A group of Republican Jews called this week on Barack Obama to sack retired General Merrill A. "Tony" McPeak for what it considers anti-Israel views and comments.
The Republican Jewish Coalition cited past interviews in which McPeak blamed lack of progress on a Middle East peace deal on the political influence of US Jews, and pointed to McPeak's past criticism of Israel for not returning to pre-1967 war borders.
"Senator Obama continues to surround himself with advisors holding troubling and disturbing anti-Israel bias. General McPeak's views are alarming," coalition executive director Matt Brooks said in a statement Tuesday. "...Rather than putting the blame where it belongs -- on the Palestinian leadership and their continued reliance on terror, General McPeak finds it more convenient to blame American Jewry and their perceived influence."
Brooks said McPeak's continued presence in Obama's inner circle raises questions about the Illinois senator's judgment on Middle East issues. The group, which is supporting presumptive Republican nominee John McCain, has hosted GOP presidential hopefuls.
Hillary Clinton's campaign on Tuesday also pointed to McPeak's views, sending reporters an article predicting that McPeak would be forced out.
McPeak, a defense policy adviser and national campaign co-chairman for Obama, has vouched for his readiness to be commander-in-chief and has been in the news recently for accusing former president Bill Clinton of McCarthyism for some of his remarks.
Obama's campaign had no immediate comment.