- Save 10% on selected children’s books, compliments of Amazon Family Promotion exclusive for Prime members .
The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy Hardcover – 7 Sep 2007
Special offers and product promotions
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
'A world of scholarly analysis, and it deserves to be taken seriously'
-- Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Telegraph
'Instead of celebrating America's power in the world or excoriating American hubris, Stephen Walt asks the critical questions.'
-- Michael Ignatieff
'[Mearsheimer] is an excellent critic of rival perspectives, exposing their weaknesses with real forensic flair. Admirably, he seems to be happiest when swimming against the prevailing tide of academic opinion' -- Adam Roberts, the Times Literary Supplement
There will be no peace in the Middle East until the United States faces its responsibilities there in a much more convincingfashion than it does today
-- Max Hastings, Sunday Times
`The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy brings out into the open a subject hitherto taboo in the US'
-- Tariq Ali
From the Publisher
How a powerful American interest group has created havoc in the Middle East, betrayed Israel itself and now threatens an even more perilous future.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
The authors cover many topics such as the military, diplomatic, financial and legal aid handed to Israel by the United States over the years. This has ranged from the latest military technology to simple aid to loans which are not expected to be repaid.... ever !! This is a condition they would not accept from the United Kingdom.
However, the most intriguing aspect of the work is just how much the US has been prepared to accept from their "strategic" ally, or is it how little ?? There is documented evidence of how Israel regularly sells on US arms and technology to nations not quite suited to US foreign policy, including China. There is also quite a large amount of data on how much support Israel receives in Congress with the America Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) being particularly influential in the forming of US foreign policy.
The book has further dimensions which you will need to explore yourself and I would certainly recommend it to anyone with a historical interest in international relations.
Contrary to what some reviewers say,their account of the Israel lobby starts from the view that there is nothing wrong in individuals or groups who support Israel lobbying and trying to persuade politicians,the press or the public of the rightness of their views.It is US democracy in action,good old-fashioned politics,and everyone else does it.It's almost impossible to read an article about US politics which doesn't discuss the farm lobby,the labour lobby,the banking lobby or whatever other lobby.
The problem is that there is,in effect,no opposition to the Israel lobby (not all of whom are Jewish,as the authors point out).Any "Arab lobby" or "Palestinian lobby" in the USA is pathetically weak and poor in comparison with pro-Israeli groups.So,the most extreme and confrontational policies of the Israeli government are tolerated,supported or,at most,attract verbal displeasure from the US government-there's no benefit in supporting Palestinians,no loss in supporting Israel.Same with the financial munificence of the US taxpayers to Israel.
Great work of political analysis,and ignore the cries of "anti-Semitism" you may sometimes hear directed at this book.The authors point out that particular canard has been used so frequently and so loosely by pro-Israeli apologists as their response to anything and anybody that opposes anything the Israeli goverment does.
This is a fascinating and informative academic essay, it is not anti Semitic and should not be shouted down which it has. To start with the conclusion nothing done by the Lobby is wrong per se, largely in the open and within the Constitution they exert pressure to advance their own interests. The Lobby is very well organised, any US congressional politician is risking electoral suicide if they oppose Israeli interests. Has the United States become a client state of Israel; is this the sort of plural politics the Founding Fathers envisaged?
The book explains how the "Lobby" (a crude term for a "loose coalition of individuals and groups" ....p viii, and well defined in Chapter 4) have regrouped and responded essentially post 1973. Equally it shows how the political structure of United States has been compromised by aggressive ideological activists, well funded and organised. Mearsheimer & Walt explain the mechanics, this not a conspiracy theory it is about the US political process. Read the book to form your own opinion but it allows you to answer three questions: is the Israeli Lobby good for America, is it good for Israel and will it secure an equitable peace in the Middle East. This is not just Jewish politics; the Lobby encompasses the Radical right, Neocons, Christian fundamentalists and Christian Zionists. Collectively they see a world most of us do not accept, many of their arguments are dishonest, devious or dangerously partisan. For me the analysis says much about the failure of alternative lobbies (the Arabs, American big business interests) to counter the Israeli voice and an absence of any counterweight opposition. "America's intimate embrace of Israel... is not making America any safer or more prosperous. To the contrary unconditional support for Israel is undermining relations with other US allies, casting doubt over America's moral vision, helping inspire a generation of anti American extremists" (p 77). The book deals with politics but also the economic and moral aspects.
The Lobby comprises enthusiasts/extremists. That's true of most lobbies, animal rights through to NRA etc etc. What the authors illustrate is the impossibility of an objective debate within the US political system that is critical of Israel and an acceptance of the Israeli agenda determining the US response in the Middle East and beyond. Israel, as we are always reminded, is a democracy but one that through their electoral system gives a disproportionately loud voice to radicals, hard liners, and the crazies. Has the Israeli Lobby marginalised intelligent, compassionate liberal Jewish opinion? Apply common sense "the minority was permitted to speak for the mass and become the dominant voice of Jewish politics " (p126). That is the tragedy. I found their conclusion to be well argued and a positive agenda for change but - as the authors indicate - an unrealistic one.