WASHINGTON – During a ceremony held at the Israeli Embassy Wednesday night to mark the Jewish state's 62nd Independence Day, a senior advisor to Barack Obama said the US president is committed to the alliance between the two countries.
David Axelrod said that despite the disagreements, the bond between Israel and the US is unshakable, adding that Washington remains committed to Israel's security and to preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons.
During the ceremony, Axelrod said a two-state solution was in the interest of Israel, the Palestinians and the US. According to him, the absence of such a solution would make it difficult for Israel to maintain its Jewish and democratic identity.
The American official said he was proud to represent Obama at the ceremony and noted that he and his children had visited Israel six times.
The event was pushed up due to the fact that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was scheduled to attend the nuclear security summit in Washington. He eventually canceled his participation.
Some 1,000 people, including several Jewish community leaders, took part in the reception.
Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren spoke of the historic alliance with the US and of kibbutzim that were founded by American immigrants. One such kibbutz, Sasa, manufactures armored vehicles that are used to protect American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan from roadside bombs, he said.
Oren said Israel and the US share the vision of a Jewish state within secure borders alongside a stable and non-violent Palestinian state. He said Israel was committed to cooperating with President Obama in order to realize this vision.