From the Editor
What Lara Friedman Gets Wrong About AIPAC and Iran
The situation that Israel lobbyists find themselves in today vis-a-vis Iran is very different from the one it found itself in with Iraq. AIPAC and other pro-Israel groups are making no secret of their motivation—they loudly and publicly have been telling anyone who will listen that Iran presents an existential threat to Israel’s existence.
This is not some shadowy lobbying effort behind the scenes, but a very public PR campaign. It doesn’t get much clearer than Bibi Netanyahu announcing to the AIPAC conference that Israel reserves the right to protect itself and can’t afford to wait much longer. This type of rhetoric from the Israeli government or from AIPAC spokesmen was very hard to find in the run-up to the Iraq War, which is why Walt and Mearsheimer’s arguments about Iraq sound like conspiracy-mongering...
If there is a war with Iran and AIPAC gets blamed, then it will have to deal with the consequences, but unlike with Iraq, its feelings this time are crystal clear and nobody needs to absurdly trace an alleged web of nefarious neo-con connections to divine the group’s true motivations.