Alan Hart : Obama’s Hagel test


I’ll get to what it is about Hagel’s record that troubles and even frightens the Zionist lobby in a moment, but first can we, please, get the terminology right.

 

By Alan Hart

 

By all accounts President Obama wants to nominate Chuck Hagel, the former two-term Republican senator from Nebraska to replace Leon Panetta at the Pentagon as Secretary of Defense, but a coalition led by the Zionist lobby is mounting a smear campaign against Hagel. Why? It hopes to persuade Obama that he would be foolish to nominate Hagel because he is unlikely to be confirmed by a Senate in which many members are content to do Zionism’s bidding in order to protect their own backs.

I’ll get to what it is about Hagel’s record that troubles and even frightens the Zionist lobby in a moment, but first can we, please, get the terminology right. Almost everybody who speaks and writes about the Israel-Palestine conflict does not get it right. And that creates an obstacle to understanding.

The monster that controls Congress and ties any president’s hands on policy for dealing with Israel-Palestine is not the “Jewish lobby” and not the “Israel lobby.”

It is wrong to describe it as the Jewish lobby for two reasons.

One is that such a description implies that it represents and speaks for all Jews. It most certainly does not.

The other is that it’s not only Jews who make up the lobby. Another key element of it is composed of the “Bring on Armageddon” Christian fundamentalists.

It is wrong to describe it as the Israel lobby because such a description implies that it represents and speaks for all of Israel’s Jews and the nearly one quarter of its citizens who are Arabs. It most certainly does not.

The most accurate long description of the Zionist lobby would be that it is composed of those of all faiths and none who give and demand unconditional support for the Zionist (not Jewish) state of Israel right or wrong. In my view the most practical short form of that is Zionist lobby. (Some call it the “Likud lobby”. That was a case for doing so in the past, but today there are emerging fascist forces in Israel even further to the right than Likud, and the Zionist lobby speaks for them, too).

Even the term “pro-Israel” is an obstacle to understanding. When it is used without qualification, as it almost always is, it can mean either pro an Israel inside its borders as they were on the eve of the 1967 war, or pro an Israel in occupation of the West Bank (in defiance of international law) and laying siege to the Gaza Strip. Politicians who declare themselves to be “pro-Israel” should be asked which Israel they are pro.

So what is it about Hagel’s views that put him today at the temporary top of the Zionist lobby’s verbal hit-list?

First and foremost is his often stated view that the duty of the President and Congress is to put America’s own best interests first and not allow them to become subservient to Israel’s interests. He is firmly on the record with the statement, “I am an American senator, not an Israeli senator.”

In 2007 he informed the Arab American Institute that he had dropped his bid for the presidency because a pro-Israel donor had told him that if he wanted funding his support for Israel should be “automatic”.

A year later in a book by Aaron David Miller he was correctly quoted as saying “The Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people.” That enraged and still enrages the Zionist lobby and all who do its bidding, including Arizona senator John McCain who, thank goodness, didn’t make it to the White House when he ran against Obama.

McCain actually said: “I know of no Jewish lobby. I know there is strong support for Israel but I know of no Jewish lobby. I hope he (Hagel) will identify who that is.”

McCain wasn’t challenging Hagel’s imprecise terminology. He was asserting that there is no lobby organized by some Jewish Americans who give and demand unconditional support for all of Greater Israel’s policies and actions.

If Hagel is nominated for the post of Secretary of Defense, I think he would be well advised to respond to McCain’s challenge during his confirmation hearing. And I would have him do it with something like these words:

I was in error when I said the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people. That was an imprecise use of language on my part. I should have said the Zionist lobby intimidates a lot of people… Are you really saying, Senator McCain, that you know of no Zionist lobby which intimidates very many members of Congress and our presidents?

I also have a question for those including some here today who are seeking to demonize me. What is so objectionable about my stated view that the duty of the President and Congress is to put America’s own best interests first and not allow them to become subservient to Israel’s interests?

Hagel’s other past sins include his call for the U.S. to engage with Hamas and his stated view that there is no military solution to Iran’s nuclear problem. (I can almost hear America’s military chiefs saying behind closed doors, “That’s the man we want and need as our political master.”)

In its efforts to demonize Hagel the Zionist lobby and its associates are not having things all their own away.

Richard Armitage, a former deputy secretary of state in the Republican administration of George “Dubya” Bush, said he didn’t think the attacks on Hagel were fair. He went on:  “I’ve known him quite closely for the last 15 years and I’ve never heard him utter any anti-Semitic statement. If he used the term ‘Jewish lobby,’ that’s a poor choice of words and I’m sure he’ll speak for himself on that… I happen to know the guy. He’s not owned by anybody, he happens to think for himself, and this apparently causes some fear in some cases. He’s got an unerring bullshit sensor, he’s got real stones (I presume that means balls in English-English) and he doesn’t mind telling you what his opinion is, which will stand him in very good stead in the Pentagon if the president nominates him.”

Another who has come to Hagel’s defense is Brent Scowcroft, the former air force general and Republican national security adviser. He said: “Senator Hagel is one of the most well-respected and thoughtful voices on both foreign and domestic policy. At an uncertain time in America – with a significant debt burden, a polarized Congress, and a host of challenges facing the international community, I am confident Senator Hagel will provide a vibrant, no-nonsense voice of logic and leadership to the United States.”

Obama’s decision, expected very soon, about whether or not to nominate Hagel will give us the first significant indication since his re-election of whether or not he is going to continue to dance to Zionism’s tune or, as Hagel might put it, continue to be intimidated by its lobby.

Related articles:

 

Alan Hart

Alan Hart is a former ITN and BBC Panorama foreign correspondent who has covered wars and conflicts wherever they were taking place in the world and specialized in the Middle East. His Latest book Zionism: The Real Enemy of the Jews, Vol. 1: The False Messiah, is a three-volume epic in its American edition. He blogs on AlanHart.com.

Related Posts:

The views expressed herein are the views of the author exclusively and not necessarily the views of VNN or any other VNN authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors or partners and technicians. Notices

Posted by on 4:06 am, With 0 Reads, Filed under Americas, Asia, Bahrain, China, Egypt, Europe, Iran, Israel, Middle East, Oceana, Oman, Palestine, Syria, United Kingdom, World News, Yemen. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments Closed

One Response to "Alan Hart : Obama’s Hagel test"

  1. Reality Check  December 22, 2012 at 11:44 pm

    Why sanctions on Palestinians and Iran and NOT Israel? A wake-up call for Americans…
    *IRAN SANCTIONS ACT of 1996 Sponsor: Ileana Ross-Lehtinen (Jewish)
    *S.Res. 185, Sponsor: Sen. Ben Cardin (Jewish) states that if the Palestinian Authority goes ahead with its plan to seek unilateral recognition as a state, the US would suspend its financial aid.
    *H.Res. 268, Sponsor: House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (Jewish) The resolution called upon the administration to announce that it would “veto any resolution on Palestinian statehood that comes before the United Nations Security Council.
    *H.Res. 4133, Sponsor: Eric Cantor (Jewish) United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act of 2012
    *H.RES.568, Sponsor: Ileana Ross-Lehtinen (Jewish) preventing the Government of Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability.
    *H.R. 2194, Sponsor: Howard Berman (Jewish) Comprehensive Iran Sanctions, Accountability, and Divestment Act of 2010
    *H.R. 1905, Sponsor: Ileana Ross-Lehtinen (Jewish) Howard Berman (J e w) will place virtually all of Iran’s energy, financial, and transportation sectors under U.S. sanction. Companies conducting business with Iran in these sectors face losing access to U.S. markets; impose sanctions designed to prevent Iran from repatriating any proceeds from its oil sales, thus depriving Iran of 80 percent of its hard currency earnings and half of the funds to support its national budget; impose tough new sanctions on the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC), the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC) and Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC); target Iran’s use of barter transactions to bypass sanctions, the provision of insurance to Iran’s energy sector, and the provision of specialized financial messaging services to the Central Bank of Iran.
    *Steve Simon (Jewish) National Security Council Middle East Desk
    *Dan Shapiro (Jewish) former Head of Middle East Desk at the National Security Council now ambassador to Israel
    *Robert Einhorn (Jewish) Special Advisor for Non-Proliferation and Arms Control
    *Dennis Ross (Jewish) Special Advisor for the Gulf (Iran) and Southwest Asia to the Secretary of State
    *Colin Kahl(Jewish) Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East (Current National Security Advisor)
    *James N. Miller(Jewish) Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy
    *Lee Feinstein (Jewish) Foreign Policy Advisor
    *Mara Rudman (Jewish) Foreign Policy Advisor
    *Eric Lynn (Jewish) Middle East Policy Advisor
    *William Burns (Jewish) Current Deputy Secretary of State
    *James B. Steinberg (Jewish) Former Deputy Secretary of State
    *Stuart Levey (Jewish) Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence
    *David Cohen (Jewish) Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence

    *The Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs headed by Assistant Secretary Jeffrey Feltman (Jewish),deals with U.S. foreign policy and U.S. diplomatic relations with Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt,Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Palestinian Territories, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen. Regional policy issues that NEA handles include Iraq, Middle East peace, terrorism and weapons of mass destruction, and political and economic reform.
    *Hannah Rosenthal (Jewish) State Dept Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism
    *Cass Sunstein (Jewish) Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Obama administration
    *Wendy Sherman (Jewish) Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs
    *Victoria Nuland (Jewish) (career Foreign Service officer) and spokesperson for the United States Department of State. (and married to Jewish neocon Robert Kagan co-founder of PNAC the ideological manifesto for the Iraq war)
    *Diane Feinstein (Jewish) Chairwoman Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
    *Michael Ratney (Jewish) U.S. Consul General in Jerusalem
    *Daniel Rubinstein (Jewish), former Consul General Jerusalem
    *Michael Chertoff (Jewish) former Homeland Security chief
    *Daniel Benjamin (Jewish) head of the State Department’s Bureau of Counter-Terrorism
    *Ronald Klain (Jewish) Former Biden Chief of Staff
    *Rahm Emanuel (Jewish) former Obama chief of staff and former Israeli Defense Force soldier
    *Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Jewish) Democratic National Committee Chairman
    *David Axelrod (Jewish) ran the Obama re-election campaign
    (This is only a very partial list. Do the arithmetic yourself)

You must be logged in to post a comment Login


TOP 50 READ ARTICLES THIS WEEK