Thursday, February 04, 2010

Pro-Israel lobbyist Lorna Fitzsimons: foreign policy is an 'elite issue'


It seems we shouldn’t be bothering ourselves with foreign policy. It’s not for the likes of us, dear reader. Cos we aren’t members of the ‘elite’.

From today's Morning Star.

The chief executive of a British pro-Israeli lobby group has been condemned for making inflammatory comments flouting democracy and international law at a high-profile conference in Israel.

Lorna Fitzsimons, CEO of Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre (BICOM) - a group which lobbies on behalf of Israel in Britain - was addressing the Herzliya conference on the state of the Jewish nation.

Former Labour MP Ms Fitzsimons is reported to have told the conference that "public opinion does not influence foreign policy in Britain. Foreign policy is an elite issue."

Veteran Middle East reporter Robert Fisk described this as "one of the most distressing moments" of the conference. "Deal with the elite and the proles will follow - that was the implication," he interpreted.


Quite.

5 comments:

Exile said...

As a general rule her point is fair enough because most people don't take all that much interest in foreign policy. However, when they do, then they can influence policy quite a lot. South Africa is an obvious case in point where pressure groups and public opinion dragged a reluctant Tory government into line.

David Lindsay said...

Leo Strauss lives.

It has come to something when Lorna Fitzsimons thinks of herself as the elite. In that case, who the hell isn't?

And no wonder that former Cabinet Ministers of both parties have been among those telling me not to write, even in jest, about the drafting of our least accomplished 16-year-olds directly into the Israeli Defence Force, because "if the wrong people read that then it will happen". How long can we now have to wait?

dan said...

More on the mouthpiece of Britain's AIPAC

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/lorna-fitzsimons-israel-faces-a-battle-for-credibility-but-its-winnable-1888792.html

Bryn Gerard said...

If people don't care about foreign policy (which I am not all that sure that that is the case) it is because they are not educated as to the implications of any particular policy.

If people really understood that having people in power who support foreign governments means that their vote has been handed to a foreign power for its own ends, they might begin to care.

If people realised how much of their taxes are handed to Israel to pursue a policy of Apartheid and ruthless oppression of a defenceless people perhaps they would care enough to take action and not vote for those whose main priority is not the constituents they are meant to represent.

Anonymous said...

ALL of public policy is an elite issue.

According to the elite.

I think people will be most motivated by the unfairness of the situation, which sees one people being dispossessed of their land by another stronger people.

That's why the violent resistance of Hamas is counter productive in gaining support from the general population in the west.