“So we want the Jewish community to go face to face in this small environment, 50, 30, 40 people, and say this is what’s important to us. We want to make sure that if we give you money that you’re going to enforce the Iran deal. That way, when they need something from him or her, like the Iran deal, they can quickly mobilize and say look we’ll give you 30 grand. They actually impact,” Ochs tells the reporter.
Such a claim is not so different from what Omar was describing, and for which she was roundly condemned. In the wake of Omar’s tweets, the Washington Post, for instance, reported: “The American Jewish Committee demanded an apology, calling her suggestion that AIPAC is paying American politicians for their support ‘demonstrably false and stunningly anti-Semitic.’” (On Monday, Omar apologized for her tweets but insisted that AIPAC and other lobbyist groups are harmful to U.S. politics.)
In the censored documentary, Ochs went on to describe a fundraiser hosted by Jeff Talpins, a hedge fund giant, as similar, as well. “In New York, with Jeff Talpins, we don’t ask a goddamn thing about the fucking Palestinians. You know why? Cuz it’s a tiny issue. It’s a small, insignificant issue. The big issue is Iran. We want everything focused on Iran,” Ochs says. “What happens is Jeff meets with the congressman in the back room, tells them exactly what his goals are — and by the way, Jeff Talpins is worth $250 million — basically they hand him an envelope with 20 credit cards, and say, You can swipe each of these credit cards for a thousand dollars each.”
Ochs explains that the club in New York required a minimum pledge of $10,000 to join and participate in such events. “It’s a minimum commitment. Some people give a lot more than that.”
AIPAC, on its own website, recruits members to join its “Congressional Club,” and commit to give at least $5,000 per election cycle.
Eric Gallagher, a top official at AIPAC from 2010 to 2015, tells the Al Jazeera reporter that AIPAC gets results. “Getting $38 billion in security aid to Israel matters, which is what AIPAC just did,” he notes at one secretly recorded lunch. “Everything AIPAC does is focused on influencing Congress.”
The film, called “The Lobby,” was produced by Al Jazeera’s investigative unit, and features hidden-camera footage obtained by the reporter, who posed as a Jewish pro-Israel activist from Britain who wanted to volunteer with The Israel Project.https://archive.fo/9GoCNhttps://theintercept.com/2019/02/11/ilhan-omar-israel-lobby-documentary/