Now in a work of major importance, Mearsheimer and Walt deepen and expand their argument and confront recent developments in Lebanon and Iran. They describe the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the United States provides to Israel and argues that this support cannot be fully explained on either strategic or moral grounds.
This exceptional relationship is due largely to the political influence of a loose coalition of individuals and organizations that actively work to shape U.S. foreign policy in a pro-Israel direction. This lobby has a far-reaching impact on America's posture throughout the Middle East in Iraq, Syria, Iran, and Lebanon, and toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and, the authors contend, it has encouraged policies profoundly damaging to both America's national interests and Israel's long-term security.
The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is certain to widen the debate at a time when there is no more urgent issue than America's role in the Middle East.
©2007 John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt; (P)2007 Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC
This book exposes all of the common myths that pro-Israel supporters use to justify massive, uncritical U.S. support and aid to Israel, namely:
Israel as a "strategic" ally- in fact the opposite is true, all-out support for Israel jeopardizes our national security, and erodes our credibility on the world stage. Yet no major American candidate will ever speak a word of criticism against Israel for fear of alienating or offending the Israel lobby and major campaign contributors. The authors correctly argue that we need to come to grips with the fact that what is good for Israel is not always good for the U.S.
The book's central idea is that the "war for oil" is just spin and smokescreen: the real reasons for war in Iraq, and increased antagonism against the peaceful nation of Iran, are the interests and security of Israel. They meticulously document the public statements of record made by various individuals and groups, and illustrate that the oil lobby was almost totally silent on the issue of the Iraq invasion, but the "Israel Lobby" was vociferously beating the war drum. The sheer size and scope of the Lobby, the staggering funding they provide to both Republican and Democrat coffers, is rarely or never discussed in the mainstream media. Its like the elephant in your living room that everyone pretends not the notice. Those who claim - like Noam Chomsky - that Israel is a U.S. satellite state miss the obvious: it is the other way around. As Ariel Sharon once infamously quipped: "Washington is Likud occupied territory."
For those that view this whole topic as anti-semitic, this is hogwash. Israel is a nation, not a religion or a race. The authors spend a good deal of the book pre-emptively defending themselves against the absurd charge of "anti-semite!" and document their argument with scientific precision. Knowing full well they will be attacked by the considerable weight of the Lobby, the authors were careful to omit all conjecture and speculation, and stick to publicly available facts. Very well narrated. A MUST READ/LISTEN!
It is a long book! So it is not to faint hearted.
If there is one thing I will have to criticise the authors about is the fact that they feel they must apologise for their discoveries and their statement, they feel they must preface every word in stating that they are committed to the "survival of Israel", lets we think that they are anti-Semitic bigots, hell raisers, idiots, that they do not realise the importance and the greatness of Israel.
And that fact alone should show us the reach and the power of the lobby, that made sure that a single voice of moderation within the recent administration's foreign policy adviser be rejected on the ground that : "it will give an unbalanced view" to the Middle East policies of the administration.
Lets hope that books like this and others will finally permit an open and franc discussion about the US role and ultimate intrests in that region.
Detailed, provocative, uncomfortable
Explaining the Iraq war, Christian Zionism and Hilary Clinton
A must read for anyone who hopes to understand US foreign policy wrt to the Middle East. After reading it, US policy and actions become easily predictable.
This is probably one of the most insightful books I have ever read. To have everything laid out with clinical objectivity and related in such a riveting fashion is remarkable. Confirms all of the conclusions of Jimmy Carter's Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, which I also downloaded from Audible. These writings open your eyes to the real world without all of the spin. A must read for all who seek the truth.
One the really interesting observations in this book is that the debate over Israel's conduct is much more open in Israel itself than it is in the U.S., where detractors are immediately intimated with accusations of anti-Semitism (never mind that Arabs are Semites as well)
What if you believe the earth is flat, and then scientist proved it is not. However you live your entire life thinking you’re right and out of the blue your assumption is proven correct.
This book is by far very detailed and references every factual statement. I’ve read the text version and the Audio just as great as the book…
Book is very interesting and informational, however I would not recomend it just to anybody. Reader should be prepeared to read it. If reader has a poor knowledge in political science, then this book is not for the one- simple minds may end up thinking that authors are antisemites...
The irony of this book is that the authors are suspicious of Israel???s peaceful means of influencing American foreign policy, namely diplomacy, rationale, and lobbyists. Terrorists use violence to influence American foreign policy and this book suggests we listen. The book???s primary position is that terrorism, while wrong, is understandable. It claims that America should not support Israel mainly because it is unpopular among other Middle-eastern countries. The solution became a broken record. When people begin behaving violently to the point of terrorism, no matter how irrational their actions get, no matter how ignorant their justifications may be, no matter how violent their reprisals???.the US should regard this behavior as EQUAL to the democratic self-determinism of Israel. In other words, the US should appease terrorists and stop supporting Israel for strategic reasons???because it might make us more popular with those nations hostile to Israel. 20 hours of THIS point.
The Israel Lobby calls to attention an important issue that is worthy of discussion. Mearsheimer and Walt convincingly argue and show that Israel does receive preferential treatment in American foreign policy, and that AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee) is able to manipulate American policy in favor of Israel time and again. I was at first drawn into the subject matter, as I wanted to read more about an issue that needs academic attention. Unfortunately, I did not find an issue analyzed objectively. The authors don't seek to discuss the issue of the Israel lobby, but rather present a long-winded argument that the United States should sever ties with Israel.
The authors selectively choose sources in order to construct a one-sided and anti-Zionist portrayal of Israel. The Jewish state is deemed the villain while the Palestinians emerge as the victims throughout the ENTIRE history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The authors downplay Palestinian terrorism as an ordinary form of warfare, while overstating Israeli occupation of the West Bank as a crime against humanity. The author's attack against Israel serves to show a need to dissolve the favored relationship between Israel and the United States so that Israel would be treated like any other state. This logic is unmistakably flawed. I might even go as far to say that the language resembles antisemitic rhetoric that is couched within statements against Israel.
Mearsheimer and Walt did not address the issue of the Israel lobby with an objective question. Their research centers on building an argument against Israel, not around research of the critical issue of the Israel lobby. I applaud them for their abundance of research, yet they show no range of opinion whatsoever. If you're looking to read a 496 page Op-ed piece about Israel as a colonial and Apartheid government with which the US should sever ties, this is the book for you. If you're looking for a piece of academic scholarship, you should direct your attention elsewhere.
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