Home > Diplomacy, Hasbara > Haim Saban gives unusually blunt assessment of Obama administration to Israeli TV

Haim Saban gives unusually blunt assessment of Obama administration to Israeli TV

Israeli-American TV magnate and Democratic mega donor Haim Saban (see Connie Bruck’s recent New Yorker profile here) is unhappy with the Obama administration Israeli policies. Usually restrained, in an interview for Israeli Channel Ten TV News broadcast Thursday (May 13 2010), Saban let his guard down for a moment:

Saban: I had the chance to talk to Hillary about a lot of things including this and I also talked to Rahm Emanuel and Rahm Emanuel for instance told me ‘I am more hawkish than 50 percent of the people in Israel.’ I don’t know where he got that survey but that is what he said. They are not anti-Israelis. Look, they are from the left. The left, left of which there is not much space to the wall, I agree, and this is their ideology.

——

Interview with Haim Saban

Channel Ten TV News, May 13 2010 20:00

Yaacov Eilon (host): The Israeli-American businessman Haim Saban is disappointed by President Obama. Until now he only hinted to that but in a conversation with our correspondent Gil Tamari he opened up a little. Gil, over to you in Los Angeles.

Gil Tamari: Billionaire Haim Saban is the biggest donor to the Democratic Party in the U.S. And even though he donates millions to them he has a lot of resentment towards the Obama administration. In a special interview with us in Los Angeles he calls the state of relations “a disaster.” He calls the Obama administration radical leftists and tells me of tough talks he’s had with Hillary Clinton and Rahm Emanuel.

Tamari: Do you sleep well at night with the Obama administration’s policy?

Saban: First of all that is an understatement. Because I have been living here in the U.S. for nearly 25 years I have become a little American so I don’t say everything like I used to.

Tamari: In a special interview with us a few hours ago here in L.A., Saban, the biggest donor to the Democratic Party, minces no words.

Saban: The situation is a disaster [the word used was the Arabic Harta, which has a coarser connotation], if you want me to put it in simple words.

Tamari: He compares the relations with Obama to the difficult years Israel had with George  Bush Sr.

Saban: We had the days with Bush Sr., with Shamir. We got over it and moved on and we had 16 great years with Clinton and then with Bush, and this too shall pass. Look, I don’t think Obama is anti-Israeli, like people think he is. His goal is to achieve peace, just like our goal is to achieve peace. The way he wants to do it may not be the way some people in Israel would like it, and especially the members of the right.

Tamari: Saban, who donated millions to the Clintons as well, is not at all happy with what he sees. Did you have a chance to talk about this with Hillary?

Saban: I had the chance to talk to Hillary about a lot of things including this and I also talked to Rahm Emanuel and Rahm Emanuel for instance told me ‘I am more hawkish than 50 percent of the people in Israel.’ I don’t know where he got that survey but that is what he said. They are not anti-Israelis. Look, they are from the left. The left, left of which there is not much space to the wall, I agree, and this is their ideology.

Tamari: At this ball tonight, organized by the Israeli leadership organization, an organization that turned the Israelis here from mere émigrés to a political force working for Israel, people sang and danced. But this big party was overshadowed by the state of relations between Israel and the administration. Gil Tamari, Ch. 10 News, LA.

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Categories: Diplomacy, Hasbara
  1. J. Victor Cardoo
    May 14, 2010 at 23:54

    Very interesting interview with a prominent Israeli/American. What shatters me as a very generous donor of the Dem. party and has direct access to those in government to share his views and concerns is that they won´t listen to him! The Dems. have got the wrong ideology for Israel and peace process. It is very dangerous, destructive and humiliating. I would suggest he suspends his donations as a “protest” to their policies. There are many desperate social needs in Israel with a large number of elderly Jewish immigrants (mainly from Russia) almost living in poverty. He could be a tremendous help to them. I´m not a Jew but I just love Israel. God bless and protect Israel! Victor (Brazil)

  2. Al Redwood
    May 16, 2010 at 06:42

    Saban is another mugged media nabob who poured his good dollars to the crackpots of American politics, thinking he could maintain his courtesan position. As an L.A resident I d rather see him put the money in countering the relentless offensive against Israel and the Jews in our state than piss his hard earned shekels on a poser like Mme. Clinton, who makes Obama look like an amateur revolutionary. They all operate from the same cook-book, The Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, which was a 100 pages thesis she wrote as her final paper in College, before she became a full time Marxist enabler in Yale. It is sad to see how hard the Jews have to work to become so successful only to throw their resources on half baked, shrill Democrats in name only. I am ready to bet that he did not learn the lesson yet and when the next elections come he will play it both ways.

  1. May 15, 2010 at 00:31
  2. May 15, 2010 at 07:20
  3. May 15, 2010 at 20:53
  4. May 15, 2010 at 22:20

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