27 thoughts on “Bibi, Israel Lobby Give Obama Congressional Ally Semi-Public Flogging for Opposing Iran Sanctions Bill – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. RS: “[H]er Florida constituency consisting of elderly Jewish pro-Israel voters.”

    I have read that her constituency INCLUDES such people but is dominated by Hispanics. In any case, in American politics, it is almost NEVER a question of voters, and almost ALWAYS a question of money, which can come from outside the district (read: AIPAC). See next.

    RS: “[T]he leadership of the American Jewish community, that is the Israel Lobby, has placed every roadblock possible in the president’s path.”

    Well, AIPAC et al. like to CLAIM that they are the leaders of the American Jewish community, but they are merely big-money guys who self-perpetuate. The so-called community is not democratic (as to policy or anything else), so these “leaders” are not elected but appointed. Big money supports synagogues, big-money supports the big charities, big-money makes the so-called Jewish community go around.

    But you corrected that notion, adding as a qualifier: “that is the Israel Lobby”. That is closer to the truth. However, again, The Lobby is not even equivalent to the big-money Jews who make up such an important part of it, because The Lobby doubtless includes non-Jewish Evangelicals and, more important, includes the CEOs of components of the Military-Industrial-Complex which make money selling arms to all sides to keeping the pot boiling in the Middle East.

    In short, Debbie W-S is being pushed around by The Lobby — the supporters of right-wing militant imperialist Israel. And she is, so far, resisting, showing either [1] that there are other big-money oligarchs out there who desire peace with Iran and oppose AIPAC on that or [2] that the calls of morality and peace are sometimes stronger than the heretofore triumphant AIPAC foreign-policy capture of America. I imagine that it is [1], cynic that I am.

    1. [1] ..there are other big-money oligarchs out there who desire peace with Iran and oppose AIPAC on that

      there is the guy who wrote this piece for Ha’aretz, he qualifies

      “Kerry can survive failure, but can Israel?”

      “A long-time donor to the Democratic Party, Abraham gave $1.5 million to the party and ranked as the number one contributor of soft money to the national parties in 2000.”

      “Abraham is the founder of the Center for Middle East Peace in Washington, D.C. He is a close friend of many top leaders in the United States, Israel, and throughout the Middle East, and through those personal channels has worked tirelessly over the past two decades to help bring an end to the Arab/Israeli conflict.[4] He is a major sponsor of the Washington-based United States Institute of Peace.”

      1. @ brenda: Abraham is the guy who gave tons of Slimfast boxes filled with cash to Morris Taslansky & Ehud Olmert!! His claim to fame! But he’s a liberal Zionist and not atrocious when it comes to some of these issues.

          1. I wouldn’t say he’s as bad as Aipac & the Lobby. But he’s certainly one of the Jewish 1% & as pro-Israel as they come. He’s just a tad more sophisticated than Foxman & his ilk.

  2. McCain’s Outright Lies Blaming Terror on Iran

    Semantics, distortions and outright lies by politicians and journalists … Iran’s message at Davos has eerie echo.

    A kinda ridiculous article about Rouhani in Davos, NYT reporter ought to stick to fiction/novels.

    “And in an interview with Fareed Zakaria of CNN, he insisted that Iran would not agree to dismantle a single centrifuge – a position that, if nonnegotiable, would be a deal breaker.”

    I watched and listened to short trailers of interview and above presentation is an outright misrepresentation of what was said. It sells newspapers and increases viewer potential, but the right-wing media and politici will run with the headlines. The interview will be broadcast on Sunday.

    Fareed Zakaria in CNN interview with Iranian president Rouhani in Davos

    (CNN) – Iranian FM Javad Zarif in report by CNN Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto:

    In addition, the deal mandated that Iran halt all enrichment above 5% and “dismantle the technical connections required to enrich above 5%,” according to a White House fact sheet issued in November after the initial agreement was reached.

    “The White House tries to portray it as basically a dismantling of Iran’s nuclear program. That is the word they use time and again,” he said, urging Sciutto to read the actual text of the agreement. “If you find a single, a single word, that even closely resembles dismantling or could be defined as dismantling in the entire text, then I would take back my comment.”

    McCain in debate with Russia’s Pushkov blames Saudi bombing and USS Cole attack on Iranians

    On BBC World Debate there is only a trailer available with the one-sided view of McCain. Typical. This weekend the broadcast can still be viewed. The perpetrators of the attack on the USS Cole were Al Qaeda militia from Yemen. McCain also used the Qatar propaganda of “11,000 detainees tortured and murdered by the Assad regime.” See article in CS Monitor by Dan Murphy – Syria ‘smoking gun’ report warrants a careful read. In the discussion, McCain used the words: “We were winning when Iran send in 5,000 Hezbollah and Revolutionary Guards to turn the tide.” So the Syrian clash is the US and FSA proxy against the evil empire of Assad, Putin and the ayatollahs. Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran.

  3. The entire private commercial media has a Federal court sanctified carte blanche to lie as much as they want, even if it’s an international war crime to fraudulently induce war. Thus, when the NY Times, Washington Post, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, Newsweek, Time, NY Post, Dallas Tribune, etc. all colluded and overtly choreograph lied, often concealed in reckless (not negligent) failures to check simple facts, and in hindsight were definitely stoking a war they knew to be hyped and misdirected after the War on Terror started, everyone turned a blind eye — even people who continue to read those obviously manipulated and controlled venues of disinformation. Case in point, the same media that is “not controlled’ (who cares by who – let’s leave that for another discussion), tends to censor all anti-Israeli viewpoints, with pundits and journalists showing an overt bias for Israeli lobby policy points. The prime example of this is that you will never see Richard Silverstein on any of the outlets mentioned above — if rarely — and often, they’ll just steal his scoops if anything seems useful to them and spit out Richard on the other side sans mention. The politicians do their parts as well. Sorry to speak on your behalf, Richard, but it’s the truth — ain’t it? In an unfettered world, Richard would be a highly regarded journalist for his watchdog qualities over police state concerns, etc. He would be given resources and access. In a world dominated by whatever it is that aligns with Israel’s interests overtly and unequivocally, Richard is relatively unknown. He’s a hero, nevertheless, but more people know who Wolf Blitzer is (he was and is directly connected to AIPAC), and that’s a joke.

    As for your article, Richard, it’s true. AIPAC has gone rabid in trying to detonate nukes under these peace talks. Guess what? The deal has been designed so that whoever tries to sabotage the enterprise will not only be caught red-handed, but will provide better support for the deal to go through. This is a deal between 7 world powers, not just the United States and Iran. Despite what you have read in various outlets, Richard, the hardliners in Iran are precautious, but they are not holding back Rouhani from making the deal. In fact, Rouhani has the backing of Iranians across the spectrum while Congress is betraying both the American interest, the President, and 6 other nations: England, Russia, France, China, and Germany. In reality, the Likud infiltration of America is betraying us all.

    Iran’s program is really simple. Iran signed the controlling international law regarding the development, production or research of nuclear weapons, the NPT. The NPT has three pillars: (1) having the powers that already have nukes remove them (anti-proliferation); (2) guaranteeing an INALIENABLE right to signatories to have a civilian nuclear program in all capacities WITHOUT DISCRIMATION (definitely read Article IV, Section 1 of the NPT — it’s in plain English and enunciates how Iran’s right is guaranteed as a co-signatory; and, (3) guaranteeing that nuclear nations ASSIST non-nuclear nation signatories to develop their civilian programs. Pillars 2 and 3 are being steadfastly violated by any nation that signed into being sanctions. Further, under the NPT, Iran is actually guaranteed the inalienable right (and the right to support from other nations) to build its civilian program in all capacities without discrimination.

    Any other discussions, any other interpretations, any other supplementary points, etc. are all non-sense and irrelevant. 189 nations recognize the three pillars above. Check the results of the last NPT Review Conference. 189 Nations (including the US!) voted that Israel had to sign the NPT and come clean about its nukes. Not a single nation even made a statement about Iran (Israel was absent — non-signatories aren’t invited).

    Here’s the other truths: (1) Obama suggested that Bibi first solve his Palestinian issue then try to deal with any Iranian threat. He was insulted heavily for this and attacked; (2) Israel has only one option at this point for longevity outside of employing dirty tactics like trying to start a World War — it faces a demographic expiry that is all but inevitable and needs the two-state solution if it wants to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians, other Arabs, and grab more land. A one state solution would ensure the beginning of the quick end to fanatical Zionism as Israel has come to represent also (they would be branded as terrorists and the international community would intervene); (3) the financial backing of the enterprise is falling apart as all economists know the petrodollar is soon to bust; and, (4) just because justice wasn’t rendered immediately doesn’t mean that it wasn’t that way by design — watch as more troublesome low-hanging poisonous fruit are plucked off the tree for ulterior reasons while the infected roots stay silently observed.

  4. The seal depicted in Peter Schrank’s cartoon is a play on the Great Seal of the United States, the symbol chosen by Congress in 1782 to represent that body. The cartoonist is not depicting the Seal of the President of the United States.

      1. The Great Seal was a design Haym Solomon got to submit after helping to provide emergency finances to Washington’s army to overcome the Bank of England. Supposedly the money came from overseas. Although, all money came from overseas around that time because that was also when the First Bank of the United States existed. The stars on the seal are arranged in the outline of a hexagram above the Eagle’s head. Some claim this means something.

      2. US Congress does not have a seal, but the House of Representatives, Senate and State Department all use the Great Seal of the United States of America. Thirteen stars are positioned in the shape of the Star of David in recognition of Haym Solomon, as the legend goes. The Seal of the President does not have this hexagon arrangement. In the original design description, the order was : “Thirteen Stars Forming a Constellation.”

        Great Seal’s official design description

        Late on the afternoon of July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress appointed Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, and John Adams to “to bring in a device for a seal for the United States of America.”

        Like other nations, America needed an official symbol of sovereignty to seal and authenticate her international treaties and transactions. The new nation needed a symbolic signature others would recognize and honor. This is what America’s founders had to do back in 1776. Using only a few images and words, they had to illustrate the principles that inspired them to revolutionize their world and create a new nation.

        During the next six years of the Revolution, three different committees submitted ideas for this graphic image of America, but none were acceptable. In June 1782, Congress turned the task over to Charles Thomson who created the final design.

        1. Just to point out how controversial this issue is, your Charles Thomson is from Wikipedia and cites a singular source and book. Different historians and professionals have had different findings. Although there is sensitivity over the issue, it remains historical fact that there was a Jewish influence in the design on the back.

          In fact, if one takes a one dollar bill and draws on the pyramid behind it an inverse pyramid to form a perfectly symetrical and familiar hexagram, then the corners of the new pyramid drawn plus the corners of the existing pyramid point to the letters M-A-S-O-N. This is just one of the many clues. The signs are all there and very deliberate.

          Do “they” who put that there represent every single Jewish person? No. Does Israel? 😉 Like Israel, which is just a diplomatic safe haven for this organized extremist/criminal faction in major part (as it turns out!), the symbols on the back of the dollar bill hardly represent any religion. They represent secret power (conspiracy) and dominion over “others”.

          I think it’s well-established that the hand-sign of the Kohanim priests and other Jewish symbolism were adopted by the Freemasons (the all-seeing eye replaced by the tetragrammaton is a symbol seen in many ancient synogogues especially in the Caspian area). The entire sociopolitical environment of early America was steeped in Freemasonry. Franklin’s original design had a Biblical theme (including Moses). Jefferson rejected it for something more esoteric (despite reports that he was in on that design with Franklin — besides, it goes against everything else we know about Jefferson and his disbelief of religious mysticism).

          Haym Solomon provided what was equivalent to $40 BILLION to Washington’s army from financiers in Holland and France. While mostly defenders of Jewish reputation want to disassociate with Charles Thomson to avoid any controversial discussions, the truth is that all of the people offered up instead of Haym Solomon give the standard superficial interpretations that blow apart upon investigation, and also at the same time claim they “don’t know” why the stars are arranged in a Hexagram, and were never asked about the little experiment I outlined above that makes the conclusion as obvious as daylight.

          Again, I’m not drawing conclusions here, I am stating fact and offering possibilities. If you are Jewish and you have never been told of any conspiracy of this nature, then you are my proof that this has nothing to do with Judaism as well. 🙂

          1. @ TMC:

            Israel, which is just a diplomatic safe haven for this organized extremist/criminal faction in major part (as it turns out!), the symbols on the back of the dollar billhardly represent any religion. They represent secret power (conspiracy) and dominion over “others”.

            I can’t tell you how many times I’ve warned you in your various comment ID iterations to steer clear of the anti-Semitic conspiratorial nonsense. Yet you somehow revert to it every time. You & these ideas are like a bad penny. You both keep coming back. I’m moderating this identity. I’ll ban you if you continue with this crap.

            You give anti-Zionism or whatever it is you claim to represent, a bad name.

  5. Sorry, I can’t read the comments at this time.
    Thank you, Richard, for this very well delivered reporting on Iranian sanctions, Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s challenges with AIPAC, etc., the Times reporting, and the Israeli lobby, and the various statements regarding President Rouhani.
    The amount of news coverage is astounding, with so many angles working at all ends, for “special” interests.
    The US must deal with Israeli settlements and human rights abuses, cut aid to Israel, apply sanctions, and not let the pro-Israel lobby dominate American foreign policy and allow it to instruct the U.S. what to do.
    It seems to me, that this is more critical (after 67 years of International Law violations and human rights abuses) than acting as Israeli policy’s puppets.

  6. Richard, great piece, thank you for the fine reporting. I’m especially grateful for your translation of the Hebrew press item. Even though “exceedingly polite”, it may have carried a bigger punch than the rhetoric alone. Israel Shahak wrote about the Hebrew press being a safe refuge, few outsiders can read it, politicians and generals can let down their guard and brag about their accomplishments. Maybe Obama is more Machiavellian than he appears. I surely hope so because he needs all the help he can get. This is being a great story overall, better than fiction action-adventure.

  7. Without an Israeli military presence in the Jordan Valley, what’s to prevent terrorists from slipping into the West Bank to set up shop?
    Hello! Syria! ISIS!

    1. @ Shoshana: You’ve forgotten that the PA security forces are trained and armed by the U.S. & have done a good job of preventing terror attacks both within Israel and in the West Bank itself. Jordan’s security services are as good as Israel’s at preventing such things. Not to mention that there will be sophisticated security systems up the yazoo to prevent just such a thing. To make such a claim shows you know nothing about security conditions in the West Bank.

      1. I surrender my pistol and let foreign rent-a-cops protect my home and family. Hmm?

        BTW. The Jordanians and PA security force’s ‘job one’ is to protect their paymasters, the monarchy and Fatah, respectively.
        After that, they protect their citizenry and maybe, just maybe, they might cast a glance at the Jordan Valley. Maybe.

        Richard. The problem with your model, besides being pulled out of a unicorn’s butt, is that it severely underestimates the will of the Jihadists. ISIL stands for Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. Levant includes Israel/Palestine.

        1. What’s to protect Palestine from the Israel “setting up shop” in the valley and continuing to oppress Palestinians? What? A piece of paper — after ignoring 40 UN resolutions, violating numerous international laws and the Geneva agreements? Who would trust Israel? Israel has security. It has a large army, sophisticated weapons including F-16’s and tanks. Pal have rocks. It is Palestine that has no security at all, not now, not in any future. I think this is obvious. Talk about Israel’s security is almost entirely disingenuous aimed at obstructing the reality that Pals have no security at all. None.

  8. 1. As head of the Democratic National Committee Wasserman would probably have to resign if she refused to support the
    president on a major policy. The attacks on her and the tone of some of the attacks unfortunately raises the
    question of dual loyalties something that those attacking her could come to regret. It invites anti-semitism.
    The all out attack on Obama can have blow back. If Obama were a stronger president and feared even a little by
    Netanyahu none of this would be possible. But Netanyahu like Sharon feels he owns Congress . He also
    shows his contempt for Obama. Wasserman is strong enough to handle this.

    2. The sanctions really are about regime change, destroying the Iranian economy so that “the people will
    rise up and throw those rascals out”. Its how the CIA and our government have gone about things
    in other countries. The immediate goal is destroying the negotiations but the long term goal has always
    been regime change

    3. McCain is just a miserable individual who may not believe in anything. To cite the Cole without ever
    mentioning the USS Liberty and his father’s disgraceful conduct in that attack by Israel and the
    ensuing coverup of the attack speaks volumes. He will claim with or without proof whatever
    advances his cause .

    1. “But Netanyahu like Sharon feels he owns Congress.”

      Slight observation, he does own Congress as AIPAC has been quite effective. In a subtle way, Obama is taking Natnayahu head-on without showing the complete wreckage of the US-Israel relationship. To illustrate US policy, John McCain has undercut the White House, the President and Secretary Kerry on major issues today on Syria, Iran nuclear talks and the I-P negotiations. Watch today’s BBC World Debate in Davos with Jane Harman, Prince Turki bin Faisal Al-Saud, Russia’s Puskhov and Senator McCain. The latter is proponent of America’s exceptionalism [hoon] and friend/close ally of Israel, Saudi Arabia [GCC states], Assad’s opponents and opposed to the rest of the players in the region. Main arguments of his are a pack of lies … see Curveball and today’s Caesar.

      1. Agreed — and this is more than simply the ugly business of buying influence. It is buying influence at the behest of a foreign country. American Jews (presumably AIPAC) are collaborators. Why don’t Italian-Americans demand $3.1 billion in US taxpayer funds for Italy, a modern country like Israel? Why?

    2. “The attacks on her and the tone of some of the attacks unfortunately raises the
      question of dual loyalties something that those attacking her could come to regret. It invites anti-semitism.”

      It could invite something more dramatic than that. It could be the road in to correcting the status of AIPAC in this country, to require it to be registered as a foreign lobby, with all the restrictions inherent in that status. No more buying of US Congresspersons and Senators. It should be do-able, if the political will exists, and the president has been sorely challenged lately.

      One thing that is puzzling me more and more is the whole issue of antisemitism in the United States. Why is it given such reverence? There has been and still is all kinds of bigotry in the United States but antisemitism has not been lethal here, not like in Europe. Not like Jim Crow in the past, or anti-gay more recently. Or native American Indian ‘reservations’. Why is bigotry against Jews given moral priority — in America — over other bigotries that have been more important in their effect?

    1. Inderdaad goed nieuws! (Overigens, de reacties op site van Ynet zijn zoals gewoonlijk totaal doorgedraaid en mesjogge.)

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