Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Welcoming Remarks

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Welcoming Remarks

Article excerpt

Dale Sprusansky: Well, good morning, everyone. My name is Dale Sprusansky. I'm editor of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. And, on behalf of the Washington Report and the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy, I would like to welcome you to today's Israel Lobby and American Policy Conference.

Now in its sixth year, a core goal of this conference is to advance the notion that it's healthy and normal to challenge special interest groups and that no group, including the Israel lobby, ought to be exempt from critique. And, of course, challenging powerful lobbies helps promote transparent governance, accountability, and policies that promote human rights and the common good rather than special interests.

And while this conference will assess the history of the Israel lobby and some of its latest agenda items, it will also highlight the work of grassroots activists who have worked diligently and often under the radar to challenge the lobby in productive, effective and tangible ways. We hope their words and example inspire our audience to get involved in local and national organizations that are committed to upholding the principles of truth, justice and human dignity.

And so before we begin today's program, just some information for our audience here. In the bags that were given to you at the reception desk, there are question cards and pens. You can use those to write questions as they come to you as our speakers are presenting. Ushers will be circulating to collect those question cards. …

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