Created on Wednesday, 04 February 2015 16:36
Written by Prof. Phyllis Chesler - Arutz Sheva
Obama won't 'interfere in Israel's elections' by meeting Netanyahu, but will interfere in Israel's elections by sending his campaign manager to Israel to work against him. Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Lee Zeldin sent a letter demanding an explanation
The White House is “dismayed,” “displeased,” “angry” over Prime Minister Netanyahu’s upcoming address to Congress.
The White House’s “Dismay over Netanyahu Visit Extends to (Israeli) Ambassador.”
That is the title of aJanuary 29th piece in the New York Times. Accepting Speaker Boehner’s invitation is seen as proof of “a further decay in relations between Republicans and the White House;” the White House has called the (Republican Congressional) invitation “a breach of diplomatic protocol,” and has announced that President Obama will not meet with PM Netanyahu as a “matter of policy”: It does not meet with world leaders close to their election so as not to interfere in a foreign election.
This is beyond ironic; in fact, it is one Big very fat Lie.
As Thomas Rose at Breitbart points out: Obama met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel prior to recent German elections. Former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown met with Obama twice—each time before the British elections.
But no matter. This President rules as if he is a divinely appointed King. He can do whatever he wants—especially in this, the “last quarter” of his 8 year Presidency.
Although you will probably not read about this in the mass media, (the New York Times, etc.), Obama’s 2012 campaign field director was selected to head a “five man Obama team” to run a campaign, Obama-style, on the ground, in Israel. Chicago-style, Alinsky-style, grassroots, young people, urging others to drink the Kool-Aid of “change,” engaging more and more volunteers to go from apartment to apartment.
This Obama-initiated campaign has been reported by Breitbart, Bizpac Review, PJ Media, Truth Revolt, and Haaretz, but only in Hebrew, not in their English edition. The estimable Carolyn Glick pointed this out in a tweet and Independent Media Review and Analysis translated it into English. Glick is quoted by Thomas Rose in Breitbart:
“Obama won’t meet Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington when he addresses the Joint House of Congress in March because of Netanyahu’s visit’s proximity to the Israeli elections. And Obama, of course, believes in protocol and propriety which is why he won’t get involved. He is just sending his 2012 field campaign manager to Israel to run a campaign to defeat Netanyahu.”
No interference at all.
Dr. Aaron Lerner notes that “foreign funding bankrolls Anti-Netanyahu Campaign—Flies in 5-Man Obama Team.”
Journalist Roi Arad, in Haaretz, happily announced that the foreign funded organization “One Voice” is bankrolling the V-2015 campaign to defeat Binyamin Netanyahu in the 2015 elections.
Jeremy Bird, the Obama campaign’s national field director is running a grassroots, Obama-style campaign from an office in Tel Aviv which takes up the entire ground floor of the building. V-2015 is not supporting a specific party. They are for anyone, “just not Bibi.” Therefore, the foreign funding pouring into the campaign will not be subjected to Israel’s campaign finance laws.
Obama may not know anything about the economy, foreign policy, military strategy, health care, or universal human rights but, as BizPac painfully points out, “if Obama has a singular talent, it’s this: He knows what it takes to win an election.”
Imagine what this means: Obama is trying to unseat a democratically elected President of Israel’s most stable and militarily prepared ally in the Middle East.
Todays’ New York Times describes Israeli Ambassador, Ron Dermer, as “a political operative, not really an Ambassador.” This is what Daniel Kurtzer, a former American Ambassador to Israel says—and Kurtzer goes further. He would not be surprised if Dermer were to be declared “persona non grata” or at least “reprimanded or removed.”
And why? Because he is thought to have engineered House Speaker John A. Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu to address Congress about many things, especially that of Iranian nuclear power.
Obama wants to give Iran all the time it may need to develop nuclear power by refusing to strengthen sanctions and by delaying crucial deadlines. And, he does not want Americans to hear any other view at this time.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Congressman Lee Zeldin, R-NY-1, today sent a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry asking for information regarding media reports that U.S. taxpayer dollars are being used to fund efforts to influence upcoming elections in Israel.
Full text of the letter is below. For sources, which appear on the writer's Senate site, click here:
January 29, 2015
The Honorable John Kerry, Secretary of State
Department of State, Washington, DC 20520
Dear Mr. Secretary:
We write to express strong concerns over the recent media reports that a U.S. taxpayer funded 501(c) non-profit[ organization called OneVoice is actively working with a campaign operation called V15 or “Victory 2015” in an effort to influence the outcome of the elections in Israel on March 17, 2015.
On January 26, 2015, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported on the close coordination between these two entities. The reporter described his visit to the campaign operation in Tel Aviv, Israel, and the significant role Jeremy Bird, President Obama’s former deputy national field director (2008) and national field director (2012), is playing with V15.
The Haaretz report makes clear that the purpose of this alliance is to advance a particular ideological agenda: “With the help of American money and a former campaign adviser to President Barack Obama, V15 is trying to replace Israel’s government. The money and organization comes from V15’s partnership with OneVoice…OneVoice is expected to merge with V15 before the March 17 election.”
V15 organizers reiterated this point to the Haaretz reporter, noting that instead of calling the operation “Anyone but Bibi,” members of V15 merely phrase it slightly differently: “We say ‘replace the government,’ it’s not directed at specific individuals. There have been many years of right-wing governments during which little happened, it’s time to change course and give people hope… We will go to homes and we will win…The work with the research team that Bird brought has really ignited sparks…”
The January 27th OneVoice press release confirmed this goal. As its Executive Director declared, “We need a prime minister and a government who will be responsive to the people.”
Of course private American citizens are free to engage in political activities according to their inclinations, but given the overtly partisan nature of this particular case, we are deeply concerned by the relationship that also exists between OneVoice and the U.S. Department of State. OneVoice lists the State Department as a partner on its website. In its 2013 annual report, the CEO of OneVoice touted the organization’s work “together in partnership with the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv and the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem…made possible by two parallel U.S. Government grants.” According to a U.S. government website, OneVoice twice received grants from the State Department in 2014.
Given the public statements by a number of Obama administration officials, including the President, that it would be “inappropriate”[ for the government of the United States to exercise any influence over elections in a foreign country including Israel, we believe this issue demands your urgent attention. There appears to be a danger that U.S. taxpayer funds are being used to directly shape the outcome of the upcoming Israeli election--and specifically to campaign against Prime Minister Netanyahu--something all would agree would be highly inappropriate.
We request a thorough investigation by the State Department’s Inspector General within the next 15 days that answers the following questions:
How much funding has the U.S. Government provided to OneVoice, PeaceWorks Network Foundation, and any connected initiatives, projects or subsidiaries?
Who approved providing such funds?
What is the oversight and accounting process for how these funds are being spent?
How often and on what dates has such funding been provided?
What were the specific reasons and terms for providing funds, and how are these funds specifically being spent?
Can the Department of State guarantee that none of these funds have been or will be used in the endeavor detailed above, namely the partnership with V15, or any similar effort to exert undue influence over the Israeli political process?
Was there any knowledge from the State Department or other U.S. government officials of the partnership with V15 prior to providing funds to OneVoice?
Does OneVoice’s work with V15 violate its 501(c)(3) status (or the status of the PeaceWorks Network Foundation) as a tax-exempt organization and should such status be revoked?
Thank you for your prompt attention to this disturbing matter, and we look forward to your swift and detailed reply.
Sen. Ted Cruz Rep. Lee Zeldin
Member of Congress Member of Congress
Phyllis Chesler01Prof. Phyllis Chesler
The writer, a Shillman-Ginsburg Fellow at the Middle East Forum and recipient of the 2013 National Jewish Book Award, is the author of fifteen books, including Women and Madness, Woman's Inhumanity to Woman, and The New Anti-Semitism. She has published three studies about honor killing and is at work on a fourth. Her latest book is An American Bride in Kabul, (Palgrave Macmillan). Professor Chesler may be reached at her website www.phyllis-