Cal Tzedek: A dim ray of light

Monday, September 27, 2004

A dim ray of light

Not that I'm a big fan of John Kerry, for his reactionary positions on Israel or for a whole lot else, but I’ve all but signed on to the idea that there is a Greater Evil, so articles like this, showing that Jews are still overwhelmingly not Bush supporters, are somewhat comforting. And maybe it says that American Jews really don’t like Bush’s policies in Israel/Palestine. Tracking the “Jewish vote” would be more interesting if Kerry were to take a reasonable stance on Israel/Palestine (e.g., supporting the Geneva Accords-- though I guess that would make him sound too much like Nader, which would scare the “swing voters”), because if Jews were to still vote for Kerry over Bush, it would provide a strong argument that being “pro-Israel” (in a right-wing sense) is not The Most Important Thing to American Jews. Imagine if it were clear that Jews supported Kerry despite him being more balanced (less Bush-style “Pro-Israel”) on the conflict. Too bad we won’t find out if that’s the case during this election season.
I found this line somewhat interesting:
“The Bush administration has been the most unabashedly supportive of Israel, culminating in Mr Sharon's visit to Washington last April, when Mr Bush broke with 30 years of diplomatic tradition by endorsing his Gaza withdrawal plan.”
Hasn’t American diplomatic tradition for the past 30+ years been that Israel should not be in the Gaza strip? So isn’t backing the withdrawal plan very consistent with American diplomatic tradition? Maybe in England, as opposed to the U.S., it’s already common knowledge that keeping parts of the West Bank is a key part of the withdrawal plan, even though the plan, for some shocking reason, isn’t called “The Gaza Withdrawal and West Bank Land Grabbing Plan.” That would certainly be counter to American policy to date-- at least the stated policy.
- Gidon

The lack of Jewish support for the Republican party does have something to do with Israel, but it also has to do with the oil-and-water difficulty of getting Jews and evangelical Protestants (some, not all, of whom still subscribe to anti-Semitic interpretations of the Bible). In addition, they've studied contributors to the Democratic Party and the historical reason why Jewish businessman still continue to donate to the Democrats despite their status as businessmen is due to the exclusion of Jews from country clubs, social clubs etc. where ties to the Republican party are formed (at least among so-called "country club" Republicans).
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