Sunday, December 17, 2006

Carter to the American Jews on the bias for Israel.

When former US president Jimmy Carter talks about the Middle-East, I tend to listen. I think he has a lot more credibility than the current US president in that respect. Carter has after all spent a great deal of his life trying to bring peace to Israel, including some notable success during his administration. Who else can say so much?
So when, when Carter chose to call his book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid", I tend to think that he's mostly trying to draw attention by stirring controversy, and that is obviously working. In this letter to American Jews, he explains his use of the term "apartheid" very clearly. Interestingly, I do not think any official Jewish leader has called for the boycott of his book anyway.
But there's something else he says in his letter, which, I believe, very few Americans would have the guts to say:
I made it clear that I have never claimed that American Jews control the news media, but reiterated that the overwhelming bias for Israel comes from among Christians like me who have been taught since childhood to honor and protect God's chosen people from among whom came our own savior, Jesus Christ. An additional factor, especially in the political arena, is the powerful influence of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, which is exercising its legitimate goal of explaining the current policies of Israel's government and arousing maximum support in our country. There are no significant countervailing voices.
I think Carter has captured quite well the reason for pro-Isreal bias of many Americans. (for more on this subject, see our posts here, here, and here, here, here, and here)

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