The Israel Lobby in U.S. Strategy

[Stratfor/IMRA] George Friedman - Israeli-U.S. relations have gone through three phases. From 1948 to 1967, the U.S. supported Israel's right to exist but was not its patron. In the 1967-1991 period, the Israelis were a key American asset in the Cold War. From 1991 to the present, the relationship has remained close but it is not pivotal to either country. Washington cannot help Israel with Hizbullah or Hamas. The Israelis cannot help the U.S. in Iraq or Afghanistan. There is a powerful Jewish, pro-Israel lobby in Washington, though it was not very successful in the first 20 years or so of Israel's history. When U.S. policy toward Israel swung in 1967, it had far more to do with geopolitical interests than with lobbying. Beyond its ability to exert itself on small things, the Israel lobby is powerful in influencing Washington to do what it is going to do anyway. What happens next in Iraq is not up to the Israel lobby.

2007-09-05 01:00:00

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