Tags: Senators | Letter | Obama | Israel

Two-Thirds of Senators Urge Obama to Stand with Israel

Tuesday, 19 Mar 2013 11:48 PM

By Matthew Auerbach

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More than three-quarters of the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate has signed a letter strongly advising President Obama to make clear his unwavering support of Israel ahead of the president’s first visit to that country as commander-in-chief, The Hill reports.

Seventy-seven senators signed the letter, spearheaded by the America Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), which asks the president to — in no uncertain terms — warn Palestinians against using their new status as a United Nations observer state to take action against Israel.

It specifies that Obama should make clear to Palestinians that their relationship with the U.S. would be jeopardized if they seek action against Israel in the International Criminal Court.

“It is important to re-emphasize that the United States will not tolerate efforts to isolate or delegitimize Israel,” states the letter, led by Sens. Ben Cardin, D-Md., and Susan Collins, R-Maine.

“During your first term, you and your administration actively stood by Israel at the U.N. and other agencies to try to block such efforts,” the letter continues.

“It is critical that you now make clear that our relationship with Palestinians will be jeopardized by seeking action against Israel at the International Criminal Court.”

The letter also calls on Obama to drive home America's commitment to Israel's security, notably through funding for the Iron Dome missile defense system.

Meanwhile, a new poll finds that 36 percent of 500 Israelis surveyed believe that Obama is more pro-Palestinian than pro-Israel, The Jerusalem Post reports, according to The Washington Times.

Only 26 percent said Obama was more pro-Israel than pro-Palestinian.

With respect to the possibility that Obama could help broker a peace treaty between Israel and the Palestinians, 80 percent of the respondents doubted that such a possibility would happen.

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