Arab Lobby's Chokehold on U.S. Mideast Policy

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Every year, policy makers from both sides of the political aisle appear at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee Conference to show their support for a strong bond between the United States and Israel.

AIPAC is the largest, most influential pro-Israel lobby in America. However, another more powerful group, the Arab lobby, has been quietly shaping U.S. policy in the Middle East for decades.

Author Mitchell Bard says this invisible alliance undermines America's interests in the Middle East. His new book, The Arab Lobby: The Invisible Alliance That Undermines America's Interests in the Middle East, pulls back the veil on the activities of these shadowy organizations, documenting 70 years of complicity at the highest levels of government and corporate America.

In his book, Bard claims that historically, the Arab lobby consisted of the oil industry, Christian missionaries, and current or former U.S. diplomats. Arabists in the State Department, many of them openly anti-Semitic, tried to prevent America from recognizing Israel in 1948. They have since waged a long bureaucratic war to undermine the alliance between America and the only true democracy in the Middle East, blocking arms and aid to Israel while seeking larger weapons sales for their Arab friends. Many of these Arabists subsequently found lucrative jobs promoting business with Arab countries, speaking on their behalf and criticizing U.S.-Israel policy.

Today, the Arab states influence American policy through numerous hidden and informal channels, including former members of Congress, subsidized think tanks, paid media spokesmen, academics who hold chairs endowed by Arab money, human rights organizations, assorted U.N. agencies, European diplomats, and Christian groups hostile to Israel. A number of former ambassadors, university professors, and think tank experts routinely express their opinions on Middle Eastern affairs, but never reveal their conflicts of interest.

Bard says the Arab lobby has a chokehold on U.S. policy in the Middle East and threatens America's national security.

Bard is an authority on U.S. -Israel relations and has written or edited more than 20 books, including 48 Hours of Kristallnacht: Night of Destruction/Dawn of the Holocaust; Will Israel Survive?; and The Water's Edge and Beyond: Defining the Limits to Domestic Influence on U.S. Middle East Policy. He has a doctorate from UCLA, with a specialty in American politics and international relations.

Bard is scheduled to appear on Monday's The 700 Club. Check local listings. Or check after 10:00 a.m. EDT Monday to watch Bard's interview.

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