Saturday, January 26, 2008

Barack Obama's Middle East Expert

Barack Obama's Middle East Expert"

Barack Obama's real thinking about Israel and the Middle East continues to be an enigma. The words he chose in an address to AIPAC create a different impression than the composition of his foreign policy advisory team. Several advisors have evidenced a history of suspicion and worse toward Israel. One of his advisors in particular, Robert Malley, clearly warrants attention, as does the reasoning that led him to being chosen by Barack Obama.

A little family history may be in order to understand the genesis of Robert Malley's views. Normally, one should be reluctant in exploring a person's family background -- after all, who would want to be held responsible for the sins of one's father? However, when close relatives share a strong current of ideological affinity, and when a father has a commanding persona, it behooves a researcher to inquire a bit into the role of family in forming views. That said, Robert Malley has a very interesting father.

His father Simon Malley was born to a Syrian family in Cairo and at an early age found his métier in political journalism. He participated in the wave of anti-imperialist and nationalist ideology that was sweeping the Third World. He wrote thousands of words in support of struggle against Western nations. In Paris, he founded the journal Afrique Asie; he and his magazine became advocates for "liberation" struggles throughout the world, particularly for the Palestinians.

Simon Malley loathed Israel and anti-Israel activism became a crusade for him-as an internet search would easily show. He spent countless hours with Yasser Arafat and became a close friend of Arafat. He was, according to Daniel Pipes, a sympathizer of the Palestinian Liberation Organization --- and this was when it was at the height of its terrorism wave against the West . His efforts were so damaging to France that President Valerie d'Estaing expelled him from the country.

Malley has seemingly followed in his father's footsteps: he represents the next generation of anti-Israel activism. Through his writings he has served as a willing propagandist, bending the truth (and more) to serve an agenda that is marked by anti-Israel bias; he heads a group of Middle East policy advisers for a think-tank funded (in part) by anti-Israel billionaire activist George Soros; and now is on the foreign policy staff of a leading Presidential contender. Each step up the ladder seems to be a step closer towards his goal of empowering radicals and weakening the ties between American and our ally Israel.

Robert Malley's writings strike me as being akin to propaganda. One notable example is an op-ed that was published in the New York Times (Fictions About the Failure at Camp David). The column indicted Israel for not being generous enough at Camp David and blamed the failure of the talks on the Israelis.

Malley has repeated this line of attack in numerous op-eds over the years, often co-writing with Hussein Agha, a former adviser to Yasser Arafat (see, for example, Camp David: The Tragedy of Errors ). He was also believed to be the chief source for an article by Deborah Sontag that whitewashed Arafat's role in the collapse of the peace process, an article that has been widely criticized as riddled with errors and bias.

Malley is a revisionist and his views are sharply at odds with the views of others who participated at Camp David, including Ambassador Dennis Ross and President Bill Clinton. Malley's myth-making has been peddled in the notably anti-Israel magazine, Counterpunch and by Norman Finkelstein, the failed academic recently denied tenure at DePaul University . Malley's Camp David propaganda has also become fodder for Palestinians, Arab rejectionists, and anti-Israel activists across the world..there's more


Winston said...

Barack Hussein O(s)bama will not be elected. Hitlery will be the nominee and she'll be defeated, hopefully.

Anna ny mouse said...

Winston, you know they say when it rains, it pours !? not only Hilary has a big chance for winning, but I actually think Obama will win! With all the money the leftists like Soros are spending, only the worse can happen. the more money they use, the bigger the tragedy will be! No one can destroy this country as bad as the leftists!Maybe I am getting pessimistic and associating situation that happened in Iran to here. Leftists selling the country to Islamists. Hussein Obama already has much Moslem support.

Anonymous said...

Anything will be better than racists and bigots such as you.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Malley is not an advisor to the Oboba camp, on foreign policy or anything else. Dan Shapiro and Zbig Brz are. Both of these men are fine patriotic Americans who have always put their nation first.
That is as it should be.

US policy on the ME is for a two-state solution roughly along the 1967 ceasefire line. It rejects both the Greater Israel policy of the Israeli Government and AIPAC, and the rejectionists on the Palestinian side.

The now likely election of Obama will certainly bring change in that the US government is again likely to press US policy on the parties. Obama seems also to realize that in a scenario where significant parts of the Israeli polity, including some government ministers, reject the right of the Palestinians to their own state it is both hypocritical and futile to refuse to talk to all the Palestinian representatives, including Hamas.