A few readers took me to task for downplaying the threat to AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobbying giant, posed by the surprisingly lurid legal drama centering on the defamation suit by Steve Rosen, the former AIPAC honcho fired after his arrest in 2005.
Well, it's lurid enough, but I can't exactly see how this week's revelations that a former high-ranking AIPAC official looked at pornography on his office computer and that some of his colleagues may have done the same will make much of a difference in the big pro-Israel lobby group's political muscle.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- AIPAC officials acknowledged in depositions that the organization only recently adopted a stated policy forbidding the receipt of classified information. The depositions also produced claims regarding the viewing of pornographic materials on office computers.
The depositions are part of a brief filed earlier this month in the District of Columbia Superior Court by lawyers for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee seeking the dismissal of a defamation lawsuit by Steve Rosen, AIPAC’s former foreign policy chief.
Rep. Eric Cantor's proposal to separate Israel's U.S. aid from the overall foreign aid appropriations process may get support from some GOP colleagues eager to put the Democratic administration and congressional Democrats on the spot, but you can bet it's going to make pro-Israel leaders here nervous.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Eighty-seven U.S. senators signed a letter urging President Obama to keep the Israelis and Palestinians at the negotiating table.
The letter, initiated by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Richard Burr (R-N.C.), thanks Obama for restarting direct peace talks and notes the threat to their success from what it calls "enemies of peace" -- Hamas, Hezbollah and Iran.
I just finished writing a story on J Street's disastrous week and the possible consequences of the revelation it's leaders lied for two years about George Soros' contributions - consequences on Capitol Hill, in voting booths and in the Jewish communal world.
In looking the story over, I was particularly struck by one quote from my old friend Doug Bloomfield, once the legislative director of AIPAC, now a columnist for – gasp – Jewish newspapers.
As a journalist covering the Middle East beat in Washington, I've always wondered about the lack of a strong pro-Arab lobby in Washington. So I'm pretty intrigued with Mitchell Bard's new book, The Arab Lobby: The Invisible Alliance That Undermines America’s Interests in the Middle East - which argues that I'm wrong, and that there is one.
The real powerhouse Middle East lobby in Washington isn't AIPAC, Bard argues, but a diffuse but potent pro-Arab lobby run and funded by the Saudis.
Many Jewish journalists, myself included, spent a good deal of this past spring discussing Peter Beinart's provocative essay on liberal Zionism. If you thought that horse died, think again: Publisher's Weekly just announced that Beinart struck a deal with Times Books to
Jewish Washington was buzzing this week with the news – first reported in Politico, expanded on in the Jewish Week – that a few Republican heavy hitters have created an “Emergency Committee for Israel” to slam the
Kristol, Bauer target J Street’s candidate in Pa. Senate race.
James D. Besser
J Street, the pro-peace process political action committee and lobby, already had a lot on the line in Pennsylvania’s hotly contested Senate race, where it has bet heavily on Democratic nominee Rep. Joe Sestak.
But the ante was raised this week with the creation of a new group including Republican heavy hitters William Kristol and Gary Bauer that launched with hard-hitting television ads accusing Sestak of being hostile to Israel.