February 12, 2008

The boundless arrogance of the Lobby is a sight to see, but we don’t really get to view it in its full glory—except when they travel to Israel, where they can and do speak rather more frankly, as the head of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Malcolm Hoenlein, did recently. At a press conference in Jerusalem, Hoenlein whined:

“All the talk about change, but without defining what that change should be is an opening for all kind of mischief. Of course Obama has plenty of Jewish supporters and there are many Jews around him. But there is a legitimate concern over the zeitgeist around the campaign.”

Any talk of change scares the Lobby, of course, since our current foreign policy of mindless obeisence to Israeli interests over and above our own is threatened by any alteration of the status quo: and, of course, anything less than unconditional support to Tel Aviv would be a hate crime of Hitlerian proportions.

Notice how gingerly Hoenlein walks around what he’s obviously trying to say and means to say: Oh, of course Obama isn’t a bigot, why he’s crawled before AIPAC on his belly and even repudiated the Mearsheimer/Walt book—but the suspicion remains, according to Hoenlein, hanging over his head. And there it will remain, rest assured, like a sword of Damocles: the minute Obama gets out of line, believe you me, the Lobby will stop with the sly innuendo and start with the outright smears.


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