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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tea party is pro-Israel

Sammy Levine writes about a session at the recent AIPAC convention which attempted to prove that the Tea Party is pro-Israel.
The three discussed the fear of some, including a UCLA professor present at another session, that the tea party movement’s focus on dramatically reducing the federal budget might threaten the three billion dollars per year America gives to Israel. This is a legitimate concern to anyone who is not familiar with the tea party movement. Though the tea party movement is determined to reduce the budget, it is conservative enough in political ideology to believe in a robust national defense. According to [Gary] Bauer, Ron and Rand Paul are outliers who do not represent the mainstream of the tea party movement on foreign affairs. As it happens, when Rand Paul made public his wish to cut off all of American foreign aid, including to Israel, Bauer mobilized twenty thousand emails asking for reconsideration. And Bauer declared that in addition to current levels of aid, “we should take money we’re giving to the Palestinians, and give it to Israel” too, in response to the new unity agreement between Hamas and Fatah.

Dick Armey told the audience he believes America’s investment in Israel is in our vital national security interest because both countries are on the front lines in the war against radical Islam. The tea party movement supports Israel, he said, because it is an “island of freedom” in a sea of despotism. Plus, Americans and Israelis share the same fundamental values: liberty, democracy, and justice.

There is, Armey continued, an even more fundamental reason as to why the tea party — like conservatives in general — is so forthright in its support of Israel: the overwhelming majority of new tea party members in Congress are evangelical Christians. And, as anyone who is familiar with the Old Testament knows, God instructs the Israelites that “I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curses thee.” Christians support Israel, said Armey, because “God gave this land [of Israel] to Abraham and the Jews.” For Armey, it doesn’t go too far to say that the tea party movement believes supporting Israel is a moral imperative, a command from God.
Read the whole thing.

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