AIPAC has issued one heck of a statement trashing the administration and defending Netanyahu.
It's a standard AIPAC statement, in that it takes the side of the Israeli right over whoever constitutes the opposition. Except this one is blasting the United States and not the Arabs, or left-wing college students or Israeli doves. It is attacking the nation that provides it with more aid, by far, than any other country. Unlike the British prime minister who refused to criticize LBJ on the grounds that "the United Kingdom does not kick its creditor in the balls," Israel has just done that. This AIPAC statement belongs in the Chutzpah Hall of Fame.
It also belongs in the Staff Ineptitude Hall of Fame.
No one expects AIPAC to side with Obama over Netanyahu. That is not who AIPAC is.
But, any professional over there should have understood that it might be smarter to defend Israel while acknowledging that Israel had perhaps a little to do with the blow-up.
It might have at least conceded that the United States did not just wake up last week and decide to blast Netanyahu. It might even have called Israel's decision to announce the expansion of settlements while the Vice President was there "ill-timed." Because, I'd bet my house on this, AIPAC itself is appalled by the sheer stupidity of the announcement (if not by the substance).
But clearly the lobby, in addition to being locked into slavish devotion to Netanyahu by its donors like casino mogul and far right extremist Sheldon Adelson, has lost its professional touch. This is the single most inept and clumsy statement ever put out by a "pro-Israel" organization. Heads should roll over this one.
This is clearly the lobbying position AIPAC will be selling to Congress. It will be urging super pro-AIPAC legislators like DCCC chair Chris Van Hollen, Anthony Wiener, Alan Grayson, Howard Berman, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Steny Hoyer etc to sign on to this statement as they have always backed Israel in the past (see Gaza war).
Same with Boxer, Schumer, Specter, and others who never deviate from the AIPAC line.
Donors will be calling. And the GOP will jump right in to blast the United States for not understanding that fellow rightwinger Bibi is on the only one out there fighting Obama and the terrorists.
The Obama Administration's recent statements regarding the U.S. relationship with Israel are a matter of serious concern. AIPAC calls on the Administration to take immediate steps to defuse the tension with the Jewish State.
The Administration should make a conscious effort to move away from public demands and unilateral deadlines directed at Israel, with whom the United States shares basic, fundamental, and strategic interests.
We strongly urge the Administration to work closely and privately with our partner Israel, in a manner befitting strategic allies, to address any issues between the two