Psalms 29:11: The LORD will give strength unto his people; The LORD will bless his people with peace.
“Israel is our greatest ally!” is the common refrain sung by Conservative Inc. when the topic of Israel is brought up. An active and hawkish foreign policy, especially regarding the defense of Israel, has been a staple of the Republican Party and the conservative movement since the end of the Second World War. This consensus is being challenged, however, among Gen Z conservatives.
Curious why the United States unconditionally supports this supposed ally, many Gen Z conservatives have asked our so-called leaders why this is the case. In return, they have been met time and time again with hostility. Their questions have been avoided at best and shut down at worst. Gen Z is the future of this nation and the conservative movement, so our current leaders must listen to their concerns.
Many Gen Z conservatives see little reason why the United States should be involved in Israel and its affairs. This young conservative movement is inherently Christian, so many of its members fail to see why they should support a nation whose religion is unlike (and perhaps even hostile) to their own. Additionally, these young conservatives care much more about what is happening domestically than what is happening in a Middle Eastern country. From fears that they might not be able to purchase a home to accelerating rates of depression and nihilism, young people have profound concerns. It's bizarre to demand they must disproportionately care about a foreign nation that has done nothing for them.
American foreign policy should only be concerned with the security of the United States and its national interests. Protecting trade routes, securing vital resources, and combatting direct threats to the American homeland are some valid reasons for the United States to get involved abroad. With this in mind, a follow-up question must be asked: “What is America's interest in Israel?” The answer, quite simply, is not much at all.
Israel is a tiny nation with few resources to offer the United States, and it makes no sense why the United States spends billions on foreign aid to Israel each year. If you question your boomer relatives, they may tell you that Israel is helpful as a geopolitical forward operating base against the threat of “radical Islam.” However, as the eminent international relations scholar John Mearsheimer argues in “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy,” this is circular logic. The Islamic world would not regard America with such hostility if we did not unconditionally support Israel and its aggressive actions against Muslims, which we have repeatedly done.
Israel has also actively harmed the United States. There are numerous instances of Israel deliberately hurting us to further its goals. A few major ones that come to mind:
- The 1954 Lavon Affair: Israeli agents planted bombs inside American and British movie theaters, libraries, and education centers with the intent to blame mass terrorist attacks on the Egyptian government to draw America and Britain into conflict with Egypt, a major regional rival. The plan was botched, and Israeli Prime Minister Pinhas Lavon resigned. However, the surviving agents received certificates of appreciation from President Moshe Katsav.
- The 1965 Apollo Affair: A Jewish Zionist stole up to 600 pounds of enriched uranium from the Nuclear Materials and Equipment Corporation in Pittsburgh and covertly donated it to the Israeli government. The goal was to obtain a nuclear arsenal in Israel, which the American government prohibited. Now, the Israeli government has an unofficial arsenal, even though America has pressured Israel to adhere to the Non-Proliferation Treaty.
- The 1967 U.S.S. Liberty incident: The Israeli military attacked an American survey boat off the coast of Egypt, killing 34 crew members and injuring 171 more, in an attempt to blame the Egyptian military to draw America into the ongoing Six-Day War. The attack was blamed on false Israeli intelligence regarding the ship's identity, but crew members sent out repeated signals to the attacking force that they were Americans. The remaining crew members, to this day, maintain the attack was deliberate, as did the secretary of state at the time, Dean Rusk.
We must also consider cases of Israeli spying in America, such as the spy Jonathan Pollard. Pollard spied for years within the American government on behalf of Israel, divulging vital national security secrets about intelligence-gathering methods. He was sentenced to life in prison but released after continuous lobbying efforts by Israeli organizations. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu greeted him with a red carpet flight into Jerusalem, praising the man as a hero.
Why do conservatives still slavishly support Israel? They, or even the United States itself, would never put up with these actions from any other supposed ally. So why do we turn a blind eye to Israel?
Interestingly, conservatives were not always the international hawks they are today. Great Christian conservative thought leaders like Pat Buchanan and Joseph Sobran opposed the unconditional support for Israel that was beginning to take root during their time. Buchanan had this to say on the matter:
They charge us with anti-Semitism … The truth is, those hurling these charges harbor a 'passionate attachment' to a nation not our own that causes them to subordinate the interests of their own country and to act on an assumption that, somehow, what's good for Israel is good for America.
Even the Founding Fathers would find unconditional support for Israel to be egregious. Regarding alliance-making, George Washington remarked:
It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliance with any portion of the foreign world.
Alexander Hamilton, the father of American nationalism, stated:
Foreign influence is truly the Grecian Horse to a republic. We cannot be too careful to exclude its entrance.
It is abundantly clear that Gen Z conservatives are upholding a tradition long-rooted in American nationalism and good statecraft. America does not owe an eternal, unconditional relationship to Israel — a nation that contains little interest to us and has actively harmed us throughout history.
The views expressed in this article solely represent the author's views and not necessarily College Dissident's.