The Washington Post reports on the efforts of Barack Obama and his campaign to “rebuff challenges on his Israel stance.” Part of that “challenge” relates, of course, to his foreign policy advisers some of whom, the Post accurately observes, are regarded by some Jews as anti-Israel.
The Post reports:
Obama took on those issues in Cleveland when he told Jewish leaders that Brzezinski, a national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, is not a key adviser but merely someone he had lunch with and exchanged e-mails with “maybe three times.” Malley, a State Department official in the Clinton White House involved in failed efforts to complete a comprehensive Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, “is one of hundreds of people who have sent advice to the campaign,” Rep. Robert Wexler (D-Fla.), an Obama supporter, wrote in the Jerusalem Post yesterday.
It’s nice that Obama, under pressure, is distancing himself from Brzezinski. Nonetheless, Obama does not dispute that Brzezinski is advising him. It will be up to pro-Israel voters to decide whether the allegedly small number of contacts is sufficiently reassuring.
As to Malley, the Washington Post published a list of “the national security and foreign policy advisers to the leading presidential candidates from both parties.” Malley (along with Brzezinski) is one of approximately 20 advisers who appears on Obama’s list. Malley also appears on a similar list in Newsweek. Either the Post and Newsweek got it wrong, or Wexler’s attempt to minimize Malley’s role is quite misleading.
Finally, so far as appears in the recent Post story, Obama and his campaign simply avoided discussing Samantha Power. Not only is Power quite likely the worst of Obama’s advisers when it comes to being anti-Israel, but she is also indisputably a key adivser. According to Ed Lasky and Richard Baehr, Power left a position at Harvard to work for Obama for a year after his election to the U.S. Senate and is now identified as a “senior foreign policy advisor.” Moreover, apparently it was Obama who sought out Power, not the other way around.
As I noted here, Power has attacked Israel for its response to terrorist acts launched against it from Southern Lebanon, criticized the New York Times for not sufficiently trumpeting alleged Israeli war crimes on the West Bank, and blamed deference to Israeli interests in part for our involvement and tactics in Iraq.
It’s easy to see why Obama and his campaign would rather not talk about Power and her views. It will be interesting to see whether liberal MSM organs like the Post permit this evasion.
To comment on this post, go here.