By: DONNY WEBER. JPOST—
While speaking at an event this Monday in Portsmouth, New Hampshire New Jersey Governor Chris Christie criticized US President Barack Obama’s relationship with Israel indicating the current administration’s approach towards the Jewish State has been shameful. Christie hinted his support–should he ultimately gain the 2016 Republican Presidential nomination and win the White House for the Republican Party for the first time in two terms– would be vastly stronger and with resolve:
“Our commitment to Israel must be absolute. Israel is a beacon of freedom in a sea of autocracy and our friendship should be unshakeable. Over the last few years this administration has taken our Israeli partners for granted and it is shameful how the president has treated them.”
Christie added: “Israel and its people must be supported by the United States and the American president – its existence and its security is non-negotiable, and the Iranians and others who think otherwise must be reminded by America of that simple fact.”
Other Republican hopefuls who have either declared or are expected to declare their candidacy to become the next Republican presidential nominee have expressed similar support for Israel, including Florida Senator Marco Rubio and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Their positions and perspectives on Israel are sure to make local, national, worldwide and Israel news as a looming showdown with Iran politically or militarily appears inevitable.
Rubio, the junior senator from Florida, insists on forcing Iran to recognize Israel as part of any nuclear deal with the Obama administration and Presidential contender Scott Walker arrived in Israel less than two weeks ago for a five-day visit.
But Christie has been in the national media over the past several years at times for commendation in his handling of Hurricane Sandy and putting aside partisan politics to work hand in hand with the Federal government and White House and condemnation in his handling of the Fort Lee lane closure scandal dubbed “Bridgegate”. While he is widely seen as a strong figure for the Republican party many question his lack of foreign policy experience and exposure and thus his relevance for the nomination.
But Christie has been very aggressive the past several years in his criticism of Obama’s attitude to Israel and the deficiency with which the White House has been lax in offering Israel unbridled and unequivocal support. Christie lambasted Obama for not supporting the the voice of democracy in the Middle East, not condemning Hamas, and not focusing on stability in the region through more forceful measures, words, and actions.
Last summer when Israel embarked on Operation Protective Edge, Christie came out swinging:
“Israel is not sure that they have America’s full support like they used to and that’s a real failure of this presidency, in my view. And I think the unrest you see in the Middle East is caused in some measure — not completely, but in some measure — by the fact that this president has not acted in a decisive, consistent way.”
Let’s hope Christie keeps his “dukes” up and swinging during the campaign and his electoral bid and if and when he secures the office. We have seen this rhetoric before from the current White House occupant. Let’s hope Christie remains a heavyweight fighter in support of Israel rather than offering lightweight semantics while undermining her existence and sanctifying her enemies.