Recently the Muslim congresswoman Ilhan Omar made repeated tweets criticizing Israel and their treatment of her Arab neighbors. However, yesterday controversy exploded after Omar named the Israeli Lobby, and specifically AIPAC, as the main culprit behind influencing American politicians by providing them with money:
Democrats’ freshmen class of lawmakers are providing the party with a new source of passion — and a lot of headaches.
A series of tweets sent Sunday night from Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) are another addition for the latter category.
The tweets began after a writer for the Intercept, Glenn Greenwald, posted a story about Rep. Kevin McCarthy “threatening punishment” of Rep. Omar and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) “over their criticisms of Israel.” (As CNN’s Jake Tapper noted, McCarthy’s comments were actually directed at “what he sees as anti-Semitic rhetoric from Reps. Omar and Tlaib.”)
Rep. Omar responded to Greenwald’s post with, “It’s all about the Benjamins baby”
The insinuation that Jewish interests were compelling Rep. McCarthy’s actions prompted some to ask Rep. Omar for clarification.
When a writer for the Forward asked, “Would love to know who Omar thinks is paying American politicians to be pro-Israel,” Rep. Omar responded: “AIPAC!”
Rep. Omar’s tweets were promptly condemned among Jewish advocacy groups. AIPAC responded: “We are proud that we are engaged in the democratic process to strengthen the US-Israel relationship. Our bipartisan efforts are reflective of American values and interests. We will not be deterred in any way by ill-informed and illegitimate attacks on this important work.”
Curiously, it was hardly a day after these tweets were made that Omar apologized for making them, saying now that she condemns “anti-semitism,” and how “grateful” she is for “Jewish allies” in “educating” her about the “painful history” of such comments:
Representative Ilhan Omar, who has been battling charges of anti-Semitism for weeks, apologized on Monday for insinuating that American support for Israel is fueled by money from a pro-Israel lobbying group — a comment that drew swift and unqualified condemnation from fellow Democrats, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
The mea culpa by Ms. Omar, a freshman lawmaker from Minnesota and one of the first two Muslim women elected to Congress, came after a day of bipartisan outrage over her tweet Sunday night asserting that support for Israel was “all about the Benjamins baby,” a reference to hundred-dollar bills.
“Anti-Semitism is real and I am grateful for Jewish allies and colleagues who are educating me on the painful history of anti-Semitic tropes,” Ms. Omar said in a statement released on Twitter, about an hour after Ms. Pelosi and the entire Democratic leadership publicly chastised her for engaging in “deeply offensive” anti-Semitic tropes.
Shoebat.com has been staunchly opposed to all forms of racial discrimination, of which anti-semitism is one part of discrimination along with many other types. However, it is manifestly evil to claim that one is attacking people for being of a certain race in order to cover for attacking a series of principles that one holds, especially if those principles are evil. It is the abuse of claims of racism in order to advance a greater evil, which too often times includes a degree of racism as well. In the case of anti-semitism, it is to conflate racism against Jewish people on account of their physical existence and makeup with the non-racially motivated and to the contrary, Christian moral opposition to the teachings and philosophy espoused by contemporary Judaism and whose roots culminated in the Crucifixion.
The is the main criticism of Israel and specifically, the Israeli lobby that needs to be discussed but so seldom is actually discussed. While Israel does have many challenges, as do all nations, and while Jews have been unrighteously persecuted and such a history must not be ignored or manipulated, there have been many times where Jews have been either the persecutors or involved in the horrendous persecution of other peoples, including Christians. The same also can be said about practically all other persons of the ethnic and religious groups of the world. Again, the point is not to sanctify or demonize any one particular group, but to take into account historical records and the current actions of a man and a people for the totality of the matter, be that history good and bad. While it is true that history can and is often used for political or social manipulation, the mere existence of accurate and uncomfortable but factual accounts does not make that history “racist” or “anti-semitic.” It does not need to be exaggerated or ignored, but reported as it is for what it is worth in its particular context.
It is said that every saint has a past, and every sinner has a future, and this goes for all nations and peoples because one’s actions are often times the total of a sum of previous actions or beliefs already held that are just being made to manifest before the world.
The power of the Israeli Lobby in the US is an open scandal, for since the mid-20th century American politics has been abnormally guided and influenced by Israeli interests who use their money and the connections that they buy with their money to promote or destroy politicians in order to advance their own interests. Many of these interests are either tied to personal business ventures, or they are tied to a combination of ethno-tribalist ideas in combination with business investments that culminate in the support of Israel. As John Mearsheimer, author of The Israeli Lobby writes:
The U.S. national interest should be the primary object of American foreign policy. For the past several decades, however, and especially since the Six Day War in 1967, the centerpiece of U.S. Middle East policy has been its relationship with Israel. The combination of unwavering U.S. support for Israel and the related effort to spread democracy throughout the region has inflamed Arab and Islamic opinion and jeopardized U.S. security.
This situation has no equal in American political history. Why has the United States been willing to set aside its own security in order to advance the interests of another state? One might assume that the bond between the two countries is based on shared strategic interests or compelling moral imperatives. As we show below, however, neither of those explanations can account for the remarkable level of material and diplomatic support that the United States provides to Israel. (source)
A politician’s career in the US can generally be expressed in terms of his proportional submission to the will of the Israeli lobby. They are a group that politicians dare not criticize and in this way, it is not unreasonable to say that Israeli interests exercise a disproportionate, if not domineering control over the functions and direction of the government herself so much that it functions as though a foreign government is controlling the function of the United States:
A key pillar of the Lobby’s effectiveness is its influence in the U.S. Congress, where Israel is virtually immune from criticism. This is in itself a remarkable situation, because Congress almost never shies away from contentious issues. Whether the issue is abortion, affirmative action, health care, or welfare, there is
certain to be a lively debate on Capitol Hill. Where Israel is concerned, however,potential critics fall silent and there is hardly any debate at all.
One reason for the Lobby’s success with Congress is that some key members are Christian Zionists like Dick Armey, who said in September 2002 that “My No. 1 priority in foreign policy is to protect Israel.”69 One would think that the number 1 priority for any congressman would be to “protect America,” but that is not what Armey said. There are also Jewish senators and congressmen who work to make U.S. foreign policy support Israel’s interests.
Pro‐Israel congressional staffers are another source of the Lobby’s power. As Morris Amitay, a former head of AIPAC, once admitted, “There are a lot of guys at the working level up here [on Capitol Hill] … who happen to be Jewish, who are willing … to look at certain issues in terms of their Jewishness …. These are all guys who are in a position to make the decision in these areas for those senators …. You can get an awful lot done just at the staff level.”
It is AIPAC itself, however, that forms the core of the Lobby’s influence in Congress. AIPAC’s success is due to its ability to reward legislators and congressional candidates who support its agenda, and to punish those who
challenge it. Money is critical to U.S. elections (as the recent scandal over lobbyist Jack Abramoff’s various shady dealings reminds us), and AIPAC makes sure that its friends get strong financial support from the myriad pro‐Israel political action committees. Those seen as hostile to Israel, on the other hand, can be sure that AIPAC will direct campaign contributions to their political opponents. AIPAC also organizes letter‐writing campaigns and encourages newspaper editors to endorse pro‐Israel candidates.
There is no doubt about the potency of these tactics. To take but one example, in 1984 AIPAC helped defeat Senator Charles Percy from Illinois, who, according to one prominent Lobby figure, had “displayed insensitivity and even hostility to our concerns.” Thomas Dine, the head of AIPAC at the time, explained what happened: “All the Jews in America, from coast to coast, gathered to oust Percy.
And the American politicians ‐‐ those who hold public positions now, and those who aspire ‐‐ got the message.” AIPAC prizes its reputation as a formidable adversary, of course, because it discourages anyone from questioning its agenda.
AIPAC’s influence on Capitol Hill goes even further, however. According to Douglas Bloomfield, a former AIPAC staff member, “It is common for members of Congress and their staffs to turn to AIPAC first when they need information, before calling the Library of Congress, the Congressional Research Service, committee staff or administration experts.” More importantly, he notes that AIPAC is “often called upon to draft speeches, work on legislation, advise on tactics, perform research, collect co‐sponsors and marshal votes.”
The bottom line is that AIPAC, which is a de facto agent for a foreign government, has a stranglehold on the U.S. Congress. Open debate about U.S. policy towards Israel does not occur there, even though that policy has important consequences for the entire world. Thus, one of the three main branches of the U.S. government is firmly committed to supporting Israel. As former Senator Ernest Hollings (D‐SC) noted as he was leaving office, “You can’t have an Israeli policy other than what AIPAC gives you around here.” Small wonder that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon once told an American audience. “When people ask me how they can help Israel, I tell them—Help AIPAC.” (source)
The Omar scandal is a perfect example of this. In scarcely a day, and most likely after a “meeting” with AIPAC representatives, Omar changed her position because she was likely told to submit to the requests Israeli lobby to stop criticizing Israel or her career would be destroyed. She chose, like most politicians, to submit and so issued the earlier mentioned and almost “groveling” statement of apology in an act of submission to the lobby.
In response to Omar’s statement, The Intercept published an article referring to a recent expose by Al Jazeera, where they went undercover and infiltrated a major Israeli lobbying group, secretly recording conversations no differently than the Center for Medical Progress’ investigation of Planned Parenthood, which included among many things the open admission of a major lobbyist describing how monies gathered from Israel and American Jews control American politicians:
The debate over the influence of pro-Israel groups could be informed by an investigation by Al Jazeera, in which an undercover reporter infiltrated The Israel Project, a Washington-based group, and secretly recorded conversations about political strategy and influence over a six-month period in 2016. That investigation, however, was never aired by the network —suppressed by pressure from the pro-Israel lobby.
In November, Electronic Intifada obtained and published the four-part series, but it did so during the week of the midterm elections, and the documentary did not get a lot of attention then.
In it, leaders of the pro-Israel lobby speak openly about how they use money to influence the political process, in ways so blunt that if the comments were made by critics, they’d be charged with anti-Semitism.
David Ochs, founder of HaLev, which helps send young people to AIPAC’s annual conference, described for the reporter how AIPAC and its donors organize fundraisers outside the official umbrella of the organization, so that the money doesn’t show up on disclosures as coming specifically from AIPAC. He describes one group that organizes fundraisers in both Washington and New York. “This is the biggest ad hoc political group, definitely the wealthiest, in D.C.,” Ochs says, adding that it has no official name, but is clearly tied to AIPAC. “It’s the AIPAC group. It makes a difference, it really, really does. It’s the best bang for your buck and the networking is phenomenal.” (Ochs and AIPAC did not immediately return The Intercept’s requests for comment.)
Without spending money, Ochs argues, the pro-Israel lobby isn’t able to enact its agenda. “Congressmen and senators don’t do anything unless you pressure them. They kick the can down the road, unless you pressure them, and the only way to do that is with money,” he explains.
The above was the film, which received almost no attention in media, being essentially ignored and “shut out” of discussion. However, as with anything, the lack of attention to its existence does not per se address the accuracy of the content.
The situation with Omar, in light of the work by scholars such as Mr. Mearsheimer as well as other filmmakers, is not to attack people for who they are, but to address an unspoken fact that is provable beyond any reasonable doubts, which is the existence of a particular and powerful cabal of people who actively use their money to direct the American nation’s destiny with or without regard to the objective good of the nation, and of which the particular group who has exercised a tremendous amount of influence in doing this is Israel with the direct collaboration of Jews in the USA. The failure to acknowledge and discuss this would not be to stand against “anti-semitism,” but to actively obscure historical and present reality that cannot serve to benefit anybody except for those in the lobby who would use such a cover to engage in immoral, illegal, or unethical activities away from the scrutiny of the public eye, for sunlight is always the best disinfectant of not only corruption done in secret but the proof of one’s innocence. For as Jesus says in the Bible in John 3:
For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God. (John 3:20-21)
Indeed, the one who truly loves somebody and seeks their good tells the truth about them, be it comfortable or uncomfortable. If such people are either silenced or stopped from telling the truth, then people will still tell the truth, but they will do so for malicious reasons. Either way, the truth will always come out, only that one has a hand in deciding how it comes out.