivalry with its Arab neighbors has made close association with it increasingly problematic. The moral justification has also diminished. With Israel's ongoing occupation of Palestinian territories, aiding Israel can no longer be easily justified on moral grounds.

Via Foreign Policy Watch.

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