Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 26, 2011

The New Yorker Lost It

The New Yorker has a 9,000 something words article on Obama's foreign policy: The Consequentialist - How the Arab Spring remade Obama’s foreign policy.

The looooong piece is trying to characterize Obama, his foreign policies and the various foreign policy persons around him especially with regard to the Middle East. It is also trying to keep all persons involved in a somewhat positive light.

But while trying to describe and analyze his alleged evolution on foreign policy issues it is missing the biggest of his foreign policy initiatives and how he lost it.

Within 9,000+ words there is no mentioning, none at all, of Obama's demand to stop Israeli settlements in the West Bank and of Netanyahooe's and the lobby's successful sabotage of the issue.

How can one analyze the foreign policy of the U.S., especially in the Middle East, while leaving out Israel? How can one analyze Obama's foreign policy while leaving out the most embarrassing public rejection of U.S. leadership in the last decades?

It seems that the New Yorker is now just as clueless about foreign policy as the Obama administration is.

Posted by b on April 26, 2011 at 19:26 UTC | Permalink


"In a telling off-the-cuff interview in Israel's December 24, 2010 Yediot Aharonot, New Yorker editor David Remnick let loose with a startlingly personal blast at Israel, railing at the Jewish state as if it were a recalcitrant, embarrassing teenager. The harsh view of Israel will be unsurprising to readers of The New Yorker, which has not for some time been particularly concerned about getting facts straight where Israel is concerned, and where errors and distortions trend in one direction — denigrating Israel. Remnick's own writing includes the same hectoring and biases" - CAMERA

Posted by: Blinky | Apr 26 2011 19:36 utc | 1

he pre-warned, exactly from what reactionary mold he was made, from which bloodthirsty tradition he owed allegiance

"At a campaign event in Pennsylvania, Obama said, “The truth is that my foreign policy is actually a return to the traditional bipartisan realistic policy of George Bush’s father, of John F. Kennedy, of, in some ways, Ronald Reagan.”

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Apr 26 2011 19:47 utc | 2

Denigrating Israel doesn't have to be done by others, they, by their treatment of the Palestinians, do a fine job on their own.

Posted by: ben | Apr 26 2011 20:04 utc | 3

Since we have more to lose than gain, both in terms of dollars and blood, by having a foreign policy based on picking and choosing which Middle Eastern dictators to prop up and which ones to tear down, we should base our foreign policy in the Middle East on what former Rep Alan Grayson refers to as MYOB -- Mind Your Own Business.

But we can't do this until we first take the profit out of the military-industrial complex. And it's gonna be mighty hard to do when our warmongering news media has brainwashed so many of our citizens into believing that war is good for our economy, and that whenever we invade and occupy an oil-rich country like Libya or Iraq, we get cheap oil out of the deal.

Posted by: Cynthia | Apr 26 2011 20:52 utc | 4

Greenwald at Salon today on how Obama isn't distinguished from Bush in the --negative--opinion of Egypt and the Mideast.

Posted by: Ken Hoop | Apr 26 2011 22:18 utc | 5

Guantánamo Bay files: Al-Qaida assassin 'worked for MI6'

ho hum.. yawn.

Posted by: Uncle $cam | Apr 26 2011 23:44 utc | 6

there aint no obama foreign policy, or bush or clinton
there's only amerikkan foreign policy

Posted by: denk | Apr 27 2011 14:47 utc | 7

The omission of Israel may be related to the fact that the Recognition of Palestine by the UN (67 borders) is moving forward.

The last two meetings of the Quartette (US, EU, UN + Russia) have been cancelled as stiff language about that recognition have been transmitted to the reps of the non-US entities.

Between 110 and 115 countries are ready to recognize Palestine. The quorum needed in the General Assembly, 2/3 of the votes, = 128. Almost there. See link 1, in French.

It is generally assumed that the Security Council (i.e. the US) can veto any such initiative, but that is not so, as there is a way to by-pass the Security Council. (See e.g. link 2 for from JTA....)

The 3rd link is from Wiki and shows the countries that either fully recognize Palestine already (though what that exactly means is rather moot) or have some sort of diplomatic bi-lateral agreement. OK, it’s WikiCommons, but the map is kinda telling.

Today, Israel is under the radar while diplomatic, military and financial horse-trading and coercion take place. Upshot: The US will have to be seen to implement some new version of “peace plans” or whatever, promptly, in several weeks at most.

The N Yorker article is perhaps in part an attempt to draw attention away from the Isr-Pal. issue by focussing on the Arab Spring, which is dramatic, while putting out tortuous guff about Obama’s foreign policy, guaranteed to spark controversy no matter what - Obama is the most divisive US president ever.

Posted by: Noirette | Apr 27 2011 16:50 utc | 8

me, personally, am fascinating by the ethical argument made "they are murdering their own people", meaning it is o.k. murdering other people.

now, what does "own" mean?

Posted by: somebody | Apr 27 2011 16:57 utc | 9

it is o.k. murdering other people.

That is exactly right, provided those people are Iraqis or Afghans or Pakistani or Libyan and the killers are "western".

Posted by: b | Apr 27 2011 18:47 utc | 10

@ Noirette

Maybe the Palestinians are uniting before the UN vote on statehood?

But trusting Abbas??

Posted by: Cloned Poster | Apr 27 2011 19:15 utc | 11

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