The authors of the ultra-controversial “The Israel Lobby” report face off in a panel discussion against several of their detractors. It’s a civil exchange, but, to paraphrase J-Lo: “Don’t be fooled by the suits that they got / They’re still flame-throwers from the block.”
Last March, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt published an article in the London Review of Books. Entitled “The Israel Lobby: Does it Have too Much Influence on US Foreign Policy,” it drew swift charges of anti-Semitism in the editorial pages of American newspapers.
... Those attacking Mearsheimer and Walt suggest the duo outline a nefarious Jewish cabal with a stranglehold on American Mideast policy. Think smokey back rooms; think political and media domination; think subtle and sneaky manipulation of the unsuspecting, innocent gentile. Think historical stereotype.
Mearsheimer, Walt and their defenders counter that they neither suggest a cabal nor a monolithic Jewry driving the American body politic. Instead, a close alliance of disparate groups form a capital “L” Israeli Lobby that distorts US interests in the region. While this is lead by the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the Lobby includes Jews and Gentiles alike:
The above debate centers around these two perspectives as the panelists move among issues such as US-Israeli relations, the Middle East peace process, the origins of the Iraq War and Israeli settlement policy to name a few.