Sunday, April 25, 2010

HPW: Steve Clemons on Chuck Schumer's Comments

Huffington Post blogger Steve Clemons wrote at the end of last week a story with the combative headline: "Has Chuck Schumer Ever Criticized Israel or its Leadership in the Way He Just Unloaded on Obama?" To make a long story short, Democrat Schumer chewed out the Obama administration on their handling of the Israeli/Palestinian situation. In the beginning of his article Clemons does a pretty good job of portraying Schumer as a strong-to-the-point-of-irrationality Zionist. Maybe he is. But it didn't take very long at all for Clemons to also dredge up the classic accusation:
"Schumer's screed gets to the edge of sounding as if he is more a Senator working in the Knesset than working in the United States Senate."
Fortunately, that's the closest he gets to the dual loyalty accusation, but even the fact that he hinted at it is informative. If a senator was strongly against healthcare reform, would he be accused of being a secret insurance agent? He would probably be accused of a great many things, but I don't think that one would be one of them. In the later half of his article, Clemons quotes Schumer directly. Let's take a look, shall we?
"I told the President, I told Rahm Emanuel and others in the administration that I thought the policy they took to try to bring about negotiations is counter-productive, because when you give the Palestinians hope that the United States will do its negotiating for them, they are not going to sit down and talk," Schumer told Segal. "Palestinians don't really believe in a state of Israel. They, unlike a majority of Israelis, who have come to the conclusion that they can live with a two-state solution to be determined by the parties, the majority of Palestinians are still very reluctant, and they need to be pushed to get there."
That's not exactly an extremist point of view, it may not be exactly correct, but it's a viewpoint that is held by a great many Israelis and Americans. To simply disagree with Obama's handling of the negotiations (especially in light of the poll I posted earlier) should not be enough to warrant an accusation of "traitor." And yet it does. Perhaps it is because Schumer is Jewish?

Speaking of Schumer, let's talk about him some more: He's a Democrat, and has been described as "hard left." He is pro-gun control, strongly pro-choice, supported the Iraq War but criticized Bush's strategy, he's also in favor of sanctions on Iran. He is strongly in favor of gay marriage and other LGBT issues. You can read some more about him if you like, but as far as liberal issues go, he is right up there with the best of them.

But when it comes to disagreeing with the President on Israel, the HPers are ready to brand him a traitor, denounce him, and give him all kinds of the usual insults. How informative. Click the link below to read the comments of note out of a 230 comment thread.

shumer is in love with wall st and Israel
both morally indefendable.

Spot on! Many American Jews need to examine their priorities and their loyalties. Israel has been an "ally" to American but it is a one way street-America has to support Israel unilaterally or else all hell breaks loose in the media! The price for this support has been too steep and it may be time to face the fact that Israel is just another country and NOT a US state...
If fissures develop in the relationship, and they are long overdue given many Israeli policies responsible for world tensions, American jews will have to decide like any other group where they belong, with America or with the old country. It is a fair question.

If General Petreus finds the Israeli-Palestinian conflict a national security problem for the US, then it poses this question for Senator Schumer, where do your loyalties lie? With the US or Israel?
 [follow up]
yes we can call him out and we can all out others, Mr Schumer where does your loyalty lie with America or Israel? and quit sniveling about anti-semitism

I commend this article. Israel has received a trillion dollars in funding from us since '67, and thanks us by making a big show of their rejection of our president's peace efforts in the region by announcing new settlements while biden is there. They do that because they know that there are politicians like schumer and lieberman that put israel over their very own country. Your analogy to the Palestinians doesn't work. Our military is saying that our troops are put in harm's way by our support of israel. If Schumer wants to get in the way of our president's efforts to, among other things, protect our troops from Israel's aggression in the region, then I agree: let him go join the Knesset. America first.

[edited for length]
Schumer's screed gets to the edge of SOUNDING as if he is MORE A SENATOR WORKING in THE KNESSET than working in the United States Senate.
This is the 2nd time I know of that Schumer has publicly crossed the line when it came to ZEALOUSLY BLAMING HIS OWN GOVERNMENT and colleagues in delicate matters of US-Israel-Palestine policy. >
Thanks for that.. NOW we're getting somewhere. The list of "Democratic" elected officials who often "SOUND LIKE THEIR WORKING FOR THE KNESSET" besides Schumer includes JOE LIEBERMAN, DIANNE FEINSTEIN, BARBARA BOXER, (former Congressman) RAHM EMANUEL, to name a few. [All Jews]

Don't forget Jane, Jane Harman and Howard Berman
And the rest of the Dem signatories to AIPAC's recent letter to the President (Barbara Boxer headed this effort!):  [edited for length]
 And there were of course a bunch of Republicans who were only to happy to join them! Isn't it funny how Congress is totally dysfunctional EXCEPT when it comes to doing stuff for ISRAEL!
Maybe they should all pack their bags and become the Senators for Israel IN Israel!!
They certainly can get the citizenship in a second.... Glad America is waking up to the infiltration within it's ranks. A thank you letter to AIPAC is in order i think....

So, your god is not only a real estate developer but a racist as well. HOW CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS DRIVEL??

Just what we need... another lieberscum in the senate. Israel needs to get completely out of ALL lands it occupied in 1967 or face international economic and military isolation. Any legislator who panders to voters of the Jewish faith by excusing illegal occupation, a covert nuclear arsenal, apartheid and ghetto-ization of the native people it rules over has no place in our government.
It's about time the world got a clue... as truly horrific as the holocaust was, that does not justify eternal absolution for whatever treatment Israel wants to dish out to the native residents of Paslestine, nor does it excuse unbridled annexation of territory as self-righteous zionists flood into the region believing their religious faith alone entitles them to this land.

Sooner or later, these Israeli agents who are pretending to be Americans are going to have to choose one or the other. The longer they put that choice off, the more painful it will be.

old timer 37
I wonder if Chuck Schumer is a citizen of Israel. If he isn't he should consider becoming one because he seems to prefer an Israeli Right Wing Extremist (Netanyahou) to a rational, centrist US President. Were Schumer consistent, then he must have been overjoyed when George Bush was president.... a very scary thought for any moderates in this country.
I truly believe that people should be citizens of countries to which they are most loyal.
Chuck...why are illegal settlements fostered by a right wing Israeli politican so sacrosanct as to be off limits to any criticism by our government? If you can answer that question calmly and rationally, then you'll restore my confidence that you might be putting our country first.

Israel is like a welfare queen living off the largesse of the US and then have the nerve to be offended when they are told the truth of their actions. I am a New Yorker and was big Schumer fan but this man will never get my vote again. What he should do is go to Israel and run for the office of prime minister. In Schumer's opinion Israel can do no wrong.

Give your head a shake. This is not a "left/right" issue. It's about human rights and hard-won international humanitarian law.
Face reality: Palestinians are the occupied, Israel is the occupier; Palestinians are the dispossessed, Israel is the expansionist state; Palestinians are the oppressed, Israel is the oppressor; Palestinians have international law on their side, Israel violates international law each and every day at an accelerating rate.

Schumer's statement that the Palestinians don't believe in a two state solution is complete bunk. He needs to look in a mirror. How can you have two states when one of them continues to gobble up the land of the other? Go to the West Bank sometime and you will be shocked. Palestinians control about 1/3 of the land area, and even in those areas the Israeli Army and Israeli settlers have free reign to shoot to kill, tear down houses, poison wells, rip out olive trees, and terrorize the Palestinian population. The United States is supporting a slow-motion genocide of the Palestinian people.

Because they are the "chosen ones", whatever that means! Got a problem with that, dear?

That's right. Just look anywhere in the Books of Deuteronomy, Joshua, Kings, or Chronicles to get an understanding of how Israel thinks in terms of good relations with their neighbors.
For example, Joshua 8:26 - "For Joshua drew not his hand back, wherewith he stretched out the spear, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai. "
And how does Schumer legitimize mass murder? Because Gawd says it's OK, of course!

Schumer is merely one of several American politicians that are arguably more worried about Israel maintaining a Jewish majority in the 'Holy Land' than ending the occupation and giving the Palestinians the civil rights they've been denied for over 62 years now.
Our nation should never have any politician that is so affiliated with another, especially a country that represents the evils that we as a people have moved away from: namely racism, persecution and oppression
Having a politician so brazenly represent and fight for the lies and the protection of a nation over 6,000 miles away tells us that our government is currently heading in the wrong direction. We need to cut our ties and affiliation with a nation that tramples every notion of Democracy...equality, justice and fairness.
It is up to the voters to ask themselves, to which nation do these "representatives" owe allegiance?
Well, thanks for highlighting Schumer's AIPAC problem; Democrats willing to sell out their own President on a CONSERVATIVE talk show can best be called "seditious." Americans had better wake up to the destruction of our body politic by these poisonous foreign agents of The Israel Lobby. They spy on us; they bribe our government officials; they manufacture wars of aggression for our troops to fight; they take our weapons systems and sell them to China; and they deliberately use taxpayer money for a system of segregation, discrimination, and brutal military oppression.
Our unequivocal support for Israel has cost us $100 Billion in Foreign aid. For that money we are globally humiliated. Israel has an organization in our country comprised of foreign agents dictating our domestic and foreign policy. On the very day our envoy, George Mitchell, arrives back in Israel, Bibi does an interview in which he says Israel "does not intend" to stop building settlements in Jerusalem--pointedly humiliating the US envoy. The US response? We love Israel and we will bow and scrape even more to prove it.

"Schumer's screed gets to the edge of sounding as if he is more a Senator working in the Knesset than working in the United States Senate."
think you have summed it up very well Steve . . . schumer and lieberman are quite a team . . . I think they should both be thrown out of the Senate .. . as far as I am concerned they are both traitors to the US . . . israel is a foreign power . . . and if schumer wants to serve the aims of israel then he should leave the US Senate . . . the two are not compatible

Well and truly stated!!!! These hasbara puppets still don't realize that people around the world now have easy access to the facts and see their mis/disinformation for what it is. A new era is upon us.

Unfortunately Israel "shares" this highly advanced military technology with the Palestinian people, and we all saw the hideous results of that.

fanned Linda . . . totally agree . . . it is time the aipac domination of our foreign policy is the Middle East is terminated big time

Wow. Did the US lose a war against Israel I wasn't aware of?
When did the US become a colonial member of the Israeli empire. When did US political leaders have to prove their loyalty to a foreign country?

pure nonsense.
gun and oil industries are largely American in nature.
advocating for a foreign government against the interests of the U.S. is treasonous.
and by the way Jews are less than 1% of the American population with an outsized affect on our elections because of Money.
They buy our politicians.

Now when the oil and gun industries do it, it's call corruption.
when a foreign country does it through its foreign nationals, it's called treason.


  1. The Jews supposedly corrupt the political process and have bought up the Democratic Party. Never mind that most Jews are to the left of the American electorate as a whole and identify strongly with the Democrats' domestic agenda. The Jews' faithfulness as liberals doesn't save them when it comes to Israel on the HP. Will that kind of sentiment on HP I noted at the outset serve as a wakeup call to the American Jewish Community?

    Don't hold your breath waiting for that to happen.

  2. May I disagree a bit here? Clemons is clearly anti-Israel but I believe that Joe Lieberman, when he was objecting to aspects of healthcare reform was indeed condemned as a tool of the insurance industry.

  3. Soccer Dad,

    Welcome! And it's true, calling a politician the puppet of a lobby is not exactly new. But this is also the only issue we have seen so far in which politicians who take a particular stance are labeled as "traitors" or "Israel-firsters."