Israel Lobby and American Policy Conference: Post-Event Video

Conference early feed, highlights below. The expanded feed will be posted soon.


Speakers include:

Grant Smith, Hanan Ashrawi, John Mearsheimer, Ilan Pappé, Wajahat Ali, Tom Hayes, Khalil Jahshan, Maria LaHood, Jim Moran, Nick Rahall, Jack Shaheen, Clayton Swisher.

Expert keynote speakers and panelists will present their analysis of:

U.S. foreign aid, intelligence and diplomatic support to Israel. Since 1948, the U.S. has provided more foreign aid to Israel than to any other country. In 2016 the U.S. signed a new pledge to provide it $38 billion over 10 years. Is the aid unconditional? Will the U.S. provide it no matter how many illegal settlements Israel builds or what military actions it takes?

Israel as a U.S. ally. During the Cold War, many claimed Israel was America’s “cop on the beat” in the Middle East, squaring off against Soviet client states and protecting U.S. access to oil. Were these claims ever true? Does Israel currently serve any identifiable U.S. strategic interest, or is it in fact a liability?

Israel lobbying organizations have launched many programs in the U.S. They transfer billions of dollars in tax-deductible charitable contributions to support Jewish immigration to Israel (including from the former Soviet Union), and fund Israel’s clandestine nuclear weapons program. Do these programs further harm American interests?

Israel affinity organizations and prominent neoconservatives have long demanded that the U.S. should militarily engage Israel’s rivals, including Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, Syria and Iraq. Is the list of targets growing? What future wars are these neocons currently agitating for? How likely is it the U.S. will comply?

The Israel-Palestine conflict is the longest running confrontation in the region. It generates terrorist attacks and other blowback against the United States. What are the latest views from the region about prospects for a viable Palestinian state vs. Israel’s continual territorial growth as a foreign-supported settler-colonial enterprise?

American public opinion is rapidly turning against unqualified support for Israel. How do Americans really feel about U.S. aid to Israel, Israel’s huge influence with U.S. elites, and its treatment of Palestinians?

Beyond changing perceptions, increasing numbers of Americans are actively working against Israeli programs. What is currently being done at the grassroots level, in courtrooms and internationally to confront, expose and challenge Israel lobby initiatives?

  • Luchorpan

    Big money supports Israel. Who can defeat big money? Grassroots think largely what big money tells them to think.

    China has money, and it seems to want a two state solution. Maybe China and Russia could negotiate stable Israeli borders and lasting peace between Israel and Iran.

    • Don

      Didn’t you just help to elect big money as your president?
      Did you think the little people (the sheep) could lie down with the Lion? (the billionaire corporate psychopath)
      Did racist hate for Obama in the heads of so many Americans have anything to do with you being fooled so badly?

      • Luchorpan

        You have the morality of a Neocon. I don’t reply to people like you. People like you are the reason we have empire. You are the problem.

        • Don

          You know I speak the truth about him being a billionaire corporate psychopath and you know that most of his support comes from racists. How else could it have been that so many ordinary little people could have been fooled so badly? Are you or were you a Trump supporter?
          I don’t argue with racist pigs. i try to counsel others on how they went so wrong and how to get it right the next time.

          • Luchorpan

            I supported Trump since nearly day one. He was against the trade policy, he condemned the Iraq War, he wanted immigration reduction, he mentioned the asset bubbles, he mentioned the spending deficit.

            I liked Trump for all the reasons the Neocons hate him.

            You can think of me what you will, but I acknowledge the immortal soul in others. I don’t hate as you do. Even my political opponents are still human.

            Political disagreements are fine. I do not tolerate immoral behavior however. And I do make mistakes, but I do not treat others as trash as do you.

          • Don

            I don’t acknowledge any ‘soul’, immoral or otherwise. I’m an atheist and I don’t believe in sky fairies either. This is the 21st. century and the earth is indeed not just 6000 years old.

            If you were a Trump supporter than it’s time you came back to reality and your senses. He promised lots and lied about all of it. You were fooled into believing a billionaire corporate psychopath. Now it’s time to move on and admit that you made a mistake in supporting Trump

    • Blake

      1 ss called Palestine. Right the wrong.

      • Luchorpan

        Sorry, what? I’m not interested so much in “righting wrongs” since there are disputed lands all over the world. I just want peace!

        I want a stable Israel so the US can leave, for-ev-er! No more subsidies; no more involvement.

        America’s government should govern Americans. If Neocons care more about Israel, then they should move to Israel. If Palestinians have no homes, then they should move to Syria. They could help chase out ISIS, reclaim Syria.

        If America were actually helping anyone, I’d maybe support more involvement. However, I almost never see the US do anything good. It’s best we just leave, try to fix our own problems first.

        • Blake

          You should be taking that up with western imperialism not those innocent unarmed natives robbed of their land. Palestinians have an inalienable right to return to their land. So deal with that fact and dont whine about it because Palestinians werent harming anyone.

  • Marc

    A Two Citizenships Solution vs. a Jewish-Arab State :>>

    A two states solution is meaningless without changing citizenship of Israeli Arabs. Israeli Arabs obtained Israeli citizenship illegally and against international law. Unfortunately, Israel long ago became a bi-national , it’s an incubator for Arab people.
    Jews will not survive in a bi-national state.
    Israel must stop to impose Israeli citizenship to the hostile nation.

    Immediately after the establishment of a new Arab state west of the Jordan River ( or return Jordanian rule ), the Arabs of Haifa, Nazareth, Lod, Galilee, Negev, Jerusalem etc. must become citizens of their new (old) state.
    If the Jews do not want to continue to live in a bi-national state, and within a generation become a minority in Israel, they must prepare for a referendum (as in Scotland) based on the UN resolution to divide Palestine for Jews and Arabs.

    Fatah-Hamas government requires land free of Jews.
    Therefore, Israeli demands are legitimate and forced:
    1. To divide National Insurance for Jews and Arabs, by forming the funds from taxes collected separately from Jews and Arabs.
    2. To employ only the Arabs, who will replace Israeli citizenship to the status of Israel’s residents.
    3. Deductions from wages ( income tax and health tax) of Arab residents to transfer to the Palestinian Authority , of course along with responsibility for health, education , jobs and pensions to all Arabs who wish to remain in Israel.

    It’s possible to separate from the Arabs by the law, as the Irish and the British, as the Czechs and the Slovaks or as the Greeks and the Turks in Cyprus .
    First to separate economically and then geographically.
    Palestinian citizenship to the Arabs, Israeli citizenship to the Jews.
    Two Nations – Two States – Two Citizenships !

    • Don

      An incubator for Arab people? You mean ‘ breeding ground’? Separating people as to their religious beliefs and their skin colour? That sounds a lot like a Nazi solution.

      You’re not suggesting a solution, you’re suggesting an apartheid state made up of Palestinian lands as a part of a much expanded Israel for Jews only.

      The real humanitarian solution and the ‘legal’ solution is for the Jews to adhere to that which the UN mandated, which calls for dismantling all the settlements on Palestinian lands.

      Hail Netanyahu and hail all his apologists!

      • —–
        An incubator for Arab people? You mean ‘ breeding ground’? Separating people as to their religious beliefs and their skin colour? That sounds a lot like a Nazi solution.
        —–

        “Arab” has nothing to do with religious belief or skin color. There are Arabs of every skin shade and every religious belief. The defining characteristic shared by Arabs is that they speak Arabic.

        • Don

          Yes, it’s true that some Arabs aren’t Muslims, even though most are. And it’s true that some Arabs have lighter skin, but most don’t. And it’s also true that his intent was as I suggested. It was full of racist hate and could have been nothing more than a dishonest attempt to promote Israel’s apartheid regime. What his cause is, I don’t know but if he sticks around I think it’s going to become evident.

          The defining characteristic of Arabs for people of decency is only that they speak Arabic. You demonstrate your decency by stating that, but that is far from what he stated and that was intentional. I heard him being very pro-Jewish with no consideration for others. He didn’t seem to even try to hide that!

          • Marc

            Answer honestly these questions:
            Why were all the Jews expelled from the Arab countries ?
            Why do Arabs and Muslims kill Jews in Israel and around the world ?
            Why do Arabs kill even those Jews who accidentally fall into Arab villages in the Palestinian autonomy ?

          • Don

            Why do you promote the idea of human beings being different from others of the same human race? Do you believe that some humans are of a different species of animal than their brother humans? What makes Jewish people superior to others in your mind only? Why are Israeli Arabs not equally as eligible to be citizens of Israel as those who practice a particular religion?

            Are you a racist? Do you hate Arabs? Why is a one-state solution not applicable when it would result in the majority of the people gaining control over their country?

            Or why would a two-state solution not be applicable where all settlements on Palestinian lands were dismantled and the UN mandate become the reality?

          • Marc

            The Arabs have 20 national states, and the Jews have one Israel. The Arabs attacked Israel in 1948, 1967, and 1973.
            The Arab aggressors were defeated in all wars and therefore the Jews will occupy a larger territory than was decided at the UN in 1947.

          • Don

            They will ignore the UN mandate and they will likely pay the price for doing that some time in the future. We hope it won’t come to that but eventually all evil deeds are repaid with interest. Best that they stop what they’re doing now.
            And in the meantime the US will pay the price. In fact, already did on 911 for supporting the evil apartheid regime against the Palestinian people. OBL made a point of mentioning that. I think that most Americans consider the price to be worth it., although there doesn’t seem to be a majority on this site that think Israel is worth it!

          • Marc

            Israel is the only support of Western civilization in the Middle East. This must be understood and appreciated.

          • Actually in 1967 it was the Israelis who attacked the Arabs.

          • Don

            Actually Thomas, don’t go there. You’ll only have 45% of us proving you wrong and the other 45% of us proving you right. The other 10% have learned long ago to stay out of it.

            It’s just curious though, that the pro-israel side can always summon up their 45%. It’s like they magically come out of the woodword for the cause, and then fade away on the other issues.

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