Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Rosen's short-term victory over Freeman

The Freeman affair continues to rumble on. But, as Robert Dreyfuss comments,* the seeming victory for Steve Rosen, AIPAC and the rest of the Israeli lobby in foreclosing his appointment may turn out to be pyrrhic.

Freeman's vocal backlash and the Washington press's front page coverage identifying an actual "Israel lobby" comes just as the governmental alliance between Netanyahu and Lieberman is formalised, bringing together a truly open racist coalition.

Dreyfuss sees this as a crucial joint moment for the Obama administration and the Lobby:

Perhaps most important of all, Israel is about to be run by an extremist, ultra right-wing government led by Likud Party leader Bibi Netanyahu, and including the even more extreme party of Avigdor Lieberman, as well as a host of radical-right religious parties. It’s an ugly coalition that is guaranteed to clash with the priorities of the Obama White House. As a result, the arrival of the Netanyahu-Lieberman government is also guaranteed to prove a crisis moment for the Israel lobby.

Rosen and his circle must, indeed, be running just a little scared these days. As previously noted, there's little indication of Obama rushing to Freeman's defence or facing-down people like Rosen. Yet, the adverse publicity generated by their squalid manoeuvrings, coupled with shifting public perceptions after the slaughter of Gaza, signifies a growing public relations crisis. The murderous actions of Israel and the extremism of the US Lobby have pushed both into the critical limelight.

Rosen's own statement of alarm over the proposed Freeman appointment illustrates the Lobby's determination to put naked Israeli interest before peace and justice for the region. It's worth quoting it and Freeman's cited words in full:

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