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Dennis Ross reportedly has a very nice office on the State Department’s seventh floor with windows looking out towards Constitution Avenue and the Mall, but there are reports that he has little to do. Ross, a pro-Israel hardliner who has worked for AIPAC funded Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) was a late-in-the-game backdoor appointment at State. His cheerleaders at WINEP nearly torpedoed the assignment through the premature issuance of a press release praising his appointment and describing him as the soon-to-be responsible party for Iran policy. Ross is a hardliner on Iran, advocating negotiations based on Iranian concessions on all key issues as a first step to a bombing campaign.

Ross was deliberately excluded from any active role in Hillary Clinton’s first Middle East trip last month and Richard Holbrooke, who is special envoy for Pakistan and Afghanistan, also blocked Ross’s participation in last week’s talks with the Iranian deputy foreign minister during the Afghanistan conference held at the Hague. Ross is apparently unhappy about the state of affairs.

It has been alleged that Ross has been sidelined for failing to register as an agent of Israel due to his chairmanship of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute, which is run by the Jewish Agency, an arm of the Israeli government. But the JPPPI connection was widely reported before he obtained the State Department position and it is more likely that the Obama Administration has decided to aggressively pursue an understanding with Iran, a program that Ross would hardly be likely to support. If the exclusion of Ross is indeed a deliberate policy decision it is good news for those who hope to avoid yet another war in the Middle East, but Ross has many supporters in congress and pressure to engage him more fully in the Iran debate will no doubt be forthcoming.

(Republished from The American Conservative by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Dennis Ross, Neocons 
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  1. KXB says:

    If this is true, I would be worried that Ross may try to embarrass the Obama administration through a public resignation, followed by bluster by guys like Schumer and Co. warning Obama to toe the corporate line. Perhaps Obama needs to have a prominent Jewish moderate involved, to eliminate the charge of anti-Israel/anti-Semitism.

  2. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    People like Ross should be deported and/or jailed.

  3. Phil:
    how does the exclusion of the”Jew Ross” I believe is the phrase the Germans liked, , square with your other big theme. The power of the dreaded. titanic, deadly lobby. JEWISH LOBBBY!!!!!!!!!!!!!. The ruler of us all. Seems contradictory to me.

  4. The inclusion of Ross is an implied threat to Iran that the administration can always revert to a harder line. And as KXB says, Ross’s inclusion keeps the Likudniks on side for the time being.

  5. Thomas, I’m I suppose what you call a likudnik. Back in the day Ross was known has one of “Baker’s Jewboys” along with Hasd, Miller, and Kurtzer.

  6. Would it be asking too much for Mr Ross to consider gainful employment somewhere? He should stop being a paper-pushing parasite shilling for another destructive war, and instead devote himself to a job in the private sector. It might give him a different perspective on life. He might even enjoy knowing that he’s contributing to society for the first time in his life.

  7. I don’t know what you guys are getting worked up about. You got the “black messiah” in the white house. You know, the Hamas endorsed candidate who likes to prostrate himself before the Saudi king. He’s a TAC guy.

  8. People like Ross should be investiagted. That also applies to AIPAC in it’s entirety.

  9. Jack Ross says:

    I’m very encouraged by this story, combined with the scandal leaked this weekend about Larry Summers it vindicates Obama’s strategy of isolating and then cutting loose those most determined to bring him down from within.

    If Summers has caused significant trouble, this story about Ross indicates that Obama had his priorities strait by making sure the adults were squarely in charge in foreign policy first and then worrying about those on the economic side.

  10. Who here said Obama was any good, Billy? Don’t forget that Bush french kissed that Saudi, too.

  11. KXB says:

    The new “Bill Pearlman” app for the iPhone is something – it manages to locate even the most mild criticism of Israel anywhere on the Web.

  12. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Bill you’re becoming hysterical:

    “Jew Ross” : your words

    “Baker’s Jewboys” : your words again.

    If Ross is a shill for a foreign country (demonstrable), then he has no place at the State Department.
    Your argument to the contrary is …?

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