A Poisonous Endorsement For J Street

Stephen Walt, who makes his living scapegoating Jews, writes in a Sunday op-ed (thanks for the special Rosh Hashanah gift, Washington Post!):

Why is Obama letting Netanyahu thwart his efforts? To begin with, the president has too much on his plate -- the economic crisis, the health-care battle, Afghanistan, Iran's nuclear problem -- so the attention he can devote to Israeli-Palestinian peace is limited.

And then there is the Israel lobby. The good news is that there is a new pro-Israel organization, J Street, which is committed to the two-state solution and firmly behind Obama. The bad news is that the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and other defenders of the status quo remain powerful, and they will surely oppose any attempt to pressure Netanyahu.

J Street would be better off with Osama Bin Laden's endorsement than it would with Stephen Walt's. As best as I can tell, the bulk of J Street's backers are people who ardently support the creation of a Palestinian state and don't very much like Benjamin Netanyahu, but they are also people who don't like grubby Jew-baiters like Stephen Walt. I'm curious to see what Jeremy Ben-Ami, the head of J Street, has to say about this.

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. He is the author of Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. He was previouslly a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

Goldberg's book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. He received the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism and the 2005 Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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