This is a thread for discussing the existence, influence, and exceptionalism of the "Israel Lobby" as proposed by Mearsheimer & Walt and rebutted by Dershowitz. First, the papers themselves: http://ksgnotes1.harvard.edu/Research/wpaper.nsf/rwp/RWP06-011/$File/rwp_06_011_walt.pdf, Mearsheimer & Walt (2006) http://www.hks.harvard.edu/research/working_papers/abstract_dersh1.htm [Broken], Dershowitz (2006) I have attempted to suggest a number of different controversial viewpoints below. With any luck, both sides will think that I'm siding with their opponents. Some questions to consider (or not): * To what extent are disparate U.S. groups supporting Israel more cohesive than other collections of interest-joined lobbyists (hence "The Lobby" rather than "lobbyists")? * For specific examples of persons and organizations belonging to the lobby, are the choices reasonable? Exhaustive? * How can the size and influence of the lobby be measured? * Is the press unusually favorable to Israel? How can this be measured? If so, is it more biased toward Israel than it is biased in other ways? * To what extent is support of Israel costly to the U.S., relative to other policy goals? * To what extent does MW mirror anti-Semitic propaganda? To what extent has the threat of being labeled anti-Semitic shut down debate? Specific criticisms of Mearsheimer & Walt 2006:† * Quotes taken out of context * Lack of research (is it bad to be 'just' a compilation?) * Factual and logical mistakes * Low-quality/biased sources: if the information is right why can't a reputable source be found? † There is no similar section for Dershowitz because Dershowitz responded to Mearsheimer & Walt, not the other way around. When replying to this thread, please focus on the facts at hand; resist the tendency to fall into ad hominem attacks. Please support all facts with arguments or citations: what is obvious to you may not be obvious to others -- it may even be false! Also, respect the rules of the board in order to delay the nigh-inevitable closing of this thread.