Haaretz Editor Says "The Settlers" Control Israel Lobby

For the second time in the course of four weeks, a senior editor of ultra-leftist Haaretz has openly given voice to his radical agenda.

Ezra HaLevi ,

For the second time in the course of four weeks, a senior editor of ultra-leftist Haaretz has openly given voice to his radical agenda.

This time it was Akiva Eldar, the paper's senior political editor, who endorsed the recently published book "The Israel Lobby," which alleges that a powerful network of lobby groups and Jewish organizations induce the US to pursue policies that are against its best interests.

Eldar made the statements in recent lectures in the United States. On October 1st and 2nd, he was hosted by Americans for Peace Now, and on September 20th he was the guest of the Meretz party at its New York offices.

Eldar praised the thesis of "The Israel Lobby," and said: “A small minority of people dictates their interests to the US and the Middle East, and the mainstream American Jewish lobby is directing US decisions from Israel.”

Echoing CNN’s Christianne Amanpour, who in her recent documentary “God’s Jewish Warriors” used the settlement of Judea and Samaria to criticize the American Jewish establishment, Eldar seemed to seek the next step: American Jewish adoption of the anti-settlement line of the Israeli hard-left. “The settlements are the ultimate proof that the American Jewish lobby should get an award for dictating their policy to the US government,” Saudi-based Arab News reported Eldar as saying.

Eldar endorsed the Arab League’s recent “Peace Initiative,” actually a repackaging of the Saudi Initiative of 2002 – which demands Israel withdraw to its pre-1967 borders, divide Jerusalem and compensate or accept Arab expatriates in return for recognition by the Arabs. “The majority of Israelis agree with this, but the settlers’ lobbies — both in the US and Israel — are so strong that it turns us away from peace," he said.

The Haaretz editor expressed his great support for the Partition Wall between most of Judea and Samaria and the rest of Israel, and voiced hope that the Annapolis conference in November would result in the eviction of Jews from the “Palestinian” side. “I believe the wall did us a favor,” Eldar said, “as it brought back the idea of partition in Israel. The problem is no longer where, but when we withdraw to the line…The settlements are about Jewish hegemony — and they failed.”

Another Haaretz Editor, Danny Rubinstein, caused a stir in September when he called Israel an “apartheid state” when speaking before a UN conference in Brussels, on a World Zionist Organization sponsored speaking tour. Rubinstein refused to apologize for his allegations.

Prominent journalist Nahum Barnea wrote in November 2000 (in a publication printed by The Israel Democracy Institute) that there are Israeli reporters who do not pass the "lynch test": these, he said, are journalists who could not bring themselves to criticize the Arabs even when two Israelis were savagely murdered by a mob in Ramallah. The journalists he named were Gideon Levy, Amira Hass and Eldar - all of Haaretz. Barnea wrote: "And then the lynch test came, and before it the test of the shooting and fire bombs of the Tanzim fighters, and before it the test of the violations of the Oslo Agreement by Arafat, and it turns out that the support of some of the prominent reporters [for PA positions] is absolute...They have a mission."

Click here for a critique of Eldar and Haaretz by Andrea Levin, the Executive Director of the Boston-based Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA).