In the recently released documentary The Kings of Capitol Hill, the Israeli filmmaker Mor Loushy attempts to highlight what she sees as the internal contradictions and failures of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). Loushy has created other documentaries airing leftwing criticisms of the Jewish state, including Censored Voices, stitched together from uncorroborated interviews with veterans of the Six-Day War, which, contrary to the film’s central claim, had never been censored. Based on a published interview with Loushy, David E. Bernstein raises some objections to the new film’s premises:
[Loushy] points out that “AIPAC’s aims do not mirror those of the bulk of American Jewry.” Not to put too fine a point on it, but most American Jews are fairly indifferent to Israel, and on average politically much more left-leaning than the population as a whole. Obviously, AIPAC, dedicated to being a bipartisan pro-Israel lobby, is not going to mirror that indifference and that strong bias to the left, but is going to make Israeli-American relations a priority over other political issues and will try to be centrist in political orientation. . . . AIPAC’s role is to serve as a pro-Israel conduit that can appeal to the broad middle of pro-Israel Americans, not to represent American Jews writ large.
Loushy also relies on M.J. Rosenberg for her understanding of AIPAC and American politics. Rosenberg worked for AIPAC long ago, but has long since become a leftist gadfly who is far from a reliable source on anything AIPAC-related. For example, he helped popularize the use on the left of the . . . term “Israel-firsters” to refer to American Jews who support Israel. Note that this calumny goes beyond accusing Jews of dual loyalty, and into accusing (some) American Jews of having primary loyalty to Israel. Not surprisingly, the phrase originated on the anti-Semitic far right, and eventually migrated to the anti-Semitic far left.