President Obama told a Jewish audience today that his commitment to Israel’s safety is “unshakeable,” and that no presidential administration has done more to protect Israel from its enemies.”Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise,” Obama told the General Assembly of the Union for Reform Judaism. “It is a fact.”
Obama, under criticism from Republicans over Israel policy, reassured a friendly audience that “we are determined to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.” He also told the Jewish group, “rest assured, we will take no options off the table.”
As our colleague Aamer Madhani wrote earlier, Republicans are hoping to pick off some of Obama’s Jewish support in next year’s presidential election, enough “to make a difference in several swing states.”
Some of the Republican presidential candidates have accused Obama of practicing “appeasement” when it comes to policies regarding Israel and its Arab neighbors in the Middle East.
In his speech to the Union for Reform Judaism, Obama said he remains committed to the peace process between the Israelis and Palestinians, but not at the expense of Israel’s security.
His administration has worked hard to prevent international forums to “de-legitimize” Israel, Obama said, whether it’s the United Nations or an environmental conference in South Africa.
“That’s what friends and allies do for each other,” Obama said. “So don’t let anybody else tell you a different story … We have been there and we will continue to be there.”
(content.usatoday.com / 16.12.2011)