NEWS BLOG (WSAU) Relations between the U.S. and Israel are at a low point. Israel was unwise to announce new settlements in East Jerusalem while Vice President Biden was attending a state dinner. And Israel has grievances with the Obama administration, after Benjamin Netanyaho red-lighted on using force to stop Iran’s nuclear program.
So why should we be friends with Israel? The basic reason is unspoken. And it’s possible the Obama Administration has forgotten.
It’s not because powerful Jewish interests are at work within the U.S. government. Jewish interests have been effective at lobbying Congress… but so have banks, labor unions, and business interests. It’s certainly not because Israel has a military or strategic importance. We’d be better off cultivating an ally along the Persian Gulf to protect shipping interests, like Saudi Arabia. And it’s not because of religious and end-time theories. If the Jews are truly God’s chosen people, we’ve separated that from our foreign policy.
So why DO we seeming side with Israel over its Arab and Palestinian neighbors? Because Israel is a democracy. It’s the only country in that part of the world that has a functioning government based its population’s ballot-box choices. In a region that’s mostly ruled by whoever has the most guns, the strongest militia, and strikes the most fear into its people, Israel is still a good friend to have.
Operations Manager, Midwest Communications-Wausau