DEAN BLAMES ROVE FOR ONLINE ATTACKS
Matthew E. Berger, Global Jewish News, 12/15/03
WASHINGTON - Howard Dean is smarting from e-mails that distort his views on
the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and he has suggested that President
Bush's right-hand man is behind the e-mail campaign. Speaking Monday to the
Pacific Council on International Policy, a leadership forum in Los Angeles,
Dean said he believed Karl Rove, the White House's senior political
adviser, is behind an e-mail campaign that has flooded inboxes of American
Jews across the country.
The White House referred calls about Rove's alleged involvement in the
e-mail campaign to the Bush/Cheney re-election campaign. Scott Stanzel, a
campaign spokesman, said the campaign does not respond to comments by the
The message in the e-mails is that Dean wants an "even-handed" policy
toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Many Jews consider that a way of
saying that the United States should be less supportive of Israel.
"I've discovered that 'even-handedly' is a code word to certain people who
think that is being unfair, and I don't want to ever repeat that word
again," Dean said after his speech, in which he outlined his vision for
foreign affairs and national security. "It is now making its way around the
Internet in an unsigned piece of literature, undoubtedly from one of my
worthy opponents, perhaps Karl Rove."
The campaign later said Dean made the comments in a light-hearted exchange
with a questioner, who wanted to know how he would deal more even-handedly
with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Matthew Dorf, Dean's liaison to the Jewish community, noted that the
audience broke into laughter after Dean said it. However, Dorf reiterated
Dean's comment that the e-mails are politically motivated.
"It's clearly the work of political opponents and not true friends of
Israel," he said.