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News and views on Israel, Zionism and the war on terrorism.

February 15, 2003

Grassroots Support For Israel - And Against "Road Map

Reaching out in friendship. Would there were many more nations that cared

The U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed a resolution this week congratulating Israel on its "free and fair elections" of last month. Virginia Congressman Eric Cantor, the bill's original sponsor, said, "I congratulate our only true democratic ally in the Middle East - Israel - a country that stands with the United States on the key principles of human rights, freedom, peace and democracy; a country like no other in its region." Speaking on behalf of the bill, which passed by a 411-2 vote, Cantor said,
"Israel is currently fighting a war on terrorism against people dedicated to hate and destruction; dedicated to ending freedom and democracy; dedicated to suppressing the basic rights of life and liberty. For the past two and a half years, Israel has faced an unrelenting campaign of violence and terror against her citizens. Yet, during all of this unrest and violence, the Israeli people engaged in the most basic and most important feature of democracy: They held free, open and, competitive elections -an act in stark contrast to their enemies."

Other U.S. support for a secure Israel was expressed this week by six prominent Christian leaders at a press briefing at the National Religious Broadcasters Convention this week in Nashville. The briefing, given by Prime Minister Sharon's spokesman Raanan Gissin, was sponsored by the National Unity Coalition for Israel (NUC), an alliance of more than 200 Jewish and Christian organizations representing more than 40 million Americans. The NUC announced afterwards that contrary to public perception conveyed by the State Department and the media, "it is apparent that the vast majority of informed Americans oppose the Quartet Road Map calling for Palestinian statehood." Opposition to the plan was expressed as based on various perspectives, including, religious, legal, historical, military defense, security and terrorism issues.