Madison Ruppert, Contributing Writer
Over the coming weeks, 81 Congressmen — a whopping 20% of the entire House of Representatives — will be spending their time off not with their constituents, but instead in a foreign nation on a trip sponsored by a powerful lobbying group.
These 26 Democrats and 55 Republicans are being sent to Israel thanks to the American Israel Education Foundation, or AIEF, a group under the banner of the behemoth Israeli lobby known as AIPAC or the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.
While AIPAC forms the core of the Israel lobby in Washington, AIEF is responsible for bringing large groups of our so-called representatives to Israel every other August. This year half of the freshmen Republicans who were voted into office last year are participating in the getaway.
In 1990 AIEF was founded as a “supporting organization” of AIPAC, with AIEF providing “grant monies to educate opinion leaders about the U.S.-Israel relationship, to expand public awareness about issues affecting the Middle East and to encourage participation in public affairs, especially by students on college campuses where anti-Israeli propaganda is rampant.”
I’m always amazed by how these groups can conjure up a victim role, even when it is absolutely ludicrous to do so. I have never been on a college campus where “anti-Israeli propaganda is rampant.” In fact, it is usually the case that pro-Israeli propaganda is rampant.
Then again, in the eyes of these delusional Israeli lobby groups, anyone questioning the occupation of Palestine and Israel’s countless war crimes is an anti-Semitic, anti-Israeli propagandist. It is always interesting to see how well-meaning, peace loving human rights advocates are painted as terrorist supporters or anti-Israeli hate mongers.
I also find it a bit disturbing that they openly admit to providing money to “educate opinion leaders about the U.S.-Israel relationship”. This, in no uncertain terms, is saying that they give cash to our so-called leaders in exchange for their loyalty to the illegal state of Israel and their genocidal terrorist activities.
However, these groups don’t stop at just attempting to sway the decisions of leaders in Washington.
AIEF helps fund the Schusterman Advocacy Institute High School Summit which brings high school “student leaders” to Washington for “sophisticated Israel advocacy and political activism training.” This could also be characterized as an intensive propaganda indoctrination trip which “enables AIPAC to identify and mentor high school students from across the country who are considering academic, internship and career tracks in the arenas of politics, public policy, media and Israel advocacy.”
Of course only those who are earmarked as spineless or delusional pawns who will happily kowtow to the interests of the Israeli lobby here in the United States are considered student leaders worthy of identification and mentoring at the hands of AIPAC.
Despite these groups’ continual victimization of themselves, there is not a single lobby in the United States that represents a country with the funding or access the Israel lobby enjoys.
The Democratic delegation is led by House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor will be leading one of the Republican groups joining in the trip.
Hoyer told The Jerusalem Post, “I’m pleased members of Congress have this opportunity to study American interests in the Middle East and gain a deeper understanding of the issues involved in increasing stability in the region.”
Hoyer, like many in politics and media, seems to hold the absurdist position that Israeli interests are American interests and that Israel has any interest in bringing stability to the region. A quick glance at their actions over the past decades rules out that ludicrous notion.
The so-called American Representatives, who would be better described as Israeli Representatives who happen to hold office in the United States, will visit Israel and the occupied territories of the west Bank.
The delegations are also scheduled to meet with Israeli leadership in Jerusalem including President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu. They will also meet with the fraudulent Palestinian Authority President, Mahmoud Abbas, who no more represents the people of Palestine and their actual interests than I do.
In another part of the Israel lobby’s show of dominance over the puppets in governments across the globe, the Israel Project is also paying for 18 Washington-based ambassadors from across Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia.
These nations include: Haiti, Macedonia, Belize, Barbados, Albania, Burkina Faso, the Dominican Republic, Uganda and Saint Lucia among others.
The above countries were targeted by Israeli interests because they “have been mentioned by officials in Jerusalem as likely candidates to either vote against, or at least abstain, when the vote on the Palestinian statehood comes before the UN in September”, according to The Jerusalem Post.
In defense of this trip that blatantly serves to sway the opinions of our supposed representatives in Washington, the fact that taxpayer dollars are not used to fund the trips is cited as a justification and proof this is not objectionable.
For instance, Communications Director for Congresswoman Betty Sutton from Ohio, Anthony DeAngelo, stated, “As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, Congresswoman Sutton is planning to visit one of our chief allies in the Middle East with other Members of Congress to discuss national security and economic issues. The trip is funded by an organization that sponsors fact-finding trips, and not taxpayer dollars.”
Since you have just read AIEF’s own description of their activities, calling it “an organization that sponsors fact-finding trips” is nothing short of a bald-faced lie. If this doesn’t represent Representative Sutton and her staff spitting in the eye of her own constituents to whom she is supposed to be solely responsible to, I don’t know what does.
I also find it a bit disturbing that American public officials are traveling to Israel to “discuss national security and economic issues.” If this is indeed what they are doing, I think it is a bit worrisome that they are not staying in the United States to discuss our national security and economic crisis.
To make the publicly presented picture of this trip even more deceiving, Ari Goldberg, Spokesman for AIPAC stated that these trips “offer members [of Congress] the chance to meet with both Israeli and Palestinian officials and hear from speakers representing diverse views across the political spectrum.”
Of course when they speak of Palestinian officials they speak of the fraudulent Palestinian Authority who really has no right to use the name of Palestine and participate in the negotiations.
We must also take note of the fact that the Israel lobby is given a special position in Washington, above the normal ethical rules that constrain the activities of other lobby groups.
The ethical rules of the House “ban lobbyist involvement in planning, organizing, requesting or arranging most trips.”
Yet, since AIEF is a “non-profit” and a “charitable” organization and not technically a lobby group like AIPAC, they are allowed to pay for our so-called Representatives to leave behind the people to whom they are supposed to be accountable in favor of the illegal state of Israel.
Obviously the AIEF and AIPAC are inseparable, as revealed in their own words, and further emphasized by the fact that they are located in the same exact building in Washington, D.C.!
When it comes to the mainstream corporate special interest media here in the United States, the coverage is few and far between. When this is covered, it is thoroughly misrepresented or presented in a deceptive manner.
For instance, when The Washington Post was finally forced to cover this junket, they published a story entitled, “House members travel to Israel, courtesy of AIPAC lobby, not taxpayers” as if the fact that taxpayers didn’t fund it made any difference whatsoever.
They avoid addressing the implications of these trips and instead cover the lavish treatment given to the Members of Congress and their family.
They turn this blatant example of how our government is dominated by Israeli interests into a light-hearted story, betraying the seriousness of the issue with statements like, “At some point, the group will head to the West bank […] No Hamas folks are invited.”
The second page of the report then moves completely away from the actual issue and leaves it without ever covering the absurdity of openly stating that the trip is courtesy of AIPAC, which directly conflicts with House ethic rules.
The Associated Press has avoided publishing stories about this on their international newswire, instead opting for local stories about individual Representatives similar to the above linked story about the Ohio Rep.
The rest of the coverage has been interesting, to say the least. As Alison Weird points out:
Washington’s Politico covered it twice; The Atlantic‘s website reported on people who were “kvetching” about the one-sided nature of the junkets, pointing out that some of the reps were also going to meet with some Palestinian leaders, without telling how many (no one will say) and for how long (apparently for a few hours of the weeklong trip). Los Angeles’ Jewish Journal was remarkably forthright, reporting that “the congressional reps will be getting the dog and pony show,” and Commentary gloated at the “astonishing” number of representatives going on the trip, noting that “Congress is the backstop that gives Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu the ability to say ‘no’” to the president of the United States.
It is an irrefutable fact that the mainstream media in the United States takes a blatantly pro-Israel stance whenever possible.
This is an incredibly misleading representation of the events going on in the Middle East and is directly contradicted by the actual opinions of the American people. Two-thirds of Americans want our government to “lean toward neither side” with 25% wanting America to lean toward Israel while only 2% favor the Palestinians.
Even with these extremely low numbers in direct support of the Palestinians, the fact that two-thirds seek an even-handed approach speaks volumes.
The unfortunate reality in America is that our representatives do not represent us. They represent those who have put them in power and those who have the resources to remove them from power if they do not serve their puppet masters.
More Americans need to realize this and confront their Representatives on their treasonous ways.
If your Representative is traveling to Israel during his/her break, I highly recommend that you inundate them with phone calls, letters, e-mails, and if you have the time you could even go down to their office and get your voice heard. Even if you are only speaking to their staffers, you might walk away with one more person aware of reality who will seek out the truth and thus spread the word.
In these days of economic, political and military turmoil worldwide, we need to stand together as a nation and refuse to let our Representatives serve the interests of a foreign country, whichever it might be.