What does need to happen is to re-balance the relationship with Israel so that the political, diplomatic and financial costs of the alliance are matched by what the U.S. receives from it (which isn’t very much these days). At present, even the smallest moves in that direction are considered unspeakable betrayals. That is one reason why proponents of re-balancing the U.S.-Israel relationship are not interested in arguing for ending the alliance outright. It is difficult enough to argue for conditional reductions in economic aid that calling for a complete break would be rejected out of hand.
That is what makes Frum’s detour about Charles Freeman at the end of the same post especially ridiculous. Freeman outlined some of the costs that the alliance imposes on the U.S., and he may have understated the case, but he then made very modest recommendations for what the U.S. government should do to pressure Israel to halt settlements. My guess is that the “pathetically disproportionate” recommendations reflect Freeman’s understanding of what is politically possible here in the U.S. As it is, Freeman’s proposal to reduce economic aid to Israel to compel a halt to settlement activity is more than anyone in the administration or J Street is willing to advocate publicly. Had Freeman made a more radical proposal, Frum would not be congratulating him on his consistency or his boldness, but would instead be declaring him a lunatic.
Judge for yourself Freeman's latest. Some of it is spot-on; some, to my mind, just wrong. Israel has no friends apart from the US? Please.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.