Good post by Marc Cooper on the crass political calculations driving the Democrats’ Israel “policy.”
Fact is, the Democrats’ policy on Israel mirrors the Republican policy on Cuba. They both derive from primarily domestic political considerations and not from any measured analysis of foreign policy nor any deliberation on where our true national interests reside.
Republicans want to keep the Cuban-American voting base — in Florida and New Jersey primarily– inside the tent. So to hell with any notion of revising a policy toward Castro that has only, in effect, helped maintain his now 47 year long monopoly on power. (Happy 80th, Comandante).
Democrats, likewise, want to retain the majority of the Jewish-American vote and prefer, for the most part, to keep their mouths closed and their eyes shut when it comes to Israel. Cuban-Americans and Jewish-Americans are also important funding sources for both parties (Bill Clinton was actually able to raise tons from both communities, Hilary’s borther-in-law being a major muckety-much within the right-wing exile milieu) and neither party wants to offend those who pay their bills. Here’s “Speaker” Nancy Pelosi, a liberal darling, enthusiastically enlisting in the ranks of those pledging “unwavering support and committment” to Israel, urging the Bush administration to tighten the screws on Syria and Iran. How’s that for an opposition leader?
Hence unconditional bipartisan indulgence of whatever Israel wants to do — e.g. bomb Lebanon to rubble.
(He also has some interesting observations about where the lefty blogosphere is on all this–which is mostly AWOL.)