Israel and America are united by a shared set of values. Throughout both their histories, Israelis and Americans alike have chosen to value freedom, liberty, and democracy, and have created societies of religious tolerance and peaceful coexistence. Moreover, Americans admire Israel for staying true to its democratic principles of human rights and tolerance in the face of unrelenting terrorism. We also admire Israel’s courage in its ongoing struggle to defeat terrorism despite the many threats that it confronts on a daily basis. In addition, our partnership is continually reinforced by our extensive cooperation in matters relating to research & development, trade, intelligence gathering, and defense.
With Israel’s sworn terrorist enemies consolidating power along the Jewish state’s borders and across the Middle East, it is urgent that the United States stands firmly by Israel in its struggle to live in peace and security.
Israel is ground zero of the struggle in the Middle East between radicalism and moderation in the Middle East.
Ceding ground on Israel to our mutual and ideological enemies would only empower those who are actively working against our interests in the region, not only in Israel but in Lebanon, Iraq and elsewhere. Accordingly, it is incumbent upon the Unites States to support Israel in its right to self-defense both in diplomatic stance and in foreign assistance.
Spearheading the radical forces of instability in the region is Iran. The Islamic Republic, defiantly pushing to become a nuclear power, represents the single greatest threat to Israel’s security.
Dealing with Iran, we must keep all measures on the table while leveraging our economic power to convince it that continuation of its nuclear weapons program is not in Tehran’s best interests.
We need to work tirelessly with our allies around the world to prevent investment in companies tied to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, particularly in the oil sector.
Peace in the Middle East
As we lean on our European and Arab allies to shore up a united front in our struggles with Iraq and Iran, we will be urged to increase pressure on Israel to make difficult concessions to the Palestinians.
As long as the Palestinians do not implement their commitments under stage 1 of the Road Map (fighting terrorism and ending anti-Israel incitement), Israel should not be forced to make painful concessions that will hinder its ability to defend its citizenry.
The Palestinians responded to Israel’s August 2005 pullout from Gaza, a painful sacrifice meant to foster good will, by using the vacated territory to launch several hundred rockets into Southern Israel. A weak Fatah proved unwilling or unable to prevent rocket launchings from the vacated areas, and Hamas last year wrested control of Gaza by force.
We must learn from these lessons. The Fatah government in the West Bank must be strengthened and it must demonstrably show Israel that it can enforce order – and any potential peace deal – over its own people.
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