Tuesday, April 4, 2006

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My very first satellite radio show

I'll be on Open Source Radio with Christopher Lydon on that satellite radio thing the young people talk about so much. My assignment is to repeat my Zionist overlord's talking points discuss the substance of "The Israel Lobby." You can listen in live from from 7-8 PM Eastern by clicking here. Other participants will be Steve Clemons and Daniel Levy.

[I thought you said you weren't talking about this any more?!--ed. No, I said I wouldn't blog about this. Talking on the radio is completely different. While I'm at it, though, it's worth linking to this Guardian story by Peter Beaumont that clears up one aspect of the paper that I did think was borderline anti-Semitic: the capitalization of "The Israel Lobby":

[London Review of Books editor Mary-Kay] Wilmers rejects the accusation by Hitchens, Ross and others that the Mearsheimer-Walt article has done little more than attempt to join up a disconnected list of people and organisations lobbying on different aspects of Israeli concern into a central 'Israel Lobby' - capitalised by the LRB. She admits now, however, that it would have been better to use a lower case 'l' for the word 'lobby' - to have avoided the risk of being misunderstood.

posted by Dan on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM


Go get them, Dan. I wouldn't be surprised if this little thing is costing the University of Chicago potential graduate students unwilling to be associated with Mearsheimer.

posted by: John on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

Isn't Christopher Lydon the real name of Johnny Rotten?

posted by: Tom T. on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]


I think you're right that Mearsheimer is likely to scare prospective grad students (such as myself) away, though this paper isn't necessarily the reason. Few people (judging of course from an entirely non-scientific sample, but I digress) interested in conflict/security want to get their training from a department whose most prominent conflict scholar is the staunchest defender of a dying paradigm (i.e., neorealism). And Sebastian Rosato's (a then-grad student of Mearsheimer's) shoddily-argued 2003 American Political Science Review piece on the democratic peace basically took UChicago off my list.

Of course, the Drezner and Levy tenure denials were also a discouragement.

posted by: b on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

B, you have to be kidding. A dying paradigm? Sebastian's work shoddy? There's no way you're a prospective grad student. Much more likely that you're a current grad student or junior faculty infatuated with the quant craze that's been destroying our discipline and upset at Seb for demolishing what passes for scholarship in your world. As for John M, I completely disagree with much of what he writes but, and I say this as a non chicago grad student, you won't find a better mentor.

posted by: ui on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

Oh, I take such great delight in Mearsheimer and Walt's upbraiding of the Sanhedrin in this country (media and university elites). It's grand drama with Abraham Foxman as Joseph Goebbels and Dershowitz as Caiphus.

What a disgrace that they couldn't even find a publisher in their own country. What a disgrace. The Jews control the First Amendment in America when it comes to Israel, everyone knows that.

Let us not forget a very important rule: don't criticize Jews or Israel. They are above criticism.

Thank God for tenure. Isn't the job of tenured professors to speak the truth? Dershawitz said it was.

posted by: Mark on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

Capitalizing "The Israel Lobby" is anti-semitic...?

How do you figure that?

Nuts.... this anti-semitic sluring has gotten ridiculous.

posted by: Carroll on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

Hey Mark -
You just broke the rule. You criticized the Jews.

What's going to happen to you?

(Hey rich and powerful Jews - I'm a gentile and stuck up for you guys. What do I get?)

posted by: bgates on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]


I'm looking over my shoulder every day now, I know Mel Brooks is lurking around with a tire iron.

posted by: Mark on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

Just listened to the broadcast and my first impression is that it was a very good discussion. I think the key idea that should be taken away from it was when Daniel Levy said that the ongoing, nuanced discussion that is going on in Israel should be imported to the United States. My biggest criticism of the "Israel lobby" (or whatever you want to call it - maybe Israel's most ardent supporters) is their attempt to quash any debate on the subject other than Israel good, everything else bad and if you disagree you are anti-semitic.

I visited Israel in 1988 (I am not Jewish - just a tourist). What struck me about the country is the intense debate that went on about just about everything. Some observations that risk ethnic stereotypes - a polite discussion in Israel sounds like a barroom brawl about to break out, there usually is at least one more point of view than people involved in the debate, and nothing is sacred. In the United States, when it comes to Israel, no type of discussion, let alone one that uninhibitted, is allowed to go on.

That is bad for Israel and the United States. Levy made it clear how the "Israel lobby" is bad for Israel. One additional factor is the old military maxim - "He who defends everything, defends nothing." If the "Israel lobby" insists on walling off any discussion (let alone criticism) of Israeli policy, once the wall starts to crack, it will be like a dam bursting. Having an open discussion of Israel in the US will do more to solidify support for Israel in the long run. All polls show that there is a lot of support for Israel in the US. I do not think that will be endangered by any discussion. It can be endangered by a lack of discussion which leads to surprises.

Israel lives in a dangerous neighborhood. It knows that neighborhood well. Nuance is called for when there are shades of shades of shades of grey. In the US, there are those who want us to see just black and white.

posted by: Realist on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

dan, did you see this article by eliot cohen in WaPo?


posted by: joe m. on 04.04.06 at 04:25 PM [permalink]

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