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Anatol LievenThe most controversial part of the book is Walt's analysis of the role of national lobbies in the United States, particularly the Israeli lobby. Walt does not condemn this lobby for acting in Israel's interest. Lobbies exist to influence policy. But he does bring out just how damaging the results of Israeli influence have been, both in terms of direct harm to American interests and in creating Muslim perceptions of American bias, hostility and hypocrisy. ''It is one thing to pay a price for taking steps that are clearly in the U.S. national interest,'' he writes, ''but it is quite another matter to place U.S. security at risk doing something primarily on behalf of some other country.'' For raising this vital issue, on which so many others are silent, Walt deserves special thanks.
— The New York Times