New Page 1

 Friday, March 24, 2006

Commentary: The Harvard Study on the Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy


Justin Raimondo

Read here full article

Read here related article on the "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy" by Justin Raimondo on

  • Click here to read related article in News Compass

  • An edited version of this paper was published in the London Review of Books Vol. 28, No. 6 (March 23, 2006), and is available online at

  • Click here to read the FULL article "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy"

  • Click Here to DOWNLOAD FULL article "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy" (in MSWord document)

  • Click here to read "The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy" from Harvard University website (in .pdf format. Requires Acrobat Reader download)

  • "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy," a study by John J. Mearsheimer, the doyen of foreign policy realism, and Stephen M. Walt, dean of the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, has blasted the scales from our eyes.

    While not falling into the trap of identifying the efforts of "the Lobby" as the sole reason for the radicalization of U.S. foreign policy in the post-9/11 era, their research clearly shows that this was the decisive factor.

    I have to say that this conclusion was fairly obvious early on: after all, if all the other rationalizations – WMD, Iraq's alleged links to al-Qaeda, uranium-pilfering in Niger – were pure bunk, then, by means of a simple process of elimination, we come to the geopolitical explanation as the only logical alternative.

    If the U.S. is systematically dismantling regimes from Baghdad to Beirut to Tehran – and perhaps beyond – then the primary geostrategic beneficiary leaps out at any objective analyst. As I put it way back in 2003:

    "The Iraq war, as we are beginning to discover, had nothing to do with 'weapons of mass destruction,' zero to do with al-Qaeda, and zilch to do with implanting 'democracy' in the inhospitable soil of Iraq.

    The first phase of the second Yom Kippur War is revealing, in action, the strategic doctrine at the heart of U.S. Middle Eastern policy: the installation of Israel as regional hegemon."

    I am glad to see the Kennedy School is finally catching up to the level of analysis long available here at it's a good sign, albeit long overdue.

    Another good sign is the wellspring of hysteria that has arisen in the wake of the study's publication.

    Already Alan Dershowitz has smeared the distinguished authors as anti-Semites, and the Usual Suspects have launched a deafening chorus of caterwauling.

    Among the "arguments" raised by the study's detractors: David Duke has praised it, the Washington office of Fatah is handing out copies, and the Muslim Brotherhood likes it, too.

    None of which proves anything – except for the thesis, advanced by the study's authors, that the role of the Lobby is to prevent any objective analysis and rational discussion of the very "special relationship" Israel enjoys with key U.S. policymakers.

    The Mearsheimer-Walt study is an important step in identifying how and why we are bogged down in the Iraqi quagmire, but it is only a first step.

    The second, third, and fourth steps will come as we unravel the complex web of lies that lured us in on a variety of pretexts. What were the sources of the phony "intelligence" that made U.S. policymakers believe – or pretend to believe – Iraq had "weapons of mass destruction" primed to launch at a moment's notice?

    More importantly, how did this ersatz data get pumped into the U.S. intelligence stream, and who injected it? As I wrote two years ago:

    "The concept of the Iraq war as a successful Israeli covert operation is altogether plausible.

    It would hardly be the first time a foreign government made a concerted effort to drag us into war on their side. "

    Those who are crying the loudest about this study are the same people who, when confronted with the news of an FBI raid – two of them! –on the headquarters of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the powerful pro-Israel lobby that has long dominated the debate of Middle East policy on Capitol Hill, were either uncharacteristically silent or else in total denial.

    The arrest of Pentagon analyst Larry Franklin, and charges of spying on behalf of Israel lodged against longtime AIPAC leader and spark plug Steve Rosen, and his associate Keith Weissman, should have alerted even the most loyal pro-Israel stalwarts that where there's so much smoke there has to be some real fire.

    Seen as background to the mid-April trial of Rosen and Weissman, the Mearsheimer-Walt study throws some real light on a situation that has long been untenable and may now be finally coming to a head.

      Go to Latest Posting

    Comments 0