Rosen, a former senior lobbyist with the American Israel Public Affairs
Committee, said Arab countries have used Europe to pressure Washington to
weaken the U.S. relationship with Israel. He said successive U.S.
administrations have regarded Europe as vital for the world economy, NATO as
well as American dominance in the Middle East.
"Europe is not hostile to Israel on every issue, and not every European
intervention with U.S. officials is meant to move U.S. policy in the Arab
direction," the report, published in the Middle East Quarterly," said. "But,
on the whole, the Arab road to Washington runs through Paris, London, and
Rosen said the Europeans have been far more effective than the
Arab-American lobby. The report also played down the so-called "petrodollar
lobby," led by Saudi Arabia, in reducing U.S. policy toward Israel.
"The strongest external force pressuring the U.S. government to distance
itself from Israel is not the Arab-American organizations, the Arab
embassies, the oil companies, or the petrodollar lobby," the report said.
"Rather, it is the Europeans, especially the British, French, and Germans,
that are the most influential Arab lobby to the U.S. government. The Arabs
consider Europe to be the soft underbelly of the U.S. alliance with Israel
and the best way to drive a wedge between the two historic allies."
Rosen said Britain, France and Germany wield the greatest influence over
Washington's foreign policy establishment. They said the leaders of the
three EU states, which have threatened to embark on an independent policy,
have easier access to the president and his senior aides than either Arabs
The EU states were said to have been pressing Washington to engage with
Hamas and Hizbullah, force Israeli concessions to the PA and oppose Jewish
construction in the West Bank and most of Jerusalem. The report said the EU
has been working intensively behind the scenes to pressure Israel to
establish a Palestinian state in the West Bank.
"One of the things the Europeans want from Washington is intensified
pressure on Jerusalem to make concessions in peace negotiations, in order to
get an agreement with the Palestinians," the report said. "Europeans like
the idea of deadlines, international conferences, verbal and economic
pressure on Israel, and other devices, to dislodge the Israeli government
from what they tend to see as its 'intransigence.'"
In 1991, the report said, then-British Prime Minister John Major
scuttled an Israeli-U.S. deal that would have enabled $10 billion worth of
American loan guarantees to the Jewish state. Major was said to have changed
the mind of President George Bush, who then asked Congress to delay the loan
"Assistant secretaries, office directors, and senior advisers give
special weight to the opinions of their French, German, and British
counterparts and spend more time with them than they do with the Arabs," the
report said. "These Europeans also have easy access to members of Congress
and their senior staffs."