Thursday, April 27, 2006



also known as


“AIPAC is America’s Pro Israel Lobby,” says its masthead. Its stated purpose is to lobby for policies and issues that are in the best interests of Israel and of America. It is a registered lobby. Fortune lists it as being the 2nd most powerful lobby in Washington, AARP being the first. However, AIPAC is widely regarded as the most effective foreign policy lobby. It was created in 1951.

Membership is apparently open to anyone. There are now 100,000 members and it has grown rapidly since 9-11. The annual operating budget is $40 Million. Although, one apparently does not have to join a membership club, there are 6:

The Minyan Club for those who give $100,000 or more per year

The Chairman’s Council for those giving $36K or more

The President’s Cabinet for those giving $25K

The Senate Club for those giving $10K

The Capitol Club for those giving $3,600 or more

The Washington Club for those giving $1,500 or more

AIPAC’s Board of Directors consists of 46 persons. I could not find out how they are elected. Each is quite wealthy, and they contribute an average of $70,000 per year each. One Director gave $51 Million. The Board consists of Wall Street lawyers, stock brokers, heirs to family fortunes and real estate developers.

AIPAC’s 51 person Executive Committee is also called the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations CPMJO. It is supposed to represent a consensus of American Jews, but it is dominated by one man, Malcolm Hoenlein, a supporter of the Likud Party. He believes that Jews have a right to occupy and live in the West Bank permanently. According to the Jewish Bulletin, it is dedicated to the “unequivocal support of every Israeli government.” My research persuades me that this is also the objective of AIPAC.

CPMJO concentrates on lobbing the Executive Branch of the US government, the President, the State Department, the Department of Defense, the Intelligence Agencies, while AIPAC concentrates on Congress.

AIPAC has many satellite organizations or committees or separate organizations with which it works in tandem some of which are:

  • PACs There are at least 61 (some say 100) separate pro Israel PACs ( Political Action Committees) with such names as Northern Californians for Good Government.

  • CAMERA the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting which seeks to counter any media that portrays Israel in a way that AIPAC does not like….for example, it has put out or sponsored articles critical of Steven Spielberg’s new movie, Munich. AIPAC sees the movie as too partial to the Palestinians, although the main point of the movie seemed to me to be to show the idiocy of Mindless reciprocal retaliatory killing

  • WINEP the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a think tank.

  • JINSA, the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs whose purpose is to educate Americans about the importance of an effective defense capability, and to inform the American public affairs and foreign policy community about the important role of Israel in bolstering democratic interests in the Middle East.

  • The American Israel Education Foundation that finances trips to Israel for Congress persons and students.

  • AIPAC’s influence and power are compounded by the fact that it seeks policies and acts sought also by the Christian Right, the Military Industrial Complex, and by the Bush Administration.

US elected officials are terrified of AIPAC. Criticism of Israel or sympathy for Palestinians has become the “third rail of American politics.” The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles in a series of articles about AIPAC dated 10-28-05 raised the question: “Who is afraid of big bad AIPAC?” and answered: “Nearly everybody.” In Congress, every person, Democrat or Republican, with one or two exceptions votes the way that AIPAC requests.

So what does AIPAC ask of the President, the Department of Defense, and of Congress?

  • It is now actively lobbying for the US to invade or bomb Iran
  • It lobbied for the Gulf War
  • It lobbied for the Iraq War and lobbies for it to continue
  • It lobbies for ever more monetary aid, loan guarantees, and armaments for Israel
  • Support for the 15,000 new Jewish settlers in the West Bank
  • Opposed every two state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict so far proposed
  • Opposes any US intervention or brokering or pressuring or even handed mediation of the conflict
  • Urges the US to veto any UN Resolution critical of Israel
  • Opposes peace groups in the US and labels them “naïve.”

AIPAC contributed much money for candidates opposing Congress people who were insufficiently supportive of Israel, or supportive of Palestine.

Some Israeli Labor Party members have been critical of AIPAC as being too supportive of the Likud Party. I can not find one single instance where AIPAC has supported a peace proposal. In my view, AIPAC’s policies and actions are consistent only with an objective of the permanent Israeli occupation of the West Bank, and of ever more Jewish settlers there. So what is to become of the Palestinians?

Polls show that a substantial majority of American Jews favor US involvement in the peace process.

Does AIPAC speak for you?

Does AIPAC deserve your financial support?

Does AIPAC contribute to the long term safety of Israel and of Jews? Of my safety and the safety of my grandson?

Dated: January 23, 2006

Doug Page

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