Andrew Sullivan On Trump And The Israel Lobby

Chris Menahan
Mar. 13, 2019

New York Magazine's Andrew Sullivan writes in his latest column that under President Donald Trump the state of Israel has "achieved almost every goal" they've aimed for from "the scrapping of the Iran deal" to "moving the US embassy to Jerusalem" to ending "every form of US aid to Palestinians" but the US has gotten "nothing" in return.

From Sullivan's column titled, "How Should We Talk About the Israel Lobby's Power?":
Is it possible to write honestly about the Israel lobby's power in D.C. without using any anti-Semitic "tropes" at all?

The basic facts are not really in dispute. A very powerful lobby deploys the money and passions of its members to ensure that a foreign country gets very, very special treatment from the U.S. [...]

The U.S. provides the Jewish state with $3.8 billion a year in aid, and has committed to doing so for each of the next ten years. Compare that with what the U.S. gives other allies who are as wealthy as Israel: The U.K. got $150,000 in 2017; South Korea got $775,000. The average aid for high-income countries like Israel, according to USAID, is $79 million a year. Israel gets 48 times more.

Per capita, the disparity is close to absurd. Israel gets $436 in U.S. aid a year; dirt-poor Afghanistan $154; post-war Iraq $91; Egypt $14. By any measure, this is extreme exceptionalism. Yes, Israel faces military threats. But so does South Korea. And, unlike South Korea, Israel has nuclear weapons (illegally acquired) and its enemies don't.

[...] Under Trump, Israel has achieved almost every goal it aimed for: the scrapping of the Iran deal, the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, a surge in settlements, and an intensification of the abuse of the Palestinians. Every form of U.S. aid to Palestinians in the West Bank has ended. We're now the only country to have no diplomatic relations with the Palestinians, and just defunded the U.N. agencies that serve Palestinian refugees. Again you might ask: What did the U.S. get in return for all this from Israel? And again the answer is: Nothing.

[...] Now observe the public discourse in Washington. Here is Nancy Pelosi last year: “If this capitol crumbled to the ground, the one thing that would remain would be our commitment to aid — I won’t even call it aid — our cooperation with Israel.” Chew on that a minute. If the United States were to collapse, its one objective would be to aid a foreign country. Here’s Chuck Schumer: “The view of Palestinians is simple, the Europeans treated the Jews badly culminating in the Holocaust and they gave them our land as compensation. Of course, we say it’s our land, the Torah says it, but they don’t believe in the Torah. So that’s the reason there is not peace.” If only Palestinians would convert to Judaism, all would be well!

The Jerusalem Post reported on Monday that President Trump said during a closed door with Republican donors in Florida on Friday: "If I ran in the Israeli elections, I would win 98% of the vote."

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