Politico: Does Rahm Emanuel Really Have a Kosher Stamp of Approval?

Politico, following up on yesterday's front page Times story, ran today with their treatment, "Israelis sour on Rahm," by Kenneth P. Vogel.

Does Rahm have a kosher stamp of approval to apply to White House policy? We don't think so. One pollster goes out of his way to say that he doesn't believe that having pro-Israel Rahm in the White House, gives Obama permission to be tough on Israel. That whole line of reasoning and counter arguing and speculating is just too Talmudic, even for us.

We recall that Emanuel is a member of the Obama inner circle, but not a foreign policy honcho. Still we have every reason to believe that he will forcefully represent Israel's interests wherever he can.

The issue is that what he thinks is in the best interest of Israel is not precisely what every Israeli or American Jew thinks is in its best interest.

Accordingly, Rahm is tangled up in controversy and subject to the opinions of those folk, who, like us by and large, are known for having and expressing their strong views.

Note that in one key passage in the Politico article Vogel says,
Citing Obama’s call for Israel to cease building new settlements in Palestinian territory, [Israeli pollster Mitchell] Barak asserted Israelis think Emanuel “is giving Obama his Kosher stamp of approval to be tough on Israel, when they thought he was going to be there to explain our position.”

That sentiment is an unfair characterization and reflects a misunderstanding of Emanuel’s role, said Aaron David Miller, a former State Department official who worked on Arab-Israeli peace negotiations under four presidents.

“On matters related to Israel and Middle East policy, Rahm will have a very strong voice, but he’s not the power behind the throne on foreign policy,” said Miller, who worked with Emanuel during the Clinton administration and is now a scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center. “The whole thing is inside Jewish baseball, and it’s not healthy. It’s symptomatic of a real dysfunction in the way some Israelis look at the world and look at America.”
We don't yet see evidence that there is an anti-Israel policy coming out of Washington.

We do see loads of evidence that there are plenty of right wingers in the echo chamber who like to tell fanciful stories with no basis in fact about how bad Obama is for Israel. Pay no attention to the whistling of the wind.

No comments: