Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

AIPAC: 'Business As Usual'

Expand Messages
  • World View
    AIPAC: Business As Usual : The fact that this AIPAC national summit is a record turnout, that it s our largest annual summit ever, is a tribute to the
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 1, 2004
    • 0 Attachment
      AIPAC: 'Business As Usual':

      "The fact that this AIPAC national summit is a record turnout, that
      it's our largest annual summit ever, is a tribute to the importance
      that people in this country place in the value of a strong U.S.-
      Israel relationship," AIPAC spokesman Andrew Schwartz said.

      http://www.jewishtimes.com/News/4282.stm


      Matthew E. Berger
      Special to the Jewish Times

      OCTOBER 29, 2004
      Hollywood, Fla.

      It would have been easy for Israel advocates to be distracted at the
      American Israel Public Affairs Committee's national summit here this
      week.

      To get to the meeting rooms at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino here,
      one had to venture past the slot machines and the framed guitars that
      have been used by rock 'n' roll greats, the Harley Davidson
      motorcycles on display and the waterfalls that flow into a large
      swimming pool.

      If that didn't distract donors to the pro-Israel lobby from the work
      at hand, the recent rumors and innuendos surrounding AIPAC certainly
      didn't stop them either.

      Ever since news reports said AIPAC officials were being investigated
      for allegedly taking a classified document from a Pentagon official
      and passing it on to Israel, people have been watching AIPAC very
      closely.

      The organization has responded by dismissing the charges as baseless
      and continuing its mission, insiders say, and the conference this
      week was a testament to that.

      "Business as usual" was the oft-spoken mantra.

      Among supporters, at least, it seemed to be true.

      "The fact that this AIPAC national summit is a record turnout, that
      it's our largest annual summit ever, is a tribute to the importance
      that people in this country place in the value of a strong U.S.-
      Israel relationship," AIPAC spokesman Andrew Schwartz said.

      The two-day summit, which began Sunday, drew more than 800 people and
      brought key leaders from both political parties.

      Some participants said the natural growth of the organization,
      combined with the heightened political season, drew participants, as
      well as the desire to support AIPAC just two months after it came
      under intense media scrutiny.

      The conference was addressed by Condoleezza Rice, President Bush's
      national security adviser, and Richard Holbrooke, a former U.S.
      ambassador to the United Nations and a foreign policy adviser to the
      Democratic presidential candidate, Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts.

      Rice's presence was particularly striking: AIPAC advocates say the
      fact that Rice and President Bush have spoken to AIPAC since being
      informed of the details of the federal investigation reportedly
      launched two years ago shows that the charges against the group are
      not serious.

      "I think the U.S. officials, whether it's in the administration or
      Congress, realize how important relations between Israel and the U.S.
      are to the United States," said conference participant Mark Engel,
      57, a real estate developer in New York City.

      "Their feeling is, whatever may have happened with AIPAC may or may
      not be true, and they can't let innuendo distract them."

      The controversy reportedly focuses on a Pentagon official accused of
      passing a classified document about Iran to two AIPAC aides, who then
      allegedly passed it on to Israeli officials.

      Some reports have indicated that AIPAC was the target of the probe.
      David Szady, the senior FBI counterintelligence official
      investigating AIPAC, has targeted Jews in the past, JTA has reported.

      Most AIPAC supporters and staff at the summit refused to speak
      publicly about the controversy.

      Privately, supporters said they believe the investigation may have
      been sparked by anti-Semites in the State Department or by others who
      want to defame Israel.

      Some said the biggest vindication comes from the fact that no charges
      have yet been filed. The investigation appears to have stalled, if
      not faded away, according to sources close to AIPAC and in Congress

      There was little mention of the controversy at the summit this week.

      That was a sharp contrast to the days when the scandal first broke in
      late August, just before the Republican National Convention in New
      York.

      At that time, AIPAC Executive Director Howard Kohr began his remarks
      at each convention-related event by trying to quell donors' concerns.

      Kohr did raise the issue at one closed-door summit forum this week
      on "The State of AIPAC," participants said.

      Kohr said he did not know where the accusations came from, and would
      like to know more, participants said.

      FORUM (GENRIC) AND JTA
      This story reprinted courtesy of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

      *********************************************************************

      WORLD VIEW NEWS SERVICE

      To subscribe to this group, send an email to:
      wvns-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

      NEWS ARCHIVE IS OPEN TO PUBLIC VIEW
      http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/wvns/
    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.