Menu JTA Search

Chuck Hagel, “Someone should tell” edition

–Someone should tell Colin Powell that Jewish sensibillity-wise,  "Israeli lobby" may be worse than "Jewish lobby." 

It’s pro-Israel lobby. The folks in the lobby are très sensitive about how they advocate for the U.S.-Israel relationship, and not for Israel itself.

–Someone also should tell Powell that dog whistles are by definition difficult to define and if he believes that Obama-related references to "laziness" and "shuckin’ and jivin’" are indicting, so may be Chuck Hagel’s insistence in 2006 that he was "not an Israeli senator."

Which doesn’t mean Powell has to agree necessarily with Elliott Abrams that Hagel’s comments are indicting, just that interpreting nudges and winks is a matter of art and getting it wrong is not necessarily "disgraceful."  (In fact, Bret Stephens does tell Powell this in today’s Wall Stret Journal.)

–Someone should tell the Emergency Committee for Israel that if even an intimation of impugning the national loyalties of pro-Israel activists is enough to disqualify one from the Cabinet, shouldn’t it be off-limits to blatantly impugn same loyalties of senators by calling on them to "put country ahead of party" in today’s New York Times?

–Someone should tell ECI founder Bill Kristol that if he’s going to make "cheap date" cracks about Chuck Schumer, he might at least entertain the flirtations of J-Streeters armed with a dozen not-so-cheap bagels.

Kristol’s attacks on Chuck Hagel had prompted their "Smear a Bagel, not Chuck Hagel" petition challenge, garnering $350 for a DC foodbank. J Street staffers tried to deliver a dozen fresh ones today to Kristol and his Weekly Standard crew, but they were turned away.

NEXT STORY