Walt, Mearsheimer walk back from Iraq claim

Two professors who published a
controversial paper on the “Israel lobby” appear to have walked back
from their claim that pro-Israel voices were principally responsible for the
Iraq war.

In a lengthy reply to their
critics, John Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago and Stephen Walt, do not
acknowledge error in their original paper’s contentions about the lobby’s role
in the Iraq war.

However, their new conclusion is
considerably less definitive then their original remarks: “Israel’s
endorsement was hardly the only reason why the United States went to war, of
course, but to say that Israel did not encourage it is wrong,” they now
say.

That’s considerably softer than
their original contention that pressure from the pro-Israel lobby was “a
critical element” in the decision to attack Iraq and that “the main
driving force behind the Iraq war was a small band of neoconservatives, many
with close ties to Israel’s Likud Party.

The reply has been privately published and distributed
by Paul Flum, a businessman.

NEXT STORY