Bad for the Jews

A shandeh fur de goyim.

Man, I hope this isn’t true. But if it is, I hope that it will cause some rethinking both in Jerusalem and in the American Jewish community.

American Jews who are more loyal to Israel than to the United States are, in my view, unpatriotic Americans, but their choice is their choice. But about American Jews who are officials of the American government there should be no doubt: if they’re acting disloyally, they’re not just bad Americans, they’re bad Jews, because they cast doubt on the loyalty of the rest of us. (The technical term is “shandeh fur de goyim.”)

And American Jews need to make it clear to the Israeli government that attempts at espionage and subversion directed by Israel against our country make it harder for Jews here to support Israel.

Wasn’t Pollard bad enough?

Update: I hoped this was some overenthusiastic reporter at CBS overinterpreting something said by someone at the FBI, but it looks real:

A senior Pentagon official confirmed to CNN that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld “had been made generally aware that the Justice Department had an investigation going on.”

CBS News, which first reported the story, said the FBI had developed evidence against the suspect, including photographs and conversations recorded through wiretaps.


Second update

By the clear light of dawn, and of Laura Rozen’s excellent reporting, the above seems overwrought in several respects.

1. Most outrageously, it assumes that an “Israeli spy” in the Pentagon would naturally be Jewish. I don’t know anything about Larry Franklin, but that’s not obviously a Jewish name, and reading it made me aware that I’d made an utterly unjustified assumption.

2. If Rozen’s account is correct, Franklin might have been using AIPAC as an end-around to get information he cared about to higher-ups outside his chain of command, rather than spying for Israel.

3. It doesn’t look as if any of the information passed along was damaging to U.S. national security.

On the other hand, Rozen suspects that Franklin may not be the real target here: perhaps he’s being squeezed to provide testimony against someone more important.

And there seem to be links to forged Nigerian documents (and thus to the Valerie Plame affair), to our old friend Ahmed Chalabi, and to many of the usual suspects from Iran-Contra days.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: