Via Matthew Yglesias, this is enough to make a cat laugh. As I’ve argued elsewhere, although the Mearsheimer & Walt “Israel Lobby” does have a referent which is a real and definable set of groups and institutions, this lobby really doesn’t have all that much to do with Israel. Every time this slightly scary bunch of warlike, paranoid and rather right-wing people are asked to make a choice between the national interests of Israel and their own vanity politics, it’s Israel that gets shafted. Any concern over “divided loyalties” or what have you is completely misplaced – the “Israel Lobby” are nationalists of a completely imaginary state, one which has no meaningful politics of its own, no need to compromise with reality and no national interests other than constant war.
Note also that the well-known South Africa analogy, which has been pronounced to be intrinsically bigoted and anti-semitic by the wisest heads outside Israel, is considered normal politics by the head of government of that country. I begin to think that the Israeli state (which has, over the years, played its part in giving these nutters much more prominence and credibility than they deserve) has been lately finding the wingnuttier wing of American “pro-Israel” politics to be more trouble than it is worth. There are all sorts of reasons one might have to be less than happy with the human rights record of the State of Israel, but as far as I can see they don’t deserve to be blamed for the extremely negative contribution made to public debate in English-speaking politics by the political organisation trading under their name.