Romney Breaks With Every GOP President, Pledges To Never Criticize Israel
Fresh off of telling the United Kingdom that it wasn’t ready for the Olympics during an tour of London, Romney unsubtly jabbed President Obama in Jerusalem this Sunday — as he often does on U.S. soil — for criticizing Israeli policy. Romney suggested that any public criticism of Israel in public would be off-limits in a Romney Presidency:
We cannot stand silent as those who seek to undermine Israel voice their criticisms. And we certainly should not join in that criticism. Diplomatic distance in our public between our nations emboldens Israel’s adversaries.
Romney regularly attacks While Romney is right to say that Israel is a close American ally that deserves our support, that doesn’t mean we can’t or shouldn’t ever publicly criticize Israel when we believe it to be in American (or Israeli) interests. Indeed, though Romney said the United States and Israel have “been the most natural of allies” since 1948, every Republican President since then has publicly criticized Israeli policies:
Setting aside the merits of the GOP’s historical criticism, it’s clear that past Republican presidents didn’t shirk from publicly finding fault with Israel when they felt it was necessary. Romney, then, is repudiating his party’s traditional approach to handling the US-Israeli relationship. This suggests either that previous Republican Presidents have “emboldened Israel’s enemies” or that Israel’s ties with America are strong enough to weather occasional public disagreement.
Though Romney has criticized Obama’s handling of relations between the two countries as hostile towards the Jewish state, Israeli officials beg to differ: the Obama Administration has stepped up security cooperation with Israel and put unprecedented pressure on Iran’s threatening nuclear program. It does make one wonder what Romney means when he says he would “do the opposite” of Obama on Israel.
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