M.J. Rosenberg writes: Douglas Bloomfield, who served as AIPAC’s chief lobbyist for more than a decade, reports this week that the lobby intends to insist that the United States not include Israel’s $3 billion grants package in the sequester that goes into effect today. Writing in the New York Jewish Week, Bloomfield says:
At a time when sequestration is about to take a big bite out of the Pentagon budget, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) will be sending thousands of its citizen lobbyists to Capitol Hill next week to make sure Israel is exempted from any spending cuts. This could prove a very risky strategy at a time when millions of Americans will be feeling the bite of the sequestration debacle, from the defense budget to the school lunch program. But not aid to Israel, which will be untouched if AIPAC gets its way.
At one time I wouldn’t have believed AIPAC would dare try something this bold. That is because traditionally AIPAC has been very cautious about not seeming to take actions that suggested putting Israel’s interests over America’s. Demanding that Israel be exempt from cuts that virtually every American will feel seems so counterproductive as to almost be suicidal for the lobbying powerhouse. [Continue reading…]