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

April 19, 2003

Calling on US citizens

Today, April 19, 2003, Ha’Aretz ran the following piece under the heading, ”Senators, Congressmen put pro-Israel stance in writing”:

For the past two weeks, a letter initiated by supporters of Israel and explicitly calling on the administration not to make demands of Israel in the framework of the road map has been doing the rounds among members of both houses of Congress.

The letter, already bearing the signatures of 75 senators and 250 members of the House of Representatives, will be sent to President George W. Bush in the coming weeks, as soon as the administration's intentions vis-a-vis the peace plan are made clear.

Such letters have no binding validity...

While the letter has been making its rounds, a more official process has also been kicked off: Last week, Senator Richard Lugar (Republican from Indiana) added an amendment to the State Department Authorization Bill that would anchor in legislation demands of the Palestinians prior to U.S. recognition of an independent Palestinian state.

The amendment includes the following demands: A promise that the Palestinian Authority will not be tainted by terror; a call for the Palestinians to demonstrate an ongoing and active commitment to the war against terror; dismantling of the terrorist infrastructure; collection of illegal arms; and the establishment of a security mechanism that will cooperate with the Israeli defense establishment.

Although Lugar's move is a legislative step, it, too, has no practical significance...

An additional stage in the action on Capitol Hill against the road map could come in the next few weeks, in the framework of direct legislation that will stipulate non-recognition of an independent Palestinian state without it first meeting a series of conditions or, alternatively, legislation that will be tied to the Budget Bill and hence be of a more binding nature.
The US Congress is one of the very few institutions of significance that supports Israel. If the RoachMap is to be defeated, it is vital that US citizens contact their elected representatives to encourage them to support Israel at this time. This applies to congresspersons who support Israel already (in which case they need to know that the populace is behind them) as well as to those who do not (in which case they should be urged to change tack). The important point is to be heard continually, lest CAIR be the only body whose voice is heard.

Another point to remember: we can say what Sharon cannot, at least what he cannot say openly.