steve rosen keith weissman 248.88.
(photo credit: AP)
Steve Rosen, the former foreign policy chief for AIPAC who was charged with illegally disclosing classified information, said ulterior motives against "Jews, Israel and AIPAC" were behind the case against him.
In an interview which followed the dismissal of the case on May 1, Rosen compared himself to Alfred Dreyfus, who was unjustly tried for treason by France.
"Poor Dreyfus - he had no defense, he had no ability to fight. It was a secret trial. Our judge didn't agree to a secret trial. They tried, they tried to make it a Dreyfus trial, but he said, 'No. I'm not having a secret trial, we're going to have an open trial,'" Rosen described in an interview filmed only hours after the dismissal of the case and aired on Channel 10 Wednesday.
"It's been nearly five years since they came to my door, out of the blue, and turned my life upside-down," he continued. "It's been a horrible experience. It's over, but it will take awhile to rebuild."
Rosen allegedly received classified information concerning Iran and its backing for terrorism.
The case came to light following an FBI raid on AIPAC's offices in August 2004. Seven months later, in March 2005, he was fired by the lobby group, and in August of that year, he was indicted by the United States.
But Rosen maintained that his actions were not illegal.
"I was a person, you see, who worked with government officials every day for 23 years. That week, every week, I would meet with people in the State Department, the National Security Council, the Defense Department, other agencies in the government. They were my friends, they knew very well that I spoke to the embassy of Israel. It wasn't a surprise to them; they also spoke to the embassy," he said.
"But these people we're talking about viewed it as if we were a nest of spies, as if we were doing something against America," Rosen continued.
While he expressed relief that the saga was over, Rosen noted that "we didn't really have a trial, and in some ways it's too bad we didn't, because all the facts would've come out, and what it would've shown is that I did nothing wrong. Those that did something wrong were the people that brought this case; not just that they were incorrect, but that the attitude they had about Jews, Israel, AIPAC was completely false."
Unfortunately, he said, "a lot of that nonsense is still out there. You can go on the Internet and see hundreds of stories. They talk about spies, and they see the Mossad under every desk."
Rosen also expressed his belief that then-president George W. Bush was not at all responsible for the case, but that it was "a faction in the bureaucracy who had this belief."
"They have materials against other people at AIPAC," he continued. "They have material about people at other Jewish organizations. These guys are still there in the bureaucracy. They still believe that Jews are more loyal to Israel than to America. They still believe that there are Jewish spies under every bed. And they may find another opportunity to bring another case against someone, and that's the problem."