AIPAC vs. Chas Freedman


This sure is weird:

But former AIPAC Policy Director Steve Rosen sounded a more strident tone yesterday at Laura Rozen’s report of a new head for the National Intelligence Council, calling the reported choice of Chas Freeman “alarming.”

He, disapprovingly, quotes Freeman, the former U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia, saying, “As long as the United States continues unconditionally to provide the subsidies and political protection that make the Israeli occupation and the high-handed and self-defeating policies it engenders possible, there is little, if any, reason to hope that anything resembling the former peace process can be resurrected” and decrying the consequences of “Israeli violence against Palestinians.”

If this is all they’ve got on Freeman, that’s absurd. Of course, I imagine their real objections run deeper than that. The Middle East Policy Council where Freeman works offers, as I understand it, something of an Arabist take on Middle East issues rather than the usual tussle between hawkish Jews and dovish Jews represented by me and Jamie Kirchick furiously blogging against each other. But clearly Freeman is right about the inadvisability of unconditional financial aid to Israel and also about the fact that Israeli violence has regrettable consequences. Freeman’s point of view, as far as I know, isn’t exactly mine but it seems to be well within the range of perspectives that one might want to have access to.