Tzipi Livni
Photo: Moti Kimhi

Livni: Israel must not play role in US politics

In Newsweek op-ed, former opposition chairwoman takes a jab at PM Netanyahu for what appears to be intervening in US election campaign in Romney's favor

Former Opposition Chairwoman Tzipi Livni may be using much of her free time to travel the world but has not abandoned politics altogether.


In an opinion piece published by Newsweek's Daily Beast, Livni touches on the role Israel plays in the US's political discourse. "This past week as I visited the United States, it was impossible to miss the degree to which Israel has become an issue this election season. It has not always been this way," she wrote.


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"I remember as Israeli foreign minister witnessing first-hand the impressive depth of the bipartisan support for Israel. That deep bipartisan American commitment to Israel's security, a commitment which has been maintained for decades, cannot and should not be undermined by turning Israel into a wedge issue in political campaigns," she added.


"The US-Israel relationship is based on a broad recognition for our shared democratic values. These are the very same values which have made the United States great; and since its inception, Israel has been the clearest expression of those American values in the Middle East. Keeping Israel above partisan politics is particularly important for both our states when the Middle East faces unprecedented turmoil. "


The former Kadima chairwoman further added, "For us, in this tough neighborhood, our special relations are a fundamental component of Israel’s deterrence, precisely because this is clearly not a partisan issue that depends on who is the president or which party is in power, but rather, on deep, ongoing ties that transcend party rule.


"This is an honest and intimate relationship in which each side presents its concerns, and they become joint challenges for both governments."


In a time when Washington and Jerusalem play political ping pong over a possible Israeli strike in Iran, which the US opposes, Livni stresses that "In the face of these many challenges, the joint task of any American president and any Israeli prime minister will be the same: to reinforce a regional alliance of pragmatists against the extremists, to identify the common denominator, and to work together against the threats."


Recently, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been criticized of favoring Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney. "Political leaders in both countries, and from every party, have a sacred trust to protect and nurture this relationship—and to immunize it from partisan politics—for the sake of our citizens who hold it dear, for the sake of their future, and for the sake of the interests and values we share and cherish," Livni remarked.


"To be sure, as between any two friends, close though they are, there are occasional disagreements. It is not a secret that within Israel as well, we have some differences over policy issues. Yet our democratic bonds permit those disagreements to take place without endangering our strategic alliance from without.


"Whoever the American people elect as their president this November, the people of Israel will remain eager to work with his administration as we continue to strengthen our ever important relations."




פרסום ראשון: 08.22.12, 01:11
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