Kahanism and American Politics: The Democratic Party's Decades-Long Courtship of Racist Fanatics
Institute for Palestine Studies
Publication Year: 
Number of Pages: 

American Foreign Policy on Israel and Palestine lurched to the far right during Donald Trump’s term as US president. Benjamin Netanyahu took advantage of Trump’s unmitigated support for Israel to oversee the installation of more illegal settlement infrastructure in occupied Palestine than had been built in the previous quarter century. Sadly, replacing the Trump administration with a Democratic one has hardly remedied the damage his policies wrought; if anything, the situation is more dire for Palestinians. For over half a century, followers of the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, colloquially called Kahanists – the most racist and most murderous Jewish political movement of modern times – have cultivated an alarming level of influence on both sides of the aisle. This installment of Current Issues in Depth by investigative journalist David Sheen uncovers how for decades, ostensibly liberal lawmakers at the highest levels of the Democratic Party have actively courted and embraced Kahanists, pandering to those who have sabotaged the struggle for Palestinian rights and enthusiastically promoted their ethnic cleansing.


David Sheen is a Haifa-based freelance investigative journalist who has reported for dozens of local, regional, and international news outlets. His website is davidsheen.com.