Middle East References
May 1, 2004
Economist tallies swelling cost of Israel to US | csmonitor.com
Economist tallies swelling cost of Israel to US | csmonitor.com: "Economist tallies swelling cost of Israel to US

By David R. Francis | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

Since 1973, Israel has cost the United States about $1.6 trillion. If divided by today's population, that is more than $5,700 per person.
This is an estimate by Thomas Stauffer, a consulting economist in Washington. For decades, his analyses of the Middle East scene have made him a frequent thorn in the side of the Israel lobby."
U.S. Assistance to Israel
U.S. Assistance to Israel: "U.S. Assistance to Israel
(FY1949 - FY2005)"
WRMEA: U.S. Aid to Israel
WRMEA: U.S. Aid to Israel
Jewish Voice for Peace
Jewish Voice for Peace: "This year, the U.S. government gave Israel $4.5 billion in direct aid and $9 billion in loan guarantees. One out of every four dollars that the U.S. gives in foreign aid goes to Israel, a country that has one one-thousandth of the world�s population, a country where Israeli Jews enjoy the sixteenth highest per capita income in the world, a country with a gross national product higher than all of its neighbors combined. But, given the fact that most Israelis never see this money, it doesn�t seem to make any sense that the U.S. is funding Israel because of its concern with Jewish welfare. The Israeli government receives military grants and then buys weapons, technology and expertise from U.S. arms manufacturers, spending two-to-three times as much money as it�s given on maintaining and sustaining military equipment, sending the money they receive back into the pockets of U.S. companies. Moreover, U.S. aid is a temporary fix for the Israeli economy, impairing its capacity for long-term growth. . "
Foreign Influence
Foreign Influence: "American contributions to Israeli political campaigns are raising concerns

By Tom Tugend, Contributing Editor

American donors have poured $10 million to $15 million into each of the last two Israeli elections through campaign contributions or through nonprofit organizations that directly or indirectly support a candidate or political party.
The estimate, attributed to unnamed 'political scientists,' is cited in a front page article in the Feb. 25 Los Angeles Times, headlined 'U.S. Soil Proves Fertile for Israel Political Campaigns.'
As its primary case in point, the Times reported on a private reception, given by television mogul Haim Saban at his Beverly Hills home last March 25. Guest of honor was Ehud Barak, then running for prime minister as head of the Labor Party and One Israel coalition.
At the reception, first reported by The Jewish Journal last April, some 30 guests contributed $10,000 each. Saban promised in the invitation that he would match all donations dollar for dollar, bringing the estimated take for the evening to $600,000. "
Al-Ahram Weekly | A Jewish question
Al-Ahram Weekly | A Jewish question: "Jewish Americans account for more than half of major donors to the Democratic Party and, in recent years, between 20 to 30 per cent of major donors to the Republican Party.
American-Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC) contributions are also an issue. These contributions are based on a single issue and traditionally favour the party in power. This year, for example, pro-Israeli contributions to Democrats and Republicans are almost even.
Polls continue to show that over two-thirds of Jewish Americans support the Middle East peace process and, surprisingly, a large percentage even support a Palestinian state.
It is equally clear from recent polls that the overwhelming majority of Jewish Americans are repelled by the Christian fundamentalist agenda that has been adopted by the Republican majority in Congress.
Jewish voters, therefore, will support a Republican candidate who is liberal on social issues and pro-Israel. It doesn't necessarily follow that they will reject a Democratic candidate who is balanced on the Middle East if that Democrat is facing a conservative Republican, simply because the Republican candidate is 'unconditionally pro-Israel'. "
American Jewish Contributions to Israel
American Jewish Contributions to Israel: "American Jewish Contributions to Israel
J, the Jewish news weekly of Northern California, formerly the Jewish Bulletin of Northern California - Jewish PAC money flowing to Democrats once again
J, the Jewish news weekly of Northern California, formerly the Jewish Bulletin of Northern California - Jewish PAC money flowing to Democrats once again: "Jewish PAC money flowing to Democrats once again
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
But the most recent statistics available from the Federal Election Commission show a change, with Democrats -- the traditional recipients of most Jewish dollars -- now attracting some 54 percent of all direct contributions from pro-Israel political action committees.
As of Oct. 1, the PACs, some of which also consider domestic issues when distributing funds, had contributed $1.3 million directly to candidates of both parties.
The funds are finding their way into several tight races across the country, as well as a few secure contests that involve congressional leaders with records showing solid support for Israel.
Among leading recipients, the funds are more or less evenly distributed between Jewish and non-Jewish Congressmembers.
'Basically, you look for people who are on important committees with seniority who have been very consistently supportive' of the Jewish state, said Morris Amitay, founder and treasurer of Washington PAC, which had, as of Oct. 1, distributed about $120,000 to congressional candidates.
Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) has been the top recipient of pro-Israel PAC funding in the House with about $25,000 in direct contributions. PAC officials cite his solid record on Israel and say they are backing him for obvious reasons.
Among House Democrats, Rep. Bob Filner (D-Chula Vista) has led the way with more than $15,000 in contributions. In that race, the distribution of anti-Semitic literature identifying Filner as an 'Anti-Christ Jew for Congress' prompt"
FORWARD : News: "No one knows how much in the way of campaign contributions originate in the Jewish community, but fund-raisers say privately that the Democrats in particular are heavily dependent on contributions from Jewish sources. One notable recent soft-money contribution on the Democratic side was the $3 million that Hollywood producer Haim Saban gave to the Democratic National Committee to build its new headquarters.
Big Republican Jewish fund-raisers include Lew Eisenberg, the RNC finance chairman; Sam Fox, chairman of the Republican Regions, and Jeff Marcus, chairman of 'Team 100,' made up of $100,000-plus givers to the party. All are board members of the Republican Jewish Coalition."
Jews for GOP?
Jews for GOP?: "Another indication that more Jews may vote for Bush this time around is that he has proven himself to be a friend to Israel. As Horowitz writes:
'In 2000, the Jewish community viewed George W. Bush with more than a small amount of wariness as he entered office. His father was not considered a friend of Israel and many thought the younger Bush would continue his father's policies towards the Jewish state. Instead, he not only walked away from his father's views, but is perceived by many to be the most ardent supporter of Israel to ever occupy the White House.

How? For starters, Bush moved his administration decisively away from the Clinton doctrine of moral equivalency. His June 24, 2002 speech, in which he placed the blame for the current round of Middle East violence squarely on the shoulders of the Palestinian leadership, was a watershed policy statement. Bush has allowed Israel to take measures in self defense and has taken bold steps to reshape the Middle East towards the goal of democratizing the region. He has also surrounded himself with senior policy advisors who share his desire to support the Jewish state.'"
Kerry on the Record: Israel
Kerry on the Record: Israel: "In the new terror age, the Jewish vote may be up for grabs in an unprecedented way. Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., knows it and wants to hang on to this traditionally Democratic voting bloc.
But this traditional base may not be so happy with Kerry on issues relating to Israel and national security.
For starters, Kerry said he now opposes the war to topple Saddam Hussein, though Israel was one of the direct beneficiaries of this war.
Israel gained even more. Already Bush's policies have led to Libya, an arch foe of Israel, dismantling its weapons of mass destruction, and Iran opening up its nuclear facilities.
There are additional Kerry flip-flops. Having once criticized Israel for taking steps to protect its citizens from West Bank suicide bombers and having praised terrorist Arafat as a 'statesman,' Kerry is taking a different stance today.
In fact, there's little wonder why Kerry is becoming a pro-Israel hawk. "
Bush Move on Mideast May Sway Jewish Vote
Bush Move on Mideast May Sway Jewish Vote: "THE RACE TO THE WHITE HOUSE
Bush Move on Mideast May Sway Jewish Vote
Even small gains with the largely Democratic bloc could make a difference in November.

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By Mark Z. Barabak, Times Staff Writer

When President Bush announced a major shift this week in Middle East policy, the news was heralded on the Republican Jewish Coalition website with smiling photos of Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and a headline declaring, 'President Bush Backs Israel, Yet Again.'

Bush's recognition of permanent Israeli settlements in the West Bank was 'a watershed event' in the long, fraternal relationship between the United States and Israel, said William Daroff, the group's deputy chief.

Republicans are hoping the shift will mark a watershed in presidential politics as well."
US Elections and the 1 Percent Solution
US Elections and the 1 Percent Solution: "US Elections and the 1 Percent Solution
Michael Saba, Arab News

WASHINGTON, 1 May 2004 � Shortly after President Bush met with Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and declared a major shift in US policy on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry brought together key operatives to discuss his position on this dispute. Bush had set a new agenda favoring Sharon and Israel on almost every major point. Kerry was on the defensive regarding the support of the American Jewish community and quickly made adjustments.
Kerry immediately declared that he supported the Sharon separation plan as well as the Bush letter to the Sharon government and joined Bush in justifying Israel�s assassination of Hamas leader Abdelaziz Al-Rantissi. Kerry then arranged a trip to Florida with Sen. Joe Lieberman, who was the first Jewish candidate on a major American presidential/vice presidential ticket. Florida is a state with a relatively large Jewish population. Kerry announced at a rally in Florida, �I have not a 99 percent, but a 100 percent record of sustaining the special relationship and friendship that we have with Israel.� "
The Daily Star - Politics - Arab-American vote looms large in next election
The Daily Star - Politics - Arab-American vote looms large in next election: "Arab-American vote looms large in next election
Poll shows that despite being a minority, arabs could tip balance in favor of john kerry

Turnout at ballots could be especially decisive in 4 battleground states where the race is
By Jim Lobe
Special to The Daily Star
Friday, April 30, 2004"

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