Obama’s philosemitic network reflects the new establishment
Maureen Dowd points out wisely that the Obama administration is too white. There are only two blacks in the administration, she says.
unlike Bill Clinton, who never needed help fathoming Southern black culture, Obama lacks advisers who are descended from the central African-American experience, ones who understand “the slave thing,” as a top black Democrat dryly puts it.
The first black president should expand beyond his campaign security blanket, the smug cordon of overprotective white guys surrounding him — a long political tradition underscored by Geraldine Ferraro in 1984 when she complained about the “smart-ass white boys” from Walter Mondale’s campaign who tried to boss her around.
That “smug cordon” that Dowd astutely describes is also a philosemitic one. Israel lobbyist Mitchell Bard points out all the Jews in the Obama administration.
David Axelrod (2009- ) Senior Advisor to the President; Jared Bernstein (2009- ) Chief Economist and Economic Policy Advisor to the Vice President; Rahm Emanuel (2009- ) Chief of Staff; Lee Feinstein (2009- ) Foreign Policy Advisor; Gary Gensler (2009- ) Chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission; Elena Kagan (2009- ) Solicitor General of the United States; Ronald Klain (2009- ) Chief of Staff to the Vice President; Jack Lew (2009- ) Deputy Secretary of State; Eric Lynn (2009- ) Middle East Policy Advisor; Peter Orszag (2009- ) Director of the Office of Management and Budget; Dennis Ross (2009- ) Special Advisor for the Gulf and Southwest Asia to the Secretary of State; Mara Rudman (2009- ) Foreign Policy Advisor; Mary Schapiro (2009- ) Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission; Dan Shapiro (2009- ) Head of Middle East desk at the National Security Council; James B. Steinberg (2009- ) Deputy Secretary of State; Lawrence Summers (2009- ) Director National Economic Council; Mona Sutphen (2009- ) Deputy White House Chief of Staff
I think Bard may be missing a Shapiro (I’m guessing the asst secy of State is Jewish), as well as Stuart Levey, the Iran guy in Treasury, and czar Cass Sunstein. My impression is that Obama’s philosemitism outstrips Clinton’s and Bush’s. And the lesson is that Obama is a conservative person temperamentally who has a keen sense of where American power lies. Originally an outsider from a scattered family in the west, he gravitated unerringly toward the east coast Harvard establishment; and the American establishment today has a prominent Jewish component…
The WASPs are over; none are on the Supreme Court today. The significance of these numbers is the effect on Middle East policy. And of course, along with that, the absence of Arab-Americans; and the fact that people like Rashid Khalidi, Chas Freeman and Rob Malley (yes, a Jew, but a progressive one) are exiled from this braintrust.
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ICC | December 2005
When the House of Commons was debating how much to increase the time limit for detention without trial the question of torture came up. Officially this was limited to the nice considerations of whether it was all right to send people to places where torture is used and whether Britain can use information collected by the use of torture in other countries. This discussion gave an impression of democratic Britain as the home of civilised behaviour where the very idea of torture is repugnant to our legislators – unlike, say, the US with its secret CIA jails and where Cheney has been labelled the ‘Vice President for Torture’. In reality, the British state has a long history of using and developing a whole range of torture techniques. … continue
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