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October 29, 2004 - Image 52

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2004-10-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE

Bush

52

.

the coalition then forming to
St. Paul/JTA
confront Saddam Hussein.
ebates are a chance for
But Bush didn't budge: The
the candidates to speak
United States has vetoed eight
without scripts and
anti-Israel resolutions at the
show what they truly believe.
U.N. Security Council. With
And in the first presidential
that support, Israel effectively
debate, Sen. John E Kerry D-
destroyed many of the terrorist
Mass., made a revealing com-
ment: While making a point
SEN. N ORM cells that had plotted slaughters
in buses, cafes and Passover
about the war in Iraq, Kerry said COLE MAN
seders in Israel.
that, as president, he would
Special to the
By comparison, Sen. Kerry,
make sure America could pass a Jewish News
his running mate Sen. John
"global test" before defending its
.
Edwards, D-N.C., and their
interests.
foreign policy advisers have shown that
Kerry's threshold for action is being
they would rather focus on detente and
able to "prove to the world that you did
diplomacy than on protecting their
it for legitimate reasons."
friends. But we know from experience
Subjecting foreign policy and national
that sometimes saying "No deal" to
security decisions to Kerry's "global test"
one's enemies is more effective than say-
would have a critical effect not just on
ing "I'll compromise." President Bush
America's ability to defend itself, but
understands this, and John Kerry does
also would dramatically affect the securi-
not.
ty of one of our most loyal allies, Israel.
_ Jews who are Democrats may not yet
A troubling proportion of the global.
grasp this, but clearly Israel's enemies
Community considers Israel a racist, ille-
do: the Jerusalem Post reported last
gitimate state. Some of the leading
month that the Palestinians likely will
diplomats of the European community,
wait until after the election to present a
who publicly tolerate Israel's existence,
U.N. resolution calling for sanctions
in their parlors and their cafes dismiss
Over Israel's West Bank security barrier
Israel with scatological terminology.
"in the hope that if. John Kerry wins, the
When international bodies have the
U.S. may not cast a veto."
opportunity, they ban the presence of
A telling point: The world knows
Israelis wherever possible — Israeli ath-
what it's getting with George Bush.
letes, Israeli academics, Israeli scientists,
But it has .different expectations for
Israeli businessmen and Israeli diplomats
John Kerry.
can all attest to this.
Fundamentally, his foreign policy
And this is the community to which
instinct is to negotiate, to deal and to
Kerry would kowtow on matters of
bargain away strengths. Thus Kerry's
national security and foreign policy?
1980's fantasy that unilateral disarma-
Kerry predictably has sent his Jewish
ment would defeat the Soviets; the
political allies to vouchsafe for his pro-
opposite was true. Thus his mistaken
Israel bona fides. They say his fealty to
belief that the Sandinistas represented
Israel is non-negotiable.
the democratic will of the Nicaraguan
But does Sen. Kerry have the ability
people; the Nicaraguan people demon-
to tell the European community, as
strated the exact opposite.
President Bush has done repeatedly, that
Thus Kerry's 1990s fantasy that Yasser
anti-Zionism is a modern and savage
Arafat was a "model statesman;" he was
form of the ancient evil of anti-
a master terrorist. Thus his theory that
Semitism?
the first Persian Gulf War in 1991 wasn't
Does Kerry have the gumption to
worth fighting, and the second Gulf
personally confront soft allies over anti-
War wasn't worth funding. Wrong
Israel, anti-Semitic epithets, as Bush did
again, on both counts.
to Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir
Ask Israelis whether they belieye the
Mohammed? Would Kerry tell his secre-
removal of Saddam was a mistake — or
tary of state, as Bush did, to abruptly
that this war, as both Kerry and former
leave an international conference that
Vermont Gov. Howard Dean say, was
had become a public lynching of Israel?
"the wrong war, at the wrong place, at
Does Kerry have the willingness to tell
the wrong time."
Arab states that American support for
But Sen. Kerry is most egregiously
Israel is not a bargaining chip as we seek
wrong when he says American foreign
to win their cooperation in Iraq?
policy must meet a "global test."
The Differences
America's support for Israel should never
be contingent on a permission slip from
President Bush faced that very same
France, Germany or the United
quandary in spring 2002 when Israel
Nations.
launched Operation Defensive Shield in
Any president who subjects America's
the West Bank. Arab nations blamed
alliance
with Israel to a "global test"
Israel's actions for their inability to join
knows exactly what he will get: total fail-
Norm Coleman is a Republican senator ure. ❑
from Minnesota.

D

10/29
2004

Steadfast, Proven

• Kerry: Pluralism Fighter

President Bush's unilat-
Washington
eralism and mishan-
n the two decades
dling of the Iraq war
that we have served
that is undermining
in the Congress
our effort to defeat ter-
with Democratic Sen.
rorism around the
John E Kerry, on issues
world.,
relating to Israel's securi-
The leader of a glob-
ty, his record has been
REP.
SEN.
al
effort against terror-
our record, and our
SANDER
CARL
ism
needs the support
record has been John
LEVIN
LEVIN
and
respect
of those
Kerry's. That's a fact.
e
Jewish
News
Special
to
th
whom
we
are
asking to
Here's what President
take risks to join us. To
George W. Bush said in London on
whom would the governments and peo-
Nov. 19, 2003: "Israel should freeze set-
ple of the world better respond: to a
dement construction, dismantle unau-
thorized outposts, end the daily humilia- president who worked to cooperate in
areas of mutual concern and won their
tion of the Palestinian people and not
respect, or to a president who has treated
prejudice final negotiations with the
other countries with arrogance and
placement of walls and fences."
whose populations he has alienated?
We do not cite this quote of President
As the Israeli newspaper HaAretz put
Bush to argue that he has not supported
it, "It must be-hoped, for Israel's sake as
the State of Israel. He has. We cite it
well, that the next American administra-
because it shows how easy it is to distort
tion will succeed in drawing its allies
someone's record by selective quotes.
closer and healing the rift that has
Some people are distorting the record
emerged in the international democratic
of Sen. Kerry on Israel. Do not believe
camp."
them. Kerry has said, "I support the
As between two candidates who sup-
building of the fence." As for a "right of
port Israel's security, when the first
return," he said, "It has always been a
understands the importance of building
-
non-starter."
alliances and the second weakens them,
He was an original co-sponsor of the
we'll
take the first candidate.
Syrian Accountability Act, while Bush
On
the key issues of health care,
administration officials opposed it. In
health
research, including stem cell
response to the anti-Semitic comments
research, promoting job creation in
of the Saudi Arabian Crown Prince,
America by eliminating the tax incen-
Kerry said, 'As president, I will never
tives to move jobs overseas, Social
permit this kind of attack to go unan-
Security, a woman's choice, policies to
swered." This administration was silent.
In 1997, Kerry declared, "Let me state counteract discrimination, there is sim-
ply no comparison between John Kerry
it as plainly as I can: The U.N. Security
Council has no right to impose insecuri- and George W Bush. As between two
candidates who support Israel's security,
ty on Israel. The United States can and
when the first is with us on domestic
should veto any other similar one-sided
issues and the second is against us, we'll
measure that brings discredit on nations
take the first candidate.
such as France and Russia whose own
There is another basic reason that we
anti-Semitic records now rebuke their
are
so dedicated to Kerry's election. Our
anti-Israeli votes."
community
has been the beneficiary of
More recently, he declared, "I am
an
environment
in this beloved nation
deeply disappointed by today's
of ours, which cherishes diversity and
International Court of Justice (ICJ) rul-
proclaims the virtues and values of plu-
ing related to Israel's security fence ...
ralism. This is threatened today-by the
Several months ago, I joined in sending
right wing that controls the House and
a letter to U.N. Secretary General Kofi
Senate and of which George Bush has
Annan urging him to act so that the ICJ
become a critical part. The president
does not ... issue an advisory opinion on
the legality of the security fence Israel is - came to office promising to be a unifier.
He has been the great divider. The 'right
building.'"
wing is turning back the clock on what
We know that Sen. Kerry will be a
has made our nation the tolerant,
strong supporter of a secure Israel. He
diverse, pluralistic place it is. Polarization
understands the value of building
has never served our community well.
alliances so a global war can be success-
As between two candidates who sup-
fully fought against terrorism. He is
port
Israel's security, when the first is a
mocked by his opponents because he
fighter
for pluralism and diversity and
recognizes. the importance of global sup-
the second is a captive of the far right,
port in winning that war, but it is
we'll take the first candidate.
Carl Levin of Detroit is a U.S. senator
John Kerry is that candidate. We
from Michigan. Sander Levin of Royal
strongly urge you to support him on
Oak is a U.S. representative from south-
Nov. 2. 0
east Michigan's 12th District. The broth-
ers are Democrats.

I

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