By Charles Freeman
March 11, 2009 “WSJ”
To all who supported me or gave me words of encouragement during the controversy of the past two weeks, you have my gratitude and respect.
You will by now have seen the statement by Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair reporting that I have withdrawn my previous acceptance of his invitation to chair the National Intelligence Council.
I have concluded that the barrage of libelous distortions of my record would not cease upon my entry into office. The effort to smear me and to destroy my credibility would instead continue. I do not believe the National Intelligence Council could function effectively while its chair was under constant attack by unscrupulous people with a passionate attachment to the views of a political faction in a foreign country. I agreed to chair the NIC to strengthen it and protect it against politicization, not to introduce it to efforts by a special interest group to assert control over it through a protracted political campaign.
The libels on me and their easily traceable email trails show conclusively that there is a powerful lobby determined to prevent any view other than its own from being aired, still less to factor in American understanding of trends and events in the Middle East. The tactics of the Israel Lobby plumb the depths of dishonor and indecency and include character assassination, selective misquotation, the willful distortion of the record, the fabrication of falsehoods, and an utter disregard for the truth. The aim of this Lobby is control of the policy process through the exercise of a veto over the appointment of people who dispute the wisdom of its views, the substitution of political correctness for analysis, and the exclusion of any and all options for decision by Americans and our government other than those that it favors.
Obama pick ‘too critical of Israel’ – 11 Mar 09
US President Barack Obama’s choice for a top intelligence post has been described as the “wrong guy for the job” who has made statements against Israel that are “way over the top”. That is the view of New York Democratic Senator, Charles Schumer, about Charles Freeman. Freeman had been Obama’s pick to head the US National Intelligence Council. The Council oversees US spy agencies. Freeman has now withdrawn. It is the latest embarrassment for a president struggling to staff his new administration. Al Jazeera’s Shihab Rattansi reports.
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The United States of Israel.
Following Withdrawal From Intelligence Post, Freeman Points Finger at Israel Lobby.
By Nathan Guttman
Published March 11, 2009.
…. Many of the lawmakers demanding an investigation into Freeman’s qualifications for the intelligence post are known as strong supporters of Israel: Senator Charles Schumer from New York raised the issue with White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel and, in a statement released upon his resignation, specifically cited Freeman’s views on Israel as the disqualifying factor; Republican Illinois Rep. Mark Kirk and Democrat Steve Israel of New York took the issue to the inspector general of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and Joseph Lieberman, the Independent from Connecticut, questioned Dennis Blair, director of national intelligence, on this issue during the March 10 hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
[From Nov. 2008]
In sharp contrast to Obama’s claim that the invasion of Iraq was a mistake, Emanuel claims he would do it again today. As chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he directed party funds to pro-invasion candidates and recruited candidates to oppose anti-war Democrats.
Known in Washington as an outspoken pro-Israel hardliner, he joins Speaker Nancy Pelosi in bringing to the Middle East peace process a record of support for Tel Aviv’s targeted assassinations of Palestinian political leaders. (“Pelosi supports Israel’s attacks on Hamas group,” San Francisco Chronicle, June 14, 2003).
Those who sought a break with pro-Israel policies can look forward to an “assistant president” who is the son of a Jerusalem-born member of the Irgun, a Zionist-terrorist group active in Palestine from 1931-1948. Born an Israeli due to his father’s dual Israeli-U.S. citizenship, Emanuel relinquished his Israeli citizenship when he turned 18 but not his fierce allegiance to the Zionist state. …