It seems that CT congressman Jim Himes has finally decided which side of the divide he comes out on regarding the HAMAS War.
According to a report by the website “Responsible Statecraft,” (RS) which has thus far not been denied by Himes’ office:
“A senior Democratic lawmaker recently said that it’s easier to back Israeli government policy, in many instances at the expense of the Palestinians, because pro-Israel lobbyists have a relatively more influential presence on Capitol Hill.” <https://responsiblestatecraft.org/un-vote-global-south/>
While I welcome this inveterate dissembler’s decision to take a clear stand, it is unfortunately, in agreement with the most RADICAL members of the Democrat party, and far from his incessant positioning while here in our District that he’s a “moderate.”
According to RS, in the October 23, 2023 meeting with constituents, Himes – a ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee – showed the cards he usually keeps so close to his vest. Himes said:
“The Palestinians have very legitimate claims” and have been “subject to brutal injustice…”
Himes is upset that pro-Israel groups such as J-Street and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) exercise great pro-Israeli influence on Congress. He claims that this is not because Israel is one of America’s most important allies… or because Israel is the ONLY Democracy in the Middle East… or because Israel is fighting on the front lines against a hideously cruel and barbaric form of Islamist Fascist Terrorism that is directed as much against the USA (the “Great Satan”) as it is against Israel (the “Little Satan”); Oh no…Congress is pro-Israel because doing so is “the path of least resistance” – Himes’ words.
Thus, Jim Himes hauls out one of the most historically specious antisemitic tropes; that is, that Israel is corrupting American politics via its spread of lucre, and by frequently visiting with politicians on Capitol Hill so as to bribe them into backing Israeli policies against the Palestinians.
The RS article quotes Himes saying:
“[I]n this office, I get 6 to 8 visits a year by AIPAC, which is a fairly right-wing pro-Israeli group, and J-Street, which is a left-leaning pro-Israeli group. I have never had a visit — never once, I’ve been doing this for 15 years — by a pro-Palestinian group… And I think, therefore, the path of least resistance for an awful lot of members of Congress is to be reflexive the way you were concerned about. And the reason I would love to talk more about that is because, you know, the Palestinians have very legitimate claims, and in times and places have been subject to brutal injustice, and yet there is nobody telling their story.”
It would be interesting to know the “legitimate claims” to which Himes is referring. As usual, he makes the claim but fails to back it up.
The article continues:
“Himes pointed to the influence of AIPAC to help explain the lopsided support for Israel in congress:
“AIPAC has been doing this for 60 years. They come in and they sit in the office, and they say, you know, ‘Here’s three things that we would really like you to consider doing, are you going to do it?’ And I’m not saying AIPAC is good or bad, I’m just saying that I know what is effective in educating members of Congress, and honestly it breaks my heart that there isn’t a Palestinian group that comes in and says, ‘Look, let us tell you what our aspirations are, let us tell you some stories, let us tell you what the settlers are doing outside of, you know, Ramallah.’”
Pity the poor Palestinian groups!
It’s not enough that the Establishment Media, Social-Media and the entirety of Academia are rabidly anti-Israel; Himes’ heart is breaking because they don’t have the same slavish following in the halls of Congress.
Himes is not saying that AIPAC is good or bad – why? What has AIPAC done that is “bad?”
- Advocate for the only Democratic state in the Middle East?
- Ask for America to support its strongest ally by far in the area?
- Support the only Jewish State in a region surrounded by enemies, and whose founding was the result of the atrocities of the Holocaust?
- Advocating that America make common cause with a people whose myriad beneficial contributions to the world, including birthing Christianity and the creation of Judeo-Christian Tradition that is at the heart of everything upon which Western Civilization is built?
What exactly does Mr. Himes think is “bad” about that? The article continues:
“I’d be curious to know what he means by ‘path of least resistance,’” Foundation for Middle East Peace President Lara Friedman told Responsible Statecraft. “Does he mean, ‘this is the path that gets me rewarded in terms of campaign support,’ or, on the other hand, ‘how I avoid other possible negative consequences like someone giving massive support to my primary opponent?’”
I would be curious to know why Mr. Himes has decided to embrace the brutally ignorant antisemitic tropes that inflame the imaginations of the most radical members of his party, including Rashida Talib, AOC and Illan Omar, who once infamously claimed support for Israel was “all about the Benjamins,” referring to the cash the Israel Lobby supposedly uses to influence legislators… as if no one ever gave donations to politicians to influence policy before the sinister connivers at APAC discovered it.
But the antisemitism is not found in the claim that politicians are constantly looking for campaign contributions from anyone with a dollar to spend; they are. The antisemitism is found in Himes’ agreement that using campaign donations to influence policy is something particularly associated with Jewish community activists.
But it gets worse. His October 23rd online-meeting to discuss the Israel-Palestine conflict with constituents was LED by the Connecticut chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
Himes lets CAIR run the discussion! Does he NOT know that CAIR is a well-documented supporter of Islamist terrorists, including the Muslim Brotherhood and HAMAS going back to the ‘90s?
As Newsweek states:
“CAIR was incorporated by Omar Ahmad, Rafiq Jaber and Nihad Awad in 1994. To become its founding director, Awad left his position as public relations director for the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), which has been described by the FBI counterterrorism chief as “a front organization for Hamas that engages in propaganda for Islamic militants,” and by the U.S. government itself as a founding member of the Muslim Brotherhood’s ‘Palestine Committee.’ Ahmad was the IAP president at that time, while Jaber became IAP president in 1996.” See: CAIR’s links to terrorism
A Jan. 2020 Washington Free Beacon article exposed that “120 members of congress privately issued letters of support” to CAIR, including Jim Himes. So, Himes continues to take public stances supporting Israel, while privately assuring CAIR they have his support. Now THAT move is congressman Jim Himes in a nutshell.
Following that revelation, NPR did an extensive expose` of a CAIR leadership riddled with incidents of sexual-harassment. Some Democrats backed away from the group at that point – but not Jim Himes.
Are we supposed to believe that Himes, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, doesn’t know that in May 2007 CAIR was an unindicted co-conspirator in a case the U.S. filed against the Holy Land Foundation (the largest Muslim charity in the United States at the time) for providing funds to Hamas? Was he unaware that CAIR’s co-founder, Nihal Awad, had participated in planning meetings with HLF? Didn’t he know that during a 2008 retrial of the HLF case, the FBI labeled CAIR “a front group for HAMAS?” And on Dec.7th Nihad Awad, now CAIR’s president, publicly said he “was happy to see” the October 7th terrorist massacre. It has become self-evident that Jim Himes has aligned himself with the most radical members of the Left in the House.
At a Norwalk town hall in July, 2021, I challenged Himes to denounce the Squad members Omar, Tlaib, AOC, and Pressley for their subversive positions, actions and statements. Watch him squirm and fumble in this video.
What should we think about the credibility of a member of the House, who sits on the Intelligence Committee, when we find out he is sympathetically listening to propaganda from a HAMAS terrorist front group and then concocting utterly false moral equivalencies for it with AIPAC, a totally legitimate lobbying group, from which Himes himself has taken money!?
The RS article goes on to state:
“Amid this wave of money, the largest contributor to Himes’ campaign committee in 2022 was AIPAC…”
Yes, Himes has apparently had a hard time resisting all the money he gleefully took from AIPAC until he started worrying about blowback from the extreme antisemitic elements in the Democrat Party. He knows how worried the fanatical pro-Palestinian faction in his politically influential Leftwing Base are, about AIPAC-affiliated groups spending upwards of $100 million on primary elections in an effort to oust pro-Palestinian candidates.
So, in his well-practiced manner of trying to be all things to all people, he condemns HAMAS while pleading for them to have “their side” of the story being told… all while taking money from AIPAC.
To Jim Himes, this is “balance” – to me it’s the height of two-faced hypocrisy.
At his October 23rd meeting he said he does not support a ceasefire.
“Unless somebody can convince me that there is an alternative mechanism for bringing these terrorists that perpetrated this grave, grave crime against Israel… to justice, I will not do that,” Himes said in reference to Hamas’s monstrous attacks on October 7. However, Himes also opposed censuring Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI)…”
Once again maneuvering behind his “moderate” mask, Himes states:
“My theme has been two-fold,” said Himes, “which is that we will support Israel in the face of this disgusting attack, and number two, that we need to make sure that the Israeli response is moderated, that they abide by the laws of armed conflict, that they come off of their rhetoric of leveling Gaza, of a siege, and that everything be done with an eye towards what is right from a humanitarian standpoint.”
First, the Israeli action has been far more moderate than most countries, including the United States after 9/11… as well as of other world powers such as Iran against Iraq in the 1980s or Russia in Ukraine today; there has rarely been a country that has gone so far to protect civilians, even at the expense of endangering its own soldiers. To question Israel “from a humanitarian standpoint” is the worst form of casuistry.
Second, what “laws of armed conflict” is Israel NOT abiding by? Yes, sadly, the rules adhered to by ONLY those in the civilized West.
Now, on Jan. 23rd Jim Himes co-sponsored a congressional letter to President Biden to “express our support for a two-state solution as the only viable path for a sustainable peace” – yet another duplicitous gambit.
Newsflash to Himes and the 44 co-sponsors: Neither the Palestinians, currently under the tyrannical control of the vicious HAMAS murderers who have brought nothing but ruin to their lives… nor the Israelis, who have been bled white while trying to placate the unfulfillable demands of HAMAS and HEZBOLLA, want a “two-state solution” – neither do!
U.S. President Bill Clinton worked to fashion the Oslo Accords, which promised a compromise solution. At a Camp David Summit in July 2000, Israeli P.M. Ehud Barak offered Yasser Arafat a number of important concessions designed to lead to a comprehensive peace agreement in return for Arafat ending the armed conflict. As the Summit concluded, Arafat clearly appeared to be heading home to sell it to the PLO and The Arab League.
But the PLO defiantly rejected Barak’s proposals and never even offered a counterproposal. Instead, the Palestinian Authority began massive waves of suicide bombers into Israel. With no “recognition of Israel’s right to exist” in any of these Arab terror organizations’ charters, clear-minded and reality-driven thinkers in the West have concluded a two-state solution is a non-starter. In fact, without a recognition of Israel’s right to exist, such a “solution” is in reality a death-warrant for Israel.
And there’s a Himes recent voting record leading up to his ominous two-state gambit. In the last two months of 2023:
- HImes voted against aid to Israel (H.R. 6126: Israel Security Supplemental Appropriations Act.)
- He voted against freezing the release of funds to Iran, which sponsors HAMAS (H.R. 5961: No Funds for Iranian Terrorism Act.)
- He voted against House Resolution 927, which called for “Condemning antisemitism on University campuses.”
Jim Himes has in the foreign policy arena, yet again abandoned his moderate pose and revealed his true Leftwing proclivities, which are aligned with the most antisemitic, radical elements of his Party.
All voters, especially Jewish voters… and even more especially donors like AIPAC… should recognize the face behind the moderate mask.
The anti-Israel, pro-CAIR, pro-HAMAS reality is as ugly as the false, moral equivalencies in which Himes regularly engages.
The time when the people of CT District 4 could allow themselves to be fooled by the duplicitous words of this charlatan “moderate” are long past; the stakes for Israel, the Jewish people, the United States, and indeed the arc of western civilization are too high to give any more credence to the dangerous double-talk engaged in by Jim Himes.