Zionist Power in American Politics- part one


 

Bended Knees: Zionist Power in American Politics

By James Petras


http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24236.htm

“Obama want to see a stop to settlements: Not some settlements, not outposts, not natural growth exceptions”. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, May 2009

“What the prime minister has offered in specifics of a restraint on the policy of settlements…..is unprecedented, there has never been a precondition, it’s always been an issue within negotiations.” Hillary Clinton, BBC, November 1, 2009 (my emphasis)

“The US administration understands what we have always said … that the real obstacle to negotiations is the Palestinians (calling for a freeze on settlements)”. Israeli Minister of Science and Technology Daniel Hershkowitz, November 1, 2009 (my addition).

“America, stop sucking up to Israel!” Gideon Levy, Israeli journalist, Haaretz, November 1, 2009.

“US Zionists are sticking it to America, 24/7”, Anonymous Staff Official, Washington D. C., October 31, 2009.

December 21, 2009 "Information Clearing House" — The
discussion of Zionist Power Configuration (ZPC) in the US political
system revolves around several essential issues, including:

  1. The claims by the ZPC that it represents Jewish opinion and values as well as its authority to speak for the interests of the American people.

  2. Measuring the power of the ZPC and determining its influence over policy, appointments and political institutions.

  3. The
    question of whether the ZPC is a legitimate part of the US political
    system, another lobby, or something very different, an unregistered
    agent of a foreign power (Israel).

  4. The scope and depth of the ZPC influence in US politics beyond the focus on its “lobbying” in Washington on a “single issue”.

  5. The
    organizational weapons and techniques utilized by the ZPC to maximize
    influence and deny voice and influence to critics of Israel and itself.

  6. The
    similarities of the organizational linkages of the Israel-Zionist
    relationship to the Russian – Stalinist Communist Parties of the 1930’s.


Method: Public Records, Ethnic Neutral Sources and Citations

The case against the Zionist Power Configuration is based on the open record
of publications, speeches, articles, interviews and sources available
to the general public (and any interested reader). Many facts and data
are drawn from Zionist and Israeli sources as well as mainstream
publications and writings by critical journalists and analysts.1 We do not privilege
the statements by Jews, whether they are critics or supporters of the
State of Israel, as most “progressive” writers do. The pursuit of truth
is not an “ethnic science”, an approach that smacks of Nazi and Zionist
racial theories. Indeed, nothing reveals the extreme Zionist power or
cultural hegemony over the debate on Israel and American Zionism so
much as the constant reliance, reference and citation of the “Jewish”
authorship of critical articles, even when publications by non-Jews are
better documented, of earlier publication, and better argued.

The ethnic (Jewish) label attached to writings and intellectual and political activity is selectively
applied: the ethnic labels are applied to ‘positive outcomes’ as part
of a general campaign exalting the “superiority” of the “race”; and
disregarded in the face of ‘negative outcomes’ and activities (e.g.
financial swindles, Russian oligarchs, espionage agents). In fact the
“double standard” is buttressed by savage attacks by the ZPC on those
who, following the ethnic labeling tradition, actually mention the
Jewish background of mediocrities and war criminals as well as peace
and justice advocates.

We will begin by questioning and challenging the representativeness of the ZPC in the United States today.


Zionists and the Jewish Communities in America

The 51 Presidents of the Major American Jewish Organization (PMAJO) claim to speak for all Jews in the US.2
A major study in the north Boston region found that less than 25% of
Jews belong to a synagogue, fewer (10%) contribute to the Jewish
Federation and over 50% do not accept rabbinical Zionist precepts
against inter-marriage with non-Jews.3 According to the Jewish Telegraph Agency
(12/4/2009) conservative synagogues have declined by almost 25% from
800 to 650 over the past decade. Even most striking many prominent
individuals who may be of Jewish parentage, no longer consider
themselves “Jews” despite frequent claims by Zionists that their
achievements are a product or a result of their being “Jewish”. Near
majorities of young people of Jewish ancestry do not identify with
Judaism and are critical or indifferent to Zionist appeals for Israel.
They have no involvement in Jewish centered civic activities.4
A small, but vocal, group of Jews are organized and active critics of
the entire Zionist apparatus, rejecting the idea of Israel as an
exclusive ethno-religious state and supporting a secular democratic
republic in Palestine. 5 In addition several Orthodox Jewish sects view the ‘state of Israel’ as a form of blasphemy and call for its destruction.6

The
“51” misrepresent their actual numbers and claim to speak for 6 million
US Jews. At best they may speak for less than half of the imputed
population and even then their support waxes and wanes according to the
issue, the timing and the place and varies in intensity. The power of
the “51” is not a result of its representativeness of the Jewish community at large, but the location
of its followers in the power structure and the intensity and
quasi-religious fervor of their activists. Their political power
resides in their singular forces in pursuit of the interests of the
State of Israel and the control and influence in media; their
nationwide networks and the wealth and financial power of contributors.
Their capacity to browbeat apathetic Jews into making contributions and
lending support adds organizational muscle. Their willing use of force,
money and media slander intimidates any and all critics, including
dissident politicians, media, journalists and professors.7

At
most there are probably no more than 500,000 Jews who actively back the
“51” – but what a half million! Given the low level of political
participation of the US population in general, the relative low
saliency of Middle East issues to most Americans and the one-sided
pro-Israel mass media propaganda, which misinforms the public, the
Zionist zealots have little competition. They have a free hand in
penetrating and influencing political, social and cultural institutions
in line with the policies dictated by their Israeli influenced leaders
among the “51”.

The issue of the limited representativeness of the Zionist organization must be separated from the exercise of power.
By leveraging non-Zionist, non-Jewish civic organizations, political
institutions, pension funds, trade unions etc. the ZPC magnifies its
power beyond its numbers8.

The limited representativeness
of the “51” is compensated by the silence and apathy of the majority of
Jews and non-Jewish/Jews, who either are not willing to challenge ZPC
claims or are immersed in private concerns, careers or other unrelated
civic issues.

The ‘51’s hundreds of thousands of activists are strategically placed in institutions, as well as geographically,
with a centralized command capable of mobilizing money, media attention
and political leverage in any priority, political, cultural or social
arena9.
The ‘51’ organizations are not merely a “lobby” in the sense of having
paid officials operating to influence congressional votes.10
They include religious, civic, charitable, ideological, cultural and
social organizations unified and unconditionally committed to following
the zigzags of Israeli political directives11.
The actual structure resembles a ‘power configuration’ that reaches
from small chapters in municipalities to statewide confederations, as
well as national organizations, each with its own budget, its own
ideological watchdogs and appropriate levels of power.

The
power for Israel is exercised by elected and appointed Zionist
officials, especially those in positions that have any relevance to
Israeli interests. These “interests” include direct aid to Israel,
sanctions and wars against Israel’s Middle East and Asian adversaries,
American pension fund investments in Israel, boycotts of companies
trading with Israeli-designated adversary countries and many other
strategic concerns.

The key to the power of the Zionist Power Configuration is that it is a mass grassroots organization,
bolstered by the financial support by scores of millionaires and dozens
of billionaires and a complicit mass media. These political resources
translate into tremendous leverage over the far more numerous
non-Zionist electorates, the mass media spectators and the upwardly
mobile politicians.

The ZPC illustrates clearly how “numbers” in the abstract do not count,12
especially in a permeable electoral system like the US, where money,
organization, discipline and ethno-religious fanaticism define the
boundaries, issues and acceptable policies.


The ZPC as Foreign Agents of the Israeli State

The recent decision of the US Congress to repudiate (HR 867) the findings of Israeli war crimes in the official Final Report of the United Nations’ Fact Finding Mission on the 2009 Gaza Conflict by a vote of 344 – 36 is a measure of the power of the ZPC.13 The report, also known as the “Goldstone Report”,
after its principle author Justice Richard Goldstone, was released on
September 15, 2009, amid a carefully orchestrated campaign to discredit
its findings and its authors. What is even more important than the US
Congressional vote of condemnation is the fact that the campaign was
publically ordered from Israel, directed by the Presidents of the ‘51’
and obediently and enthusiastically carried out by several hundred
thousand Zionist activists, throughout the country. The ‘51’ and the
mass of Zionist zealots were openly defending Israeli state terror and
crimes against humanity. Their defense of war crimes never evoked a
second thought. What mattered was their ability to pressure, threaten,
cajole and promise future funds to Congressional representatives in
order to secure their vote against Justice Goldstone. Blind obedience
to Israeli dictates was evident in the fact that many Congresspersons
proudly confessed to never having even read the Goldstone Report
and that none dared question the egregious fabrications, which its two
uber-Zionist Congressional sponsors, (Representatives H.L. Berman,
D-California and G.L. Ackermann, D-New York), of the House Resolution
867, concocted.14
The US Congress, in fact, almost unanimously rejected the eminent
Justice Goldstone’s request to present his findings in person.

In the UN National Assembly, the Zionists were able to leverage the US to vote against the Goldstone Report,
which in turn secured the vote of several Eastern European client
states, insignificant island dependencies and the predictable Western
European “Allies”. This amounted to a total of 18 votes against the 114 UN members who endorsed the Report’s
thorough documentation of Israeli war crimes and state terrorism, an
endorsement which represented over 80% of the world’s population.15

The ZPC is powerful but not omnipotent.
It controls the US Congress and Executive and has decisive influence in
the mass media, but there are important fissures in the monolith, as a
number of Jewish organizations and individuals, revolted by Israel’s
mass killings in Gaza and the ZPC unconditional support, have spoken
out in support of the Goldstone Report.16
More importantly, major national trade/union federations in Canada,
Ireland, Great Britain, France and Italy, along with numerous human
rights organizations, support a global boycott and disinvestment
campaign against Israeli products.17
Judicial processes are proceeding in various European countries to
arrest and put on trial top Israeli officials involved in the Gaza
massacre.18

The
United States, under the tutelage of the ZPC, remains as the center of
Israeli power and the sole reliable backer of Israeli war aims in the
Middle East, especially with regard to Iran. The power of Israel over
Washington’s Middle East policy is in direct relation to the strategic
influence of the ZPC. The denial of the power of the ZPC by seemingly “progressive” and “leftist
writers and journalists has been one of the principal obstacles
undermining efforts to effectively counter US government support for
Israeli war crimes, the expansion of colonial settlements in the West
Bank and the military/sanctions policies toward Iran.19


Israeli Power over US Middle Policy: The Centrality of the ZPC.

The
manifestations of Israeli power over the US are public, visible,
outrageous and unprecedented in the annals of US foreign relations.20 Israeli power is wielded directly through its subordinated political arm, the ZPC, which in turn facilitates the direct intervention of the Israeli state in the internal politics of the US. Let us examine several crucial empirical indicators of Israeli power in the US.

On
November 9, 2009, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed
the mass based Jewish Federation (JF) of North America General Assembly
and thanked US President Obama and the US Congress for repudiating the Goldstone Report.
The Israeli head of state then told his US followers to increase their
efforts to influence US policy to “stop Teheran from realizing its
nuclear ambitions”.21
The previous day, Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, Michael
Oren, told the same Jewish Federation to “press for sanctions on Iran
and condemn the findings of the United Nations commission on Gaza.22
Speaking as a tribal chieftain dictating orders to the loyal overseas
followers, Oren stated, “Our strength derives from the belief that we
have a right to independence in our tribal land, the land of Israel…”23
Israel is the only country that can intervene in the internal politics
of the US, counting on a powerful political organization, to shape US
policy to serve its state interests.

By
drawing on the now discredited myth that American Jews’ tribal ancestry
is rooted in Israel, rather than Central Asia, Khazaran, reinforces the
idea that Israel and not the United States – is the true ‘homeland’ of
American Jews and therefore it is their right and duty to obey the
dictates of the Israeli state.24
Each year dozens of Israeli state officials visit the US and directly
intervene in US political debates, congressional hearings and executive
policy making – with nary a whisper of protest, let alone censure from
the US State Department. Any other country’s officials who so
flagrantly intervene in US politics would be declared persona non grata and expelled from the country. In contrast, because of the power of the ZPC, Israeli civilians and military officials are invited
to intervene in US policy making, to set the agenda for numerous
Zionist officials in and out of public office and to bludgeon and
praise those who criticize or oppose Israeli dictates.25
The repeated public statements by Israeli officials that the primary
loyalty of American Jews is to Israel and its policies – in other
words, that they should act as a fifth column for Israel – is
incompatible with the notion of citizenship everywhere except for this
small group in the US.26
One could imagine the outcry (and brutal reprisals) if any political
leader from a Moslem country called on their co-religionists to pursue
its state interests. What is striking then about the ZPC is that it openly and publically organizes meetings, follows orders and pursues policies dictated by Israeli public officials and yet is not registered as a foreign agent, let alone prosecuted for acting, by its own admission, on behalf of a foreign power.27


The ZPC: Lobby or Unregistered Foreign Agents?

Based
on its organizational structure and political aims, the pro-Israel
social-political configuration cannot be reduced to a common “lobby”.
The mass activist organizational structure encompassing and penetrating
civic, political, cultural institutions and media outlets resembles a
power configuration that works within and outside of Washington to
shape political decisions relevant to Israel.28
Equally important it plays a major role in shaping the opinions and
behavior of public opinion and civic society organizations. Secondly,
unlike American lobbies, it acts to shape US foreign policy in the interest of
a foreign military power, up to and including decisions on promoting
war and imposing sanctions against Israel’s opponents, prejudicing the
lives and security of thousands of American working people and
taxpayers. Thirdly, the term “lobby” does not ordinarily encompass the
virulent repressive activities pursued by the ZPC against critical
writers, cultural figures, academics and others in American society who
question Israeli policy. The ZPC not only acts a foreign agent for
Israel today, but has been openly doing so over fifty years.29 In the 1960’s the Justice Department attempted to enforce the 1938 Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA)
against the current American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)’s
predecessor, the American Zionist Council (AZC), but was blocked by
pro-Israel politicians.

The ZPC no only publically gives unconditional support to Israeli policy but engages in espionage
on behalf of Israel as several prominent members of the ZPC and Mossad
have testified. One of America’s leading experts on Israel’s “lobby”
Grant Smith, who has amassed a vast archive of declassified official US
documents on Israeli-Zionist activities in the US, cites numerous cases
in which AIPAC purloined internal classified government documents in
order to further Israeli trade privileges n the 1980’s.30
A leader of the Zionist Organization of America was implicated in the
illegal transfer of US government uranium to Israel in 1956. In 2005
Steve Rosen and Keith Weissman, leaders in AIPAC, admitted to receiving
a confidential document relating to US-Iran policy, transmitting it to
an Israeli embassy official.31
From 1979 to 1985, senior US Army Weapons Engineer Ben-ami Kadish, an
American Zionist and former member of the fanatical Jewish Haganah
militia in British Mandate Palestine, handed critical confidential
documents on an enormous number of US weapons systems over to agents
from the Israeli embassy.32
These were then believed to have been passed to the Soviet Union in
order to influence their policy on immigration to Israel. Under the
influence of the Zionist-infested Justice Department, Kadish got off
with a $50,000 fine and not a single day in jail – for handing scores
of crucial US military secrets to Israel.

Ben-ami
Kadish’s fellow spy, American Zionist Jonathan Pollard, shared the same
Mossad handler in the 1980s. Pollard, who worked as an analyst for US
Naval intelligence, provided the Israelis with crate-loads of
classified military and intelligence documents filled with top secret
information on US policy in the Middle East, weapons systems, US agents
in the Soviet Union and any and all relevant strategic objects of
interest to his Israeli handlers.33

On
October 29, 2009, the Justice Department charged Stewart David Nozette,
a Defense Department scientist, with attempting to transmit classified
information to an Israeli Mossad agent. Nozette, an American Zionist,
did not act strictly out of tribal loyalties to the Jewish State. Like
Pollard, he asked for money and an Israeli passport (Boston Globe 10/20/09). According to former Mossad agent Victor Ostrtovsky, the spy agency recruits thousands of overseas Zionist sayanim
(Hebrew for ‘helpers’) who “must be 100 percent Jewish” for Israeli
Mossad operations, which may include terrorism. (See Ostrovsky, By Way of Deception
(New York: St Martin’s Press 1990, pp 86 – 88). In 2001 Fox News
investigative reporter, Carl Cameron, reported that scores of Israeli
spies were rounded up and deported in the aftermath of 9/11, including
five Mossad agents videoing the World Trade Center bombing.34

Industrial
and political spying is not uncommon among states, even between allies.
What is striking is that representatives of an organized
ethno-religious group, the major American Zionist organizations, have
expressed sympathy and solidarity with such spies as Ben-ami Kadish,
Jonathan Pollard and others, even defending their acts of espionage as
a significant contribution to US – Israeli relations.35
The implication, or better still, the explication for this perverse
thinking is that for the leading American Zionist organizations, spying
for Israel, is part and parcel of their primary loyalty to the Jewish
state. Zionist primary loyalty to Israel is not confined to mainline
American Jewish organizations.

During the Rosen-Weissman trial, numerous prominent Jewish leftist (including Democracy Now’s Amy Goodman) publicly defended the procuring of confidential documents and their handing over to a foreign (Israeli) government as a matter of “free speech” and “freedom of the press”.36
Rosen in his civil suit again his firing by AIPAC (to deflect FBI
investigators) claimed that his dealing of US government documents to
Israeli officials was “common practice” AIPAC officials.37

Top
Zionist leaders in the Bush and Obama administration have a long
history of work for and with Israel, including in some cases activity,
which has caused them to lose security clearances and/or to come under
investigation.38
Two top Pentagon officials in the Bush administration, Former
Undersecretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz and Assistant Secretary of
Defense, Douglas Feith are cases in point. Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm
Emmanuel spent time in the Israeli armed forces and has long been
suspected of ties to Mossad.39
Stuart Levey, a top US Treasury Department official involving in
enforcing sanctions against Iran, has spent nearly a decade in close
collaboration with MOSSAD, a point he brags about.40
During the Bush (Jr.) Presidency, non-Zionist officials in the Pentagon
and CIA complained of being sidelined by top Zionist officials, who set
up their own intelligence offices run by their own fellow Zionist
policymakers.41 Wolfowitz and Feith set up the Pentagon’s Office of Special Plans
run by Abram Shulsky. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski, an official in the
Pentagon at the time, complained of being marginalized and supplanted
by Israeli officers who had unfettered access to the highest Pentagon
officials.42 The November 2007 United States National Intelligence Estimate Report
(NIE) on the Iranian nuclear program was savaged by all the major
Jewish American organizations, and their cohorts in Congress and the
Executive branch because the report concluded that Iran had suspended
its nuclear weapons development since 2003.43
The major Zionist organizations and their supporters in the US
government favored Israeli intelligence disinformation claiming an
active nuclear weapons program that threatened US security. In short
order the NIE report, prepared by 16 major US Government
intelligence agencies, was pushed aside and US policy followed the lead
of the Zionist-backed Israeli claims of a “secret” Iranian weapons
program despite the absence of any hard data.


Leveraging Power

The
key to Zionist power in shaping US policy toward the Mid-East,
Arab-Muslim relations and toward “third parties” affecting Israeli
policy is the combined influence of Zionists in executive
offices (Treasury, State, National Security, Pentagon, etc.) and
Congress, especially leading committees relevant to Israeli interests,
and as well as the mass organizations in civil society (the ‘51’ major
American Jewish organizations) and Zionist control over the mass media.44
Zionist power and control in these crucial areas spreads out into
influencing academic activity, including the repression of Israeli
critics, the censoring of publications, manipulation of professional
societies, trade unions and state and union pension funds, whose
members are overwhelmingly neither Jewish nor Zionist.

The result is that the Zionist Power Configurations automatic and unquestioning support
for the crimes and treason, including Zionist espionage for Israel
within the US and the universally-condemned Israel war crimes, goes
uncontested in the mass media, the Congress, and even the small
political and literary journals on the ‘Left’. This uncontested support
of espionage by foreign power acting through public organizations is
unique in US history. In the past organizations acting as surrogates
for a foreign power were condemned, ostracized, suppressed, prosecuted
and subject to mass public outrage. It is a “tribute” to the power of
ZPC that none of that occurs today. As a footnote to history, it is the
first time that practically all Marxist journals, monthlies,
bi-monthlies, quarterlies and annuals and their leading contributors
have avoided a serious critique of the ZPC. On the contrary, the sparse
articles which purport to deal with Middle East policies cover-up the
role of the ZPC in shaping US policy.45

There
is evidence that, even in the most radical publications of “critical
writing”, fellow traveling editors, who otherwise claim
“internationalist” and “working class” allegiances, are not willing to
confront the ZPC war makers who promote wars in the Middle East, funded
by American taxpayers and fought by 99.9% non Jewish/non-Zionist working class Americans in uniform.


The Interlocking Directorate: Establishing Zionist Hegemony

Several critical analysts have identified some of the key issues and institutions under Zionist influence.46 Some have identified AIPAC as an influential pro-Israel lobby. Others have noted the pro-Israel bias of the mass media.47 A very few have even identified Zionist predominance in media ownership.48

Others,
especially during the Bush presidency, noted the influence of key
Zionists in the Pentagon, especially their role in promoting the US
invasion of Iraq.49 The narrow focus of their otherwise valuable critiques fails to account for structural continuities over time and place: the long-term, large-scale presence of unconditional Israel Fisters
across administrations especially over the past two decades. Moreover,
while case studies of Zionist influence over specific policy issues,
such as the recent Congressional repudiation of the Goldstone Report
and support for Israeli war crimes, are useful, the larger theoretical
and empirical phenomenon of the growing chain of issues over ever more extended policy areas of interest to Israel (and therefore the ZPC) is ignored.50 In a word, the problem of ZPC power in the US is not confined to a single issue lobby.
This narrow approach obfuscates the systemic role of the ZPC in
effectively disenfranchising the great majority of the American wage
and salaried people (at the expense of their living standards),
increasing war taxes for the middle class and blocking investment
opportunities for corporate America in countries designated (by Israel)
as “security threats” (adversaries of Israeli colonial expansion).

The
career patterns of leading Zionists include movers from business (Wall
Street, Corporate law firms) to government; another pattern involves
Zionist academics who move to the executive branch and then on to
corporate or Zionist think tanks. Others follow a career combining
academic – propagandist – journalist policy consultant positions, often
prominent on the television political ‘talk’ shows. The leading media
moguls combine roles as CEO’s – propagandists – and Israel advocates.
The overlap of career positions creates a network of shared ideologies, defined by ‘what is best for Israel’ (Israel First).
The shared “world view” creates a cohesive group that sets the
boundaries of US policy debate. Congressional behavior, Executive
policy makers and intellectual discourse are confined by these
ZPC-determined parameters. In effect pro-Israel career patterns and
projections of power have established a kind of Judeo-Zionist hegemony
of US public life.


Ethno-sizing Truth

One
of the extreme manifestations of Zionist-Jewish hegemony is found in
the fear and trepidation with which critics of Israeli policy approach
the issue. Most seek to “Judaize” any criticism, instead of
seeking and citing truth, facts or analyses on their own merits. They
support their statements by citing Israeli sources and Jewish
writers, even if earlier non-Jewish, non-Israeli writers and analysts
have raised the same issues and may have provided a more systematic and
consequential critique.51 This “tactic” of seeking to play off critical Jews against the ZPC and Israel is debatable
if not counter-productive, regressive and serves to re-enforce the
pervasive fear of the ZPC. The proponents of this approach, assuming
they are not ignorant of non-Jewish critics, argue that by citing the
Jewish background of the critics of Israel, they disarm the ZPC charge
of “anti-Semitism”. They further argue that by putting an ethnic ‘spin’
or ethnicizing’ the critique they are responding to “Jewish
sensibilities” and are more likely to get a hearing from Jews and their
sympathizers.52

These arguments are plausible but
deeply flawed. Committed Zionists, meaning the entire ZPC, dismiss
Jewish and non-Jewish critics with equal ferocity: the former as
“self-hating Jews”, the latter as “anti-Semites”. Sacrificing truth and
principled criticism to shield “Jewish sensibilities” means refraining
from challenging their residual tribal sympathies to a ‘Zion-centric’
view of the world. If the central problem is Zionist hegemony of US
culture and especially foreign policy in the Middle East (and wherever
else Israel dictates), it ill behooves us to pander to amorphous ‘special sensitivities’ of the few Jewish dissidents who demand ethnically-based critiques.

.

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