Perhaps less well known than his show biz bro Ari, who is agent for overweight bore, Michael Moore and Baron Sacha-Cohen - AKA Borak / Ali G.Illinois Congressman Rahm Emanuel ( who has show biz connections as he is often quoted as the model for is said to be the model for Josh Lyman in The West Wing - also was a ballet dancer and nearly star of Joffrey Ballet) is a member of the so-called New Democrat Coalition (NDC).
The NDC is a self selecting group of group of (far ?) center-right pro-business Congressional Democrats who are affiliated with the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) . This group of reformers (?) is dedicated to moving the Democratic Party away from its more liberal and progressive base ("The DLC is an idea(s) center, catalyst, and national voice for a reform movement that is reshaping American politics by moving it beyond the old left-right debate").
With just 58 members of the 236 Democrats in the current House of Representatives, the NDC has worked closely "across the aisle" ,with its Republican colleagues in pushing through and passing such legislation as those providing President Bush with "fast-track" trade authority in order to bypass efforts by labor, environmentalists and other public interest groups to promote fairer trade policy.("We believe that economic growth generated in the private sector is the prerequisite for opportunity, and that government's role is to promote growth and to equip Americans with the tools they need to prosper in the New Economy")
Rahm Emanuel began his political career as a senior adviser and chief fundraiser for the successful 1989 Chicago mayoral campaign of Richard M. Daley. In this they were successful in challenging the corrupt political machine of his father, Richard J. Daley and seized City Hall from their control.
Emanuel was later to become a senior adviser to President Bill Clinton at the White House from 1993 to 1998, first as Assistant to the President for Political Affairs and later as Senior Advisor to the President for Policy and Strategy.
Emanuel is credited with playing a (the?) major role in shifting the Clinton administration's foreign and domestic policy agenda to the right (ie Tomahawking Kabul).
Emanuel is credited with being the single most important official involved in pushing through the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the bill ending Aid for Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), and Clinton's crime bill, among other legislation.
Raham left in 1998, Emanuel worked as an investment banker in Chicago picking up US$18 Mn as a partner when Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein when they sold out ( he worked there from 1999 to 2002) - which is why Edward Moskal of the Polish American Congress and backer of his opponent in 2003 ,Nancy Kaszak called him a "millionaire carpetbagger.
Rahm has headed up the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee since 2004. This has enabled him to disburse funds in promoting pro-war and pro-business center-right candidates against anti-war and pro-labor candidates in the primaries, pouring millions of dollars of donations from Democrats across the country into the campaigns of his favored conservative minions to defeat more progressive challengers. (See here for details) (also here)The sort of people who sign up to The Hyde Park Declaration: A Statement of Principles and a Policy Agenda for the 21st Century.
This was claimed to be a successor to The New Orleans Declaration. That statement of principles that was said to outline the guiding philosophy of Clinton's 1992 run for the presidency and later that of his presidential administration. The New Orleans Declaration's call for a citizen-government relationship based on the values of opportunity, responsibility, and community subsequently became the main organizing principle (?) of Third Way (bollocks) political movements in Britain and around the world.
Emanuel was a major and enthusiastic supporter of the Iraq War resolution that authorized the invasion of Iraq - he is of course a proponent of More Wars for the Jews persusaion and a leading light in AIPAC.
Rahamn was only one of nine Democratic members of Congress from Illinois who backed granting Bush this unprecedented authority to invade a country on the far side of the world that was no threat to the United States at the time - Obama notably being one of the non placets .
Many were taken aback when aksed by the late lamented Tim Russert on "Meet the Press" whether he would have voted to authorize the invasion "knowing that there are no weapons of mass destruction," Emanuel answered that he indeed would have done so, effectively acknowledging that his support for the war was not about national security, but about oil and empire. (Read Tim R wrong footing Rahm about social security funding black hole looming here)
So keen was he on attacking Iraq he participated in the First Gulf War During the first Gulf War, he did a stint as a civilian volunteer with the Israel Defense Forces, rust-proofing brakes on a base in northern Israel.
Not surprisingly, he has also voted with the Republicans in support of unconditional funding to continue the Iraq War and has consistently opposed efforts by other Democrats to set a timetable for the withdrawal of U.S. occupation forces from that country and related Congressional efforts to end the war. So don't expect a "raw down " real soon now, whatever Mr President says.
At a time of record budget deficits, Emanuel has been a passionate supporter of increased spending for the Pentagon and has resisted efforts by fellow Democrats to trim excesses in the Bush administration's bloated military budget (see previous posts about Obama's commitment to increase the size of both the militart and the military budget)eg Wednesday, October 29, 2008 Barack Obama is a Neocon in Disguise (and only thinly disguised) .
Rahman has repeatedly voted against amendments to cut funding for Bush's lunatic European destabilizing "missile defense" and even voted against an amendment to identify unnecessary Pentagon spending by examining the need, relevance and cost of Cold War weapons systems designed to fight the former Soviet Union.
Naturally as a mouthpiece for AIPAC he is a major, major hawk regarding Iran. Emanuel has also voted against Democratic efforts to prevent the Bush administration from launching military action against that country and has entusiastically joined the administration in exaggerated claims about Iran's alleged nuclear threat. He is not opposed to nuclear proliferation if it involves U.S. allies, however. Emanuel has consistently voted against a series of Democratic amendments that would have strengthened safeguards in the Bush administration's nuclear cooperation agreement with India to prevent U.S. assistance from supporting India's nuclear weapons program.
Emanuel is also a prominent hawk regarding Israel, attacking the Bush administration from the right for criticizing Israel's assassination policies and other human rights abuses. He was also a prominent supporter of Israel's 2006 attacks on Lebanon, even challenging the credibility of Amnesty International and other human rights groups that reported Israeli violations of international humanitarian law.
The war on Iraq has so far benefited Israel by laying waste a country seen to be one of its major adversaries. Emanuel's commitment to Israel and his Congressional service to it are not in doubt. For example he attacked U.S. puppet Prime Minister of Iraq, Nouri al Maliki, because Maliki had labeled Israel's attack on Lebanon as an act of "aggression." Emanuel called on Maliki to cancel his address to Congress; and he was joined by his close friend and DSCC counterpart, Sen. Chuck Schumer, who asked; "Which side is he (Maliki) on when it comes to the war on terror?"
Emanuel's father had emigrated from Israel in the 1950s, where he had been a member of the terrorist group Irgun (see the Feith family for their republican alter ego), which had been responsible for a series of terrorist attacks against Palestinian and British civilians in mandatory Palestine during the 1940s. Emanuel himself served in a civilian capacity as a volunteer for the Israeli army in the early 1990s (se above for service in Gulf war).
Obama's selection of Emanuel is firm, determined slap in the face of the progressive anti-war elements of the Democratic party to whom Obama owes his election, particularly following his selection of Sen. Joe Biden as vice president.
Obama as president is a victim of a Zionist Foreign Policy agenda, which spills over onto isolationism and protection for US farms and factories. The rapid (and no doubt well prepared) appointment of Emanuel is illustrative of the need for the progressive base to deflect the DLC vision .... it is doubtful that thr poviders of the 1/2 billion iof funds to secure Obamas puppet status as Commander in Chief will be soon or ealsiy overthrown.
You can also read hard boiled Rahman The Plan: Big Ideas for America by Rahm Emanuel , Bruce Reed Amazon August 15, 2006 ..."Finally we must protect our homeland and civil liberties by creating a new domestic counterterrorism force like Britain's MI5. (A new domestic spying operation is an obvious threat to our civil liberties; MI5 holds secret files on one in 160 adults in Britain along with files on 53,000 organizations.) "
Change ? What change ?