Atlantis Alumni

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Do We Have A Biased Middle East Policy?

Today's New York Times has a review of a controversial book entitled The Israel Lobby And U.S. Foreign Policy suggesting that the US government is too much under the sway of the powerful Israel lobby. The authors argue that American ought to return to a more neutral stance in the Middle East, as had existed prior to the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, but that the Israel Lobby prevents any rational discussion of the issue in this country. Charges of anti-semitism have already been directed at the authors, which seems to prove their point. Former President Jimmy Carter got in hot water not too long ago for suggesting much the same thing - that US foreign policy is wrongly heavily biased in favor of Israel.

From the Times Book review:

Coolly, not to say coldly, Mr. Mearsheimer and Mr. Walt mount a
prosecutorial brief against Israel’s foreign and domestic policies, and against
the state of Israel itself. They describe a virtual rogue state, empowered by
American wealth and might, that blocks peace at every turn, threatens its
cowering neighbors with impunity, crushes the national aspirations of the
Palestinians and, whenever the opportunity arises, bites the hand that feeds it.

The author's main argument is that we would be much better off with a more neutral policy in the Middle East, and that such a policy would have many benefits for America. Why is it so controversial to even bring up the possibility that we need to change our approach in the Middle East?


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