All out of Kool Aid

Another clear example of why things need to change in Washington in the NYT article on Arab and Israeli lobbies' efforts to gain influence in Congress:

Although people in both diasporas are glued to their television screens, the parallel ends there. While the American Arab and Muslim groups say they are better organized than ever before, they say they have not made a dent in American foreign policy. Their calls for an immediate cease-fire by Israel have been rebuffed by the White House and most legislators on Capitol Hill.

“I’m devastated,” said James Zogby, president of the Arab American Institute, in Washington. “I thought we’d come further. We’re doing well, so far, in terms of our capacity to deal with everything from the humanitarian crisis to identifying families and working to get people out. What is distressing is the degree to which this neoconservative mindset has taken hold of the policy debate. It’s like everyone has drunk the Kool-Aid.”

Salam al-Marayati, executive director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, said, “This is probably the only issue in Washington where there’s no real debate.”
Which is why the fight has to be more aggressive than this.

Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region,