Analysis & Opinions - The New York Times
Israel's Friends and the Path to Peace
Letter to the Editor
This letter was written in response to Jeffrey Goldberg's op-ed, "Israel's 'American Problem' " which was published on May 18, 2008.
Jeffrey Goldberg attacks our book, “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy,” while openly embracing one of our main arguments.
He writes that we “argue, unpersuasively, that American support for Israel hurts America. It doesn’t. But unthinking American support does hurt Israel.”
Our book contains detailed case studies showing that unconditional support for Israel is not in America’s national interest. Readers can judge for themselves whether we are “persuasive.”
But we also emphasized that “the lobby’s impact has been unintentionally harmful to Israel,” that its actions “may even be jeopardizing the long-term prospects of the Jewish state” and that its “influence has been bad for both countries.”
The lobby’s harmful impact on Israel was also a central theme of an op-ed article, “Israel’s False Friends,” we wrote in The Los Angeles Times on Jan. 6. Mr. Goldberg clearly agrees with this part of our argument.
John J. Mearsheimer
Stephen M. Walt
Chicago, May 18, 2008
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