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Why Obama caved (Israeli ambassador Michael Oren is his Democratic fundraising tool)

By Philip Weiss on October 6, 2010

The Israel lobby is deeply enmeshed in the Democratic Party, as we frequently note here, for financial reasons. Consider Mark Gilbert of Boca Raton, FL, the deputy national finance chair of the Democratic Party. He loves Israel, his wife Nancy runs tours to Israel. Barack Obama has praised Mark and Nancy Gilbert as “dear friends.” Gilbert raised $500,000 for Obama last time around and has privileged access to White House policy makers.

Lately Alex Cockburn picked up the following fundraising letter written by the Gilberts that reflects the usual complete confusion about national identity that Zionists have– they seem to regard Michael Oren as a political prophet. And note that they are raising money for Obama by quoting a foreign ambassador, Michael Oren, and praising a rightwing leader, Netanyahu. Notice that there is not a word about illegal colonies or Palestinian national aspirations (Jewish prejudice at work), and contempt for the suffering people of Gaza. Emphasis mine:

‘Dear Friends,

“Under the radar” is not what we’re used to in the Jewish community.

We demand it big and bold and we need it loud and clear.  (and- that is A. O. K.! )

But- when work is done quietly and not with SCREAMING headlines, we sometimes miss it.

Silly us!  WAKE UP EVERYONE…. It’s a new (Jewish) year ! And our President and his team (and YES, our CONGRESS) have done, are doing and WILL continue to do extraordinary work in connection with America’s best friend: the State of Israel.

At the Israeli Ambassador’s residence on Monday, the annual Rosh Ha Shanah (Jewish New Year for our non-Jewish friends on this email) reception guest list included national and international Jewish organization leaders; elegantly dressed Foreign Ambassadors and members of the diplomatic corps, a host of Rabbis from across the religious spectrum ; famous authors, renown professors and magnificently decorated military personnel from several countries including at least one  U.S. 3-star General (Dayton).  We were invited because my husband Mark is the National Deputy Finance Chairman of the Democratic party, I’m the owner of an Israel tour company and have been heavily involved in tourism to Israel for 15 years and probably- and most importantly- because our daughter was Ambassador Oren’s student at Yale.

Thank You, President Obama!

Ambassador Oren and his wonderful wife Sally warmly received each guest -then stood before the assembled crowd in what was the best stump speech for President Obama that I have heard from any world leader (and yes, Ambassador Oren speaks FOR Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel!). Without a note, Ambassador Oren outlined the brilliant accomplishments and strong support of Israel demonstrated by the Obama Administration in LESS THAN 2 YEARS!  Oren invoked our President’s name, time and time again: (please memorize these bullet points and tell everyone you know!)

  • President Obama has led the global effort to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.
  • President Obama’s leadership (and coaxing) has produced an international coalition that INCLUDES China and Russia who have implemented unprecedented sanctions against Iran, which, according to conversations at the Monday reception, appear to have caught Iran off-guard
  • President Obama and his team are spending more time on this issue than almost any other issue facing our country today
  • President Obama and our Congress have provided Israel with every cent (and then some) of foreign assistance requested by Israel
  • President Obama has restored Israel’s QME (qualitative military edge) which had been neglected for the last 8 years
  • President Obama is the FIRST American leader to say – in an Arab country (Egypt)  that the Arab world must recognize Israel as a JEWISH state and in a support of Israel’s legitimacy to affirm the –quote- “unshakeable “ bond between the USA & Israel
  • President Obama & team played a critical role in leading a UNANIMOUS vote to include Israel in the OECD (Organization of Economic Cooperation & Development). The vote was  31-0 admitting Israel to this prestigious organization
  • President Obama has dispatched leaders of the Joint Chiefs to Israel not once, but four times already in his less-than-2-years in office ( before that the Joint chiefs had not been in Israel for YEARS (not once during the ‘last’ administration)
  • The Obama administration has integrated US missile technology into Israel’s expanding missile shield. NO OTHER AMERICAN PRESIDENT HAS DONE THIS.
  • The Obama administration continues to fund development of ARROW-3,  Israel’s advanced long-rage, high-altitude system for countering Iranian ballistic missiles
  • President Obama asked Congress for $205 million dollars for Israel’s IRON DOME rocket defense system (which will reduce incoming rocket threats from Hizbullah in the north and Hamas in the south…) – this request is IN ADDITION TO the $3 BILLION budgetary request for Israel’s security assistance!
  • And my personal under-the-radar item; the Obama team’s clever input to re-wording the Gaza blockade language which not only garnered international support for Israel (and a promise not to condemn Israel if Gd forbid there is another flotilla incident) BUT effectively thwarted several pending flotillas in Mediterranean and Persian Gulf ports… that simply became the boats-to-nowhere!
  • And last, but surely not least, (and listed in this basic order by Ambass. Oren) the Israeli-Palestinian conflict negotiators are sitting as we speak at a table together – talking.  Who knows what the result will be….but talking is the only way to get anywhere. And it is a giant step in a positive direction.

This email is too long already and I hope you have gotten this far, but you must realize that the list of bullet points above is extraordinary.

Unprecedented.

And all accomplished by the Obama team and the current congress- in less than two years in office.

Looking ahead to 5771, may you and your families be blessed with a beautiful year, filled with good health, good times and ….peace.

With warm regards from our house to yours,

Sincerely,

Nancy & Mark Gilbert.’

October 6, 2010 - Posted by | "Hope and Change", Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel

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