Israeli parliament speaker condemns Dems policy on Jerusalem

 

The speaker of Israel’s parliament said that the Obama administration is ignorant of the realities of the Mideast. Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said "The fact that the Democrats removed a united Jerusalem as Israel's capital from their platform is more worrying than the argument over Iran. The change may have far-reaching consequences." He spoke in an interview with the Jerusalem Post on September 5.
 
Earlier this week, the Democratic National Committee issued its party platform, which speaks of Obama’s “unshakable commitment to Israel’s security” while also emphasizing that  “the president has made clear that there will be no lasting peace unless Israel’s security concerns are met” and that he “will continue to press Arab states to reach out to Israel.” Astute observers, however, noted that no mention was made of the status of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, an issue that has long been a bone of contention with Muslim countries.
 
Rivlin said that anyone who thinks that dividing Jerusalem will bring peace is mistaken.  "A united Jerusalem will help bring peace and stability," he stated.
The Israeli politician dismissed rumors of a rift between the United States and Israel, underlining that the two allies have an unambiguous understanding concerning Iran and its threat to annihilate Israel. Even so, Knesset Member Uri Ariel of the National Union party said that "finally, Obama's true face is revealed." Ariel contends that Obama has acted against the acceptance of Jerusalem as Israel’s national capital, saying "We must not worry. With or without Obama, Jerusalem will stay united under Israeli sovereignty forever."
 
The 70-page Democratic Party platform does note state that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, which is a change from previous years. This provided fodder for Republican Mitt Romney, perhaps angling for Jewish votes in Florida, “It is unfortunate that the entire Democratic Party has embraced President Obama’s shameful refusal to acknowledge that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital,” said Romney in a statement. Romney added, “Four years of President Obama’s repeated attempts to create distance between the United States and our cherished ally have led the Democratic Party to remove from their platform an unequivocal acknowledgment of a simple reality. As president, I will restore our relationship with Israel and stand shoulder to shoulder with our close ally.”
 
The GOP 2012 platform for 2012 says “We support Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state with secure, defensible borders; and we envision two democratic states—Israel with Jerusalem as its capital and Palestine—living in peace and security.” However, the platform omits details about Israel that it had in its 2008 platform, which said “We support Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel and moving the American embassy to that undivided capital of Israel.”


Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. He is also a freelance translator.

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