J Street and US-Israel Relations

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Jeremy Ben-Ami, executive director of J Street, works the phones at the lobbying group's office in Washington, on Thursday, May 21, 2009. (AP)
Jeremy Ben-Ami, executive director of J Street, in Washington, on Thursday, May 21, 2009. (AP)

For years, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, AIPAC, has been the big player in Israel lobbying in Washington. Still is, dwarfing all others in its field.
But there’s a new player in town. It’s called J Street. It's much smaller. More liberal. And it's trying to open up the American debate on the Middle East and represent, it says, more American Jews' actual views. To be "pro-Israel," it says, and "pro-peace."
Small as J Street is, it may matter right now. This hour, On Point: The new Israel lobby. A conversation with J Street founder Jeremy Ben-Ami.
You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.Guests:

Joining us from Seattle is Jeremy Ben-Ami, founder and executive director of J Street, a year-old, Washington-based lobbying organization that describes itself as "the political arm of the pro-Israel, pro-peace movement." He served as President Bill Clinton’s deputy domestic policy adviser and as policy director on Howard Dean’s presidential campaign.

From New York, we're joined by Marty Peretz, editor in chief of The New Republic. His blog at is The Spine.

More links:

James Traub, in a piece titled "The New Israel Lobby," wrote about Jeremy Ben-Ami and J Street in last Sunday's New York Times Magazine.

This program aired on September 16, 2009.


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