A R C H I V E S
Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|04/20/02 at 21:40:47|
|Here is an excellent article on the Israel lobby in the United States|
and its control over President Bush. It is written by Eric Margolis,
Canada's equivalent to Robert Fisk. He is a columnist with the Toronto
Sun and is syndicated across Canada through the Sun newspaper chain.
April 14, 2002
Why Bush dances to Sharon's tune
Israel's right-wing Likud party dominates U.S. Mideast policy through a
powerful lobby in
the American Congress
By ERIC MARGOLIS -- Contributing Foreign
Who really is running America's Mideast policy? Last week,
the astounded world saw the grotesque
spectacle of President George W. Bush pleading in vain with
Ariel Sharon, leader of a nation of only 6.3
million people which receives almost $5 billion in annual
U.S. aid, to cease laying waste the Occupied
Ignoring worldwide condemnation and demands from the UN
Security Council, Sharon ordered his
armour, much of it American-supplied, to accelerate shooting
up and bulldozing Palestinian towns,
refugee camps and all symbols of Palestinian identity or statehood.
Twenty years ago, Sharon invaded Lebanon, "to
crush Palestinian terrorism." His big guns and warplanes blasted Beirut
for three weeks, killing 17,000 civilians. Today,
he remains determined to hold Arab lands Israel conquered in 1967 and to
destroy any hopes or vestiges of a viable
President Bush and senior aides Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell were
left looking weak, indecisive, and inept.
Bush clearly is a political soulmate of ultra-hawk Sharon; they share a
mutual detestation for Yasser Arafat and, it would
seem, for Arabs in general.
Bush has been encouraging Sharon's attacks on Palestine for months. But
Israel's invasion of the West Bank -
reminiscent of Soviet tanks crushing Hungary in 1956 - gravely
threatened America's Mideast client regimes, so Bush
had to demand Sharon relent.
In an act of sheer farce, Powell was sent on a slow boat to Israel, via
Madrid and Morocco. Before Powell even arrived,
former Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu summoned fawning U.S. senators and
arrogantly informed them Powell's
mission would fail.
While the rest of the world condemned Israel's invasion and destruction
of the Palestinian ghettos, not a peep was
heard from the White House, Congress or America's media about Israel's
violation of U.S. law in using U.S.-supplied
armour and warplanes against civilians. Nor about Israel's violation of
the Geneva Conventions and other international
laws. There were no protests when Israel's Shimon Peres described
massacres of Palestinian civilians by Israeli
Nor even a tut-tut when Sharon named to his cabinet a fanatical
right-wing general who advocates ethnic cleansing of
Palestinians - the same crime for which the U.S. pursued Serbia's
To be sure, there is deep and justified sympathy in the U.S. for the
frightful suffering Israel has endured at the hands of
suicide bombers, and its need for self-defence.
Still, why was America alone in defending Israel's ruthless punishment
of the Palestinians?
How could Bush, only a few weeks ago, still bathing in the bogus glory
of a military "triumph" against a few thousand
medieval tribesman in Afghanistan, be so suddenly made to look foolish
and impotent by events in the Mideast?
Simply put, Sharon's right-wing Likud party has come to dominate U.S.
Mideast policy through its powerful American
lobby, which "guides" Congress.
Under pressure from the Israel lobby, 89 out of 100 senators and at
least 280 congressmen recently demanded Bush
give Sharon carte blanche to crush Palestine. As the Israeli writer Uri
Avnery wryly noted, if the Israel lobby gave orders
to repeal the Ten Commandments, Congress would vote in favour.
America's media is strongly pro-Israel and averse to dissenting views. A
coterie of hawkish, Israel-first
neo-conservatives dominates media opinion-making and the Pentagon,
leading the charge for a war against Iraq, Iran,
and Syria. One even helped to write Bush's foolish "axis of evil"
Tight U.S. mid-term elections are approaching.
Bush does not want to anger American Jewish voters who believe Israel is
in mortal danger.
GEORGE SR. ROASTED
Bush obviously recalls that when his father sought to pressure Israel to
halt building illegal settlements, Bush Sr. was
unfairly roasted by the media as an anti-Semite and forced to back down.
No wonder Sharon can thumb his nose at the
Bush likes to talk tough, but this crisis has shown him to be the exact
opposite. In Texas, they'd say, "big hat, no land."
Bush has so far failed to take any real action to halt America's Mideast
interests being undermined by the bloodbath in
Palestine and Israel.
The best way to protect Israelis from terror attacks is to withdraw
their 200,000 illegal settlers and end their colonial rule
over the West Bank, Gaza and Golan; divide East Jerusalem into Jewish,
Muslim, and Christian sectors, have NATO
troops police peace accords and either normalize relations with the
Arabs, as the Saudis propose, or build a wall to
isolate Israel from its neighbours. This cannot be done so long as
Sharon is dead set against this sensible idea. He needs to be pushed the
way Dwight Eisenhower ordered Israel, in
1956, to get out of the Sinai, which it had invaded and occupied - or
else. Had Bush Eisenhower's integrity or genuine
patriotism, he would compel Sharon to accept the wise Saudi peace plan
and forget dreams of recreating biblical
Greater Israel. This would be a boon to Jews and Arabs alike.
But Bush junior is no Eisenhower. His dithering over the Mideast has
made the United States appear both helpless and
a tacit supporter of Israel's West Bank repression - and made America
the potential target of more terrorist attacks
from the enraged Arab world.
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