March 12, 2009
Obama Caves to Israel Lobby
by Ray McGovern
On Tuesday morning Director of National Intelligence, Admiral Dennis Blair, employed the indicative mood in describing the high value that Chas Freeman, his appointee to head the National Intelligence Council (NIC), will bring to the job – “his long experience and inventive mind,” for example. By five o’clock in the afternoon, Freeman announced that he had asked that his selection “not proceed.”
Not one to mince words, Freeman spelled out the strange set of affairs surrounding the flip-flop and the implications of what had just happened. Borrowing the pointed warning from George Washington’s Farewell Address against developing a “passionate attachment” to the strategic goals of another nation, Freeman made it clear that he was withdrawing his “previous acceptance” of Blair’s invitation to chair the NIC because of the character assassination of him orchestrated by the Israel Lobby.
The implications? Freeman was clear:
“The outrageous agitation…will be seen by many to raise serious questions about whether the Obama administration will be able to make its own decisions about the Middle East and related issues…[It casts] doubt on its ability to consider, let alone decide what policies might best serve the United States rather than those of a Lobby intent on enforcing the will and interests of a foreign government…
“The aim of this Lobby is control of the policy process through the exercise of a veto over the appointment of people who dispute the wisdom of its views…and the exclusion of any and all options for decision by Americans and our government other than those it [the Lobby] favors.”