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March 16, 2008
Kissing Robert Malley
Today's New York Times carries a puff piece on Robert Malley, a figure of some controversy because of his involvement in the Barack Obama campaign and for his views that are considered by many (with good reason) to be harshly critical of Israel and America.
There is a large body of work written by Robert Malley that promotes engagement with a rogues gallery of thuggish regimes and terror groups. The article delves only a bit into his own views and seems to be more of an attempt to polish his reputation which is now tattered.
The Times article ignores the long series articles written by Malley that have proven fallacious (his version of Camp David, for example). Malley has also advocated pressuring our ally, Israel-which is surrounded by enemies and faces existential threat from Iran and Hamas. If Helene Cooper, who wrote the article, was truly interested in reflecting Malley's views, a handy compendium could have been found here - a resource of which she undoubtedly knew since much of the controversy started with its publication.. There is a CAMERA article discussing Malley that can be found here.
Suffice to say, Malley's policy prescriptions leave much to be desired and have been derided. Eric Trager over at Commentary picks up just one absurd example:
Of course, the notion that Hamas would empower Abbas to talk to Israel is delusional. But perhaps more disturbing is Malley’s belief that the UN should talk to terrorist organizations.
Trager points out that both Malley's supporters and critics agree that he embraces a pro-Palestinian narrative. Malley was the only American official to blame the United States and Israel rather than Yasser Arafat for the failure to achieve Israeli-Palestinian peace at Camp David. More from Mr. Trager:
Ms. Cooper also Ignores that his version of Camp David was contradicted by President Clinton and, separately, by Dennis Ross as well as by many others who were there during the proceedings. If he is so well-known and respected on the Washington diplomatic circuit, why has he not been an "official" top-level adviser? The link to his father was peripheral to the criticism. The criticism was based on his own views.
Of course, the image of the International Crisis Group (ICG)seeking to prevent deadly conflicts sounds nice but the agenda may be a bit murkier and their views are quite critical of America and Israel. The group seems to advocate currying favor with various dictatorial and terror regimes. The group is funded by George Soros who serves on its Executive Committee and received a Founders Award from them. During his acceptance speech when he was given the award, he praised the ICG's work, especially the work that the group was doing on "the Palestinian question".
Of course, George Soros's dislike of Israel is well-known; he even explored the option of developing a lobby to counter the influence of a range of lobbies that advocate for a strong American-Israel relationship (including groups from America's large number of Christians who support Israel). George Soros was an early supporter and generous supporter of Barack Obama.
The International Crisis Group, by the way, also has on its Executive Committee, Zbigniew Brzezinski and Samantha Power
Brzezinski -a fierce critic of Israel- has been involved in the Obama campaign and this has caused concern in among supporters of Israel (the campaign has tried to minimize his role). Samantha Power was the top foreign policy adviser to Barack Obama's campaign, had once actually worked for him, and has a long litany of anti-Israel opinions and Noah Pollak's fine work over at Commentary regarding Power as had Paul Mirengoff of Powerline that also generated controversy before she resigned from the campaign in the wake of comments made regarding Hillary Clinton.
How interesting that Barack Obama seems to have been drawing his foreign policy help from a George Soros-funded group : one of which Soros is proud of for their work on the "Palestinian question".
This is another example of the campaign to burnish Robert Malley's reputation (for another example and a superb take-down of the same see this piece by Eric Trager
Robert Malley and his allies seem to be tapping friendly media outlets to burnish his reputation, Perhaps he believes he will be in line for a top diplomatic post in an Obama Administration. Perhaps we can also hope that journalists at the New York Times can spend a few more minutes researching articles instead of peddling public relations on behalf of controversial figures.