Talk:Israel lobby in the United States/Archive 1

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Note: There are few archives of talk from September to December 2007 - unclear if it was quiet or archives were deleted.

Areas for Improvement

Some initial thoughts. --Deodar 01:28, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

  • Coverage of "the visible campaign undertaken in 1982 by the Israeli lobby to defeat pro-Arab Congressman Paul Findley of Illinois" (Bard's words)
  • Coverage of real anti-Semitism that involves conspiracy theories about the Israel lobby and Jewish influence.
  • More coverage of the origins -- the sources I had didn't really cover it.
  • Integration of more sources into the article.

Word of Caution: This article is not Mearsheimer-Walt

Unlike the article about the controversial John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt paper, this article is not about making the argument that Mearsheimer and Walt were making: that the Israel lobby has excessive and detrimental to US interests -- that debate can stay in The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. This is an article that covers the "Israel lobby" in a board and NPOV descriptive way and as such coverage of the Mearsheimer-Walt "Israel lobby" paper controversy should at most be a small subsection. --Deodar 01:28, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Purpose of article?

Is this an article about the POV of Mitchell Bard? If that is the case this violates WP:NPOV, that reads: The neutral point of view is a means of dealing with conflicting views. The policy requires that, where there are or have been conflicting views, these should be presented fairly, but not asserted.

Suggest to merge any useful information with Israel-United_States_relations ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 16:44, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Good point Jossi. I marked it as a stub for the time being basically because, when I put it together yesterday evening, I relied mostly on one reference. Your criticism is useful and I'll expand it today to address it. Thank you. I also created this article Arab lobby in the United States -- could you have a look at it as well? Best. --Deodar 16:50, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
Also, I should note that there is a whole category devoted to Category:United States-Israeli relations. It is not necessary to merge all articles on the topic into one super article. --Deodar 16:59, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
Of course not, but having an article that presents the POV of a single person is frowned upon, in particular when the subject is controversial. See WP:POVFORK ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 17:31, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
I understand that some are scared of this topic, but as long as you stay away from the crack pots its pretty average stuff. The source, Bard, is the executive director of a group that promotes the US-Israel relationship and also runs the Jewish Virtual Library -- he is just talking honest about a subject he is very close to. The merger into The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy isn't really appropriate -- that article's thesis is that the Israel lobby influences US foreign policy to the determent to the US's interests, that is a controversial thesis. This article is not about that thesis. Requiring that any discussion of the ISrael lobby be centered around that thesis is unreasonable and leads implicitly to NPOV coverage of the issue. Also, you are aware that the second sentence of the AIPAC article is this one: "Describing itself as 'America's Pro-Israel Lobby,' it is a mass-membership organization including both Jews and non-Jews, and is considered one of the most powerful political lobbies in the United States." The existence of a Israel lobby or Pro-Israel lobby is not in question, but there is currently no article that covers the full topic it in an NPOV fashion. This is what I am aiming for. The trick is to stay precise and use good sources. --Deodar 17:43, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
"Some are scared of this topic"? Ben, the problem I see is that some people are obsessed with this topic! As for your discussion of a merger, I was not aware that a Wikipedia article was supposed to have a "thesis." I thought it is supposed to have a topic, and this article and The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy have the same topic. If the latter article also has a "thesis," especially if it is as you describe it, then that needs to be corrected by editing to make the article NPOV, and this one-source article should be merged into it. 6SJ7 18:21, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
Your are misunderstanding something key: The article The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is about a paper (the title of the paper is, coincidentally "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy") that puts forward a very specific and very controversial thesis. Thus when I say "thesis" I was refering to the thesis of that working paper that is the topic of that article.
In contrast, this article's topic is the boarder topic of the Israel lobby with the goal of putting things into context. I am still working on the article and incorporating more sources. --Deodar 19:01, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
I also thought that when you said "article" you were talking about a Wikipedia article, not an article somewhere else that is the subject of a Wikipedia article. But that underlines the big problem here, on which I agree with Jossi. A working paper here and article there, all about essentially the same topic, should not each have their own article on Wikipedia, it should be part of a single article about the subject. There are probably only a handful of individual articles and working papers that are individually notable enough to warrant their own article (see for example, X Article.) 6SJ7 19:44, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is certainly notable. It stirred enormous controversy when it appeared, and has been commented on in mulitiple publications from all kinds of POV. For example, a recent issue of the magazine Foreign Policy was devoted to reponses to The Israel Lobby from several different authors. Sanguinalis 01:37, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

I see. My mistake. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 19:09, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Proposal: Merge with The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy

Yet, it would be better to merge all the POVs into one article that describes them rather than separate ones, as these are actually POV forks. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 19:10, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

I agree, and I think the title should be "Conspiracy theories about the 'Israel lobby'". 6SJ7 19:37, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
Conspiracy theories about the Israel lobby? My sources at the moment are Jewish Virtual Library, The New Yorker, the Washington Post, The Nation, Foreign Policy in Focus and the New York Review of Books. Also, AIPAC describes itself as "America's Pro-Israel Lobby" -- thus there is no need to put "Israel lobby" in scare quotes. We should have a section that describes why some feel that there is no Israel lobby and also in the section on anti-Semitic conspiracies we should include the debate where the line should be drawn between reasonable debate and conspiracy theories. --Deodar 19:47, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
Relax, I was mostly kidding about the title. As for there being a pro-Israel lobby, of course there is, there is also a Saudi Arabia lobby, a dairy lobby, a China lobby, an aviation industry lobby, and hundreds if not thousands of others, but I do not see them attracting similar amounts of attention. 6SJ7 20:07, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
"I do not see them attracting similar amounts of attention." Did you know that yesterday I first wrote the article Arab lobby in the United States. When I started to link these articles to others they were in relatively equivalent states. Here are the versions of both articles at the time I called it a night Israel lobby in the United States and Arab lobby in the United States. Since then, to no real surprise on my part, only this article has attracted criticism, so much that people have questioned whether it deserves to exist. Naturally, I have responded to the concerns of critics by putting more effort into the article. This results in this article being longer and more developed than the one I wrote on the Arab lobby -- which, it seems, opens me to criticism, such as yours, that I am giving disproportionate attention into this article. Honestly, think about this for a second -- is the cause of this disproportionate attention really just me or is there something more going on here? My strong belief is that the cause of the disproportionate attention to this area as a whole both in Wikipedia and in the media is the result of a complex interaction between a number of factors, it is not as simple as your off hand criticism of the disproportionate attention suggests at first glance. --Deodar 20:26, 27 August 2006 (UTC)

Don't merge, the other article is about one specific paper, and both articles are very long. —Ashley Y 03:17, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Then they need to be summarized in one main article with links to sub-articles. As it stands now these are obvious POV forks, and in violation of NPOV≈ jossi ≈ t@
These are not POV forks. One article is about the lobby, the other about one particular working paper. —Ashley Y 05:50, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't see how you are coming to the conclusion that this article is POV. Can you be more specific about how and where it should be improved? Also, in what direction is the current POV leaning in your opinion? --Deodar 05:56, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
Agree with merge. The term "Israel lobby" is used with considerably wider scope than the "official" Israel lobby (AIPAC). JFW | T@lk 09:58, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
Wikipedia, as per NPOV, needs to describe all significant viewpoints. Creating articles that describe one viewpoint while omitting others is in violation of that policy (see WP:POVFORK. What needs to be done is to create one main article in which the main viewpoints are described (but not asserted), and only then have sub-articles that may expand on each viewpoint if that is warranted. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 16:27, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
As ther the POV tag, this article violates NPOV as per Wikipedia:Neutral_point_of_view&diff=0#Fairness_of_tone ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 16:32, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
If this article violates NPOV, then that needs to be corrected. But The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is not a fork of this article. It's an article about one specific paper that happens to be titled "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy". It's far too long to merge into here. —Ashley Y 00:12, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
We cannot have articles about a single POV, in particular when there are competing views.
  1. Create an article in which 'all viewpoints are presented, including these of different papers
  2. Summarize the significant viewpoints
  3. Create or link to articles that expand on each viewpoint
That ois the way to remain compliant with WP content policies. As it stands now, the article The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy violates NPOV. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 01:13, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
If you think The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy violates NPOV, please discuss it there. There's been a lot of back-and-forth on that article, but it seems to have settled down and doesn't currently have an NPOV tag on it. —Ashley Y 05:58, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Strongly disagree with the merge. This article is about the Israeli lobby, and the other is about a specific paper. I know this point has been made already, I'm just seconding it. Sanguinalis 01:26, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

I am not advocating a merge. Read what I said and provide counter arguments if any. ≈ jossi ≈ t@
Can we remove the merge tags, then? —Ashley Y 05:58, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
I don't think a merge is going to happen, nor do I think it would be wise to merge the articles. The article The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy is incredibly controversial and attempting to merging it into this article would likely result in the quality of this article to deteriorate into schizophrenic-like collections of disconnected partisan statements.
It may interest Jossi though that I just created two disambiguation pages that help to clarify to readers how a number of these articles relate to each other:
I would appreciated feedback on these. --Deodar 06:06, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Define the Definer

Who is Mitchell Bard who is referred to as the capacity on the Israel lobby in the United States?

Mitchel Bard's biography on Jewish Virtual Library. --Deodar 08:49, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
As it stands now this article needs to be called Mitchel Bard's views on Israel's lobbying in the USA. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 17:55, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
While I do rely on him a lot, he is a uniquely (at least in my readings) reliable source. I have expanded the article considerably since your first comment to include many other views. For most claims in the article, multiple sources are used in order to reflect multiple perspectives -- a reader, I hope, will be left with a nuanced understanding. --Deodar 18:02, 29 August 2006 (UTC)

Peer Review Request

Can NPOV tag be removed/moved to specific sections?

Hi Jossi. I am running out of obvious improvements to the article as a whole in order to better reflect a neutral point of view. Although it is obvious that at least two sections need work -- but I am not sure that their deficiencies fit as POV problems. Can we remove the NPOV tag or at least move it to the sections you feel are NPOV? I know you have pointed me to specific Wikipedia policies but your only specific criticism of article content has been its previous reliance on only one source, an issue that I have, at least in my reading of the article, addressed. Best. --Deodar 21:39, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

I read it through and it seems to me to be non-neutral, just a collection of sources with an antagonistic POV against Jews. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 22:25, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
The way you can resolve this is by describing the debate first, rather than last, and renaming this article Israel lobby in the United States debate, otherwise the title is an assertion of fact. It would also help consolidating Bard's and Mearsheimer and Walt' stuff into their own sections rather than spread throughout the article. The article lead needs also work, because as it is reads now it does not describe the controversy. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 22:30, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
I attempted to do just that, but as I am not too familiar with the subject, it may need fine-tuning. The idea would be to focus the article on the debates related to this subject, rather than assert the viewpoint of one or two authors. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 22:41, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
I strongly oppose classifying all those sections as solely the opinion of Bard, Mearsheimer and Walt -- you don't have any facts to back up that up, nor are they the only people used in that large section. I think you are not acting with "precision." Our problems communicating may be best understood by my scores on the test you have featured on your userpage: I am first a "Materialist", second a "Modernist", and I score lowest on "Idealist" and "Cultural Creative" -- almost the polar opposite of you. --Deodar 22:47, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
Lumping together blindly Bard, Mearsheimer and Walt is really nonsensical. They only agree on a few things and disagree on a lot more. For example, please read through Bard's strong critique of Mearsheimer and Walt. I repeat, from my perspective, you seem to not be thinking about this with precision. --Deodar 23:07, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
I should say thanks thought for sharing the details of why you felt the article is NPOV -- I do appreciate your time and thoughts on this matter. It is useful to understand your take on things even though I do disagree with it. --Deodar 23:10, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
As I said in my disclaimer above, I am not fully familiar with the subject, but by reading the text it seems that it quite a bit of text is entirely related to two authors. Feel free to make necessary changes, but I would argue that it would be best to place all comments of specific authors in their own sections. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 23:37, 30 August 2006 (UTC)
I have put "Toofewopinion" templates in both the "structure" and in the "means of influence", although I did restore their original names the Bard-Mearsheimer-Walt section title wasn't very accurate -- those are the problematic sections I understand from your perspective. I think that as more opinions are added, we can break those sections up into subsections focusing on the existing distinct takes people have -- right now there are not really opposing views in those sections since I centralized most of the disagreements into the "Debates" section. I also moved the "arab lobby" section back into the section "Other special interest groups" (renamed as "Relations to special interest groups") because it really is another, competing in this case, special interest group. Now that I think about your move, it does seem appropriate to put a "Toofewopinions" tag on the "arab lobby" section -- I'll do that now. I'll also put one on that whole Arab lobby in the United States article. I also did restore the lead that SlimVirgin refined from my original since I view the debates as only a part of the article -- not the focus -- and if you didn't know, it is a rare thing for SlimVirgin and me to find common ground. --Deodar 23:59, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

Removed relationship to "Jewish lobby" slur

The following was removed by SlimVirgin. I thought it served a useful purpose though:

"The term "Israel lobby" is preferred[1] over the less common term "Jewish lobby"[2][3] because a large proportion of the lobby is made up of non-Jews and the inclusion of "Israel" best "reflects the lobby’s objective." Additionally, the term "Jewish lobby" is regarded as an anti-Semitic slur [4] used to allege that Jews exercise undue influence in a number of areas, including politics, government, and international finance. [5]"

--Deodar 00:16, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

"Is regarded" by whom? To regard something as... is an opinion and should have a subject. As it stands in the paragraph above it's a weasel sentence.
I think that the sometimes used synonims, not just misleading (but not necessarily slur, it depends of the viewpoint, knowledge, perception... of the one using it, I think) "Jewish lobby", as well as the quite accurate but maybe more "political" term "Zionist lobby" should be mentioned. --Sugaar (talk) 20:45, 4 March 2008 (UTC)
FYI the Jewish Lobby article has been written to reflect the fact that Jewish Lobby is often used - including by Jews - in nonantisemitic ways. So sourced info about that fact where it might be relevant should be allowed. Especially in any new hisotry section since Jewish Lobby used even more in past than currently - Especially since all the christian zionists have jumped on board. Carol Moore 13:02, 2 April 2008 (UTC)Carolmooredc {talk}


This article is basically just a list of quotes. It needs to be written as a story, a narrative. SlimVirgin (talk) 23:57, 30 August 2006 (UTC)

I do think that we are missing a few crucial sections though -- one in particular, a history, needs a good narrative structure as well as just simple material. Also, since this is a factual article, there does not have to be too strong of a narrative arc and I think that there is a risk that too strong of a narrative arc can be misleading and also make it difficult to integrate new material.
BTW, you might be glad to know that I was at my alma mater's [sic] library today, in part to research anti-Semitism and new anti-Semitism from real life books! --Deodar 00:09, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

RE: Jossi's reorganization, Is the article focus's the "debate"?

I don't really agree with Jossi's rearrangement and refocusing of the article. To be specific, User:Jossi has rearranged the article so the "Debate" and "Other special interest groups" sections come before the more explanatory "Structure" and "Means of influence" sections. He has inserted as the first sentence in the article:

"The Israel lobby in the United States debate is related to the influence excerted by certain groups and individuals in American policy in support of Israel."

I really do not think the focus of the article is the debate -- thus I disagree with this structural change and the accuracy of the new lead sentence. --Deodar 01:19, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Structure and means of influences are sections that reflect the viewpoint of a single author, presented as assertions of fact, or presented in isolation from other viewpoints. As I have expressed many time before, this article needs to be neutral in its presentation, but many sections read in the style of advocacy journalism and not as an encyclopedic article. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 04:39, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
I understand. I did add the Toofewopinions tags to the sections you had problems with -- let's add more viewpoints. --Deodar 05:52, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
Also note that while you are rising concerns about my edits, you keep reverting to your own version of the lead again and again. So, if you want to edit alone, just tell me. I do not want to waste my time. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 04:40, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
Jossi - I reverted the lead only once to SlimVirgin's version and it was after we talked about it. You then added back in your sentence about the debate (although you left the original lead, which was kind of you) and I left it, instead I wrote about my concerns on this talk page. Then came in User:Sanguinalis who removed your lead sentence in this edit: [1].
Feel free to restore your lead. --Deodar 05:46, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
I agree, there is definitely a WP:OWN problem with this article. 6SJ7 04:51, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
I guess I am just following the model of experienced editor User:SlimVirgin on New Anti-Semitism. That said, it would be mistaken to think that have been revert crazy -- I didn't revert SlimVirgins edits to this page, Sanguinalis edits, nor was I the one that reverted Jossi's latest. I also wasn't the one that removed the NPOV tag from the article. Nor was I the one that removed the merge template on the article. --Deodar 05:46, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

New Section: Zunes' Theory

I think there is major section missing now -- something like a discussion of why Israel can be seen as a strategic asset and that is why it is supported and the lobby is just a distraction for the most part -- or it may be outside of the scope of this article since it doesn't directly involve the Israel lobby. The hints of this new section is covered a bit in the new (and admitted not well presented) Lobbying for a U.S. client state section. It is interesting in that the U.S. could desire a militarized and semi-threatened Israel and that the domestic Israel lobby helps ensure this remains by making analysis and criticism of this relationship difficult. The right wing of the lobby is only dominant over the left-wing and appears to have influence because it says and pushes for what the administration wants to happen. Those in the lobby with desirable views (right-wing) are courted, rather than the other way around. In a way, it turns the lobby and Israel into things that are being used and potentially to their detriment. One has to think past "friendship" as a basis for the relationship for a moment and actually talk about things in terms of realist national interest. That Zunes' guy is pretty amazing. --Deodar 06:18, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

In terms of my own personal understanding, I now favor something similar to the above theory by Zunes. It best fits all the evidence and it explains why most of the minor parties involved (who each only have a partial, local and egocentric understanding of what is going on) views things the way they do. --Deodar 07:46, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Taking a break to avoid WP:OWN issues.

I agree with User:6SJ7 in that my numerous edits of this article as of late have made it hard for others to contribute. Thus I will take a break from editing this article for a while. --Deodar 18:33, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Request: more sources from centrist/right political leanings?

British politician Denis Healey discusses President Eisenhower and the "Zionist lobby" during the 1956 Suez crisis in his book The Time of My Life (1989).

An anonymous comment on the article [2] (apparently from a single use account which echoed back at me some of my own recent words of criticisms of someone else -- that's funny) said that there was too much reliance on left wing sources. This is very true in some sections in particular. Who are prominent commentators on the subject on the right or the center which could be added? --Deodar 03:47, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

What follows is a quick study of the sources used in this article. --Deodar 04:03, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

The primary sources for the article are these three, listed in number of citations:

People references once or twice:

Lobbying for a U.S. client state

I just got to say that section is the "least intellectually stimulating" thing I have ever read (beating Operation Gladio).

Israel is actually "a handmaiden of American Empire" (Yawn).

A militant Israel is seen to advance American interests. (You mean like Arab Oil Embargoes?)

Seriously, what (moderately intelligent) person believes this? The only thing that Israel did that could be construed as supporting US policy objectives was trying to overthrow Nasser, which the US opposed. And bombing Iraq when the US supported Saddam.

As for the downsides:

  • Two oil embargoes
  • Soviet influence in the Middle East
  • Massive anti-American sentiment
  • Palestinians trying to overthrow Jordan's government
  • Supplying weapons to Iran in the 80s and China today
  • Numerous terrorist attacks 01:19, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

I see you have not registered. That's fine and I hope you do intend to register and add your input into this and other articles. Since you're new here, perhaps you don't realize the purpose of these Talk pages. They are not about discussing the issues the articles discuss, rather they are about discussing ways to improve or resolve conflicts about the content of the articles themselves. Thank you. --GHcool 06:09, 10 December 2006 (UTC)

another Carter article

Here, in The Guardian. —Ashley Y 05:02, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

Never mind, it's much the same as the other one. —Ashley Y 05:05, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

New Article Proposal -- Anti-capitalism and antisemitism

It seems that, much like anti-globalization and antisemitism, a great deal of anti-Semitic feelings are related to anti-capitalism. Many of the people that have these beliefs are obviously socialistic and/or left-leaning in political orientation (which includes many Jews, by the way), asserting that some Jews use their "traditional business acumen" and "shrewdness" to "dominate" and/or "control" key industries, in the meanwhile eliminating all competitors; this is often in contrast to those on The Right that have anti-Semitic beliefs that are racial (Racial antisemitism) and/or religious (Anti-Judaism) in orientation. However, even Nazism (often associated with the Far Right) was technically called the 'National Socialist German Workers Party,' (the key words there being 'Socialist' and 'Workers,' both associated with anti-capitalism), and if you read around you'll find that many of the Nazi leaders expressed quite a bit of anti-capitalist sentiment in relation to Jews, especially in their more personal writings. Indeed, one of the first thing that the Nazis did when they came to power was to organize mass-boycotts of Jewish-owned businesses (especially dept. stores, newspapers, and various banks), which eventually decimated the German-Jewish community economically and caused many of them to emigrate within a few months or years.

This is not only the case in modern times with the so-called "New antisemitism" (which is strongly associated with the more socialistic Left), but was also found in the past where many prominent Communists/socialists were anti-capitalist AND anti-Semitic at the same time. Stalin cracked down on Jews in the USSR post-WWII, citing that they [paraphrasing] "still have too much control in business and government." This also includes many lower-tier Jews in the former USSR and Eastern bloc, along with Karl Marx in his essay On the Jewish Question. Many of these Communist/socialist Jews went so far as to entirely renounce Judaism (and all religion), and became radical anti-Semites (or Self-hating Jews, take your pick) in their own right -- for example, Mátyás Rákosi and Ernő Gerő of Hungary were both ethnic Jews and were anti-Semitic, along with many other Jews in the former USSR and Eastern bloc.

Also, amongst non-Jews these days, it is commonly said that "the Jews own/run/control everything" (anti-capitalist & anti-Semitic) or that "Jews control the media" (the media is also a business, at base -- especially Hollywood), or that in certain industries non-Jews are no longer able to compete anymore because "Jews already own everything" or that "the Jews have entirely cornered certain markets" (competition is an important element in free-market capitalism; in fact, it is key to the whole system). The increasing numbers of mergers and acquisitions in recent times (as the world has become more globalized), especially when it comes to media companies, seems to back-up a few of these theories (see the Viacom table I've added below as only one example of how "mergers and acquisitions" have affected the marketplace; and remember this is only a single example). It is also well known that Jews have been highly successful in the banking/financial sectors and are VERY overrepresented in these fields (the "Shylock stereotype"), epitomized most by Wall Street (based in New York City), along with all of the banks that are headquartered there: it is well known that many of the top directors, boards, and CEOs of these banks and other major financial companies/corporations are of Jewish ethnic origin (see List of Jewish American businesspeople, though this is only a fraction), even if they no longer practice Judaism and despite the fact that they are only approx. 2.5% of the U.S. population. Thus, I think that Anti-capitalism and antisemitism would make a good article, as more than a few anti-capitalists often harbor anti-Semitic beliefs as well (both in the past and the present). Anyone have more ideas, opinions, or thoughts on this subject? Would anyone like to start an article on this topic? -- 18:43, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

I hope you don't mind, but I deleted the Viacom links since it was cluttering up the talk page. In response to your proposal, you make some interesting arguments and I appreciate the time and energy you put into your proposal, but I respectfully disagree that such an article should be written. Anti-Semitisic rhetoric has been used anti-capitalists (and vice versa), but it has been used similarly by anti-communists. I don't think that the correlation between anti-Semitism and anti-capitalism is strong enough to devote an entire article to. I feel similarly about anti-Semitism and anti-globalization, but I because globalization is a threat (perhaps the biggest threat) to the Arab world, and the Arab world places significant blame upon Jews worldwide for many of their post-1948 problems, it is more appropriate. --GHcool 20:11, 22 December 2006 (UTC)
As GHcool pointed out, there is no logical connection between the two concepts. The existence of people who happen to believe both X and Y is not sufficient grounds for the creation of an article on that subject. Anti-capitalists are a very broad group of people, and no doubt include many anti-Semites as well as many Jews (Labor Zionism, the main political movement that led to the creation of the State of Israel, is anti-capitalist in nature). Of course there have been allegations of Jews "controlling" "international capitalism", but there have been just as many (if not more) claims of a "Judeo-Bolshevik" conspiracy, or supposed Jewish control of "international communism". Jews may be overrepresented among bankers, but they are also overrepresented among communist thinkers and political leaders. Indeed, one key element of Nazi propaganda was the claim that communism is a Jewish conspiracy. Most of the anti-communist far right is antisemitic. Should we therefore have an article entitled Anti-communism and antisemitism? -- Nikodemos 23:40, 23 December 2006 (UTC)
Yes, absolutely, have them both since anti-Semitic rhetoric in the 20th Century has been both anti-communist AND anti-capitalist in nature. -- 08:14, 5 January 2007 (UTC)
Maybe you can add sections to the main anti-Semitism article with these titles, but I don't think an entire article about these subjects would be necessary. --GHcool 17:19, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

(unindent) The anti-Capitalist field has no or virtually no anti-semites, as it has humanist internationalist fundamentals (i.e. all people are equal). Most of them are anti-Zionist though and therefore strongly dislike the Israel lobby.

Using the term anti-semite to describe anti-zionists is a very offensive slur used with a clear political intent. It's a very dangerous POV and should be avoided by all means. --Sugaar (talk) 20:55, 4 March 2008 (UTC)


I reverted the paragraph linking Jack Abramoff to the Israel lobby because I thought it was tangental at best, misleading at worst (even though it is well sourced) for the following reasons:

  1. The section is about "right leaning groups." Abramoff is one man, and thus, not a group. If we named every American individual and his/her relationship with Israel or Israeli companies, this article would be endless.
  2. Private companies that Congress approves of or utilizes for reasons other than foreign policy have absolutely nothing to do with the Israel lobby in the United States, no matter which country that company was founded or based in. This forced linkage between Congress and Israel is like accusing Congress of being heavily influenced by the Japanese because they use Sony radios and televisions in their offices.
  3. This was an isolated incedent and does not represent United States foreign policy or the Israel lobby's influence over it in general.

I suggest that whoever wants this information on Wikipedia (and I agree that it is important information), I suggest that person put this paragraph in the article on Jack Abramoff where it belongs and not clutter the Israel lobby in the United States article with it. Feel free to respond here. If I do not get a response in one week, I will revert this paragraph again. --GHcool 18:33, 2 January 2007 (UTC)

Abramoff is doing corporate lobbying which is distinctly different that foreign policy lobbying (the topic of this article, although with a focus on lobbying in the United States with regards to its FP that is relevant to Israel). It does not belong in this article since it is off topic. Although, we should create at some point a corporate lobbying article -- 9 out of even 10 dollars spent lobbying the US government is with regards to corporate interests, not single-issue/ideological ones. -- 23:03, 2 January 2007 (UTC)
I'm copying/pasting the disputed Abramoff section here so that it will be available in case it is added here one day or elsewhere in a page on corporate lobbying and the U.S. govt. So, here it is:
On October 18, 2005, The Washington Post reported that Bob Ney, as former chair of the United States House Committee on House Administration, approved a 2002 license for an Israeli telecommunications company to install antennas for the United States House of Representatives. The company, then Foxcom Wireless, an Israeli start-up telecommunications firm (which has since moved headquarters from Jerusalem to Vienna, Va., and been renamed MobileAccess Networks) later paid powerful lobbyist Jack Abramoff some $280,000 for his lobbying efforts and "also donated $50,000 to a charity that Abramoff sometimes used to secretly pay for some of his lobbying activities" [3]. Abramoff, based in America, supported an Israeli sniper school for some time [4]. Abramoff had much access to the highest echelons of the U.S. Republican Party (GOP) throughout his career; an NPR news report from March 2006 stated that: "...Abramoff recently granted a rare press interview to Vanity Fair magazine, where he asserts President Bush and other prominent figures in Washington know him very well. He called them liars for denying contact with him" [5]. Abramoff was also involved with Toward Tradition for many years, a politically conservative Jewish-Christian American organization with close ties to Israel. -- 20:36, 6 January 2007 (UTC)

NYT Magazine article

Could be integrated into the article as it covers the subject at hand:

-- 18:07, 14 January 2007 (UTC)

Another article to add: -- 22:59, 27 January 2007 (UTC)
Another -- 01:21, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

"Issues" section?

A number of issues have been of key importance to the Israel lobby over the years. Of course there is the Israel-Palestine and ISrael-Lebanon conflicts, but there are other issues as well. There were the loan guarantees in the early 1990s on which a lot of press ink was spent. More recently there is the Iran crisis. It may be useful to create a section to deal with each of these individuals in isolation, instead of the current diffuse coverage spread across multiple sections. Such an organizational improvement may increase the overall precision of the article. -- 02:37, 27 January 2007 (UTC)

Wikipedia doesn't exactly aim for "precision" -- it aims to include ALL relevant info. I suppose you deleted all of that info on Nader, Clark, and Findley (along with relevant external links) on the 31st of January in the name of "precision"? Is "precision" now synonymous with "censorship"? --WassermannNYC 10:22, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Removed section

Section one:

In 2004 Ralph Nader was criticized "after he suggested that President Bush and Congress were 'puppets' of the Israeli government" [6]. Nader is quoted as saying that: "The days when the chief Israeli puppeteer comes to the United States and meets with the puppet in the White House and then proceeds to Capitol Hill, where he meets with hundreds of other puppets, should be replaced" [7]. His statements regarding unjustified Israeli influence on American foreign policy and American politicians brought him much criticism from the Anti-Defamation League and other Jewish organizations.

Section two:

In an interview with The Huffington Post on 4 January 2007, Wesley Clark chided certain Israeli and U.S. officials (including the Israeli press) of lobbying for a military confrontation with Iran and shunning all diplomacy. Clark said that "Bibi Netanyahu [is] leading the charge to lobby the Bush administration to take out Iran's nuclear facilities..." and that "You just have to read what's in the Israeli press. The Jewish community is divided but there is so much pressure being channeled from the New York money people to the office seekers" [8] [9] [10].

Section three:

Jayjg's argument is that the individual added the above passages to multiple articles, thus adding undue weight to the above. The Nader and Clark issues should be covered in their respective articles for sure. These are pretty harsh criticisms and they are not exactly scholarly. I think it would be more appropriate to handle these issues in a neutral way and create a section of issues which have been of primary concern to the mainstream lobbying bodies, which would include the current advocacy of a hardline approach to the Iran crisis. -- 17:47, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

They don't refer specifically to the "Israel lobby", many of the sources aren't notable, certainly youtube ones shouldn't be included. Also, the claims themselves about "much criticism from the ADL and other Jewish organizations" are not backed up, and the ADL isn't a "Jewish organization". Most importantly, it's a tiny incident that someone has decided to blow up into a big deal for political reasons; again, review WP:NOR#Undue weight. The incident was very thinly reported, and had no lasting impact. This trivia has no place in Wikipedia. Jayjg

(talk) 18:11, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

The Washington Post isn't notable? Nor the ADL? The YouTube video link(s) feature long interviews with Mearsheimer, Walt, Cater, and others, that's why I included them, and the YouTube clip with Nader is from CSPAN. The ADL is most certainly a Jewish organization, as the organization's tagline will tell you: "The mission of the ADL is to stop the defamation of the Jewish people..." The Nader YouTube video Nader is from CSPAN, which means that many people saw it, only not many reported it in the mainstream media (as for being "very thinly reported," if the Washington Post reported it that is notable enough for inclusion). It WAS reported by the Washington Post and others though, so I'd say that's notable enough considering Nader was a three time presidential candidate. Also, the comments/criticisms of the professors currently in the article are obviously much less notable than the criticisms offered by Nader, Clark, and Findley. Also those external links were good links: one was from The Nation, one from The American Prospect, and the other from U.S. News & World Report (along with the YouTube video link with interviews on CSPAN with Mearsheimer and Walt, etc.) --WassermannNYC 15:53, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
I agree with Jayjg. These are non-notable criticisms made by notable people. --GHcool 18:31, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
Any major figure speaking about the Israel lobby is notable because it is such a taboo subject in the U.S.. --WassermannNYC 15:53, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
Firstly, I said that these public figures are notable, but their public criticisms are not. You did not address this my statement as if I believed the public figures and their criticisms were equally non-notable even though my statement couldn't be more clear about the contrast. Secondly, simply speaking about the Israel lobby is certainly not a taboo subject in the United States, as evidenced by the numerous articles on the subject referenced here on Wikipedia alone. What is taboo is speaking about the Israel lobby as a dangerous un-patriotic demogogue that pulls the strings behind American foreign policy. These taboo claims are presented on Wikipedia already (as they should be). --GHcool 18:35, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
What makes the public criticisms of these major public figures any less notable than the quotes from the academics on this page? Surely the criticism of the Israel lobby suggested by three time presidental canidate Ralph Nader, former presidential candidate Wesley Clark, and former congressman Paul Findley (all notable public figures) are more notable than the criticisms of the numerous (unknown) academics cited on the page (Stephen Zunes, Mark Mazower, Eliot A. Cohen, Aaron Friedberg)? --WassermannNYC 20:26, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
The criticisms by Nader and Clark aren't particularly notable because the criticisms themselves are not well known, nor are Nader and Clark well known for repeatedly making criticisms of the Israel lobby. The academics cited affected the debate significantly. --GHcool 04:56, 4 February 2007 (UTC)

User:, that's not all that you removed; the entire section on former congressman Paul Findley was also entirely removed, even though he has written a book on the subject of the Israel lobby. The entire Nader quote, along with the Wesley Clark quotes (all very well sourced) and three valid links were also removed:

Former U.S. congressman Paul Findley has been a frequent and vocal critic of U.S. foreign policy regarding Israel. In 1989, Findley wrote the best selling book They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel's Lobby in which he claims that the pro-Israel lobby, notably AIPAC, has vast and undue influence over the United States Congress. He refers to the lobby as "the 700-pound gorilla in Washington" [11]. The Washington Post said "former congressman Paul Findley's message is straightforward and valid: Israeli influence in the United States, including in the inner sanctums of government, is very strong" [12]. However, the The New York Times described the book as "an angry, one-sided book that seems often to be little more than a stringing together of stray incidents" [13].
A year after the September 11 attacks, Findley published articles saying that this attack would never have occurred were it not for uncritical U.S. support of Israel [14] [15]. In these articles he wrote that "U.S. policy on the Mideast is made in Israel, not in Washington," and that "once beloved worldwide, the U.S. government finds itself reviled in most countries because it provides unconditional support of Israeli violations of the United Nations Charter, international law, and the precepts of all major religious faiths."
Findley also blames the Israeli lobby for contributing to his defeat in 1982: "But, in seeking gains for Israel, they rigorously stifled dissent and intimidated the entire Congress. They still do. They defeat legislators who criticize Israel. Senators Adlai Stevenson and Charles Percy, and Reps. Pete McCloskey, Cynthia McKinney, Earl F. Hilliard, and myself were defeated at the polls by candidates heavily financed by pro-Israel forces. McKinney alone was able to regain her seat in Congress" [16]. Findley has also claimed that the 2003 invasion of Iraq was launched primarily to benefit Israel, at the behest of pro-Israeli U.S. interest groups [17].
Findley spoke to NPR about the publication of Mearsheimer and Walt's controversial 2006 working paper, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. He said: "You can't imagine how pleased I was [...] I think I can pose as a foremost expert on the lobby for Israel, because I was the target the last three years I was in Congress" [18]. More recently Findley has supported the efforts of CAIR, the Council on American Islamic Relations, in order to try and improve the image of Muslims in America [19].
In August 2004 during his presidential campaign, Ralph Nader was criticized for expressing what many saw as antisemitic attitudes when he "suggested that President Bush and Congress were 'puppets' of the Israeli government" [20] [21] [22]. Nader is quoted as saying that: "The days when the chief Israeli puppeteer comes to the United States and meets with the puppet in the White House and then proceeds to Capitol Hill, where he meets with hundreds of other puppets, should be replaced" [23]. Nader's statements regarding the Israeli influence on American foreign policy and American politicians brought him much criticism from the Anti-Defamation League and other Jewish organizations. Abraham Foxman, the head of the Anti-Defamation League, was quoted soon after Nader made the comments, stating that "What he [Nader] said smacks of bigotry" [24]. Foxman, in an open letter to Nader about his comment(s), wrote: "...the image of the Jewish State as a 'puppeteer,' controlling the powerful U.S. Congress feeds into many age-old stereotypes which have no place in legitimate public discourse" [25]. Nader's response to Foxman can be found here, and Foxman's counter-reply to Nader's letter is here.
In an interview with The Huffington Post on 4 January 2007, Wesley Clark chided certain Israeli and U.S. officials (including the Israeli press) of lobbying for a military confrontation with Iran and shunning all diplomacy. Clark said that "Bibi Netanyahu [is] leading the charge to lobby the Bush administration to take out Iran's nuclear facilities..." and that "You just have to read what's in the Israeli press. The Jewish community is divided but there is so much pressure being channeled from the New York money people to the office seekers" [26] [27] [28].

All of this information is entirely valid and I fail to see the reason for its deletion. I was only trying to expand the article; as it's been stuck at a certain length for a long time and has not been allowed to grow. --WassermannNYC 15:53, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

It's more than big enough, most of these sources are not even directly referring to "the Israel lobby in the United States", and your insertions of trivia are just more POV-pushing. Jayjg (talk) 16:34, 5 February 2007 (UTC)
Are you sure the article is already big enough? Along the same lines as the New antisemitism article you mean, the one that is probably 3-4 times as long as this one even though the Israel lobby has received a large amount of press like the New antisemitism? All of the information is entirely relevant to the article, and to state otherwise is totally false. You say that "most of these sources are not even referring directly to the Israel lobby," and that is clearly false as well. Congressman Findley wrote an entire book specifically on the lobby, yet that info was removed; very notable Nader (remember: presidential candidate multiple times) refers directly to Israel's undue influence on American politicians and he is clearly speaking of the lobby, and that info was removed; and Wesley Clark's controversial quote says that pro-Israeli people (specifically the "New York money people" and "Bibi Netanyahu") "are lobby[ing] the Bush administration" in order to provoke a conflict with Iran. Also, several links from reputable and mainstream publications were removed as well: for what reason? So it seems that it may actually be you Jayjg that is using your admin. status to bolster your own POV and keep out relevant, factual, and well sourced information. Also, I'd appreciate it if you actually take the time to explain your reversions rather than leaving these terse one-sentence responses all over the place regarding your unjust reversions (not only in this article); please, by all means, explain yourself and tell us why you've taken out so much well sourced information from this article and others. --WassermannNYC 02:48, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Famous Pat Buchanan Quote -- Capitol Hill = "Israeli-occupied territory"

Again, given that Buchanan is far more notable than any of the academics quoted in this article, perhaps we should included the now famous quote made by Pat Buchanan in 1990 that deals with the Israel lobby in Washington D.C. Buchanan has referred to Capitol Hill as "Israeli-occupied territory" -- quoted in Media Notes, The Washington Post, September 15, 1990 ([[Pat_Buchanan#_ref-31|found in Wikipedia's article on Buchanan]). Remember, studying and/or remarking on or writing about the Israel lobby is not solely an academic matter; there are plenty of people that have things to say about it, from the media (journalists) to politicians to activists, and many others. In other words, this isn't a subject in which only academics should be quoted, but other notable public figures as well. --WassermannNYC 20:58, 3 February 2007 (UTC)

Although I think this article has gotten somewhat out of hand, in light of the other non-academics whose views are already referenced (Jimmy Carter, Molly Ivins, etc.), the quotation from Pat Buchanan might be reasonable. However, if this is to be done, the next sentence needs to say that this is one of the pronouncements by Buchanan that has caused many to regard him as an antisemite. 6SJ7 23:16, 3 February 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, I agree with this one. This should be included in the article. --GHcool 04:52, 4 February 2007 (UTC)

Dual loyalty discussions

Is the Israel lobby silencing open debate in America and elsewhere?

"A Zion in the Sand" -- February 16, 2007

Criticize Israeli policies, and you’re likely to be tarred an anti-Semite. At least that’s what some say has been happening more and more lately. Are mainstream Jewish groups really squelching debate? We ask J.J. Goldberg, editor of The Forward.

Read the article/transcript here. -- 21:41, 25 February 2007 (UTC)

Jayjg's deletions

User:Jayjg has recently deleted a lot of material from this article. In this first case he says Albright was misrepresented. The other cases he seems to be saying are not admissible because either they don't refer to "Israel lobby" or constitute original research

Jayjg's deletions:

1. Sentences describing comments made by Madeleine Albright in an interview

2. Quote by Pat Buchanan referring to Capitol Hill as "Israeli-occupied territory"

3. Long quote from Stephen Zunes on Israel influence on U.S. policy and vice versa

4. An editorial by the Forward refering to "self-appointed spokesman for Israel and the Jewish community"

5. A reference to an NPR interview with Mearsheimer and Walt

6. Excerpt from a lecture by Richard Dawkins

7. Excerpt from an interview with Henry Kissinger on the Charle Rose show in which Kissinger disagrees with statements made in Jimmy Carter's book

8. Statement from the former British ambassador about Israeli influence

I would like to respond to each of these in turn

1. I think Albright was fairly represented. In the interview she actually says "There is no doubt that there is a very strong Israeli lobby. It is very strong." And she does refer to the Saudi planes deal (a hugely important event at the time). I am restoring this.

2. Buchanan, although he certainly represents a minority viewpoint, is nonetheless a prominent figure in American politics. However, this is an offhand quip and probably not the best summary of his views. OK to leave this out, perhaps to be replaced with something more substantial from Buchanan.

3. Zunes is a professor of Middle East history at an American university and is certainly qualified to appear here. However, I agree this quote doesn't specifically mention the Israel lobby, so it should be left out.

4. The editorial is clearly alluding to something very much like an Israel lobby, even if doesn't use those exact words. And the Forward is a very significant newspaper in the U.S. Jewish community. Absolutely this quote belongs in the article.

5. It is inconceivable to me why Jayjg deleted this.

6. This is marginal. Dawkins seems to be making a point about atheism, not a deep comment about US/Middle East politics, and it seems incongruous in the midst of statements by people like Dennis Ross and Steven Rosen. We don't need to collect every mention of "Jewish lobby" in public. OK to leave this out.

7. Obviously relevant.

8. This one is talking about the influence of Israel as a country, but not about the Israel lobby specifically. Agreed, take it out.

As to linking to Google videos: Is there a Wikipedia policy against this? If so, there's no still no reason we can't quote from them if they are relevant to this article.

Sanguinalis 16:25, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

  1. If you want to add that to the Albright section, it might be acceptable. However, the edit in question skewed the thrust of her words, and removed important information from a direct quote. As such it was (and is) unacceptable.
  2. The Forward article doesn't refer to an "Israeli lobby", and it's original research to claim it does. By the way, The Forward isn't all that "significant" in the Jewish community any more; it's just one more New York Jewish newspaper at this point (albeit one with a long and illustrious history).
  3. The information about the Mearsheimer and Walt interview was not encyclopedic. It added no information to the article, except that they were interviewed, and provided a link to that. If you want to add it as an external link, I might be persuaded, but even then it belongs in the article about the paper, not here.
  4. The Kissinger interview doesn't refer to "the Israel lobby", and in any event is original research. Wikipedians should not be taking primary sources like Google videos and summarizing what they imagine the key points to be; instead, they should refer to secondary sources which summarize the interview.

-- Jayjg (talk) 03:32, 1 April 2007 (UTC)

Responding to your points in turn:

  1. I have restored the longer version together with the "information from a direct quote" you think is important. Your version, which omits Albright's clear statement that the lobby is "very strong", and her specific mention of the Saudi planes deal, is the one that skews the thrust of her words.
  2. The editorial referred to "self-appointed spokesmen for Israel and the Jewish community" with influence on the President of the United States. And yet this is not at all talking about the Israeli lobby? As for The Forward, if you dispute its significance, show us another newspaper with comparable coverage of major Jewish organizations and we can examine measures of influence like circulation numbers.
  3. The information about Mearsheimer and Walt interview is in a section entitled "media coverage of lobby", and the information it provides, that Mearsheimer and Walt were interviewed on NPR, a major media outlet, is in itself an important example of media converge. Hence it is relevant to this article.
  4. The source, in this case, is a broadcast of the Charlie Rose show. First, would you agree, putting aside for the moment the question of its relevance to this article, that an interview of Henry Kissinger on the Charlie Rose show generally meets the requirements of the WP:RS policy? The fact that its form is a video, as opposed to a printed transcipt, clearly should make no difference. Assuming you do agree on the WP:RS point, your objections seem to be: (a) Kissinger and Rose use the terms "American Jewish lobbies" and "Jewish lobby" instead of "Israeli lobby", hence they are talking about something altogether different from the subject of this article; and (b) the Wikipedia article should refer to a secondary source that summarizes the "key points" of the interview, not quote it directly. Your point (a) is overly literal minded; I know of no Wikipedia policy that says we can only incorporate sources in an article which use the exact words of the title of the article. As to (b), the principal you are enunciating (not consistent with my reading of the WP:NOR policy) is totally unworkable and cannot possibly be applied uniformly. The article directly quotes from an op-eds by Tony Judt and Eliot Cohen. Where are the secondary sources that summarizes these editorials for us? The article directly quotes from an article by Mitchell Bard. Where is the secondary source that summarizes Bards article? Besides, the usage of the Charlie Rose material is clearly in line with WP:NOR guildelines on primary sources: anyone, without specialist knowledge, can verify that the Wikipedia passage (which you deleted) agrees with what Kissinger and Rose said in the interview. Sanguinalis 02:10, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

Responding in turn:

  1. I'm fine with that.
  2. Once you start talking about "self-appointed spokesmen for the Jewish community", you could mean anything. You could be talking about various Rabbis, Jewish Federations, etc. The source isn't clear it's talking about "the Israel lobby", and we shouldn't assume it is. As for The Forward, yes, in the late 20s it was a big deal, when it was a Yiddish daily with a circulation of over 275,000. But now it is just another English weekly, like many others. Its English circulation doesn't match that of other publications like The Jewish Press, and its Yiddish circulation doesn't match that of papers like Der Blatt and Der Yid, or even The Algemeiner Journal.
  3. What did the text tell us? What information did it add? In what way was it encyclopedic? Wikipedia is not Google.
  4. To begin with, I'm highly dubious of people who quote from google videos or radio shows. In text you can easily see (and reproduce) what has been said. On other media this is questionable. Second, the material in question relies entirely on primary sources, which, except in special circumstances, should be avoided per WP:NOR. How do we know the material in question is relevant? How do we know that the person "transcribing" the interview hasn't given undue weight to part of a statement, or part of the interview? Third, Jewish lobby and Israel lobby are not identical; American Jews have many concerns about which they currently lobby, and/or have lobbied in the past; it's not all about Israel. And finally, you're right, most of this article is original research; someone has used Google to find a bunch of primary sources that say "Israel lobby" or "Jewish lobby" or similar things, and then built up a fairly incoherent thesis about it. I'm just trying to get clean up the worst parts of it.
  5. I've removed the short sentence by Rupert Cornwell giving his opinion that the "pro-Israel lobby" is an "obstacle to peace". Who is Rupert Cornwell, and why would we care what he has to say in this op-ed?

--Jayjg (talk) 18:37, 2 April 2007 (UTC)

I'll respond to your last point. Rupert Cornwell is the Washington correspondent for The Independent. If you read the reference Cornwell is referring to Edward Tivnan's arguments in his book The Lobby: Jewish Political Power and American Foreign Policy. Catchpole 06:25, 3 April 2007 (UTC)
So we have one reporter quoting another reporter who wrote a book twenty years ago, and we basically state it as fact? We don't even attribute the second-hand opinion to the person who wrote it? Why would Cornwell's view of Tivnan's view be authoritative and worth quoting? Jayjg (talk) 03:38, 5 April 2007 (UTC)

Massive censorship on this page

Take a look at what was recently stripped from this article because ONE EDITOR thought that this information was "POV original research":

[deletion of relevant material] A notable quote made by Pat Buchanan in 1990 dealt directly with the Israel lobby. During an interview with the The Washington Post, Buchanan referred to Capitol Hill as "Israeli-occupied territory" (quoted in Media Notes, The Washington Post, September 15, 1990).
[deletion of relevant material] Stephen Zunes, who writes for a self-described "think tank," "Project Information." writes that

"the stronger, more aggressive, and more compliant with U.S. interests that Israel has become, the higher the level of aid and strategic cooperation it receives. A militant Israel is seen to advance American interests. Indeed, an Israel in a constant state of war — technologically sophisticated and militarily advanced, yet lacking an independent economy and dependent on the United States -- is far more willing to perform tasks unacceptable to other allies than an Israel at peace with its neighbors." Zunes quotes former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger saying that "Israel's obstinacy [...] serves the purposes of both our countries best."

[deletion of relevant material] In 2006, The Forward expressed in an editorial that "Bush has been convinced by self-appointed spokesmen for Israel and the Jewish community that endless war is in Israel’s interest." Time To Change the Tune, Forward, August 18 2006, accessed August 31 2006
[deletion of relevant material] In June 21, 2006, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt appeared on NPR's The Diane Rehm Show and discussed their controversial working paper The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy in an hour long interview. It can be heard here (radio interview).
[understandable deletion, though this was 'media coverage of the lobby' as the section states] On October 23, 2006, Richard Dawkins, in a lecture regarding his book The God Delusion at Randolph-Macon Woman's College in Virginia, suggested that atheists, agnostics, and/or nonbelievers should form a lobby or sort-of public group that could help them to gain more proportional representation in governmental and public life in mainstream America and elsewhere. During his talk he surprisingly discussed the 'Jewish lobby' (an alternate phrase for the 'Israel lobby,' and the phrases are often used interchangeably), saying: "If a, if an 'atheist lobby' could be got together which showed a small fraction of its numerical strength, it would outnumber, for example, the 'Jewish lobby,' which is formidably and notoriously powerful in this country [the USA]. There are more secularists, agnostics, and atheists in this country [the USA] than there are Jews, but do they have a voice in politics? Is it possible for an atheist to get elected to high office in this country [the USA]? No." (video: Part 2, minutes ≈15:00-17:00) [29]
[deletion of relevant material] In an interview with Henry Kissinger on The Charlie Rose Show on December 13, 2006, Kissinger was asked about the influence of the Israeli/Jewish lobby in America and on American foreign policy. Rose asked: "Carter [Former President Jimmy Carter in his 2006 book Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid] also argues that the American Jewish lobbies exercise too much influence on American foreign policy in the Middle East." Kissinger responded: "...I'm sure that the Jewish organizations, and I know from personal experience, are vocal defenders of their point of view." Rose then asked: "It's one thing to say that, but it's another thing to say to the fact that America acts..." [Rose is cut off] Kissinger: "I do not believe that American strategy has been shaped by the Jewish lobby." Rose: "Or unduly influenced?" Kissinger: "As if it is such a clearly definable Jewish lobby, because many of these organizations disagree with each other."[30] [31] (video: ≈33:00-34:42). The pair then shifted their focus to China.
[deletion of relevant material] Sir Christopher Meyer, former British ambassador to the USA, when asked (in an interview with the BBC World Service on December 16, 2006) "Which foreign government has the most influence on Washington?" he unequivocally responded immediately, saying: "Israel." He was then asked: "And then?" After a long pause he said: "Well, in the hit parade I think Israel is in a class of its own..." [32]. (radio interview: ≈25:30-26:00)
[deletion of relevant material] The influence of the pro-Israel lobby in the United States has been cited as becoming "an obstacle to peace in the Middle East". [33]

--Wassermann 09:30, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

This information was deleted because it violated the "Wikipedia:WIkipedia is a Hasbara tool" rule. YOu should know better than to complain about this. Just to save space I will now give all the arguements people in favor of the deletion will give: You're a nazi, the deletion was in good faith, anti-semite, anti-semite, the holocaust, nazi, the holocaust. 12:10, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Restore it please. POV vandalism has no justification. --Sugaar (talk) 21:19, 4 March 2008 (UTC)

Info on Paul Findley continually deleted as well -- why?

Even though former congressman Paul Findley has been a vocal, high-profile critic of the Israel lobby and has written two books and numerous articles on the subject over the years, the references to him in the article are continually removed. Could someone please point out what is wrong with the following information and why it is constantly removed from this article (NOTE: this information comes almost directly from Findley's Wikipedia article, or a former version of it).

Former U.S. congressman Paul Findley has been a frequent and vocal critic of U.S. foreign policy regarding Israel. In 1989, Findley wrote the best selling book They Dare to Speak Out: People and Institutions Confront Israel's Lobby (updated 2003, ISBN 155652482X) in which he claims that the pro-Israel lobby, notably AIPAC, has vast and undue influence over the United States Congress. In the book he also refers to the lobby as "the 700-pound gorilla in Washington" [34]. The Washington Post said that "former congressman Paul Findley's message is straightforward and valid: Israeli influence in the United States, including in the inner sanctums of government, is very strong" [35]. However, the The New York Times described the book as "an angry, one-sided book that seems often to be little more than a stringing together of stray incidents" [36]. Findley is also the author of another book on the Israel lobby entitled Deliberate Deceptions: Facing the Facts About the U.S.-Israeli Relationship (1995, ISBN 1556522398).
A year after the September 11 attacks, Findley published articles saying that this attack would never have occurred were it not for uncritical U.S. support of Israel [37] [38]. In these articles he wrote that "U.S. policy on the Mideast is made in Israel, not in Washington," and that: "Once beloved worldwide, the U.S. government finds itself reviled in most countries because it provides unconditional support of Israeli violations of the United Nations Charter, international law, and the precepts of all major religious faiths."
Findley also blames the Israeli lobby for contributing to his defeat in 1982, saying that: " seeking gains for Israel, they rigorously stifled dissent and intimidated the entire Congress. They still do. They defeat legislators who criticize Israel. Senators Adlai Stevenson and Charles Percy, and Reps. Pete McCloskey, Cynthia McKinney, Earl F. Hilliard, and myself were defeated at the polls by candidates heavily financed by pro-Israel forces. McKinney alone was able to regain her seat in Congress" [39]. Findley has also claimed that the 2003 invasion of Iraq was launched primarily to benefit Israel, at the behest of pro-Israeli U.S. interest groups [40].
Findley spoke to NPR about the publication of Mearsheimer and Walt's controversial 2006 working paper, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy. He said that: "You can't imagine how pleased I was [...] I think I can pose as a foremost expert on the lobby for Israel, because I was the target the last three years I was in Congress" [41]. More recently, Findley has supported the efforts of CAIR, the Council on American Islamic Relations, in order to try and improve the image of Muslims in America [42].

--Wassermann 09:30, 11 April 2007 (UTC)

These things were deleted because they were not in keeping with the goal of hasbarah. 12:11, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Removal of the "criticizing Israel's critics" section

I removed a large section of this article so I think a large removal deserves a large explanation. Of course the "Israel Lobby" is going to criticize critics of Israel, this is a given so I don't understand why this needs a big section. If the reason for this is to imply that the "Israel Lobby" has created an atmosphere of intimidation against those who criticize Israel then I believe that through looking at the various mechanisms of "the lobby" the reader should be able to see that many believe this is true and hopefully be able to develop their own opinion as to whether or not there is an atmosphere of intimidation.Oneworld25 18:32, 6 May 2007 (UTC)

I support Oneworld25's action. --GHcool 18:55, 6 May 2007 (UTC)
I've restored some of the above material, under the heading stifling debate. Catchpole 17:34, 15 May 2007 (UTC)
"Stifling debate" is one of the methods the Israel lobby uses in the United States? I don't think so. Maybe it does in Mearsheimer and Walt's "Twilight Zone" scenerio, but not in the real world. See the sections on "College campuses" and "News media criticism" for refutations, or, better yet, see the heading called "Debates!" --GHcool 00:23, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
You may not think so, but the sources used in this article do! I've changed the section title slightly to reflect what they say. Catchpole 06:39, 16 May 2007 (UTC)
The sources are wrong and unspecific all aluding to what is essentially a canard. Mearsheimer and Walt, Zunes, and Carter all essentially say the same thing: that the "Israel lobby" (a poorly defined term that could mean anything from individual American Jews to specialized organizations like AIPAC) practice McCarthyism; meaning that they illegally and immorally create an environment of mass hysteria without any justification other than name calling and guilt by association. None of the editorials give any specific example of this kind of behavior from the Israel lobby because there is no such offensive campaign. Comparing AIPAC to HUAC is the slightly more politically correct version of the comparison of Israelis to Nazis. --GHcool 07:18, 16 May 2007 (UTC)

You GHcool appear to be discussing whether the information is true, that isn't the bar that material in Wikipedia has to pass. The question is whether it is accurately sourced to reputable sources. Everything you are discussing above is irrelevant. The information appears to be sourced to 3 separate reputable sources, including 3 professors who specialize in international relations and one former president. The information inappropriately censored was the following:

Limiting open debate
Mearsheimer and Walt, who focus on the right-leaning component of the Israel lobby, write that "the Lobby doesn’t want an open debate, of course, because that might lead Americans to question the level of support they provide" to Israel.[6] Zunes writes that "assaults on critics of Israeli policies have been more successful in limiting open debate, but this gagging censorship effect stems more from ignorance and liberal guilt than from any all-powerful Israel lobby."[7] He goes on to explain that

"given that Israel is the world's only Jewish state and that some criticism of Israel really is rooted in anti-Semitism, organized attacks against those opposing Israeli policies tend to carry more resonance since they involve alleged manifestations of prejudice against a minority group. If a Jewish state were not the focus, many liberals would dismiss such attacks as passé McCarthyism and would not take them seriously."[7]

Zunes argues that the mainstream and conservative Jewish organizations have "created a climate of intimidation against many who speak out for peace and human rights or who support the Palestinians' right of self-determination." [7]
Zunes has been on the receiving end of this criticism himself "As a result of my opposition to US support for the Israeli government's policies of occupation, colonization and repression, I have been deliberately misquoted, subjected to slander and libel, and falsely accused of being "anti-Semitic" and "supporting terrorism"; my children have been harassed and my university's administration has been bombarded with calls for my dismissal."[7]
Jimmy Carter wrote:

"The many controversial issues concerning Palestine and the path to peace for Israel are intensely debated among Israelis and throughout other nations — but not in the United States. For the last 30 years, I have witnessed and experienced the severe restraints on any free and balanced discussion of the facts. This reluctance to criticize any policies of the Israeli government is because of the extraordinary lobbying efforts of the American-Israel Political Action Committee and the absence of any significant contrary voices. [...] What is even more difficult to comprehend is why the editorial pages of the major newspapers and magazines in the United States exercise similar self-restraint, quite contrary to private assessments expressed quite forcefully by their correspondents in the Holy Land."

-- 20:35, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

Firstly, Mr. Unregistered, even if you were correct (and you are not), this section violates WP:NPOV by endorsing the views of Mearsheimer, et al, by claiming that the Israel lobby "limits open debate." This is uncalled for, unethical, and misrepresentative of the sources. If the sources made specific references to the Israel lobby limiting open debare (for example, by supporting legislation similar to the Sedition Act of 1918), then I would accept it as worthy of inclusion in this article. However, the sources are so vague about what they call "McCarthyism" that it just becomes a meaningless statement that actually serves the purpose it pretends to be combating. The section also violates WP:Undue weight because any alleged limiting of open debate done by the Israel lobby would have to be so miniscule that reliable sources cannot definitively prove it beyond blowing hot air. Therefore, I will once again delete the section and hope it stays deleted. --GHcool 05:23, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
You seem to be constructing your own strawman argument to justify your deletion of this material. Catchpole 11:40, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
I gave specific reasons for its deletion: that the information is given undue weight, it is worded in a way that violates NPOV standards, and that it is a vague criticism of the lobby without empiracle proof and thus it cannot be said that the lobby operates by "limiting open debate." I fail to see the straw man argument here. Before reverting, please respond to these legitimate arguments based on Wikipedia policy. --GHcool 16:27, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Look at what the sources say. From Zunes:

"As a result of my opposition to U.S. support for the Israeli government's policies of occupation, colonization, and repression, I have been deliberately misquoted, subjected to slander and libel, and been falsely accused of being “anti-Semitic” and “supporting terrorism;” my children have been harassed and my university's administration has been bombarded with calls for my dismissal. I have also had media appearances and speaking engagements cancelled, even by groups generally supportive of the right to dissent. (For example, in 2003, just two weeks prior to its annual meeting at which I had been scheduled to speak on U.S. foreign policy and international law, the State Bar Association of Arizona rescinded its invitation after the president and board received a flurry of emails claiming that I was “anti-Israel.” A few years earlier, the Oregon Peace Institute cancelled an invitation for me to speak at a forum in Portland following similar pressure from the campaign of the first district's Democratic nominee for Congress. And a recent peace studies conference at Hofstra University insisted at the last minute on adding a right-wing supporter of the Israeli government to their plenary program in order to counter my scheduled “anti-Israel” presentation, wherein I raised concerns about Washington's role in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process; at no other plenary session, even those involving other left-leaning speakers on controversial issues, did the organizers at Hofstra insist upon such “balance” from the right.)"

From Soros:

"Anybody who dares to dissent may be subjected to a campaign of personal vilification. I speak from personal experience. Ever since I participated in a meeting discussing the need for voicing alternative views, a torrent of slanders has been released including the false accusation in The New Republic that I was a "young cog in the Hitlerite wheel" at the age of thirteen when my father arranged a false identity to save my life and I accompanied an official of the Ministry of Agriculture, posing as his godson, when he was taking the inventory of a Jewish estate."

From Massing

"Consider the recent experience of the New York Times. On May 6 the paper ran two photographs of a pro-Israel parade in Manhattan. Both showed the parade in the background and anti-Israel protesters prominently in the foreground. The paper, which for weeks has been threatened with a boycott by Jewish readers, was deluged with protests. On May 7 the Times ran an abject apology. That caused much consternation in the newsroom, with some reporters and editors feeling that the paper had buckled before an influential constituency. "It's very intimidating," said a correspondent at another large daily who is familiar with the incident. Newspapers, he added, are "afraid" of organizations like AIPAC and the Presidents Conference. "The pressure from these groups is relentless. Editors would just as soon not touch them.""

In short the sources used for this article say that debate in America is limited, and give examples of the tactics used to achieve this. This is not a minority view. If you wish to refute the argument then you are free to add material that backs your view, but deleting sourced material wholesale just because you don't agree with it is not helpful. Catchpole 17:00, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Also the brightest young thinkers in the UK also seem to think debate is stifled according to the Jerusalem Post - [43]. Catchpole 17:09, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
Interesting. OK, you have made your point. However, I still have an issue with the way that it is worded. The above quotations do not objectively indicate a "limiting of open debate." Rather, they are an indicate a participation in open debate wherein a very vocal group of people contact the media leadership to voice their opinion and threaten to disavow support of their enterprise, thus affecting their sales/reputation in a negative way. This is completely legal and completely common. I see the actions of the lobby as being similar to a boycott. Would anybody write that the National Rifle Association, the NAACP, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and other powerful lobbies participate in "limiting open debate" by writing letters to the media, universities, etc. to further their position and boycott the position of their opponents? Perhaps if the section were reworded in such a way so that it reflects a boycott mentality and not a censorship/McCarthyist mentality, I would accept it as NPOV and worthy of inclusion in the article. --GHcool 17:42, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
I don't see a censorship/McCarthyist mentality, or anywhere that says the tactic is illegal, just that the tactic creates an enviroment that dissuades individuals from voicing their opinions. As you point out, many lobbyists use the tactic. The section was originally entitled "criticizing Israel's critics", would going back to that or something similar address your concerns? Catchpole 18:43, 19 May 2007 (UTC)
How about "Rebuttals to criticism of Israel." I'll change it now. --GHcool 06:25, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

POV complaints?

There is a POV template at the start of this article. From reading the article it doesn't appear that the whole article should be tagged as the majority of it appears uncontentious (or as uncontentious as these types of articles can be.) Unless someone complains in the next few days, I'm going to remove the POV template at the start of the article. I won't oppose someone adding POV templates to specific sections though, since that would allow for progress in de-POVing the article. -- 00:35, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

I agree with this. I only have one serious POV problem and I just added the template to the relevent section. The top NPOV template could definately be deleted without any complaints from me. --GHcool 06:28, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

It's not Fair

Is there anyway in the section "It's not Fair" we could find people to quote who are not Jews or have recognizably Jewish last names. Otherwise the article comes off as being organized into two sections 1) The Main Article 2) What Jews don't like about the Main Article. 12:05, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

If you find some, feel free to add them to the section. --GHcool 15:22, 11 June 2007 (UTC)
Oh, c'mon, GH! There are you know them: Petras and Carter for instance. I just read you dismissing them without fundament (just weasel words) in another section. There's many people, Jews and non-Jews who have opinions on the Israel lobby. Most are not anti-semitic but some can be anti-Zionist.
Such opinions must be included. considering it affects one of the most crucial international issues of our time, you need a wide array of opinions for the sake of NPOV (aka "objectivity", "plurality"). --Sugaar (talk) 21:28, 4 March 2008 (UTC)

Carter ref broken

Currently #16 ref name="carter" is broken. There is no such named ref.

-- nyenyec  15:57, 13 June 2007 (UTC)

[44]. It's posted above in the talk page. --Sugaar (talk) 21:44, 4 March 2008 (UTC)

  1. ^ Mitchell Bard The Israeli and Arab Lobbies", Jewish Virtual Library, published 2006, accessed August 26 2006.
  2. ^ Barkat, Amiram, An American Jewish lobby at the European Union, Ha'aretz, accessed August 29 2006
  3. ^ Sackur, Stephen Analysis: America's new Christian Zionists, May 7 2002, accessed August 29 2006
  4. ^ Ramadan, Tariq. "Muslims and Anti-Semitism", UN Chronicle, June 10, 2005.
  5. ^ Aaronovitch, David. "Message to the left: there is no all-powerful Jewish lobby", The Guardian, May 27, 2003
  6. ^ Mearsheimer, John J. and Walt, Stephen. The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy, London Review of Books, Volume 28 Number 6, March 22, 2006. Accessed March 24, 2006.
  7. ^ a b c d Stephen Zunes, The Israel Lobby: How Powerful is it Really?, Foreign Policy in Focus, May 16, 2006, accessed August 27, 2006.