Reports have emerged this week on the group Emergency Committee for Israel (ECI), an organization led by pro-war neocons and evangelical Christians seeking to attack President Obama’s Middle East policy. The group launched an ad this week bashing Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) for allegedly not understanding that Israel is a U.S. ally.
War hawk flack John Bolton commented on the new group today in an email to right-wing Commentary Magazine:
I don’t understand why so many people accept the Obama Administration’s ritualistic recital of the pro-Israel catechism, rather than looking at its specific policies and actions. You can say “unbreakable relationship” as many times as you want, but it has no real-world impact. I don’t see how anybody can object to a new group that simply points out the obvious disjunction between what Obama and his acolytes are saying and what they are actually doing.
So what is this “obvious disjunction” between ECI and “what Obama and his acolytes are saying and what they are actually doing?” The President has made it clear that the United States will achieve its foreign policy goals in the Middle East, particularly regarding Iran’s nuclear program, through diplomatic means — a position that both Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen support. What are those on the right like Bolton supporting? The former U.N. ambassador outlined his views today in the Wall Street Journal:
[Opinion leaders need] to increase political support for an Israeli strike against Iranian nuclear and ballistic missile facilities. [...] What outsiders can do is create broad support for Israel’s inherent right to self-defense against a nuclear Holocaust and defend the specific tactic of pre-emptive attacks against Iran’s Esfahan uranium-conversion plant, its Natanz enrichment facility, and other targets.
Indeed, the Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol — a member of ECI’s leadership board — has been supporting and advocating a strike on Iran’s nuclear program for quite some time. So yes, Bolton is right, there is an “obvious disjunction” between ECI and the Obama administration’s policy; despite the debacle in Iraq, the former still appears to believe that war will achieve peace in the Middle East, while the latter has learned from the neocons’ mistakes in favor of negotiation and diplomacy.