My interpretation of Chas Freeman’s withdrawal from appointment as the chairman of the National Intelligence Council is that it was provoked primarily by Chuck Schumer and Rahm Emanuel. Schumer’s call to White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel was probably the decisive event, though we don’t know what Emanuel’s reaction was.
That is, the original charge against Freeman was led by the spy for Israel, Steve Rosen, whose hiring by Daniel Pipes’ Middle East Forum/ Campus Watch is excellent evidence of what those operations really are. Rosen, when he was a head of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s Middle East bureau, handed over classified Pentagon documents to the Israeli embassy in Washington DC, which were given to him by the agent Larry Franklin, a high-level Pentagon employee who reported to Douglas Feith and Paul Wolfowitz.
As long as the criticisms were coming from the looney Likudnik fringe and from the Weekly Standard etc. (i.e. from the Rupert Murdoch right wing of the Republican Party, which is now about as central to Washington politics as the French Foreign Legion is to Paris’s), Freeman hung tough.
But when the Democratic Party movers and shakers intervened, that move completely undermined Freeman. Because he is the guy who would have to come up to the Hill and defend those portions of the National Intelligence Estimates that are made public. He would be the public face of the 16 US intelligence agencies, which Congress funds at an alleged $40 billion a year. And while he could have weathered snarky comments and ad hominem criticisms from the handful of marginalized Neoconservatives left in Congress, he could not have thrived, nor could the agencies whose conclusions his office distilled into the NIEs, if heavy hitters like Schumer were unalterably hostile.
Schumer angered some of his constituents with his defense of the Israeli total war on Gaza’s civilian population this winter, and you wonder if his isn’t the last AIPAC generation in US politics. I like Schumer and loved the way he stood up to Bush, but he and other admirable people like Mike Bloomberg just have this moral black hole in their souls when it comes to supporting far rightwing Israeli policies (policies that they would unalterably oppose if pursued by the US government).
Freeman gave his own take on the whole affair to NPR.
What happened to Freeman is further evidence for the resilience of the Israel lobbies and their enormous power in US politics. The Neoconservatives were roundly defeated on the budget, and even had to swallow George Mitchell as a special envoy for Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. But they still have the power to exclude a Washington Arabist such as Freeman even from an appointive position.
At least some of us should buy Freeman’s book, A Diplomat’s Dictionary.
Israeli Apartheid will continue unabated under Obama.
The Israeli policy of half-starving the Gazans and imposing restrictions that limit health care there and in the West Bank has produced actual stunting of children. In parts of northern Gaza 30% of children are stunted. Malnourishment is correlated with low IQ and poor impulse control. You would think Chuck Schumer, who cares deeply about health care issues in the US, would be as worried about Palestinian children as I am.
Everyone, especially New York state residents, should please contact Senator Schumer at this site: http://schumer.senate.gov/ new_website/contact.cfm and share with him this article, linked above: http://www.hc2d.co.uk/content. php?contentId=10485 and protest to him that he is essentially himself starving those children since he supports the status quo.
I conclude that the Israeli-Palestinian issue will continue to fester and cause terrorism and probably more wars. In the long run, over the 21st century, the policies Schumer supports will likely lead to the decline of Israel. You just hope that before it is all over there are no nuclear exchanges.
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