Friday, October 31, 2014

Boozman, Moran, Kirk, Coats & Vitter Call Administration’s Anonymous Attacks on Israeli PM “Disgraceful”

Senators write to President Obama denouncing harmful insults

WASHINGTON – In a letter sent to President Obama today, U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Dan Coats (R-IN) and David Vitter (R-LA) expressed their disappointment in vulgar insults directed at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from an unnamed administration official during an interview with Jeffrey Goldberg from The Atlantic.

“It is with grave concern that we read reports in The Atlantic that public, yet anonymous, vulgar and disparaging characterizations of Prime Minister Netanyahu are being made by those whom work and speak on your behalf,” the senators wrote. “Israel has long been one of our country’s closest allies, and we believe that attacks of a personal nature on its current head of state are wholly inappropriate, unacceptable and disgraceful.”

The senators note that President Obama’s unwillingness to hold accountable the individual responsible for the comments will have a detrimental impact on a long standing friendship and our country’s role in the Middle East peace process.

“While your administration’s official policy has been supportive of Israel, your refusal to hold those making these comments accountable gives the appearance of a faltering in a long standing friendship. It also significantly weakens our ability to broker an agreement that brings a sustainable peace to the Middle East,” the letter states.

Goldberg’s article begins with a quote from an unnamed “senior Obama administration official” who responds to an inquiry about diplomatic relations with obscene comments directed at the Prime Minister of Israel. 

The following is the letter in its entirety:

Dear Mr. President,

We, the undersigned Senators, write to you to express our concerns with recent comments made by senior officials in your administration about the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu.

It is with grave concern that we read reports in The Atlantic that public, yet anonymous, vulgar and disparaging characterizations of Prime Minister Netanyahu are being made by those whom work and speak on your behalf. Israel has long been one of our country’s closest allies, and we believe that attacks of a personal nature on its current head of state are wholly inappropriate, unacceptable and disgraceful. The United States Senate, and Congress as a whole, has a long history of overwhelming, bipartisan support for the only stable democratic country in the Middle East. In these trying times, Israel needs the reassurances that come from our strong bilateral relationship. Disparaging off–the-record comments like these only serve to cast doubt on our commitment to fulfill promises made to those abroad.

As we move towards the beginning of a new Congress in January, we want to take this opportunity to reaffirm our support for the state of Israel and our intentions to ensure, through the legislative process, that our ties with Israel remain as strong as ever. With the continued emergence of threats in the region, and to Israel itself, the need for strong U.S. – Israel relations is now as great as ever. As we have seen in recent months, a strong bilateral relationship is not only important to ensuring Israel’s safety but also that of the United States.

While your administration’s official policy has been supportive of Israel, your refusal to hold those making these comments accountable gives the appearance of a faltering in a long standing friendship. It also significantly weakens our ability to broker an agreement that brings a sustainable peace to the Middle East. It is our hope that your administration will refocus its efforts from personal attacks to the faithful execution of Congressional instruction.

Tags: IU.s. Senate, press release. John Boozman, Obama administration, anonymous attacks on, Israeli, Prime Minister, diswgraceful To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". This site is an Outreach of the ARRA News Service.

No comments: