Book Review: The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy February 24, 2015 23:00The volume they have co-authored, The Israel Lobby, is a comprehensive study of the staggering damage to U.S. national interest by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and other pro-Israel advocacy groups. In it, they set a new standard of political bravery by proposing that further U.S. aid be conditioned on Israel withdrawing from Arab territory seized in June 1967 and on its “willingness to conform its policies to American interests.” During the past 40 years, no president or serious presidential candidate of either party has hinted—on or off the record—that even minor conditions should be put on aid to Israel. In my close experience in the thicket of Middle East politics during those years, I could count on the fingers of one hand the candidates for any office that daring. The professors are brave pioneers.
Book Review: Guilty: Hollywood’s Verdict on Arabs After 9/11 February 20, 2015 15:00According to Shaheen, author of the bestseller Reel Bad Arabs: How Hollywood Vilifies a People,“Arabs remain the most maligned group in the history of Hollywood. Malevolent stereotypes equating Islam and Arabs with violence have endured for more than a century...Arab=Muslim=Godless Enemy.” In fact, Shaheen argues, the entertainment industry’s vilifying of Arabs and Muslims helped prepare the American public, as well as our fighting men and women, to go to war in the Middle East.
Saviors and Survivors: Darfur, Politics, and the War on Terror February 17, 2015 23:00Putting the Darfur conflict in historical context, Mamdani asks a revealing question: Why was the world silent about far more deaths in conflicts in Rwanda, Angola, and the Congo, or deaths caused by AIDs and malaria on that continent, while Darfur became a tragedy of epic proportions?
Book Review: Quicksand: America's Pursuit of Power in the Middle East February 14, 2015 19:30Unlike his works on European history that were warmly welcomed by the media, Quicksand has been ignored. It is not hard to figure out why. Clearly it is his shredding of popular myths about the establishment of Israel, his clear sympathy for the Palestinians, and his exposure of the workings of the Zionist lobby going back to the administration of President Woodrow Wilson, all of which Wawro expresses in terms that would ordinarily have Alan Dershowitz, the ADL's Abe Foxman, and the American Jewish Committee's David Harris frothing at the mouth. That they are not, at least not yet in public, is a sign of Quicksand's potential to damage Israel's image and their own before a broad American audience.
Book Review: Advise & Dissent: Memoirs of an Ex-Senator January 26, 2015 22:30Jim’s Advise is the autobiography of a brilliant man born 82 years ago into an immigrant family of Lebanese/Syrian descent in Wood, South Dakota. Conditions there at the time were hardscrabble, with American Indians being at the bottom of the barrel. In his early days Jim, like the others, looked down on them, but a social consciousness erupted one day. A bunch of boys were bullying another boy from an unusually poor family, the Zinemas, whose mother was overweight and eccentric.
Book Review: Brokers of Deceit: How the US Has Undermined Peace in the Middle East January 24, 2015 17:30Columbia University history professor Rashid Khalidi begins his latest book with a quote from George Orwell on the corruption of language and thought employed by the United States and Israel when dealing with the Arab-Israeli dispute. An example is the word “terrorism.” In the American/Israeli context it applies exclusively to the actions of Arab militants, never to those of the militaries of Israel and the United States. Other such Orwellian terms include “security,” “self-determination,” “autonomy,” “honest broker” and “peace process.”
Book Review: Zionism Unsettled: A Congregational Study Guide January 20, 2015 03:30The Israel/Palestine Mission Network (IPMN) of the Presbyterian Church (USA) has generated a tsunami of controversy with the recent publication of Zionism Unsettled: A Congregational Study Guide (available from the AET Bookstore), a lavishly illustrated 74-page book accompanied by a DVD, which provides a wealth of information and provocative questions for discussion in book clubs and church and synagogue groups. Among the savage condemnations of this book is the review by Rabbis Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein on the Fox News website which bears the title “Why is U.S. church sending Jews to the trash-heap of history?” It accuses the authors of “poisoning attitudes among its members toward their Jewish neighbors,” and exhorts members of PCUSA to abandon their church.
Book Review: Against Our Better Judgment: How the U.S. was Used to Create Israel January 13, 2015 02:00
That, as Alison Weir has made clear, is Israel’s situation. In Against Our Better Judgment, Weir writes with great clarity how the Zionist movement was able to move politicians, both in America and in England, to legalize a most illegal act—that of stealing an entire nation—and crying foul when those from whom it was stolen complained, then tried to retake the land.