Occupied Thoughts: Former Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes with Peter Beinart

A conversation between Peter Beinart and Ben Rhodes discussing the realities of lobbying efforts by Israeli and Palestinian groups.

By Foundation for Middle East Peace | Feb 10, 2021

Peter Beinart speaks to Ben Rhodes, Deputy National Security Advisor from 2009-2017, about working on Israel, Palestine, and Iran in the Obama Administration. Rhodes draws insights from interactions with different lobby groups, presidential travel to Israel and a memorable meeting with young Palestinians in Ramallah, and talks about navigating the assumption by Israel advocates that Blackness translates into sympathy for Palestinians living under oppression. Beinart and Rhodes end the conversation with a discussion of the Biden administration and Democratic foreign policy advisors’ approaches to the IHRA definition of antisemitism and Democrats’ longstanding commitment to the concept of the two state solution. Ben Rhodes’s new book, After the Fall: Being American in the World We’ve Made, will be out in June 2021.

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