An Inclusive Litany

11/3/02

Letter to the Editor, the Boston Globe, November 3, 2002:
I found Ussama Makdisi's article "The End of the Affair" in last Sunday's Ideas section informative from a historical perspective. However, I believe he failed to discuss the true motivation for our support of Israel.

He states that American support for Israel is based on the idea that Israel represents Jewish national redemption. Although this statement is accurate, we can't dismiss the economic reason for our presence in Israel—that being big business and oil. He does mention how our role in the Middle East became of interest upon the finding of oil in Saudi Arabia in 1938. Support for Israel gives the United States an excuse for maintaining a presence in the Middle East. On the world stage, our position for and in Israel would be referred to as "a sphere of influence."

As a nation built on freedom and democracy, we care about the Israeli people's right to have a homeland. I question however, if our government would be as supportive if the homeland in question were based in Western Europe.

We pay a steep price for maintaining stability in the Middle East and use our support for an Israeli homeland as a front.

—Lawrence Agresto,
Groton

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