Obama defends pro-Israel policy as compatible with US interests

Wednesday, September 12, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

US presidential candidate Barack Obama has attacked a new book claiming that supporters of Israel and their lobby groups do not represent American interests as a total distortion of what American interest are.

Written by John Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago and Stephen Walt of Harvard University, “The Israel Lobby” claims that pro-Israel Jews and Christians are compelling the US government to aid Israel contrary to American interests in the Middle East.

In a statement released by his campaign office, Obama said he is “familiar with [the book's] arguments and disagrees with them.”

The statement continued: “Senator Obama has stated that his support for a strong U.S.-Israel relationship, which includes both a commitment to Israel's security and to helping Israel achieve peace with its neighbors, comes from his belief that it's the right policy for the United States. The idea that supporters of Israel have somehow distorted U.S. foreign policy, or that they are responsible for the debacle in Iraq, is just wrong.”

Mr. Obama is considered one of the top two Democratic presidential candidates, along with Senator Hillary Clinton.

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