To the Editor:
While some of us share Tom Friedman's concern about certain negative manifestations in Israel's democratic life, we take heart from the fact that good people, including President Shimon Peres and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have spoken against these trends ("Newt, Mitt, Bibi and Vladimir," Dec. 14).
In leveling his criticism of Israel on its domestic agenda, Mr. Friedman ventures into absurd territory when he "illuminates" the reason Mr. Netanyahu was received with a standing ovation when he spoke before the U.S. Congress. His claim that "the ovation was bought and paid for by the Israel lobby" is insulting to the American people and reads like a page out of "The Israel Lobby," the biased treatise by professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt.
Poll after poll, including a recent one by ADL, shows overwhelming support for Israel by the American public. Congressional support reflects that reality.
Mr. Friedman's allegation is not merely wrong and offensive. It's dangerous. It plays into the most insidious conspiratorial notions about Jewish control of American institutions.
The Anti-Defamation League