ADL's Foxman: With Mideast in Turmoil, US Should Embrace Israel

Saturday, 14 Jun 2014 10:27 AM

By Melissa Clyne

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As Middle East instability mounts with the uprising of the jihadist group ISIS — the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria — democracies should band together and view Israel as a more significant ally, but Anti-Defamation League President Abe Foxman tells Newsmax TV that he has yet to see that happen.

"I don't see that type of appreciation yet," Foxman said Friday on "America's Forum."

"Even though the relationship on the intelligence and military level, we are told, is very, very significant, I hope that it will spill over into the political level," Foxman said. "America needs friends and allies … who are ready to stand up, who have the courage to stand up against terrorism, against religious militarism, extremism."

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Foxman weighed in on reaction by both the United States and Israel concerning the recent formation of the Palestinian Authority government, which unites the more moderate Fatah faction with Hamas, a group regarded as terrorists by the U.S. government.

The Obama administration has agreed to "recognize and fund" the new government, The Washington Post reported, a position that angered both Israelis and many Americans.

"Mistakes are being made on both sides of the Mediterranean," according to Foxman. "Both bodies prejudged and now we're going to have to wait and see."

The United States reacted impulsively, he said, suggesting that President Obama should have taken a wait-and-see approach with specific conditions for the new government to be recognized "as a significant element of peace."

"If in fact this new combination are not terrorists — we believe they are — let them prove themselves," Foxman said. "It was a mistake to jump that quickly, to say 'starting with tomorrow we're going to work with you.'"

Israel should adopt a similar position, Foxman said, offering "a period of time" for the new Palestinian Authority to show good faith.

"Don't engage tomorrow, but don't also begin punishing them or disengaging. Say to them, 'all right, we'll watch for the next three months. You know what the conditions are for negotiations, you know what the negotiations are to move forward on peace. If you can establish them, if you can maintain security, continue to work with security, then maybe we can move forward.'"

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