Monday, May 23, 2011

Israel PM at AIPAC: 'Support for Israel unites America.'

In Washington, Netanyahu addresses American Israel Public Affairs Committee on second day of their annual conference; remarks come one day after President Barack Obama clarifies remarks on 1967 borders at same podium.

Israel is with America as much as America is with Israel, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said on the second day of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's annual conference in Washington on Monday.

Netanyahu opened his speech by offering his condolences on the many American deaths following a tornado in Joplin, Miss. "America, we're with you, on this day, and everyday," the prime minister told the AIPAC conference. "Israel is America's indispensible ally."

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Netanyahu spoke admirably of the words of Abraham Lincoln and pointed out the vast similarities between American and Israeli culture, noting that both are cultures of learning and ideas. Lincoln's writings resonate, he said, because "They're rooted in ideas, first championed by our people - the Jewish people." This is the reason, Netanyahu said, that Jerusalem must remain undivided.

"Israel is the cradle of our civilization, and the modern state of Israel was founded precisely on these eternal values," he said, adding that this civilization was born and fostered in "our eternal capital: the united city of Jerusalem." This remark was met by resounding applause.

"Support for Israel does not divide America, it unites America," he said.

Netanyahu acknowledged the difficult economic times faced in the United States, and thanked the government for their continued economic support.
"I want to thank the President and Congress for providing Israel with vital assistance so that Israel can defend itself by itself," he said.

Netanyahu's address came a day after US President Barack Obama addressed AIPAC,
where he defended his formulation for an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal and made clarifications that put his comments more in line with Israeli positions. Obama reiterated statements from his Middle East speech on Thursday that a Palestinian state should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed land swaps, which had sparked outrage from many in the pro-Israel community.

Read more at JPost

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