Dual Loyalties

My opinion on the people who shape our world

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Haaretz - Benjamin Netanyahu Attempted to Blackmail Bill Clinton at Wye River Peace talks

Haaretz - Israel News - Article: "The way to free Pollard

By Haaretz Editorial

Jonathan Pollard, an American Jew once employed by U.S. naval intelligence who then spied for pay on behalf of Israeli intelligence, lost his freedom nearly 20 years ago.

He was arrested at the entrance to the Israel Embassy in Washington, where he tried to escape, was tried, convicted and sentenced to life in prison. The Israeli government tried to trick the American government and hide from it facts concerning the operation of Pollard and the information he supplied.

When that was exposed, Israel surrendered to American demands, dismantled the "Bureau for Scientific Liaison" in the Defense Ministry and watched helplessly as Pollard was punished with all the severity of the law.

Pollard has never expressed regret for his actions, but justified them on the grounds that the U.S. administration betrayed its commitments to provide Israel with intelligence. The strict punishment was both meant to teach a lesson and to create a deterrence - both toward potential spies and toward Israel, lest it play with the idea of employing more Pollards.

In the initial years after Pollard's imprisonment, Israeli governments kept up the pretense of denial of the chain of command that led from the prime ministers and defense ministers, through Pollard's operators, to the spy himself. Under political pressure, that attitude changed and turned from a chilling cold to a searing heat. Jonathan retroactively became Yonatan, made into an Israeli held captive by goyim; he was granted Israeli citizenship; ministers and Israeli diplomatic envoys visited him - yesterday it was Israeli Ambassador Danny Ayalon who visited - and often ask that his sentence be commuted. President Bill Clinton even gave into the pleas and was going to announce clemency for Pollard in partial exchange for concessions by Benjamin Netanyahu and Ariel Sharon to Yasser Arafat at the Wye River Plantation summit, but the president was deterred by resignation threats by the heads of American intelligence, who said they would portray Clinton as harming national security.

There are various elements responsible for Pollard's suffering. First, there is Pollard himself, who risked the delicate relationship Israel (and the Jewish communities in his country) have with the defense establishment and the administration in Washington, with an adventurism that included elements of cynicism and greed.

A braggart, Pollard refused to express regret. If he had behaved differently in the first half of the 1980s, the entire affair never would have taken place. When it did, if he had behaved differently, he might have already been free by now.

Next in line of responsibility for Pollard's pain is the U.S. defense and intelligence establishment, which suffered a wave of humiliations the year of Pollard's arrest in 1985, as spies were uncovered in the intelligence agencies. That establishment was influenced by the personal hostility from then-defense secretary Casper Weinberger toward Israel, and objected to the special, preferential treatment given Israel.

Those two elements were outside Israel's control, but Israeli governments - the third element responsible for Pollard's plight - should have behaved more wisely: not to provoke the Pentagon with periodic scandals, and not to make Pollard into a national hero, whose freedom would be trumpeted here as if he were a redeemed prisoners. The way to free Pollard is paved with restraint and modesty, his and that of the state he wants to reach."

Embassy Row - The Washington Times: Embassy Row - May 17, 2005

Embassy Row - The Washington Times: Embassy Row - May 17, 2005: "

Embassy Row
By James Morrison
Ambassador recall?
The wife of the Israeli ambassador was surprised yesterday when she saw a report in The Washington Times about a diplomatic scandal that pits her against the wife of the Israeli foreign minister.
Ann Ayalon retained her poise when our correspondent Julia Duin showed her a copy of the article that described the dispute as a "catfight."
Miss Duin, attending a luncheon at the ambassador's residence in Northwest, said Mrs. Ayalon would not comment on the affair, but was obviously disappointed that the dispute, widely reported in Israel, had reached Washington.

Meanwhile, Israel Radio yesterday reported on the latest development in the scandal's sideshow involving the women's husbands.
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom has decided to fire Ambassador Daniel Ayalon instead of waiting to replace him in August at the end of the ambassador's three-year tour here, the radio said.
However, a diplomat at the Israeli Embassy here said Mr. Ayalon is not packing his bags. He is busy preparing for a visit to Washington next week by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, a strong supporter of the ambassador's.
The bizarre diplomatic dispute has its origins in a visit to Israel last year by American pop star Madonna, according to Israeli press reports.
The foreign minister's wife, Judy Nir Moses-Shalom, was angered that the ambassador's personal assistant, Liran Peterzil, failed to arrange a meeting between her and Madonna. Among his other duties, Mr. Peterzil is responsible for planning trips to Israel for prominent Americans.
Israel's Channel 2 television news reported Sunday that the ambassador complained in a letter to Israeli Attorney General Menachem Mazuz that Mrs. Moses-Shalom tried to get his assistant fired.
The story broke over the weekend when the Israeli newspaper, Yediot Ahronot, partially owned by Mrs. Moses-Shalom, reported that Mrs. Ayalon was rude to the staff at the ambassador's residence in Washington and spent too much money on renovations to the house. An investigator from the Israeli Civil Service Commission arrived in Washington yesterday to begin an inquiry into the charges, Israel's Ha'aretz newspaper reported.
No one at the Israeli Embassy is talking to the press about any of the accusations.
One diplomat would say only that the ambassador "is still at the embassy" and making no plans for an early departure. The diplomat also said that Mr. Peterzil is still the ambassador's assistant.
A senior aide to the prime minister praised the ambassador in comments yesterday to United Press International in Jerusalem.
"Ayalon is an excellent ambassador," he said. "We are pleased with his work in Washington, and as far as we're concerned, he should continue."
Leaving Gaza
Mrs. Ayalon had plenty of other things on her mind yesterday, including a thank-you reception for about 80 contributors to the Lion of Judah and Lion of Judah Endowment funds, each of whom contributed at least $5,000 to the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.
Guests who came to the residence in a forested section of Northwest made their way past a gate and several guards to arrive in a foyer and living room decorated with a huge modern painting and expensive Oriental rugs, Miss Duin reports.
The main speaker, Miri Eisin, 42, a retired colonel with the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), told listeners how tourists are pouring into the country. Still, Israeli society is split "at all levels" about the country's decision to abandon the Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip this summer.
"This summer, it will be Jew vs. Jew," she said. "I don't know whether that will mean violence. ... Families are being torn apart. [In the IDF], we are training to forcibly remove people from their homes."
Actually, she said, the Israeli decision to disengage from Gaza is coming from a position of strength.
"It is that we have a backbone. It's that we've won a war against terrorism," she said.
•Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax 202/832-7278 or e-mail jmorrison@washingtontimes.com."

Haaretz - Washington Post reporter Glenn Kessler Linked To Mossaad and AIPAC/Spy Scandal

Haaretz - Israel News: "Report: Ex-AIPAC officials briefed Israel Embassy official

By Nathan Guttman

WASHINGTON - The United States appears to be investigating conversations that two former American Israel Public Affairs Committee staff members allegedly had with an Israel Embassy official and a Washington Post reporter regarding security information they received from a Pentagon analyst, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported yesterday.

The analyst, Larry Franklin, was arrested earlier this month on charges of leaking classified information.

The Federal Bureau of Investigations is believed to have co-opted Franklin in 2003, according to the JTA. A year later, he met in Virginia with Keith Weissman, a former senior Iran analyst for the pro-Israel lobby AIPAC, and - in what is believed to have been a sting operation - allegedly told him that the Iranians would try to kidnap and murder Israelis and Americans in the Kurdish region of Iraq, the agency quoted multiple sources as saying.

Weissman then allegedly told Steve Rosen, AIPAC's former policy director, about the conversation, and the two informed the White House, as well as Naor Gilon, who represents the Israel Embassy in Washington, and Washington Post reporter Glenn Kessler, the agency reported."

Paris hosts Iran carpet exhibition - Persian Journal Latest Iran news & Iranian Newspaper

Paris hosts Iran carpet exhibition - Persian Journal Latest Iran news & Iranian Newspaper: "Paris hosts Iran carpet exhibition

May 18, 2005
An exhibition of Iranian handwoven carpets kicked off in Paris on Tuesday. France's Minister Delegate for Tourism Leon Bertand, Iran's Ambassador to France Sadeq Kharrazi, Deputy Commerce Minister Feizollah Arabsorkhi and several businessmen attended the inaugural ceremony of the exhibition which runs through May 24.

The fair is sponsored by Iran-France trade centers, the Iranian Embassy in Paris as well as the Iran and France chambers of commerce and industry.

Some 25 rolls of Iranian silk carpets along with 200 rolls of other handwoven ones are being put on display at the exhibition.

Addressing the inaugural ceremony, Kharrazi expressed gratitude over the presence of the French minister and the Iranian deputy minister.

"Iranian carpet is symbol of Iranian arts, industry, history and identity," he said.


He added every region in Iran has its own style and each style represents a particular region and tribe.

Arabsorkhi also expressed appreciation over Iran-France good cooperation in holding the exhibition.

He was optimistic the fair would pave the way for negotiations between the two governments.

© Iranian.ws"

Dual Loyalties by Juan Cole (Eli Lake is a Hate Monger)

HyeForum -> Dual Loyalties: "Dual Loyalties
by Juan Cole

ProgressiveTrail.org, OR
Sept 10 2004

Many readers have written me to express concern about my safety
and/or reputation since I have spoken out frankly on the horrible
Likud policies of stealing Palestinian lands and brutalizing them
with occupation. I'm not a babe in the woods, and I know very well
that saying these things is taboo in American political culture. In
fact, whenever anyone comes on a cable television news show and is
anything but hostile to the Palestinians, he or she is made by the
interviewer to denounce terrorism. It is an outrageous implication,
and not the job of a news interviewer. But pro-Israeli speakers are
never made to denounce land theft or state terror.

I received a very weird phone call from a prominent Jewish-American
investigative journalist the other night. He kept muttering about
bias against Sharon and how the Israeli security wall is no different
from the wall near the Rio Grande (which isn't true: did the US annex
Mexican land to build that?) He kept hinting around that he thought
I must have some link to some hate group, or to the Ford Foundation,
which he coded as linked to "hate groups," which in turn seemed to
signify for him Palestinians. It was all very conspiracy theorist
oriented. I tried to have a straightforward conversation with him,
but it was probably a mistake, since it seems fairly obvious he
intends to do some sort of hatchet job. I finally had to end it when
his paraphrases of what I said became more and more outrageous and
inaccurate.

Another journalist named Eli Lake has now begun coming after me, as
many readers predicted, using innuendo to suggest that I am to the
right of Pat Buchanan and that it is irresponsible of American media
outlets to have me on television and radio. One of his charges is that
I am accusing the Neoconservatives in the Pentagon of "dual loyalties."

That is true, but not in the way Lake imagines. I believe that Doug
Feith, for instance, has dual loyalties to the Israeli Likud Party
and to the U.S. Republican Party. He thinks that their interests are
completely congruent. And I also think that if he has to choose,
he will put the interests of the Likud above the interests of the
Republican Party.

I don't think there is anything a priori wrong with Feith being
so devoted to the Likud Party. That is his prerogative. But as an
American, I don't want a person with those sentiments to serve as
the number 3 man in the Pentagon. I frankly don't trust him to put
America first.

Political dual loyalties have nothing to do with any particular
ethnicity. It is natural for Armenian Americans to have a special
tie to Armenia, for Greek Americans to have a special tie to Greece,
for Iraqi Americans to feel strongly about Iraq. For them to take
pride in the achievements of their homeland is right an natural,
and unexceptionable. There is no reason on the face of it to even
bring up their ethnicity with regard to public service.

But if a Syrian American is a strong devotee of the Baath Party,
would you appoint him Undersecretary of Defense?

The Likud Coalition in Israel does contest elections. But it isn't
morally superior in most respects to the Syrian Baath. The Likud
brutally occupies 3 million Palestinians (who don't get to vote for
their occupier) and is aggressively taking over their land. That
is, it treats at least 3 million people no better than and possibly
worse than the Syrian Baath treats its 17 million. The Likud invaded
Lebanon in 1982 and killed 18,000 or so people, 9,000 of them innocent
civilians. This is, contrary to what Bernard Lewis keeps implying,
just about equivalent morally to the Syrian Baath's crushing of
the Islamists in Hama the same year, which killed an estimated
10,000. Many in the Likud coalition are commited to "transfer,"
or the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians. At the least they want
to keep Palestinians stateless and without basic human rights and
dignity. The vast majority of Palestinians has never commited an act
of violence, but Likud propaganda justifies their expropriation on the
innuendo that they are all terrorists. Likud aggression is invisible
in American media, and the way in which it provokes violence is off
limits for discussion.

So I don't see a big difference between having a fanatical Syrian
American Baathist as the number three man in the Pentagon and having
a fanatical Jewish American Likudnik.

Lake wants to suggest that I am a racist, and that the implication of
my argument is that there should be an ethnic litmus test for public
office. There is no point in replying to such slurs. Anyone who tries
to defend himself from charges of being a racist just looks silly. I
simply think that we deserve to have American public servants who are
centrally commited to the interests of the United States, rather than
to the interests of a foreign political party. So my position implies
a political litmus test for high public office. And, of course there
is such a litmus test. Why bother to have Congress confirm or reject
appointees otherwise?

Of course, Lake's salvo is only the first of what will be a campaign to
vilify me and misrepresent my views, and to ensure as far as possible
that I am silenced. So, why do I do it?

It is September 11. It is obvious to me that what September 11 really
represented was a dragooning of the United States into internal Middle
East political conflicts. Israel's aggressive policies in the West
Bank and Gaza have poisoned the political atmosphere in the Middle
East (and increasingly in the Muslim world) for the United States. It
is ridiculous to suggest that radical Islamists don't care about the
Palestine issue.

Now, if it were a matter of Israel's simple existence causing trouble
for the U.S., then I would say, "Too bad! We stand with our friends,
and won't allow you to harm Israel." But if it is Israeli expansionism
and aggression that is causing trouble for the United States, then
my response would be to put pressure on Israel to get used to its
1949 borders, which are its only legal ones.

Unless the Israeli Palestinian issue is resolved, there will be more
September 11s on US soil. So they should resolve it already. And,
it is resolvable. If there were a Palestinian state with leaders who
would certify that they are happy with Israel, then 99% of Muslims
would accept that.

It can't be resolved as long as the Likud Party has an aggressive
colonialist agenda. It cannot be resolved as long as the United States
government is afraid to say "boo" to Ariel Sharon. The taboo erected
against saying what I have been saying is a way of ensuring that the
Likud gets its way without American interference, even if it means
America suffers from the fall-out of Likud aggression.

In addition, what the Likud government is doing is ethically wrong.
It has put hundreds of thousands of colonists into the West Bank,
stealing land, water and resources from the Palestinians there. It
has made the Palestinians' lives miserable with a dense network of
checkpoints, highways, and other barriers to ordinary commerce and
movement. And what possible claim could the Likud have on the West
Bank of the Jordan? The original Zionist colonizers put almost no
settlers there. It was not the part of Palestine that the United
Nations awarded Israel in the partition plan. The United Nations
Charter, to which Israel is a signatory, forbids the acquisition
of territory by warfare, so the mere fact that the West Bank was
conquered in 1967 gives Israel no rights in it.

Sharon and other Likudniks keep demanding that the Arabs "recognize"
Israel's "birthright" to the Holy Land. This language is bizarre.
First of all, "peoples" don't have "birthrights" to "land." There are
no peoples in the 19th century racist sense, and there is no link
between Land und Volk the way the Likud imagines. Israel should be
recognized because its people deserve to live like everyone else,
not because of any superstitious and frankly racist "birthright."
(Population geneticists have shown that the entire human population
becomes related over 50 generations, so Isaac and the other Patriarchs
are by now the common ancestors of us all. If the birthright is
genetic, then it is in everyone by now. If it is based on halakhah or
Jewish law, well that didn't exist in Isaac's time. Abraham probably
wasn't even really a monotheist in the contemporary sense of the term.)

You can't break down taboos unless you challenge them. Of course,
there is the danger that if you challenge them, you will be attacked,
and destroyed politically or marginalized. Perhaps it is even likely.

But our country is in dire danger from the conflicts in the Middle
East. If I had been a younger man (I am 51) I would have gone to
fight al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. The very least I can do is to speak
out about the dangers, and urge solutions of the problems generating
the terrorism. What good is freedom of speech if we don't use it? "