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Netanyahu’s adventures in the AIPAC wonderland

21 10 6

Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks at the 2018 conference of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), are key to an understanding of how Israel is run. The Israeli leader is not only his country’s longest-serving Prime Minister, but is also different from his predecessors in many ways. One difference has affected his personality and behaviour markedly; he was raised in the United States and imbibed its culture and political tactics. This has affected his own political behaviour as well as his world view and self-perception.

In his speech to the main pro-Israel lobby group in the US, Netanyahu acted not as a visiting head of a state, but as an experienced salesman who is keen to convince his business partners that their money is invested well and their corporation is flourishing. This reminded me of the colonial era when countries were regarded as projects and people as slaves. He seemed to have forgotten that legitimacy is not measured by business success and how developed you are. If it was, Adolf Hitler would be ranked one of the best leaders ever.

As Netanyahu stood on the stage among his friends in AIPAC, he seemed to have forgotten that he was in America, not Israel. He said that he was unable to see the audience from behind the podium, so decided to move around the stage, against the directions of the organisers. “What the heck,” he protested, “I’m the prime minister.” This may have been one of few moments of truth in his whole speech. The level of affection and warmth that Netanyahu experienced at the........

© Middle East Monitor