Center for Israel Education, December 5, 2022
November 10, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“The United States will continue to engage with Israel and our partners across the region for the benefit of all, and we commend Qatar and Israel, both close partners of the United States, for their leadership and spirit of sportsmanship that they have demonstrated with this important development.”
“We can welcome incremental steps when it comes to progress between Israel and its neighbors while also acknowledging that there needs to be significant progress when it comes to relations between Israelis and Palestinians, when it comes to tensions between Israel and Palestinians in the West Bank, between Israel and Gaza.”
“… this administration is fully and wholly supported – supportive of a negotiated two-state solution between Israelis and Palestinians. Ultimately, that is how this conflict will be solved…when we were in the Negev in the spring, a number of ministers, including Secretary Blinken, including, as I recall, Foreign Minister Lapid – at the time Foreign Minister Lapid – made the point that we cannot allow this to be a substitute.”
“…if this government were to go in – especially when tensions are high, as unfortunately they have been, between Israelis and Palestinians – and to move aggressively or suggest, put forward a diplomatic approach to the two-state solution at this moment, I’m not certain that that approach would be effective. I’m not certain that approach would serve to de-escalate tensions. And in fact, I think there’s reason to believe it would only exacerbate tensions.”
“We believe ultimately – as you’ve heard us say – that Israelis and Palestinians alike deserve equal levels of security, of stability, of democracy, of freedom, of dignity, and of opportunity. And the humanitarian assistance that we are providing and the approach that we are taking attempts to afford greater levels of dignity, greater levels of opportunity for the Palestinian people.”
November 10, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“The United States congratulates FIFA, Israel, and Qatar on the historic step of opening direct flights between Tel Aviv and Doha for the duration of the World Cup and commends the efforts that went into arriving at this arrangement. Today’s announcement is a historic development and an important step that also holds great promise to bolster people-to-people ties and economic relations. As President Biden has said, building regional integration in the Middle East and beyond brings prosperity and security to the people of the region.
“We welcome the statement that this move will benefit Israeli and Palestinian soccer fans alike, as a step towards expanding greater freedom of travel for all consistent with Qatar’s pledge that all are welcome at the World Cup. The United States will continue to engage with Israel and our partners across the region for the benefit of all, and commends Qatar and Israel, both close partners of the United States, for their leadership and spirit of sportsmanship that they have demonstrated with this development.”
November 7, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price (separate quotations from different parts of the Q&A)
“But the point we’ve also made is that our rock-solid partnership with Israel is based on mutual interests and shared values, and it’s those shared values that have served as a powerful glue between our two countries over the past more than 60 years now. It is a commitment to the value of open, democratic societies, tolerance, respect for civil society including minorities, and our – ultimately, our identities as two democracies.”
November 3, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke today with Prime Minister Yair Lapid to commend Israel for its free and fair elections, and to thank the Prime Minister for his partnership. The Secretary reaffirmed the strength of the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship. He also emphasized his deep concern over the situation in the West Bank, including heightened tensions, violence, and loss of both Israeli and Palestinian lives, and underscored the need for all parties to urgently de-escalate the situation.”
October 27, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“This historic achievement [agreement establishing a permanent maritime boundary between Israel and Lebanon] will advance security, stability, and prosperity for the region, and it demonstrates the transformative power of American diplomacy.
“This agreement meaningfully demonstrates the U.S. vision for a more secure, integrated, and prosperous Middle East…The region and beyond will soon reap the benefit of these energy resources that will advance security, stability, and prosperity.
“This historic agreement would not have been possible without the persistence and diplomacy of the leaders of Israel and Lebanon, and the hard work of Special Presidential Coordinator Hochstein and the State Department team…Their achievement will have long-lasting ramifications for the region.”
October 26, 2022 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“We’re also going to discuss the ironclad commitment — and this is — I’ll say this 5,000 times in my career — the irontad [sic]– -clad commitment the United States has to Israel based on our principles, our ideas, our values. They’re the same values. And I — I’ve often said, Mr. President [Isaac Herzog], if there were — if there were not an Israel, we’d have to invent one.”
“And so we have bedrock values and interests, and I’m going to — hope we get to talk about those a little bit today. And I think our interests are pretty consistent around the world and in the region.”
October 25, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Office of the Spokesperson
“Today, in Washington, D.C., senior U.S. and Israeli civilian and military officials convened the first in-person, bilateral Joint Political-Military Group (JMPG) since the start of the COVID pandemic…Today’s dialogue provided an opportunity to discuss issues of joint concern and explore mutually beneficial opportunities, while underpinning the United States’ continued commitment to Israel’s security, including its commitment to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and to support Israel’s capabilities to address any current and future threat…. The JPMG reflects the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security, including supporting Israel’s ability to maintain a qualitative military edge in conventional military capability.”
October 25, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken met today with President Isaac Herzog in Washington, D.C. The Secretary and President Herzog reaffirmed the strength of the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship and discussed shared security concerns, including Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine and Iran’s malign influence in the region. The Secretary congratulated President Herzog on the forthcoming conclusion of the historic agreement resolving the maritime boundary dispute between Israel and Lebanon, mediated by the United States. They also discussed opportunities to expand and deepen Israel’s relations with Arab states, as well as the continuing unprecedented work of the Negev Forum. He underscored U.S concern over current heightened tensions, violence, and loss of both Israeli and Palestinian lives in the West Bank, and emphasized the need for all the parties to urgently de-escalate the situation.”
October 25, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“…when we meet with our Israeli counterparts we do routinely discuss with them the conflict, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict…The fact is that we recognize Israel’s very real security threats. We’re also very concerned by the increased violence in the West Bank…And we re-emphasize the need, as I just said, for all parties to take steps to do everything in their power to de-escalate the situation…We continue to emphasize that Israelis and Palestinians both deserve equal measures of security, of stability, of justice, of freedom, of dignity, and of democracy. And it’s vital that both parties – Israelis and Palestinians – take urgent action to prevent an even greater loss of life.”[In response to being asked if Palestinians have a right to resist a military occupation:] “…Ultimately, to your question, we want to see a negotiated, two-state solution to this conflict. There is no military solution to this conflict. There is no solution to this conflict through violence. Ultimately, it has to come through diplomacy.”
October 20, 2022 — U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“…we have made our concerns about this Commission of Inquiry clear from the start. Israel is consistently unfairly targeted in the UN system, including in the course of this Commission of Inquiry. Israel is the only country that’s subject to a standing country-specific agenda….we also recognize that there are needed reforms. This is an effort that we continue to work towards to see to it that Israel is not unfairly singled out – and I use that term unfairly – put emphasis on that. No country – the record of no country should be immune from scrutiny, but no country should also be targeted unfairly, and that’s the principle that we seek to uphold.”[After being asked about the one-year anniversary of Israel closing NGOs:] “…our position is that human rights and the importance of civil society is applicable in countries and places around the world. Israel is no different. Independent civil society organizations play an indispensable role in reporting back, in offering facts, in scrutinizing the records. And this goes to the point I mentioned at the top of this briefing that no country should be or is immune from scrutiny, and I think our Israeli partners would agree with that. That’s why we have always contended there must be an extraordinarily high bar when it comes to taking action against independent civil society organizations. We want to see that bar protected. We want to see that bar preserved. The Israelis have told us that they had the requisite information to take the actions that they did. They have provided us in recent weeks with additional information. We are in the process of reviewing that.”
October 17, 2022 — White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre
“President Biden looks forward to welcoming President Isaac Herzog of Israel to the White House on October 26, a visit that underscores the enduring partnership and friendship between the United States and Israel. They will consult on key issues, including regional and global challenges of mutual concern, opportunities to deepen Israel’s regional integration, and ways to advance equal measures of freedom, prosperity, and security for both Israelis and Palestinians.”
October 11, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken press statement
“Following years of mediation by the United States, the Governments of Israel and Lebanon today announced consensus on an historic agreement to establish a permanent maritime boundary between the two countries.…today’s announcement demonstrates the power of regional cooperation to meet shared challenges in the Middle East and beyond. It also underscores the transformative power of American diplomacy. This agreement protects the economic and security interests of Israel and Lebanon and marks a new chapter for the people in the region.”
October 6, 2022 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary Brigadier General Pat Ryder
“So, you know, in terms of the – the broader Middle East, we’re always keeping an eye on things, we clearly have many partners in the region, and communicate with them on a regular basis, to include having representatives of the Department of Defense working in Israel.”
September 28, 2022 — U.S. National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson
“Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Jake Sullivan hosted Israeli National Security Advisor Dr. Eyal Hulata at the White House on September 28. They discussed the launch of the U.S.-Israel Strategic High-Level Dialogue on Technology that same day, a new vehicle announced by the President and Prime Minister Lapid in July in Israel to enhance technological collaboration to address pandemic preparedness and climate change, promote trustworthy artificial intelligence, and protect our technology ecosystems. They consulted on a wide range of global and regional issues of mutual concern, including the need to counter threats from Iran and its proxies. Additionally, they discussed the importance of concluding the maritime boundary negotiations between Israel and Lebanon as soon as possible. Sullivan stressed the need to take steps to de-escalate tensions in the West Bank, and to continue to take steps to improve the lives of Palestinians, which are critical to peace, security, and prosperity. Sullivan welcomed positive progress on expanded access for Palestinians at Allenby Bridge and 4G access in the West Bank and Gaza.”
September 9, 2022 — U.S. Department of State media note
“…Acting Coordinator’s [Tim] Betts’ ICT [International Institute for Counter-Terrorism] remarks will highlight the United States’ iron-clad security partnership with Israel, the need to implement whole of government approaches to terrorism, and our ongoing efforts to strengthen our partners’ counterterrorism capacities.”
August 31, 2022 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary Brigadier General Pat Ryder
“…you know, certainly we have a very longstanding security relationship with our ally, Israel. I’m not going to talk about specific details when it comes to consultation, cooperation, coordination, things like that, other than to say again that we maintain a very robust dialogue with this important ally in the region.”
August 26, 2022 — U.S. National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson
“National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan met with Israeli Minister of Defense Benjamin “Benny” Gantz on August 26 at the White House to continue consultations on security issues of mutual concern. Sullivan emphasized President Biden’s unwavering commitment to Israel’s security, and the two exchanged views on ways to deepen the U.S.-Israel security partnership, including via regional cooperation and coordination. They discussed U.S. commitment to ensure Iran never obtains a nuclear weapon, and the need to counter threats from Iran and Iran-based proxies. They also discussed the need to ensure equal measures of security, freedom, and prosperity for Palestinians and Israelis alike, and the importance of ongoing follow-through on initiatives announced during President Biden’s trip to Israel.”
August 23, 2022 — U.S. National Security Council Spokesperson Adrienne Watson
“Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs Jake Sullivan spoke with National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan hosted Israeli National Security Advisor Dr. Eyal Hulata at the White House on August 23 to consult on a broad range of global issues and issues of mutual concern. Mr. Sullivan underscored President Biden’s steadfast commitment to preserve and strengthen Israel’s capability to deter its enemies and to defend itself by itself against any threat or combination of threats, including from Iran and Iranian-backed proxies; and our commitment to ensure Iran never acquires a nuclear weapon…[T]hey exchanged views on advancing regional integration and normalization with the Arab world. They discussed plans for the upcoming U.S.-Israel Strategic High-Level Dialogue on Technology, and ways to expand and enhance bilateral cooperation on critical and emerging technologies to further solutions to address global challenges. Mr. Sullivan also stressed the need to take continued steps to improve the lives of Palestinians, which are critical to peace, security and prosperity.”
August 8, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken press statement
“The United States remains dedicated to our ironclad commitment to Israel’s security and will remain fully engaged in the days ahead to promote calm. We will continue in the months ahead to work with partners to improve the quality of life for Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Palestinians and Israelis deserve to live safely and securely and to enjoy equal measures of freedom, prosperity, and democracy.”
July 15, 2022 — U.S. President Biden
“Saudi Arabia’s historic decision to open its airspace for all civilian planes, including those flying to and from Israel, is an important step towards building a more integrated and stable Middle East region. While this opening has long been discussed, now, thanks to months of steady diplomacy between my Administration and Saudi Arabia, it is finally a reality. Today, I will be the first president of the United States to fly from Israel to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. As we mark this important moment, Saudi Arabia’s decision can help build momentum toward Israel’s further integration into the region, including with Saudi Arabia. I will do all that I can, through direct diplomacy and leader-to-leader engagement, to keep advancing this groundbreaking process.”
July 14, 2022 — U.S. President Biden in Jerusalem
“…you know that my love for Israel is deep rooted… seeing Israel thrive, seeing the wildest dreams of Israel’s founding fathers and mothers grow into a reality that Israel children enjoy today, to me is close to miraculous…But as I look out on these proud, strong Israelis in the audience, at the nation that made the desert bloom and built the Iron Dome, I see people who are growing more secure, more integrated, more confident, and more — have greater relations with their neighbors; a nation that has forged peace before and can do it again; and a nation that will never dwell alone. Because as long as we’re the United States, you will never, ever be alone.
“And as you know, there’s still so much more work to be done. That’s why America’s commitment to Israel’s security remains ironclad…It springs from the deep affinity and enduring connection between our peoples. And it is our responsibility as leaders to nurture that bond, to ensure that it grows stronger, deeper, and broader as we navigate the challenges ahead — and they will continue to be profound and they will change.”
July 14, 2022 — U.S. President Biden in Jerusalem
“…the Israel of today is not the Israel of 50 years ago. You’ve cultivated new resources, capabilities, new relationships, including a growing integration with neighbors in the region. You have new tools that keep Israel strong and secure. You have an ironclad commitment from the United States of America to Israel’s security. An ironclad commitment. We’ll make sure that Israel can defend itself by itself…”
“And as we move forward together, partners in both security and in innovation, the United States and Israel defense sectors will cooperate in new high-energy laser weapons systems that can defend Israel — Israeli lives, as well as the lives of American service members…Today, you and I also discussed America’s commitment to ensuring Iran never obtains a nuclear weapon. This is a vital security interest to both Israel and the United States and, I would add, for the rest of the world as well…As we work together toward greater integration — greater integration [vis-à-vis the Abraham Accords], we’ll also continue to work for — toward a lasting negotiated peace between the State of Israel and the Palestinian people.
“Israel must remain an independent, democratic, Jewish state — the ultimate guarantee and guarantor of security of the Jewish people not only in Israel but the entire world. I believe that to my core. And the best way to achieve that remains a two-state solution for two people, both of whom have deep and ancient roots in this land, living side-by-side in peace and security. Both states fully respecting the equal rights of their citizens; both people enjoying equal measures of freedom. And any more that takes us further from that outcome — I believe — anything is detrimental to the long-term security of Israel.
“…Israel and the United States are natural partners because we share the same values. Our people share the same innovative spirit, the same determination to preserve and persevere through every single challenge…[The U.S.] will be the last country in the world ever to walk away from Israel. Ties that have grown deeper and broader with each passing year and now encompass a 21st-century partnership, one grounded on ageless values and looking squarely at the future. We’re here to stay… “
June 30, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken press statement
“…The bond between the United States and Israel has never been stronger. Israel has no better friend than the United States and our commitment to Israel’s security remains ironclad. The President and I look forward to further enhancing our vital bilateral partnership during his visit to Israel in July and beyond.”
June 14, 2022 — White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre
“The President will begin his travel in Israel, where he will meet with Israeli leaders to discuss Israel’s security, prosperity, and its increasing integration into the greater region. The President will also visit the West Bank to consult with the Palestinian Authority and to reiterate his strong support for a two-state solution, with equal measures of security, freedom, and opportunity for the Palestinian people.”
May 19, 2022 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“This morning I think you also know the Secretary [of Defense] shared a working breakfast with Israeli Defense Minister Benjamin “Benny” Gantz, two leaders who know each other quite well. Discussed the administration’s commitment to preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon and addressing Iran’s destabilizing actions throughout the region. The secretary commended Minister Gantz on Israeli’s – on Israel’s deepening relationships with countries across the region and the increasing opportunities from military to military cooperation that are enabled by Israel’s transition into the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.”
May 17, 2022 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby[In response to being asked if the U.S. will be observing the Israel military exercise “Chariots of Fire”:] “We have exercised and trained with Israeli Defense Forces we have a strong partnership with them, strong military-to-military relationship. I do not know, what role if any, we have as observers that are involved at all in this exercise.”
April 1, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III
“In recent years, Israel has formed new bonds with Bahrain, and Morocco, and the UAE. It’s still early days. But we’ve all seen the groundbreaking Negev Summit, bringing leaders from Israel, Egypt, the United States, and those three new Arab partners together on Israeli soil. And the summit included important talks on how to build on CENTCOM’s work on integrated air and missile defenses. Now, Israel has already participated in exercises with partners in the region, and those exercises would have been unimaginable, unthinkable, just a few years ago. And with General McKenzie’s leadership, Israel has now moved into CENTCOM’s area of responsibility…”
March 28, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“…later today officials from the United States, the UAE, and Israel will launch the Religious Coexistence Working Group to counter intolerance and promote understanding. And we’ll help widen the circle of friendship to include other countries interested in securing greater peace and prosperity for their own people. As we do, we have to be clear that these regional peace agreements are not a substitute for progress between Palestinians and Israelis.
“One of the issues we discussed today was how countries involved in the Abraham Accords and normalization, as well as those that have longstanding diplomatic relationships with Israel, can support the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian people in concrete ways and have a positive impact on the daily lives of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. This is a conversation we’ll carry forward so that we can work toward our goal of Palestinians and Israelis enjoying equal measures of freedom, security, opportunity, and dignity, and create the conditions for a negotiated two-state solution.”
March 28, 2022 — U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) Comptroller Dee Dee Martinez
“MDA and the Israel Missile Defense Organization continue to cooperate on engineering, development, co-production, testing, and fielding of the Israeli missile defense systems. The F.Y. ’23 request of $500 million remains consistent with the Memorandum of Understanding between the United States and Israel.”
March 24, 2022 — U.S. Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs Yael Lempert
“During [Secretary Blinken’s] visit to Israel and the West Bank, the secretary will underscore the United States’ ironclad commitment to Israeli security, coordination on Ukraine and Iran, and work to build upon the gains from the Abraham Accords…During the visit, Secretary Blinken will affirm the commitment of the United States to a two-state solution, and to greater freedom, security, and prosperity for Palestinians and Israelis alike.”
“Look, our relationship with Israel is so broad and so deep, it’s difficult to choose just one issue and say that’s going to be the priority….it will be a broad and wide-ranging discussion…”
“[T]he issue of our consulate general in Jerusalem will undoubtedly be a topic of discussion in the Secretary’s meetings both in Israel and the West Bank, and he’ll be speaking to it there. In terms of your question about demolitions, I think that that will be among the topics that is discussed. I will say that the State Department has made the administration’s view clear. We believe it is critical for Israel and the Palestinian Authority to refrain from unilateral steps that exacerbate tensions and undercut efforts to advance a negotiated two-state solution.”
March 18, 2022 — CENTCOM Commander General Frank McKenzie
“CENTCOM is focused on operationalizing the Abraham Accords, as we brought Israel into our area of operations, and missile defense is one area of cooperation that all our partners understand. They all understand it’s particularly important when you consider the threat that Iranian missiles pose. While it continues to be nascent at this time, we have seen a willingness of traditional regional partners to work together in exercises with the Israeli Defense Force. Air defense is an excellent opportunity for cooperation because improving regional missile defense can begin with a sharing of information, which doesn’t require any nation to approve the stationing of foreign forces on their territory….I think it’s obvious that Israel is going to take steps to defend itself when it’s confronted with Iranian actions. And of course, Iran is dedicated to the destruction of Israel. That’s a matter of public record, they’ve said that many times. I do worry about these exchanges between Iran and Israel because many times, our forces are at risk, whether we’re in Iraq or in Syria. So that, in fact, does concern me as we watch this – as we watch these series of exchanges.”
March 2, 2022 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III
“Now, Bahrain has also demonstrated its role as a regional leader by taking the courageous step of establishing a lasting partnership with Israel. That is a momentous decision that will make the region more secure. So let me congratulate you on the historic recent visits to Manama by the Israeli prime minister and the minister of defense, as well as on the Bahrain-Israel defense cooperation agreement. So we’re going to work together with Bahrain, Israel, and our regional partners to strengthen air defenses, counter unmanned aerial systems and to bolster maritime security.”
December 20, 2022 — U.S. “Senior Administration Official”
“…a charge from President Biden to us in the earliest days: to ensure that we were constantly engaged with our — with our Israeli partners…one thing to highlight…a pretty extraordinary partnership between Jake Sullivan and his counterpart — Eyal Hulata, the Israeli National Security Advisor — just — I mean, regular engagement and discussions about incredibly difficult policy questions…I can say the dialogue has been honest, constructive, open. I mean, these are two officials exchanging — these are not officials exchanging talking points. It’s truly a genuine dialogue between partners.”
“The U.S. and Israel are totally aligned in our determination to ensure Iran can never acquire a nuclear weapon. And we’ve had a very active dialogue about our approach on that… And I think the level of — the level of dialogue, trust, and candor by which we approach these issues with our Israeli partners is really quite extraordinary and has helped us navigate through some pretty difficult issues and also just kind of gaming out next steps as we look ahead over the coming months in the Middle East.”
“But we remain engaged with the Israeli government about the importance of ensuring that foreign governments are not able to misuse these [cybersecurity] tools to target human rights defenders, journalists, U.S. officials, you know, others who should be protected. And I think, on that principle, we have agreement….this is a global approach.”
“Well, I think we’ve been pretty consistent in emphasizing over the last 10, 11 months, you know, the need to avoid steps that can increase tensions on the ground, and that includes settlement activity…And I think the engagements, particularly with the Bennett government, on the settlement issues have been honest, constructive — but obviously, there’s more to do.”
December 8, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“…whenever Minister Gantz and Secretary Austin have a chance to speak, Iran is right there at the top of the list of things that they talk about. And the Secretary has been and will continue to be clear publicly and privately about how he sees the most appropriate path to pursue an Iran that doesn’t have a nuclear weapon…His job is to look after our national security interest in that part of the world, every part of the world. And that means making sure that we have the right resources capabilities in the region, specifically in the region, to protect those national security interests…And a key piece of that…is to make sure that we’re helping contribute to the capabilities of our allies and partners. And our defense partnership with Israel is ironclad. We are still committed to their qualitative military edge.”[In response to question about Israeli impatience with diplomatic process vis-à-vis Iran and what Austin will talk to Israel Minister of Defense Gantz about militarily:] “As I said, they always talk about the threats that Iran poses. And as also said…he takes seriously our responsibility to defend against threats in the region. And we have robust capabilities there in the region.”
October 12, 2021 — U.S. Department of State “Senior State Department
“When it comes to the Abraham Accords, the Biden administration strongly supports states normalizing relations with Israel. We welcome efforts by think tanks, civil society, and others to advance normalization efforts. We believe that these agreements have shown that there are real benefits to breaking down old barriers, increasing cooperation, especially in ways that promote economic development and people-to-people ties. This is something that we are actively working to expand.”
October 12, 2021 — U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris
“…this occasion is an occasion, yet again, to reaffirm the strength and the endurance of the relationship between the United States and Israel — a relationship that is unwavering, a relationship that is based on shared values, shared history, and a shared concern for the mutual safety and security of the people of our two countries.”
“We will also discuss, of course, what we must do to strengthen those relationships and to strengthen, in particular, security concerns that Israel always has had and continues to have, and our commitment to ensure the security of the people of Israel.
“We will discuss…shared prosperity for the people of our countries…peace, security, and prosperity for Palestinians as well as Israelis…regional challenges that we face and our shared concern as it relates to Iran and as it relates to our support for the Abraham Accords and…And again, the Abraham Accords is something that the President and I strongly support.”
August 27, 2021 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“We’re also going to discuss Israel’s unwavering — unwavering commitment that we have in the United States to Israel’s security. And I fully, fully, fully support replenishing Israel’s Iron Dome system.
“And we also are going to discuss the threat from Iran and our commitment to ensure Iran never develops a nuclear weapon. And — but we’re putting diplomacy first and seeing where that takes us.
“But if diplomacy fails, we’re ready to turn to other options…Israel’s developing deeper ties, as well, with the Arab and Muslim neighbors and — and globally…[is] a trend that I think should be encouraged and not discouraged…We also are going to discuss ways to advance peace and security and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians. And we’re also going to direct our teams to work toward Israel fulfilling the requirements of the visa waiver program and get that done.”
“The U.S. will always be there for Israel. It’s an unshakeable partnership between our two nations.”
August 21, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III at Pentagon
“It’s great to have you [Israel Prime Minister Naftali Bennett] back, knowing the deep commitment that we share to strengthening and – and expanding the U.S.-Israel strategic partnership.”
“The administration remains committed to Israel’s security and right to self-defense. That is unwavering, it is steadfast and it is ironclad.”
“You can also see that commitment as we advocate for the replenishment of the Iron Dome missile defense system…
“The Department of Defense is also committed to maintaining Israel’s qualitative military edge and to ensuring that Israel can defend itself against threats from Iran, its proxies and terrorist groups. And in that vein, Mr. Prime Minister, I look forward to a frank discussion today about Iran’s alarming – alarming nuclear steps and continued regional aggression.”
“We’ve also been closely watching as Israel has been a global leader in the battle against COVID-19 and we’ll keep consulting closely with you and sharing lessons learned.”
“Now, over decades of cooperation, the United States and Israel have built – built a strong and enduring partnership, and that partnership is rooted in trust, shared democratic values and mutual security interests. Moving forward, we’re going to build on that, Mr. Prime Minister, and we’re going to seek lasting security for Israelis and Palestinians alike. Mr. Prime Minister, I’m personally committed to deepening our security cooperation and working together on our shared defense priorities.”
August 18, 2021 — White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki
“President Biden will welcome Prime Minister Naftali Bennett of Israel to the White House on August 26, 2021. Prime Minister Bennett’s visit will strengthen the enduring partnership between the United States and Israel, reflect the deep ties between our governments and our people, and underscore the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security. The President and Prime Minister Bennett will discuss critical issues related to regional and global security, including Iran. The visit will also be an opportunity for the two leaders to discuss efforts to advance peace, security, and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians and the importance of working towards a more peaceful and secure future for the region.”
June 28, 2021 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“And as the American press here can tell you [Israel President Reuven Rivlin], my commitment to Israel is — well, they can’t tell you anything actually; they’re not supposed to — but it’s ironclad…And so, this includes we’re — you know, we’re committed to unwavering commitment to your self-defense. And today we’re going to be discussing a broad range of challenges, including Iran. What I can say to you: Iran will never get a nuclear weapon on my watch, as they say.”
“…And the U.S. fully supports normalization of the relationship between Israel and Middle Eastern countries — that you’re making some headway on — and Africa as well…And, going forward, Mr. President, the United States and Israel are going to continue to work together to advance peace in the region and stability.”
June 27, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“And the foreign minister [Yair Lapid] is exactly right: Even though our administration is relatively new and his is extremely new, the foundation that we’re working on is one of an enduring partnership, relationship, friendship between the United States and Israel, and it is based, as the foreign minister said, on a set of shared values and shared interests.”
“I think we’ve also discovered or perhaps rediscovered that as important as they are, as vital as they are, [the Abraham Accords] are not a substitute for engaging on the issues between Israelis and Palestinians that need to be resolved.
“We’re – as the closest of friends do, we will have occasional differences. We have the same objectives; sometimes we differ on the tactics. And we, I think, are very clear and direct with each other when that’s the case. And that’s exactly the way it’s supposed to be. But the foundation is a commitment, a deep, enduring, abiding commitment on the part of the United States to Israel’s security and a commitment that President Biden brought with him to office and feels very, very strongly about.”
June 26, 2021 — U.S. Department of State “Senior State Department Official”[In response to questions regarding Israel possibly taking unilateral action and if the Biden administration has done anything to persuade Israel not to jeopardize JCPOA talks:] “That’s an important question. I want to start by saying we – under the government of Prime Minister Netanyahu, we were having close consultations. We know – we knew that they have and we know they had a different view about the JCPOA, but we are trying to talk to them to make sure that we were as aligned as possible given our common objective, which is to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. We had differences about the JCPOA. We knew that, we recognized it, but we nonetheless were working closely with them. And the same holds for the government of Prime Minister Bennett. We already had some high-level contacts…And again, we respect that they have a different point of view. I think they respect ours and we are going to try to talk and be as transparent and as coordinated as possible so that the ultimate goal, which we share, is one that is pursued as effectively as possible. And we expect to have extremely positive and productive discussions with the new Israeli government and we look forward to as close coordination as possible.”
June 23, 2021 — U.S. National Security Adviser Emily Horne
“National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan met today in Washington with Lieutenant General Aviv Kohavi, Chief of the General Staff of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Mr. Sullivan reaffirmed President Biden’s unwavering support for Israel’s security and commitment to continuing to strengthen the defense partnership between the two countries. The officials discussed the challenges to security and stability in the Middle East, including the threat posed by Iran’s malign activities in the region, and Mr. Sullivan affirmed the President’s commitment to ensuring that Iran never gets a nuclear weapon. The officials agreed on the importance of continuing and expanding bilateral consultations on the array of strategic challenges facing the region.”
June 21, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“…the chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Milley, hosted today his counterpart in the Israeli defense forces, the chief – the Israeli general – chief of the Israeli general staff, Lieutenant General Aviv Kohavi today at The Pentagon. The two leaders discussed several issues of mutual concern, including the current security environment throughout the Middle East. General Milley reaffirmed, of course, the U.S. commitment to its relationship with Israel. Secretary Austin did attend part of the meeting as well, popped in for part of it. And as you know, the U.S. and Israel enjoys strong military to military relationship as key partners committed to peace and security in the region.”
June 13, 2021 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“Israel has no better friend than the United States. The bond that unites our people is evidence of our shared values and decades of close cooperation and as we continue to strengthen our partnership, the United States remains unwavering in its support for Israel’s security. My administration is fully committed to working with the new Israeli government to advance security, stability, and peace for Israelis, Palestinians, and people throughout the broader region.”
June 13, 2021 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“On behalf of the people of the United States, I extend my warm congratulations to Isaac Herzog on his election to serve as the 11th President of the State of Israel. Throughout his career, President-elect Herzog has demonstrated his unwavering commitment to strengthening Israel’s security, advancing dialogue, and building bridges across the global Jewish community. I am confident that under his presidency, the partnership between Israel and the United States will continue to grow and deepen.
“I also want to thank President Reuven Rivlin for his many years of service to the people of Israel. I look forward to welcoming President Rivlin to Washington in the weeks ahead to honor his dedication to the enduring partnership and the close friendship between our two nations.”
June 4, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III
“Before we start, I wanted to reiterate that the administration’s commitment to Israel’s security is ironclad. We are committed to maintaining Israel’s qualitative military edge and ensuring that Israel can defend itself against regional threats, such as those posed by Iran, its proxies, and terrorist groups. The administration fully supports your country’s right to defend itself against rockets, rocket attacks fired indiscriminately by Hamas, and other Gaza-based militants against Israeli civilians.”
“Now going forward, we seek lasting security for Israelis and Palestinians alike.”
“Let me also stress that the Department of Defense supports President Biden’s goal of a two-state solution. As my colleague Secretary Blinken made clear in Israel last week, a lot of work needs to be done to rebuild confidence and trust and to create conditions to reengage in a meaningful way on the path to a two-state solution. I am personally committed to supporting that work.”
June 3, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“It’s a real pleasure to welcome Defense Minister Gantz to the State Department. We had an opportunity to spend some time together in Israel just a week or so ago. Very happy today to have the opportunity to pursue that conversation, to talk about the United States enduring commitment to Israel security, to talk about some of the needs that Israel has in that regard; also to talk about the work that needs to be done to move forward on humanitarian assistance to and reconstruction for Gaza and for the Palestinians living there and to look across the board at the many issues that we have on our agenda.”
June 2, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby[In response to a question about replenishing Iron Dome:] “I’m certainly aware of press reporting out there about their desires for resupply. The only thing I’d add is what we said many times, and that we take very seriously our commitment to Israel’s qualitative military edge and our commitment to assisting the Israeli government in its self-defense of its citizens and its – and its sovereign territory. [In response to a question about reassuring Israel regarding Iranian threats, following the previous day’s remark by Prime Minister Netanyahu about Israel taking necessary steps against Iranian nuclear threats even at the risk of creating friction in the U.S.-Israel relationship:] “Very clear on numerous occasions with Minister Gantz that, again, the United States – United States takes very seriously our security commitments to Israel, to preserving their qualitative military edge and to continuing our support for their ability to defend themselves and their people against very real threats that they face on a nearly daily basis. And I — I suspect that that will be the same tone and tenor that the secretary will have tomorrow when they get a chance to meet.”
June 1, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby[In response to question if this meeting with Minister of Defense Gantz was in response to Prime Minister Netanyahu’s comment on this day that Israel will do what it must to eliminate the Iranian threat, even it if costs them a break in the relationship with the U.S.:] “No.…today has nothing to do with comments made today in Israel. This [the visit] was something that the secretary and Minister Gantz have been talking about for quite some time.”
May 28, 2021 — U.S. Missile Defense Agency Director for Operations Michelle C. Atkinson
“Missile Defense Agency and the Israel Missile Defense Organization continue to cooperate on engineering, development, co-production, testing, and fielding of the Israeli missile defense system. The FY22 funding request remains consistent with a memorandum of understanding between the United States and Israel.”
May 25, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Jerusalem
“President Biden asked me to come here today, really, for four reasons: First, to demonstrate the commitment of the United States to Israel’s security, to start to work toward greater stability and reduce tensions in the West Bank and Jerusalem, to support urgent humanitarian and reconstruction assistance for Gaza, to benefit the Palestinian people, and to continue to rebuild our relationship with the Palestinian people and the Palestinian Authority.”
“Casualties are often reduced to numbers but behind every number is an individual human being – a daughter, a son, a father, a mother, a grandparent, a best friend. And as the Talmud teaches, to lose a life is to lose the whole world, whether that life is Palestinian or Israeli. I underscored to the prime minister something that President Biden made crystal-clear throughout the violence: The United States fully supports Israel’s right to defend itself against attacks such as the thousands of rockets fired by Hamas indiscriminately against Israeli civilians.”
“As the prime minister mentioned, we had a detailed discussion about Israel’s security needs…”
“As President Biden has said, we believe that Palestinians and Israelis equally deserve to live safely and securely; to enjoy equal measures of freedom, opportunity, and democracy; to be treated with dignity.”
May 25, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Jerusalem
“I think [Israel Defense Minister] Gabi [Ashkenazi] said it very, very well. I’m here, as I said earlier, to reaffirm the strong commitment of United States to Israel’s security, to the partnership between us, to move forward now on dealing with the humanitarian situation in Gaza and also starting to rebuild, to re-engage with the Palestinian community and Palestinian Authority. And I hope to start to move things in a positive direction where we can make material progress in the lives of Israelis and Palestinians alike. We have a lot of work to do, but we’re grateful to have close parties.”
May 25, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Ramallah
“We know that the last round of violence is symptomatic of a larger set of issues that we have to address if we’re going to prevent its recurrence, and that’s what we talked about today. We welcome the ceasefire that continues to hold, but that’s not enough…As I told the president, I am here to underscore the commitment of the United States to rebuilding a relationship with the Palestinian Authority and with the Palestinian people, a relationship built on mutual respect and also a shared conviction that Palestinians and Israelis alike deserve equal measures of freedom, security, opportunity, and dignity…. We’ll also work with the Palestinian Authority to ensure freedom of expression for all Palestinians and the promotion and protection of civil society.”
“We will, as the president noted, continue to firmly oppose any unilateral provocative actions that risk sparking more violence and that undermine prospects for a just, durable resolution of the conflict between Palestinians and Israelis, which ultimately requires two states. And whether that is settlement activity, whether that is home demolitions, annexation of territory, incitement to violence, compensation for individuals imprisoned for acts of terrorism, any unilateral action that undermines the prospects for genuine progress and genuine peace is something we will continue to oppose.”
May 25, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Ramallah
“One of the main purposes of my travel here at President Biden’s request is to renew ties between the United States and the Palestinian people, and to build on those ties going forward. One critical aspect of any democratic society is civil society, and that’s why I’m particularly anxious to have a chance to talk to you. Your voices, your experience, your insight, your advocacy I think are all critical components for the future. And as Hady said a moment ago, we feel strongly that whether you’re Israeli, whether you’re Palestinian, you’re entitled to equal measures of peace, security, opportunity, and dignity. And I know that from your different perspectives, that’s exactly what you’re working on.”
May 25, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby[in response to question asking if the U.S. will help Israel respond to recent more sophisticated rocket attacks:] “I think the way – way I’d put that is we take very seriously our commitments to Israel’s qualitative military edge. And our commitments to them in terms of assisting with their self-defense – we said that consistently and – and I think I’d leave it at that.”
May 19, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“…the secretary spoke again with Israeli Minister of Defense Benjamin – Benny Gantz. The secretary underscored his continued support for Israel’s right to defend itself, reviewed assessments of Israel’s military campaign in Gaza and urged de-escalation of the conflict.”
“Well, certainly we don’t believe that violent conflict there is in anybody’s interests, and we’ve said – to your point about Hamas and rockets [that Hamas has an estimated 15,000], we said that – and continue to say again today that we recognize Israel’s right to defend itself and its citizens against these threats, which obviously are still persistent, but we also would like to see the violence come to an end, the tensions to de-escalate, and, you know, the loss of innocent life to – to stop, OK?”
“The – the two [Secretary Austin and Minister Gantz] know each other quite well from the secretary’s time in command of Central Command. So there’s a – there’s a good personal relationship there.”
“The minister did provide an update and an assessment to the secretary. And again, I – I won’t go into greater detail than what I’ve already done, but I would reiterate that the secretary was – was very clear that we want to see this – these tensions de-escalate. We want to see the violence end. And we certainly want to see no more loss of innocent civilian life…The secretary was – was clear about that.”
May 18, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“I think you saw that the secretary spoke again with his Israeli counterpart this morning, Benjamin Gantz. The secretary again reiterated our unwavering support for Israel’s right to defend itself, and to protect Israeli citizens and civilians. And he of course lamented the loss of innocent Israeli and Palestinian lives. He expressed his support for de-escalation of the conflict and for the restoration of calm.”
“They have not asked for any additional support. The – we continue to stand by Israel’s right to defend itself and it – and its citizens. As you know, we have a strong bilateral military relationship with Israel and that has not changed as a result.”
“…we have a longstanding, bilateral security relationship with Israel and that relationship continues, and we want to continue to see it improve over time. There are no additional requests by the Israelis for support, with respect to these operations, and I don’t – I know there’s – that there’s no change to that situation, and again, what – what we want to make clear is, again, Israel has a right to defend itself and its citizens from these rocket attacks and we support that right of self-defense. We also would like to see the tensions de-escalate and – and for no more innocent lives to be lost…”
May 13, 2021 — U.S. Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby
“This morning, the under secretary of Defense for Policy, Dr. Colin Kahl, met with Israeli Ministry of Defense Director of Policy and Political Military Affairs Zohar Palti here at the Pentagon… The two leaders discussed the U.S.-Israel defense partnership and opportunities for strengthening our bilateral cooperation…Under Secretary Kahl unequivocally condemned these terrorist attacks [from Gaza] directed at Israeli civilians, and underscored U.S. support for Israel’s right to defend itself and its citizens. They agreed to maintain a close dialogue and to work together to strengthen regional security. Dr. Kahl underscored the department’s enduring support for Israel’s security and qualitative military edge, and conveyed the administration’s support for a restoration of calm and the protection of civilians.”
“We certainly don’t want to see innocent civilians hurt in this. And we would obviously welcome any moves to deescalate the tensions. But the scale and the scope of the attacks on Israel are extensive. And, as we’ve said before, they have the right to defend themselves and their citizens and we have an ironclad commitment to our bilateral relationship with Israel and to helping them in their self-defense.”
May 11, 2021 — U.S. National Security Adviser Emily Horne
“National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan spoke today with Israeli National Security Advisor Meir Ben Shabbat. He condemned the ongoing rocket attacks by Hamas and other terrorist groups, including against Jerusalem and Tel Aviv. He conveyed the President’s unwavering support for Israel’s security and for its legitimate right to defend itself and its people, while protecting civilians. He also conveyed the United States’ encouragement of steps toward restoring a sustainable calm. They agreed to continue to stay in close touch. Mr. Sullivan also spoke today with the Government of Egypt on the situation in Gaza and Jerusalem. They discussed steps to restore calm over the coming days and agreed to stay in close touch.”
May 10, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken
“Needless to say, we’re very focused on the situation in Israel, West Bank, Gaza….All sides need to de-escalate, reduce tensions, take practical steps to calm things down. I appreciate some of the steps we’ve seen in the last – of the last 24 hours, particularly with regard to rerouting the parade and putting off the decision on the evictions, but it’s imperative that all sides take steps to de-escalate and calm the situation. And again, I’m deeply concerned about the rocket attacks. And even as all sides take steps to de-escalate, Israel, of course, has a right to defend its people and its territory from these attacks.”
April 30, 2021 — U.S. President Joe Biden
“…The people of the United States and Israel are bound together by our families, our faiths, and our histories, and we will stand with our friends….”
April 22, 2021 — U.S. Central Command General Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr.
“Sure, so, as you know, Israel is under the new Unified Command Plan. Israel will actually enter the Central Command AOR [area of responsibility]. We’re working to make that move that will further align Israel with – actually with its Arab neighbors, ultimately. That would be one of the goals of bringing them into Central Command, further the normalization process that began with UAE and some other nations during the last few months. So, I think that’s a very positive sign.”
April 21, 2022 — U.S. Department of State “Senior State Department Official”
“I believe we have had numerous conversations with Israeli officials before and after every round of [JCPOA] talks. We certainly will have one again. We believe we’ve been transparent. We’ve been in the process of…looking into which sanctions… we believe would need to be lifted as part of the return to the JCPOA…We’ll discuss it at further length this week and coming out of these talks. So we intend to be as transparent as we can. We know there’s a disagreement with Israel’s perspective and we respect that. We’ll try to be as transparent as we can about how we see things and how we want to go and listen to their perspective as well.”
“I wanted to say, obviously, we do consult and discuss with our Israeli allies, but we also are very transparent with our partners as we talk to them regularly, again, both before and sometimes during and after every round of talks, and we intend to continue doing that.”
April 13, 2021 — U.S. National Security Council Spokesperson Emily Horne
“National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan led U.S. participation in a virtual meeting of the U.S.-Israel Strategic Consultative Group on April 13. This meeting was held as part of ongoing bilateral consultations on security issues of vital importance to the two countries. During the meeting, officials consulted in detail on opportunities to promote stability and security in the face of shared regional threats and challenges. Mr. Sullivan reaffirmed the Biden-Harris administration’s unwavering commitment to Israel’s security and to ensuring that Iran will never obtain a nuclear weapon.”
April 12, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III
“…they [the Israelis] have great capabilities as it stands, and of course, we want to make sure that we remain interoperable; that we’re – in terms of our plans, our concepts, and how we use our equipment, I think it’s real important that we, you know, continue to work on that partnership. And we heard some of that today as we talked to the leadership. You know, they really have been doing a lot to exercise with Central Command, with our European Command, and it’s just really impressive to see how much further we’ve gotten. We’ve – in terms of interoperability. So I think their focus is they have a laser focus on making sure that they maintain a competitive edge and that I think they’re doing a tremendous job, obviously. And anything that we can do to help, we certainly will. We will continue to do.”
April 12, 2021 — U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III in Jerusalem
“… I wanted to reaffirm the – the administration’s strong commitment to Israel and to the Israeli people. And that’s why I thought it was important that we meet face to face and to express our earnest desire for close consultations with Israel as we address shared challenges in the region. And I also wanted to underscore my personal pledge to strengthening Israel’s security and ensuring Israel’s qualitative military edge. The – the close and strong ties that we enjoy with Israel are central to regional stability and security in the Middle East, and we both agree that we must continue to work closely together to enhance the U.S.-Israel strategic partnership.
“And so we discuss ways to deepen and expand our long-standing defense relationship in the face of regional threats and other security challenges, and I affirm the – the department’s support for our ongoing diplomatic efforts to normalize relations between Israel and Arab- and Muslim-majority nations.
April 11, 2021 – Secretary of Defense Llloyd J. Austin III (in Israel)
“You know we all took the time last week to remember the Holocaust. And Minister Gantz, you as a son of Holocaust survivors know better than most the horror and heartache your family endured.
We remember the 6 million Jews and the millions of others who perished during the Holocaust. May their memory be a blessing and let it be solemn reminder of our duty to be ever vigilant against mass atrocities.
It is especially meaningful to join him here ahead of Remembrance Day, which is a most solemn day, honoring those who have fallen in the service to their country is a tradition shared by both Israel and the United States as we recognize the sacrifices our brave service members in uniform make to protect our people and preserve our way of life.
Today, I was tremendously pleased with our discussion on a number of security issues, which are important to our two countries. And I wanted to convey the Biden-Harris administration’s strong commitment to Israel and the Israeli people. As a major strategic partner for the United States, our bilateral relationship with Israel in particular is central to regional stability and security in the Middle East. And during our meeting, I reaffirmed to Minister Gantz, our commitment to Israel is enduring and it is iron clad.
And I pledge to continue close consultations in order to insure Israel’s Qualitative Military Edge and to strengthen Israel’s security. We both agree that we must work closely together to enhance U.S./Israel Defense cooperation and to advance shared security interest and priorities.
And I appreciate — appreciated hearing Minister Gantz’s perspectives about the challenges in this region. We addressed a broad range of defense issues, to include Israel’s long term planning for defense acquisitions; and regional security challenges; and U.S. support for efforts to normalize relations between Israel and Arab and Muslim majority nations.”
March 18, 2021 – Principal Deputy Spokesperson Jalina Porter
“And to your second question, we just believe that it’s critical for Israel and the Palestinian Authority to refrain from unilateral steps that would exacerbate tensions and further undercut efforts to advance a negotiated two-state solution, such as annexation of a territory, settlement activity or demolitions, incitement to violence, and providing compensation for individuals in prison for acts of terrorism.”
March 11, 2021 – U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“As we have said, as the Secretary said yesterday, we welcome, we support the normalization agreements between Israel and countries in the Arab – in – and the broader Muslim world. It is something that we will seek to build on. It is something that we have welcomed from the previous administration and something, again, we will seek to build on going forward. We have discussed it in the bilateral context with some of our partners in the Arab and Muslim world. It is something that we have discussed with the Israelis. I wouldn’t want to get ahead of where – of private conversations at this point, but I expect before too long, you will – we’ll be in a position to say more and you’ll be in a position to see more about how we are going to build on that.”
March 8, 2021 – U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“I think generally what I would say – and I’ve had an opportunity to speak to this in recent days – look, our goal is a two-state solution, a two-state solution in which Israel lives in peace next to a viable Palestinian state. And we stand by that two-state solution because it’s not only consistent with our values and in our interests, but it’s actually consistent with the values and interests of those in the region. A two-state solution ensures Israel’s continuing identity as a Jewish and democratic state, just as it fulfills the Palestinians’ legitimate and rightful aspirations for dignity and for self-determination in a state of their own…
March 4, 2021 – The White House Statements on Vice President Kamala Harris’ Phone Call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
“Vice President Kamala Harris spoke today by phone with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, and underscored the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to the U.S.-Israel partnership. The Vice President emphasized the United States’ unwavering commitment to Israel’s security. She expressed strong support for Israel’s recent groundbreaking normalization agreements with countries in the Arab and Muslim world, and stressed the importance of advancing peace, security, and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians alike. The Vice President and Prime Minister agreed on the importance of continuing close cooperation and partnership on regional security issues, including Iran’s nuclear program and the regime’s dangerous regional behavior. They discussed the importance of advancing scientific cooperation between our two countries and efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. They also noted their respective governments’ opposition to the International Criminal Court’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel.”
March 3, 2021 – U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“Well, let me just start generally and say that we firmly oppose and are disappointed by the ICC prosecutor’s announcement of an investigation into the Palestinian situation. We will continue to uphold our strong commitment to Israel and its security, including by opposing actions that seek to target Israel unfairly. The ICC, as we have said, has no jurisdiction over this matter. Israel is not a party to the ICC, and it has not consented to the court’s jurisdiction. And we have serious concerns about the ICC’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel.
The Palestinians do not qualify as a sovereign state and therefore are not qualified to obtain membership as a state in or to participate as a state in or to delegate jurisdiction to the ICC. The current ICC prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, indicated that her office would need to assess priorities and resources before determining when and how to proceed. We noted that.
February 28, 2021 – Letter to President Biden Underscoring Republican Consensus on Iran Policy by Senators Risch, Inhofe, Rubio, Toomey, and Portman
“On the regional front, Israeli and Gulf views must be central to the administration’s approach, and the administration must take into account the very real concerns of those that actually live under the shadow of the Iranian threat. In all of these cases, consultations must be more than perfunctory. They must be formal, extensive, and responsive to stakeholders. Congressional consultations to date have not met this standard. And we must always keep in mind that regardless of what we or any other nations does, Israel has its own existential threat perception that guides its decision-making regarding Iran and will always act as it sees fit to protect itself, notwithstanding any agreements other parties make, including the United States.”
February 17, 2021 – The White House Statements on President Joe Biden’s Phone Call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
“The President affirmed his personal history of steadfast commitment to Israel’s security and conveyed his intent to strengthen all aspects of the U.S.-Israel partnership, including our strong defense cooperation. Together, the leaders discussed the importance of continued close consultation on regional security issues, including Iran . The President emphasized U.S. support for the recent normalization of relations between Israel and countries in the Arab and Muslim world. He underscored the importance of working to advance peace throughout the region, including between Israelis and Palestinians. Together, they affirmed their shared interest in continued strategic cooperation to confront the many challenges facing the region.”
February 11, 2021 – U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“Look, we have spoken about our intent to provide assistance to the benefit of all Palestinians, including to Palestinian refugees. We are in the process of determining how to move forward with the resumption of that assistance consistent with U.S. law, consistent with our interests….
We believe it is critical to refrain from unilateral steps that exacerbate tensions and that undercut efforts to advance a negotiated, two-state solution. And unilateral steps might include annexation of territory, settlement activity, demolitions, incitement to violence, the provision of compensation for individuals imprisoned for acts of terrorism. We have continued to emphasize that it is critical to refrain from all those activities…The ultimate status of Jerusalem is, in fact, a final status issue which will need to be resolved by the parties in the context of direct negotiations. That is not a change to longstanding policy…”
February 2, 2021 – U.S. Department of State Spokesperson Ned Price
“And finally, the United States congratulates Israel and Kosovo on formally establishing diplomatic relations. Yesterday was a historic day. Deeper international ties help promote stability, peace, and prosperity in both regions. When our partners are united, the United States is stronger. The United States will stand by Kosovo as it continues to move forward on its Euro-Atlantic path…
The United States will continue to urge other countries to normalize relations with Israel, and we’ll look for other opportunities to expand cooperation among countries in the region. While we support normalization between Israel and countries in the Arab world, it’s also not a substitute for Israeli-Palestinian peace, and that’s very important. We hope that as Israel and other countries in the region join together in a common effort to build bridges and create new avenues for dialogue and exchange, these efforts contribute to tangible progress towards the goal of advancing a negotiated peace between Israelis and Palestinians.”
January 26, 2021- Biden Administration details to a two state solution to resolve the conflict, avoidance of unilateral actions, sets down markers on political actions by both sides
Richard Mills, Acting US Representative to the UN-
January 12, 2021 – Joint Statement of the 47th U.S.-Israel Joint Political-Military Group (JPMG)
“The JPMG is rooted in the knowledge a strong and secure Israel – and an Israel at peace with its neighbors – is critical to the United States’ strategic interests…
Notably, the United States and Israel maintain unique and robust cooperation on ballistic missile defense, resulting in development of unparalleled capabilities, protecting both Israeli and American service members and citizens. In light of the increasing security threats in the Middle East owing to Iranian production and proliferation of advanced weapon systems, such as cruise missiles, unmanned aerial systems, as well as ballistic missiles, both governments highlighted the mutual need to enhance cooperation to counter such threats and promote an integrated air and missile defense concept of operation.
Today’s JPMG reaffirmed the ironclad strategic partnership between the United States and Israel, underscoring a mutual commitment to advance collaboration in support of regional security and reinforce the historic achievements of the transformative Abraham Accords.”
January 5, 2021 – U.S. Secretary Michael R. Pompeo with David Rubenstein of Bloomberg News
“We always – indeed we have a legal requirement to make sure that Israel maintains its qualitative military edge, but that’s a concept, the idea of Israel’s security being central to how America thinks about not only its relationships, but its sale of American equipment changes when a country decides that Israel is not a threat but a partner…“We’ve simply said we’re going to recognize what’s real – what the reality is. We’re going to acknowledge that. We’re going to ask Palestinian leadership to step up and do the same. So far they have declined to do that. I hope that they will. I hope they’ll do it today or tomorrow or the next day.
If they do, if they get it right, I am very confident that they, being the people that live in these places, can live a far better existence than they do today, and they can have more control and autonomy over their own lives, more wealth and prosperity as well. But so long as their leadership chooses to reject the willingness of the Israelis to engage in a conversation with them about how to move forward, then the plight of these people will continue to be challenged in ways that are just awfully sad.”
December 15, 2020 – U.S. Secretary Michael R. Pompeo with Ben Shapiro
“The administration made two big decisions at the beginning of its time, Ben. And the first was that we were going to continue to support Israel in its right to defend itself, and so things like recognizing Jerusalem as the rightful capital of the Jewish homeland and the Golan Heights, and saying not all settlements are necessarily illegal. And then second, identifying Iran as the primary destabilizing support-factor in the Middle East.
Those two decisions led to the Gulf States recognizing that being partners, friends, commercial traders, security partners with Israel was the right solution. And so you see these Abraham Accords, where you now have countries all over the Middle East saying we don’t want to just fight Israel, we want to be their friend…Countries not only in the Middle East, but in Africa and elsewhere are joining the chorus of nations that recognize that working alongside Israel creates prosperity and security for them, and that is good for the American people and our national security as well.”
December 11, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on Progress Toward Peace
“The agreement reached yesterday between Israel and Morocco to normalize relations is another remarkable step toward peace…This significant step is the result of the hard, diplomatic work of many who have devoted their time and expertise to achieving an outcome that benefits both parties. I want to recognize the incredible efforts made by the professionals here at the Department of State who along with Special Advisor Jared Kushner have worked tirelessly to move the region beyond conflicts of the past…Morocco’s efforts to promote tolerance – from its historical tradition of protecting its Jewish minority, the signing of the Marrakech Declaration, to yesterday’s agreement with Israel – sets an example to the region and throughout the world.”
December 9, 2020 –Senator Bob Menendez on Trump Administration’s Proposed Arms Sale to the UAE
“I am not opposed to these sales if they make sense and pose no threat to the U.S. or Israel security in the short and in the long term, but these sales require and deserve careful and deliberate consideration within the interagency process, and by this Congress… And while I join just about all my colleagues in applauding the advancement of diplomatic relations that builds upon years already of Israeli and Emirati engagement there is absolutely no reason to rush through an arms sale of this magnitude – especially when we are being told there is no connection…
Let me make it clear. I take a backseat to no one when it comes to advancing U.S. policies to protect Israel’s national security. I have proven that time, and time, and time again. But this sale is fundamentally about the United States’ national security, about the United States’ qualitative military edge, and about our long-term national security. This is also about not wanting to start and thinking about at least what does it mean in terms of an advanced arms race in the region.”
November 19, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on Identifying Organizations Engaged in Anti-Semitic BDS Activities
It is the policy of the United States to combat anti-Semitism everywhere in the world and in whatever form it appears, including all forms of discrimination and hatred rooted in anti-Semitism. The United States strongly opposes the global discriminatory boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) campaign (Global BDS Campaign) and practices that facilitate it, such as discriminatory labeling and the publication of databases of companies that operate in Israel or Israeli-controlled areas.
As we have made clear, anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism. The United States is, therefore, committed to countering the Global BDS Campaign as a manifestation of anti-Semitism. To advance this policy, I have directed the Office of the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism to identify organizations that engage in, or otherwise support, the Global BDS Campaign. In identifying such organizations, the Office of the Special Envoy will consider whether an organization is engaged in actions that are politically motivated and are intended to penalize, or otherwise limit, commercial relations specifically with Israel or persons doing business in Israel or in any territory controlled by Israel.
To ensure that Department funds are not spent in a manner that is inconsistent with our government’s commitment to combat anti-Semitism, the State Department will review the use of its funds to confirm that they are not supporting the Global BDS Campaign. Further, the State Department will conduct a review of options consistent with applicable law to ensure that its foreign assistance funding is not provided to foreign organizations engaged in anti-Semitic BDS activities.
The United States urges governments around the world to take appropriate steps to ensure that their funds are not provided directly or indirectly to organizations engaged in anti-Semitic BDS activities.”
November 19, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on the Department of State’s Guidelines on Marking of Goods’ Country of Origin
“We remain committed to an enduring and sustainable peace as outlined in President Trump’s Vision for Peace. We will continue to oppose those countries and international institutions which delegitimize or penalize Israel and Israeli producers in the West Bank through malicious measures that fail to recognize the reality on the ground.”
November 6, 2020 – Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism Elan S. Carr
“Now, of course, I will remind everyone that this administration unveiled a proposal for peace between Israel and the Palestinians that acknowledges historical Jewish claims to those areas while at the same time providing a pathway to Palestinian statehood in those very same areas. And so I think one of the things that has been a hallmark of this administration from day one with regard to Middle East policy is that you can’t build peace on a foundation of falsehoods; you have to build peace on a foundation of truth. And Exhibit A, of course, is recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish people and the state of Israel and moving our embassy there.
“And again, look where we are now. We have peace that has broken out. I mean just incredibly moving examples of real peace and real brotherhood between Israel and the UAE, between Israel and Bahrain, between Israel and Sudan. There are movements with other countries as well.
And I think this is really evidence that when you tell the truth and you stand by your friends, and – very critically – you weaken your adversaries – of course, our chief adversary in the region being the Islamic Republic of Iran that has produced horrific human suffering in the Middle East, has destabilized the region; when you stand with your friends and you weaken your adversaries, good things happen. It’s not a surprise, but that’s – and that’s exactly what we’re saying.
And so there’s nothing complicated about it, and that has nothing to do with criticizing policies of Israel. Any country can be criticized. The United States can, and Israel can. But undermining Israel’s right to exist, denying the Jewish people the right to self-determination, demonizing or delegitimizing Israel, comparing Israel to the Nazis – a member of Congress tweeted just now, made an accusation that – accusing Israel of ethnic cleansing. Today, just now, a member of the United States Congress accusing the Jewish state of ethnic cleansing. And you’ve got to call this out, and criticism is one thing, but focusing unique opprobrium and demonizing the Jewish state is anti-Semitism.
And that’s why, by the way, we’ve taken a very strong stance against BDS, singling Israel out for boycott – basically “don’t buy from the Jews” is what BDS is – is anti-Semitism. And we’ve said it clearly, President Trump has said it, and Secretary Pompeo has said it. And so that’s our position, and I think it’s very, very important that we understand that when people are demonizing or hating the Jewish state, that we not shy away from and not hesitate calling that what it is, which is anti-Semitism.”
September 27, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo with Mark Levin
“Whether that is energy flowing, whether it’s our partner with the democrat – the one democratic state, the Jewish homeland in Israel, the United States was going to take an approach that permitted and created the conditions for these nations to make different decisions that they have historically made. And so you have seen that, right? The strike against Qasem Soleimani, the defeat of the caliphate and ISIS – these are all demonstrations of American commitment to protecting and creating prosperity here in the homeland.
And so we’ve been working. Everybody – I heard the – some people in The New York Times say oh, this was an overnight lucky success. This has been three years of determined work, very focused on the outcomes that we saw with the Abraham Accords now a couple of weeks back: the United Arab Emirates, the Bahrainis acknowledging the fact that Israel has a right to exist and to begin to conduct normal relationships between these important countries. It’s truly – I’m so proud of what the President did and what we’ve accomplished. It’s historic. You will see business ties, you will security ties between these countries, you’ll see all the things that normal nations are able to do with each other.
It’s a direct result of walking away from the central premise of American Middle East policy for the last several decades, which was you can’t have progress towards Middle East peace until such time as the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is resolved in its entirety. President Trump says no, we can do things that create conditions for Middle East peace. We can, for example, recognize that Jerusalem is the rightful capital of Israel and acknowledge that and move our embassy there.
The facts on the ground – I talked in the opening about a realistic foreign policy. The facts on the ground are that the Golan Heights are an important strategic asset to Israel and are part of that state, so we just simply acknowledged that fact. Those were the kinds of things that I think the Arab states saw that America was serious, that we care deeply about stability in the region, and that while we are happy to work to try and resolve the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians – we’d welcome their engagement, we hope that they will begin to be serious about coming to the negotiating table – that we’re not going to allow them to create a precondition for prosperity, security, and peace throughout the Middle East.
We hope there will be other nations will do what the Emiratis and the Bahrainis did a couple weeks back. But importantly, you can begin to see – whether it’s Chad or Sudan or Morocco or Kuwait or Oman – that you can see them all coming to understand that Israel has a right to exist, that Israel is indeed a force for good in the region, and that partnering and working alongside the Israelis is the right model to ultimately get the Palestinians to accept that there is an arrangement that will make life better for the Palestinian people as well.”
September 17, 2020 – U.S Senators Congratulate the Governments and People of Israel, the UAE, and the Kingdom of Bahrain
Senator Menendez: “The United States has long taken interest and initiative in helping broker peace, cooperation, and stability for people across the Middle East. Moreover, Congress has always played a key role in supporting Israel’s right to self-defense, including protecting her Qualitative Military Edge. As we congratulate this move, we also look forward to a sustainable, two-state solution driven by Israelis and Palestinians to live side by side in peace, prosperity, and dignity.”
Senator Graham: “These are breathtaking breakthroughs, which help bring stability to a troubled region and enhance the economies of Israel, UAE, and Bahrain. It will also hopefully set in motion the winding down of generational conflict between the Arab world and Israel. Going forward the biggest winners will be those who pursue peaceful coexistence in the Middle East. The prospects of a sustainable peace deal between the Israelis and Palestinians just became more real. In addition, the United States will now have security arrangements never dreamed of before between Arab and Israeli partners and economic opportunities that benefit the American economy for generations.”
Senator Young: “These agreements between Israel, the UAE, and the Kingdom of Bahrain mark a historic step forward toward peace and stability in the Middle East. These diplomatic achievements will expand economic opportunity, security partnerships, and work to counter the world’s leading state sponsor of terror – Iran. The U.S. stands by our friends and allies in Israel and we are glad to see the UAE and the Kingdom of Bahrain do the same.”
Senator Cardin: “The normalizing of relations between Israel and the UAE and Bahrain is historic and significant. I am proud to introduce this bipartisan resolution with my colleagues, which recognizes the magnitude of these agreements and their impact on regional stability and increased partnerships. I am hopeful these agreements will encourage further Arab countries to normalize relations with Israel and to encourage Israelis and Palestinians to return to the negotiating table in the pursuit of peace.”
September 5, 2020 – President Trump’s Abraham Accords Declaration
“We, the undersigned, recognize the importance of maintaining and strengthening peace in the Middle East and around the world based on mutual understanding and coexistence, as well as respect for human dignity and freedom, including religious freedom.
We encourage efforts to promote interfaith and intercultural dialogue to advance a culture of peace among the three Abrahamic religions and all humanity.
We believe that the best way to address challenges is through cooperation and dialogue and that developing friendly relations among States advances the interests of lasting peace in the Middle East and around the world.
We seek tolerance and respect for every person in order to make this world a place where all can enjoy a life of dignity and hope, no matter their race, faith or ethnicity.
We support science, art, medicine, and commerce to inspire humankind, maximize human potential and bring nations closer together.
We seek to end radicalization and the conflict to provide all children a better future.
We pursue a vision of peace, security, and prosperity in the Middle East and around the world.
In this spirit, we warmly welcome and are encouraged by the progress already made in establishing diplomatic relations between Israel and its neighbors in the region under the principles of the Abraham Accords. We are encouraged by the ongoing efforts to consolidate and expand such friendly relations based on shared interests and a shared commitment to a better future.”
August 24, 2020 –U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo
“It is great to be back again. As you said, this – I’m a frequent visitor here, and each time we build on the relationship, both our military relationship that gets focused on our security relationship, but also our economic relationship too, building out opportunities. We talked about chances for our countries to work together as the whole world tries to push back against this virus that came from Wuhan, China, and I’m confident there are places which our medical systems and pharmaceutical companies will build out a good solution to keep Israelis, Americans, and people all across the world safer and healthier in the weeks and months ahead.
President Trump’s made clear: Iran will never have a nuclear weapon. And we are determined to use every tool that we have to ensure that they can’t get access to high-end weapon systems, air defense systems, the ones that the prime minister spoke of. We think it’s in the best interest of the whole world – many of these leaders tell me so privately. It’s time to stand up. It’s time to publicly account for the fact that Iran is on the cusp on October 18th of having access to those weapons and the money that will come from their sale of those weapons that will be used to inflict real harm, not only in the Middle East but in Europe as well. And so I’m confident that we’ll achieve that, and I welcome Israeli and Gulf state support for our effort. The people most impacted by Iran having weapon systems are all in favor of this arms embargo being extended. The rest of the world should join us.
We had a chance to – I wanted to come here today in part to congratulate the prime minister. I’ll travel to the Emirates to meet with them and congratulate them too. What’s taken place here is deeply consistent with what President Trump set out to do: create a more stable, more prosperous Middle East. This is a really good step in that direction – economic relationships between the Emirates, opportunities for innovation and science. Travel between these two places will now be open and that’s important. That’s important to create, between Israel and this Arab state, this opportunity.
The United States has a legal requirement with respect to qualitative military edge. We will continue to honor that. But we have a 20-plus year security relationship with the United Arab Emirates as well, where we have provided them with technical assistance and military assistance. We will now continue to review that process to continue to make sure that we’re delivering them with the equipment that they need to secure and defend their own people from this same threat, from the Islamic Republic of Iran as well. We are deeply committed to doing that, to achieving that, and we’ll do it in a way that preserves our commitment to Israel as well. I’m confident that both of these objectives can be achieved.”
August 13, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo’s Press Statement on an Historic Day for Peace in the Middle East
“Today is an historic day and a significant step forward for peace in the Middle East. After vigorous diplomatic outreach, President Trump, along with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Emirati Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed, announced an agreement to fully normalize relations.
This is a remarkable achievement for two of the world’s most forward leaning, technologically advanced states, and reflects their shared regional vision of an economically integrated region. It also illustrates their commitment to confronting common threats, as small – but strong – nations.
The United States hopes that this brace step will be the first in a series of agreements that ends 72 years of hostilities in the region. Although the peace treaties between Israel and Egypt and Jordan have not yet fulfilled their full potential, since the 1978 Camp David Accords and the 1994 Wadi Arava Agreement, we have witnessed significant economic development in Egypt and Jordan, an unmistakable dividend of peace.
Today’s normalization agreement between Israel and the Emirates holds similar potential and the promise for a better day for the entire region. The United States congratulates Israel and the Emirates for their important achievement. Blessed are the peacemakers. Mabruk and Mazal Tov.”
June 24, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo at a Press Availability on the Release of the 2019 Country Reports on Terrorism
“Your first question was about Israel. We unveiled a Middle East peace vision some number of months ago now, and we’re continuing to work down that path. Decisions about Israeli and extending sovereignty in other places are decisions for the Israelis to make, and we are talking to all of the countries in the region about how it is we can manage this process for our end state objective. It’s, I think, the objective that the prime minister has certainly acknowledged he wants, right. He wants our Middle East peace vision to be successful. The Gulf states have all indicated that they are hopeful that we can put that in place. I regret only that the Palestinian Authority has refused to participate in that, right. They simply have rejected this out of hand. We simply asked that they come to the negotiating table based on what’s outlined in the Vision for Peace, and they have chosen not to. They have chosen to threaten, to bluster, to assert that they’re going to deny the ability to do security – that’s not good for the Palestinian people. It’s dangerous for the people that live in those places too.
What we’ve asked is for them to come together, for Israel and the Palestinian people to come to the table to negotiate a path forward and to find a resolution to this decades-long challenge. I remain hopeful that in the coming weeks we can begin to make real progress towards achieving that.”
June 19, 2020 – Senators Menendez, Schumer, and Cardin Issue Statement in Opposition to Proposed Unilateral Annexation of the West Bank
“As strong and dedicated supporters of the U.S.-Israel relationship, we are compelled to express opposition to the proposed unilateral annexation of territory in the West Bank.”
“A sustainable peace deal that ensures the long-term security of Israel and self-determination for Palestinians must be negotiated directly between the two parties. Real diplomacy via direct negotiations, while an arduous road, is the only path for a durable peace. For that reason it has consistently been the long-standing, bipartisan policy in Congress to oppose unilateral action by either side. Unilateral annexation runs counter to those longstanding policies and could undermine regional stability and broader U.S. national security interests in the region.”
“We are committed to sustaining a U.S.-Israel relationship based on shared democratic values and our important security assistance partnership. We are also committed to continuing to engage Israelis and Palestinians to find ways to live together with peace, freedom, security and dignity and achieve a two-state solution.”
June 11, 2020 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo at a Press Availability with Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, Attorney General William Barr, and National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien
“We’re also gravely concerned about the threat the court poses to Israel.
The ICC is already threatening Israel with an investigation of so-called war crimes committed by its forces and personnel in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip.
Given Israel’s robust civilian and military legal system and strong track record of investigating and prosecuting wrongdoing by military personnel, it’s clear the ICC is only putting Israel in its crosshairs for nakedly political purposes. It’s a mockery of justice.
More than 300 members of Congress – Republicans and Democrats alike – recently sent me letters asking that the United States support Israel in the face of the ICC’s lawless, politicized attacks.
That’s what the U.S. is dead set on doing, and with good reason. They’re a trusted and wonderful partner and a buttress of American security. If a rogue court can intimidate our friend or any other ally into abrogating its right to self-defense, that puts Americans at risk as well.
Absent corrective action, we can expect the ICC will continue its present, reckless course…
I’ll close by saying this: Never forget the American commitment to real justice and accountability.”
May 8, 2020 – Briefing on Secretary Pompeo’s Travel to Israel with Assistant Secretary Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs David Schenker
Assistant Secretary Schenker: “The United States and Israel draw on each other’s strengths. That is true whether we’re mitigating and containing COVID-19 or countering Iranian destabilizing behavior. We stand side by side with Israel in addressing all threats to the security and prosperity of the American and Israeli peoples. Our unshakeable commitment to Israel’s security is stronger than ever, as is the unbreakable tie between our countries…
The U.S. position hasn’t changed. We continue to pursue the path that the President set out in January when presenting the U.S. vision for peace between Israel and the Palestinians, and we look forward to direct negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.”
March 3, 2020 – Senator Bob Menendez at AIPAC Policy Conference
“Here’s what I know. You are the backbone of a strong U.S.-Israel relationship rooted in our shared values and common dreams. And I stand with you against the many forces that seek to undermine the U.S.-Israel relationship and even Israel’s very right to exist. Now, many of you have heard this before, but I believe in three fundamental truths that bear repeating today:
One: The security of the United States is strong when Israel is strong. Two: The Jewish people have a right to live in peace, security, and prosperity in the indisputable homeland of their ancestors. And three: Israel has a right to defend herself, and the United States will always ensure she has the capabilities necessary to protect her people and her borders.
Now, despite what some fringe elements of the right or left of American politics may say, there is simply no disputing the facts about the strength of America’s bond with Israel. The Congress has consistently voted to provide security assistance to Israel in an overwhelmingly bipartisan way. Congress has consistently voted to impose tough sanctions against Iranian malign activity that threatens Israel’s existence and U.S. interests in the region in a bipartisan way. And Congress has consistently defended the right of the Israeli people to live in peace and security. That is unmistakable.
Now, I won’t pretend that from time to time, my colleagues and I may disagree on how we confront some of our challenges. But there is no disagreement on this: the bond between America and Israel is unbreakable and ironclad…
Hope over fear. Democracy over despotism. Human rights over hatred. These values make the U.S.-Israel relationship strong. These values keep bipartisan support for Israel alive. And these values sustain a partnership between two democracies that has spanned multiple Presidents, Prime Ministers, congressional majorities and Knesset coalitions.”
“You should know that there is no president and no administration that loves Israel more than President Trump and our team…
So let’s take a look at what we’ve done just since the last time I stood right here.
We declared the common-sense truth that the Israeli West Bank settlements aren’t per se inconsistent with international law. We released a groundbreaking Vision for Peace. And President Trump took out one of the world’s worst anti-Semites, the terrorist Qasem Soleimani.
So the previous administration had a phrase they used to say. They used to say that Usama bin Ladin is dead and General Motors is alive. So that was good. I think we can do one better: Qasem Soleimani is dead; and Israel and the United States are alive…
Under President Trump, Israel is not a pariah, but a partner, and rightly so. Our special nations share so much: a pioneering spirit; basic rights and freedoms, including religious freedom and pluralism; rough-and-tumble politics. Indeed, Israel loves democracy so much, today they are holding their third election. They cannot get enough of them.
And just think of all the benefits that Israel brings to the region in which it lives. It’s an example of pluralism and free speech. Israel brings a robust, free-market, innovative economy where entrepreneurship is rewarded. And it is a place, it is a unique place in that region, a place where all can worship freely without fear or favor…
The harm to Israel, the harm to the region, the harm to the relationship between the United States and Israel comes from denying that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, by denying that the closing of the Palestinian embassy in Washington was 100 percent necessary following President Abbas’ remarks at the UN.
My friends, President Trump and his team aren’t standing for this nonsense. We know that the more the Middle East embraces Israel, the brighter their future will be. It’s why we’ve taken action against those who would harm or weaken Israel. We’ve enacted the strongest pressure campaign in history to deprive the Islamic Republic of Iran diplomatic sanctuary, or money for terror. We rallied nations in our own hemisphere, here in the Western Hemisphere, and in Europe to declare Hizbollah a terrorist organization in its entirety… On the settlements issue, we couldn’t be more clear. We’ve concluded that the Obama administration’s wrong approach did not help the peace process or prospects for peace… And I am proud to tell you that, this afternoon, the State Department released official guidance on this subject. Here’s what we said:
We said that we share your frustration. We will continue to work with, trade, and invest in Israel. Neither the Human Rights Council nor the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has the power to tell you what you can and can’t do business in the West Bank. Don’t be intimidated. If you are being subjected to intimidation or harassment because of this database, let America know. And the United States will respond to take actions against members of our business community that are being threatened by this release that was so sorely mistaken.
It’s consistent with all that we have done. We will stand for a strong, free, democratic, and prosperous Middle East and a prosperous Israel at the heart of that Middle East. The more the Middle East embraces Israel, the brighter the future will be. It’s really quite simple. We stand with Israel. We stand for peace in the Holy Land. We stand with the great Israeli people. And we stand for the unbreakable bond between our two great nations, rooted in our shared traditions of freedom and equality.”
https://www.foreign.senate.gov/press/ranking/release/menendez-delivers-keynote-remarks-at-aipac-policy-conference and https://2017-2021.state.gov/israel-central-to-the-middle-easts-future/index.html
February 11, 2020 – U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman
“Well look it’s in our interests in America to support Israel, it’s in our national interests. David Glawe who’s our Undersecretary of Homeland Security spoke at the most recent 9/11 memorial in Jerusalem – one of the most beautiful 9/11 memorials anywhere in the world and he said something that didn’t get picked up that extensively. So I am going to repeat it here. He said, “Israel keeps America safe” and that’s very true and it’s a hard thing to really go into detail or to advertise but it’s true. For generations the American support for Israel very much came from the heart and it still does. It comes from my heart and it comes from the heart of almost everybody I work with in the White House, and it comes from the hearts of millions and millions of Americans. But over the last five to ten years I would say it also comes from the head. We are without question better off when Israel is strong, secure, stable, and prosperous, so it is very much an American interest to support Israel always and understand that when we approach the president’s vision for peace and prosperity we begin with that foundational principle.”
December 22, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo with Dillon Burroughs and Joe Kerr of “A View from the Wall” on CSN Radio
“I’d just ask everyone to pray that there will be a political resolution to this conflict. The Israeli people, the democracy in the Middle East deserve the security and peace that will come from that political resolution, and we brook no ill will to the Palestinians. We want them to have a better life as well. We want a solution that will work for their sustained peace and economic prosperity as well…
We’re working – I have an ambassador named Elan Carr who travels the world working on projects to speak to, address, to call out anti-Semitic activity and to do his level best to create institutions, whether that’s our partner governments or non-governmental organizations that are expressly aimed at protecting people of all faiths, but certainly including those who are Jewish and want to practice their faith without the risk that there will be anti-Semitic activity to take place. We have an obligation to try and do that here in the United States. I know the President has spoken to this very directly. And our team at the State Department speaks and works on this issue often as we travel the world.”
December 20, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on Israel at the International Criminal Court
“Today, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Fatou Bensouda, announced that she has concluded her preliminary examination into the so-called “situation in Palestine” and asked the ICC judges to confirm that the Court may exercise jurisdiction over the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza. By taking this action, the Prosecutor expressly recognized that there are serious legal questions about the Court’s authority to proceed with an investigation.
We firmly oppose this and any action that seeks to target Israel unfairly…The United States also reiterates its longstanding objection to any assertion of ICC jurisdiction over nationals of States that are not parties to the Rome Statute, including the United States and Israel, absent a referral from the UN Security Council or the consent of such a State…The United States remains deeply, firmly, and consistently committed to achieving a comprehensive and lasting peace between Israel and the Palestinians. The only realistic path forward to end this conflict is through direct negotiations.”
July 8, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo at the Christians United for Israel Conference
“Modern Israel is the only truly free nation throughout the entire Middle East. It has an enormous respect for religious freedom, a subject of many of our hearts these days. Here too, Israel’s commitment lights the way for the rest of the Middle East and indeed for the entire world. No country is perfect, but Israel, like America, holds itself to an incredibly high standard.
Israel is a majority Jewish nation, but the government doesn’t force Jewish beliefs on others…
Compare this to many places in the world. Compare Israel’s reverence for liberty with the restrictions on religious freedom facing Christians and people of all faiths throughout the rest of the Middle East…
But thank God. Thank God we have a leader in President Trump – an immovable friend of Israel. President Trump’s commitment is the strongest in history, and it’s been one of the best parts of my job to turn that commitment into real action…The other great thing about this administration is we live in a very real world, and for that reason I was able last March to declare a simple truth, that anti-Zionism is indeed anti-Semitism. Period. Full stop.”
May 9, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on the Occasion of Israel’s National Day
“On behalf of the American people, I offer best wishes and congratulations to all Israelis as you mark the 71st anniversary of Israel’s independence. On this day, the friendship between the United States and Israel has never been stronger. As I said on my last visit to Israel, the alliance that Israel shares with the people of the United States is based on our shared values of liberty and democracy. Together, we will continue to work toward a safer, more stable, and more prosperous Middle East. I am filled with great pride in all that the United States and Israel have accomplished together over the course of the last 71 years, and particularly over the last year. We have worked closely together to counter Iranian aggression, enhance Israel’s relationships in the region, and foster even closer ties between our peoples. I am proud to affirm our continued support for Israel. Yom Ha’atzmaut Sameach.
May 4, 2019 – State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus on the Rocket Attacks on Israel
“The United States strongly condemns the ongoing barrage of rocket attacks by Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad from Gaza upon innocent civilians and their communities across Israel. We call on those responsible for the violence to cease this aggression immediately. We stand with Israel and fully support its right to self-defense against these abhorrent attacks.”
March 26, 2019 – Department Spokesperson Palladino at State Department Press Briefing
“But a lack of Israel’s ability to defend that area would be to undermine Israeli security, and enhancing the Golan Heights is to enhance Israel’s security and which strengthens, frankly, our ability to partner with Israel to fight the common threats we face…”
“As [President Trump] made clear, the statement on the Golan Heights fully reflects our understanding of the unique circumstances that makes it appropriate to recognize Israeli sovereignty at this time…”
“This administration, unlike previous administrations, is willing to acknowledge the reality that there can be no comprehensive peace agreement that does not satisfactorily address Israel’s security needs in the Golan Heights. This is an area that is vital to Israel’s national security…”
“It’s important to say this. We condemn the rocket attacks from Gaza into Israel, and we strongly support Israel’s right to defend itself. The attacks are outrageous and unacceptable…”
“Our position is there must be a complete and permanent halt. We welcome efforts by regional allies that are seeking to restore calm and prevent further attacks. And I have nothing further on that.”
March 14, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo Interviewed by Brian Kilmeade of Fox and Friends
“I’ve not been able to confirm them other than I had an initial report that said that there were two rockets, that they came out of Gaza, and that there weren’t any injuries. The Israelis have a right to defend themselves. I’m confident that they will be able to do that. I regret that the folks in the Gaza Strip – probably Hamas, although I shouldn’t speculate – fired these rockets and put Israelis at risk. This only presents an increased risk of escalation, something that we hope doesn’t happen, but you should know we will support the Israelis’ right to defend themselves.”
December 28, 2018 – Deputy Spokesperson Robert J. Palladino on Israel’s Right to Self-Defense
“The United States fully supports Israel’s right to defend itself against Iranian regional actions that endanger Israeli national security and the safety of the Israeli people. Iranian support of and supply to terrorist groups in Syria and across the region that have the clear intent and capability to strike Israel are unacceptable. The United States fully supports Israel’s right to defend itself against the Iranian regime’s aggressive adventurism, and we will continue to ensure that Israel has the military capacity to do so decisively. The commitment of the Trump Administration and the American people to ensuring Israel’s security is both enduring and unshakeable.”
October 1, 2018 – Acting Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs and State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauret on Ten-Year Memorandum of Understand between the U.S. and Israel
“Today, as we enter the new fiscal year, the ten-year period of the $38 billion Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by the United States and Israel in 2016 begins. Under the terms of the MOU, the United States will set funding for Israel at levels of $3.3 billion in Foreign Military Financing and $500 million for cooperative programs for missile defense over each of the next ten years, a significant increase enabling Israel to acquire additional advanced military capabilities from the United States that will, over time, enhance Israel’s security and strengthen our bilateral relationship. Our implementation of this historic MOU reflects the enduring and unshakable commitment of the President, this Administration, and the American people to Israel’s security. The MOU was negotiated under the previous Administration, reflecting the bi-partisan nature of this commitment. Israel is a valuable and capable ally to the United States that today faces dangerously escalating regional threats, first and foremost from the Iranian regime’s sponsorship of terrorist groups seeking to attack not only Israel but also American interests. Israel is also threatened by the reckless proliferation of destabilizing weapons systems into the region that increase the possibility of an escalated conflict in an already dangerous and volatile theater. The United States unconditionally affirms Israel’s right to self-defense, and this MOU is a concrete demonstration of our commitment to Israel’s capacity to defend itself with a qualitative military edge over all potential regional adversaries.”
June 19, 2018 – US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley
“And then, of course, there is the matter of the chronic bias against Israel. Last year, the United States made it clear that we would not accept the continued existence of agenda item seven, which singles out Israel in a way that no other country is singled out. Earlier this year, as it has in previous years, the Human Rights Council passed five resolutions against Israel – more than the number passed against North Korea, Iran, and Syria combined. This disproportionate focus and unending hostility towards Israel is clear proof that the council is motivated by political bias, not by human rights.”
May 14, 2018 – U.S. Deputy Secretary of State John J. Sullivan at the Dedication Ceremony of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem
“As President Trump said in December, moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem is first a recognition of reality – a reality many, many years in the making. Jerusalem is indisputably the capital of Israel, a capital chosen by a sovereign nation as the seat of its government.
But moving the U.S. embassy, on a broader scale, is also a step towards advancing peace in this city, in the broader region, and throughout the world…
As we do, we also recognize the deep and historic friendship that brough this mission into being. On this day, as several have noted, the United States recognized the State of Israel. It is fitting that today, we mark a new milestone and a new day of bright hope and promise for the United States and Israel.
The State Department is proud to continue our close cooperation with the Israeli Government and people from our new embassy here in Jerusalem. We’re grateful to President Rivlin, Prime Minister Netanyahu, and the ministry of foreign affairs for their friendship and their hard work to keep our alliance ironclad… The United States is committed to Israel, we’re committed to our alliance, and we are committed to building a more peaceful, more prosperous future together. May God bless the U.S.-Israel alliance on this historic day, and I thank you for letting me be a part of it.”
May 10, 2018 – Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS Brett McGurk at the Herzliya Conference
“In the meantime, make no mistake: Israel has every right to protect its borders, to include freedom of action to take measures in self-defense. This is a bedrock principle for the United States, one that is unwavering, and will never change.
And I think this was clearly demonstrated just last night. Iranian forces launched 20 rockets on IDF positions on the Golan Heights, a number of these rockets were intercepted by the iron dome anti-missile system. Others fell well short of their target and actually landed inside Syria. There were no injuries from this attack, but it was provocative, reckless, totally unacceptable, and called for a response. And in response, Israeli Defense Forces rightly struck dozens of Iranian military targets inside Syria. I just returned before coming here at meetings in your Ministry of Defense, and the Israeli Defense Forces that struck last night were precise, proportional, highly effective, and of course they have our full endorsement, and we commend the teams from the IDF that carried them out…
Finally, our bedrock commitment to the security of Israel is unwavering, and we fully support Israeli’s inherent right to self-defense.”
April 29, 2018 – U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo during Meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
“As you said, this relationship’s never been stronger, and I think we should both be proud of that. We had fantastic conversations today on difficult issues facing each of us. We are incredibly proud to be opening the new embassy on May 14th, well ahead of the original timetable. This step comes as Israel celebrates its 70th anniversary of independence and 70 years of recognition as steadfast support for Israel from the American people as well. By recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the seat of its government, we’re recognizing reality. I also stress, as President Trump has said in December, the boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem remain subject to negotiations between the parties, and we remain committed to achieving a lasting and comprehensive peace that offers a brighter future for both Israel and the Palestinians…
We know there are many challenges ahead and we look forward to being your partner in resolving each of them.”
January 31, 2018 – Coordinator for Counterterrorism Nathan A. Sales at the Institute for National Security Studies Annual Conference
“When it comes to counterterrorism, the United States has no closer friend than Israel…
In a time of continued turbulence across the Middle East, Israel is a beacon of stability – the most successful democracy in the region. It’s also a beacon of prosperity. Israel has made itself into a leading center of technological innovation, with many top tech companies from the United States and around the globe opening up shop here. And in a part of the world where the rights of women and minorities are often severely constrained, Israel stands out as a pluralistic and open society – while still maintaining its Jewish identity.
These shared values are the reason for the unbreakable friendship between the United States and Israel. We believe in democracy and self-government. We reward innovation. We’re committed to individual rights, including the free exchange of ideas that is the hallmark of liberal democracy. We honor the right to dissent. We know that men are not angels, as James Madison put it, and so we put strict limits on government power.
America and Israel don’t just share common values. We also share common adversaries. That’s not a coincidence. Part of the reason our enemies target us is because of our open, liberal societies. Today, Israel confronts a number of serious threats, right on its doorstep: An emboldened Iran and its terrorist partner Hizballah. A resilient and determined Hamas. An ISIS branch in the Sinai. The President and the Secretary are committed to working hand-in-hand with our Israeli allies to tackle these challenges. I’d like to briefly outline how the Trump Administration views our shared threats, and what we’re doing to mitigate them – including several new actions we’re announcing today…
Counterterrorism is just one aspect of the broader U.S-Israel partnership, but it’s a vital one that benefits both nations. Both the American and the Israeli people are safer today because of the long-standing and deep CT cooperation between our countries. Our continued counterterrorism cooperation is essential to our collective security.”
January 22, 2018 – US Vice President Mike Pence
“Thanks to the President’s leadership, the alliance between our two countries has never been stronger, and the friendship between our peoples has never been deeper. And I am here to convey a simple message from the heart of the American people: America stands with Israel. We stand with Israel because your cause is our cause, your values are our values, and
your fight is our fight. We stand with Israel because we believe in right over wrong, in good over evil, and in liberty over tyranny. We stand with Israel because that’s what Americans have always done, and so has it been since my country’s earliest days. In the story of the Jews, we’ve always seen the story of America. It is the story of an exodus, a journey from persecution to freedom, a story that shows the power of faith and the promise of hope. And our founders, as others have said, turned to the wisdom of the Hebrew Bible for direction, guidance, and inspiration. As you prepare to commemorate this historic milestone, I say, along with the good people of Israel, here and around the world: Shehecheyanu, v’kiyimanu, v’higiyanu la’z’man ha’zeh. Seventy years ago, the United States was proud to be the first nation in the world to recognize the State of Israel.
The United States appreciates your government’s declared willingness to resume direct peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority. And today, we strongly urge the Palestinian leadership to return to the table. Peace can only come through dialogue. Now, we recognize that peace will require compromise, but you can be confident in this: The United States of America will never compromise the safety and security of the State of Israel. Any peace agreement must guarantee Israel’s ability to defend itself by itself.
Together with our allies, we will continue to bring the full force of our might to drive radical Islamic terrorism from the face of the Earth. The United States will continue to work with Israel, and with nations across the world, to confront the leading state sponsor of terror — the Islamic Republic of Iran. The United States of America will never allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon… we will also no longer tolerate Iran’s support of terrorism, or its brutal attempts to suppress its own people. With an unshakeable bond between our people, and our shared commitment to freedom, I say from my heart: May God bless the Jewish people, may God bless the State of Israel and all who call these lands their home, and may God continue to bless the United States of America.”
December 7, 2017 – Acting Assistant Secretary David M. Satterfield
“The President is committed to advancing a peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. In his view upon reflection, this step, he believes, assists in that process. Full stop…
The decision of the President is to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of the state of Israel. The President has stated that the decision does not touch upon issues of boundaries, of sovereignty, or geographic borders. Full stop.”
December 6, 2017 – US President Donald J. Trump
“I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. I’ve judged this course of action to be in the best interests of the United States of America and the pursuit of peace between Israel and the Palestinians. Israel is a sovereign nation with the right like every other sovereign nation to determine its own capital. Acknowledging this as a fact is a necessary condition for achieving peace. Jerusalem is today, and must remain, a place where Jews pray at the Western Wall, where Christians walk the Stations of the Cross, and where Muslims worship at Al-Aqsa Mosque. This decision is not intended, in any way, to reflect a departure from our strong commitment to facilitate a lasting peace agreement. We want an agreement that is a great deal for the Israelis and a great deal for the Palestinians. We are not taking a position of any final status issues, including the specific boundaries of the Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem, or the resolution of contested borders. Those questions are up to the parties involved.”
March 20, 2017 – Acting Spokesperson Mark C. Tomer in Opposition to UN Human Rights Council Agenda Item Seven
“The United States strongly and unequivocally opposes the existence of the UN Human Rights Council’s Agenda Item Seven: “Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories.” Today’s actions in the Council are yet another reminder of that body’s long-standing bias against Israel. No other nation has an entire agenda item dedicated to it at the Council. The continued existence of this agenda item is among the largest threats to the credibility of the Council.
As an expression of our deeply held conviction that this bias must be addressed in order for the Council to realize its legitimate purpose, the United States decided not to attend the Council’s Item Seven General Debate Session. It does not serve the interests of the Council to single out one country in an unbalanced manner. Later this week, the United States will vote against every resolution put forth under this agenda item and is encouraging other countries to do the same.
The U.S. is dedicated to the pursuit of respect for international human rights by all countries in the world and we call on all UN member states and international partners who are committed to human rights to work with us to pursue much needed reforms in the UN Human Rights Council.”
February 15, 2017 – US President Donald J. Trump
“The state of Israel is a symbol to the world of resilience in the face of oppression — I can think of no other state that’s gone through what they’ve gone — and of survival in the face of genocide. We will never forget what the Jewish people have endured. Your perseverance in the face of hostility, your open democracy in the face of violence, and your success in the face of tall odds is truly inspirational. The security challenges faced by Israel are enormous, including the
threat of Iran’s nuclear ambitions, which I’ve talked a lot about. One of the worst deals I’ve ever seen is the Iran deal. My administration has already imposed new sanctions on Iran, and I will do more to prevent Iran from ever developing — I mean ever — a nuclear weapon.
Our security assistance to Israel is currently at an all-time high, ensuring that Israel has the ability to defend itself from threats of which there are unfortunately many. Both of our countries will continue and grow. We have a long history of cooperation in the fight against terrorism and the fight against those who do not value human life. America and Israel are two nations that cherish the value of all human life. This is one more reason why I reject unfair and one-sided actions against Israel at the United Nations — just treated Israel, in my opinion, very, very unfairly — or other international forums, as well as boycotts that target Israel. Our administration is committed to working with Israel and our common allies in the region towards greater security and stability. That includes working toward a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.
As far as settlements, I’d like to see you hold back on settlements for a little bit. We’ll work something out. But I would like to see a deal be made. I think a deal will be made. So I’m looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both parties like. (Laughter.) I’m very happy with the one that both parties like. I can live with either one. I thought for a while the two-state looked like it may be the easier of the two. But honestly, if Bibi and if the Palestinians
— if Israel and the Palestinians are happy, I’m happy with the one they like the best.”
December 28, 2016 –U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry
“Throughout his Administration, President Obama has been deeply committed to Israel and its security, and that commitment has guided his pursuit of peace in the Middle East. This is an issue which, all of you know, I have worked on intensively during my time as Secretary of State for one simple reason: because the two-state solution is the only way to achieve a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians. It is the only way to ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish and democratic state, living in peace and security with its neighbors. It is the only way to ensure a future of freedom and dignity for the Palestinian people. And it is an important way of advancing United States interests in the region.
June 6, 2016 –U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice
“President Obama is fiercely devoted to Israel and to the well-being of the Jewish people. I know because I see it every day. I watched him as he slipped a folded prayer into the cracks of the Western Wall. I stood with him as we ran our hands over the charred remnants of rockets in Sderot. President Obama has met with Prime Minister Netanyahu 16 times—more than almost any other leader. Our commitment to Israel, has always, transcends partisanship. America’s commitment to Israel’s security is “unshakeable,” that’s not just talk. It’s the nearly $24 billion the United States has provided since President Obama took office to help maintain Israel’s qualitative military edge.
President Obama is committed to ensuring Israel’s security not just for the remainder of his time in office, but for years to come. Israel currently receives more than half of the United States’ entire foreign military assistance budget. And, we’re discussing a new agreement with Israel that would guide our military assistance until 2029…. Our commitment to Israel’s security is also why we continue to urge Israelis and Palestinians to resolve what President Rivlin calls “the tragedy that envelops us all.” . That is why, as we mark the 49th anniversary this week of the Six-Day War, we continue to strongly oppose Israeli settlement activity. Just like every administration since 1967, Republican and Democratic. Just as we oppose counterproductive Palestinian actions and strongly condemn incitement and violence. Settlement activity corrodes the prospects for two states. It moves us toward a one-state reality. Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic state is at stake.
We vigorously opposed the Human Rights Council’s unbalanced and counter-productive focus on Israel. ..when Israel’s adversaries seek to isolate and boycott Israel economically, we forcefully combat these efforts. We strengthen our economic ties even more. The United States stands firmly against these attempts to delegitimize Israel.” Remarks by US National Security Advisor Susan Rice, the American Jewish Committee Global Forum, Washington, DC, June 6, 2016.
May 5, 2016 – U.S. Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes
“We can do things that challenge the conventional thinking that, you know, ‘AIPAC doesn’t like this,’ or ‘the Israeli government doesn’t like this,’ or ‘the gulf countries don’t like it.’ It’s the possibility of improved relations with adversaries. It’s nonproliferation. So all these threads that the president’s been spinning — and I mean that not in the press sense — for almost a decade, they kind of all converged around Iran.
In fact, this Administration has been Israel’s greatest friend and supporter, with an absolutely unwavering commitment to advancing Israel’s security and protecting its legitimacy. On this point, I want to be very clear: No American administration has done more for Israel’s security than Barack Obama’s. The Israeli prime minister himself has noted our, quote, “unprecedented” military and intelligence cooperation.
President Obama and I have made it clear to the Palestinian leadership countless times, publicly and privately, that all incitement to violence must stop. We have consistently condemned violence and terrorism, and even condemned the Palestinian leadership for not condemning it. Far too often, the Palestinians have pursued efforts to delegitimize Israel in international fora.
We have strongly opposed these initiatives, including the recent wholly unbalanced and inflammatory UNESCO resolution regarding Jerusalem. And we have made clear our strong opposition to Palestinian efforts against Israel at the ICC, which only sets back the prospects for peace.
Now, one thing we do know: if Israel goes down the one state path, it will never have true peace with the rest of the Arab world, and I can say that with certainty. The Arab countries have made clear that they will not make peace with Israel without resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. That’s not where their loyalties lie. That’s not where their politics are. That’s the bottom line: If we’re serious about the two-state solution, it’s time to start implementing it now. Advancing the process of separation now, in a serious way, could make a significant difference in saving the two-state solution and in building confidence in the citizens of both sides that peace is, indeed, possible.
This has been the fundamental – the foundational principle of the two-state solution from the beginning: creating a state for the Jewish people and a state for the Palestinian people, where each can achieve their national aspirations. And Resolution 181 is incorporated into the foundational documents of both the Israelis and Palestinians. Recognition of Israel as a Jewish state has been the U.S. position for years, and based on my conversations in these last months, I am absolutely convinced that many others are now prepared to accept it as well – provided the need for a Palestinian state is also addressed.”
March 2, 2015 – U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations Samantha Powers “We believe – firmly – that Israel’s security and the U.S.-Israel partnership transcends politics, and it always will. Our commitments to our partnership with Israel are bedrock commitments – rooted in shared, fundamental values, cemented through decades of bipartisan reinforcement. This partnership should never be politicized, and it cannot and will not be tarnished or broken. There will never be a sunset on America’s commitment to Israel’s security. Never.
Now let me turn to aspects of the U.S.-Israel partnership that get far less attention – what the United States is doing every day to combat anti-Semitism around the world, and to have Israel’s back at the United Nations. At the Security Council, we have guarded vigilantly against any resolution that threatens Israel’s security or undermines the pursuit of peace. Confronting anti- Israel bias is part of a long bipartisan American tradition at the UN.”
December 19, 2014 – US President Barak Obama
“Today I have signed into law S. 2673, the ‘United States-Israel Strategic Partnership Act of 2014,’ an Act that underscores the United States unshakeable commitment to Israel’s security and its future. This bipartisan piece of legislation reflects the importance placed by my administration on strengthening and deepening U.S.-Israel bilateral cooperation and ties. It reinforces critical defense and security programs, which have reached an unprecedented level under my administration.”
July 30, 2013 – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry
“The United States will work continuously with both parties as a facilitator every step of the way. We all understand the goal that we’re working towards: two states living side by side in peace and security. Two states because two proud peoples each deserve a country to call their own. Two states because the children of both peoples deserve the opportunity to realize their legitimate aspirations in security and in freedom. And two states because the time has come for a lasting peace.”
May 12, 2013 – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry
“So I understand the challenge of security that Israel faces. I understand it very well. And I join with President Obama in expressing to the people of Israel our deep, deep commitment to the security of Israel and to the need to find a peace that recognizes Israel as a Jewish state, recognizes Israel as a country that can defend itself, by itself, and that is an important principle with which the Prime Minister and the President and I are in agreement.”
March 21, 2013 –U.S. President Barak Obama
“When I consider Israel’s security, I also think about a people who have a living memory of the Holocaust, faced with the prospect of a nuclear-armed Iranian government that has called for Israel’s destruction. It’s no wonder Israelis view this as an existential threat. But this is not simply a challenge for Israel – it is a danger for the entire world, including the United States. Strong and principled diplomacy is the best way to ensure that the Iranian government forsakes nuclear weapons. This is not a danger that can be contained.
Negotiations will be necessary, but there’s little secret about where they must lead — two states for two peoples. Two states for two peoples… Palestinians must recognize that Israel will be a Jewish state and that Israelis have the right to insist upon their security…an independent Palestine must be viable with real borders that have to be drawn.”
November 30, 2012 – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
“When it comes to a region full of uncertainty, upheaval, revolution, this much is constant and clear: America and Israel are in it together. This is a friendship that comes naturally to us.
Americans honor Israel as a homeland dreamed of for generations and finally achieved by pioneering men and women in my lifetime. We share bedrock beliefs in freedom, equality, democracy, and the right to live without fear. What threatens Israel threatens America, and what strengthens Israel strengthens us. Our two governments maintain not just the formal U.S.-Israel Strategic Dialogue, but a daily dialogue, sometimes an hourly dialogue, at every level. But all that we hope to accomplish together depends on keeping Israelis safe to pursue their passions in peace and security. It depends on ensuring Israel’s future as a secure, democratic, Jewish state.
All sides need to consider carefully the path ahead. Palestinian leaders need to ask themselves what unilateral action can really accomplish for their people… like previous administrations – has been very clear with Israel that these activities set back the cause of a negotiated peace… And without peace, the inexorable math of demographics will, one day, force Israelis to choose between preserving their democracy and remaining a Jewish homeland. I mean, I do believe there would have been a Palestinian state if Yitzhak Rabin had not been murdered. I believe that. Because I think the Israeli people would have trusted him to take the hard decisions that were needed. A strong Israeli military is always essential, but no defense is perfect. And over the long run, nothing would do more to secure Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic state than a comprehensive peace. Protecting Israel’s future is not simply a question of policy for me, it’s personal.”
May 8, 2012 – US Vice President Joe Biden
“That’s why our policy is not one of containment. Let me say it again, the U.S. policy under President Obama is not one of containment. … Barack Obama…reemphasized that Iran posed an existential threat to Israel. And I made it clear to [Bibi], that were I an Israeli, were I a Jew, I would not contract out my security to anybody – even a loyal, loyal, loyal friend like the United States. As the President made clear, we take no option off the table as part of our determination to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.”
March 3, 2012 – President Barak Obama at AIPAC Policy Conference
“No Israeli government can tolerate a nuclear weapon in the hands of a regime that denies the Holocaust, threatens to wipe Israel off the map, and sponsors terrorist groups committed to Israel’s destruction. And so I understand the profound historical obligation that weighs on the shoulders of Bibi Netanyahu and Ehud Barak, and all of Israel’s leaders.” “A nuclear-armed Iran is completely counter to Israel’s security interests. But it is also counter to the national security interests of the United States. Indeed, the entire world has an interest in preventing Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.” “Iran’s leaders should understand that I do not have a policy of containment; I have a policy to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. And as I have made clear time and again during the course of my presidency, I will not hesitate to use force when it is necessary to defend the United States and its interests.”
November 4, 2011 – Assistant Secretary of State for Political Affairs Andrew J. Shapiro
“His [President Obama’s] vision carefully weighs and balances difficult tradeoffs that the parties will need to make, which we believe are necessary to reach our common goal: two states for two peoples – Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people, each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace. We continue to work towards this goal and remain committed to using every opportunity and every tool to make this a reality.”
May 22, 2011 – U.S. President Barak Obama
“…the parties themselves will negotiate a border than is different than the one that existed on June 4, 1967. That’s what mutually agreed-upon swaps means. It is a well-known formula to all who have worked on this issue for a generation. It allows the parties themselves to account for the changes that have taken place over the 44 years. It allows the parties themselves to take account of those changes, including the new demographic realities on the ground, and the needs of both sides. The ultimate goal is two states for two people: Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people and the State of Palestine as a homeland for the Palestinian people –each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition and peace.”
March 19, 2011 – U.S. President Barak Obama
“For over two years, my administration has worked with the parties and the international community to end this conflict, building on decades of work by previous administrations. Yet expectations have gone unmet. Israeli settlement activity continues. Palestinians have walked away from talks. For the Palestinians, efforts to delegitimize Israel will end in failure. Symbolic actions to isolate Israel at the United Nations in September won’t create an independent state.
Palestinian leaders will not achieve peace or prosperity if Hamas insists on a path of terror and rejection. And Palestinians will never realize their independence by denying the right of Israel to exist.
As for Israel, our friendship is rooted deeply in a shared history and shared values. Our commitment to Israel’s security is unshakeable. And we will stand against attempts to single it out for criticism in international forums. But precisely because of our friendship, it’s important that we tell the truth: The status quo is unsustainable, and Israel too must act boldly to advance a lasting peace. The international community is tired of an endless process that never produces an outcome. The dream of a Jewish and democratic state cannot be fulfilled with permanent occupation. What America and the international community can do is to state frankly what everyone knows — a lasting peace will involve two states for two peoples: Israel as a Jewish state and the homeland for the Jewish people, and the state of Palestine as the homeland for the Palestinian people, each state enjoying self-determination, mutual recognition, and peace.
So while the core issues of the conflict must be negotiated, the basis of those negotiations is clear: a viable Palestine, a secure Israel. The United States believes that negotiations should result in two states, with permanent Palestinian borders with Israel, Jordan, and Egypt, and permanent Israeli borders with Palestine. We believe the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps, so that secure and recognized borders are established for both states. The Palestinian people must have the right to govern themselves, and reach their full potential, in a sovereign and contiguous state.
As for security, every state has the right to self-defense, and Israel must be able to defend itself –
– by itself -– against any threat. Provisions must also be robust enough to prevent a resurgence of terrorism, to stop the infiltration of weapons, and to provide effective border security. The full and phased withdrawal of Israeli military forces should be coordinated with the assumption of Palestinian security responsibility in a sovereign, non-militarized state. And the duration of this transition period must be agreed, and the effectiveness of security arrangements must be demonstrated.
These principles provide a foundation for negotiations. Palestinians should know the territorial outlines of their state; Israelis should know that their basic security concerns will be met. I’m aware that these steps alone will not resolve the conflict, because two wrenching and emotional issues will remain: the future of Jerusalem, and the fate of Palestinian refugees.”
January 17, 2011 – Ambassador Samuel Lewis at the Conference on the U.S.-Israeli Relationship
“The relationship [with Israel] is deeper and wider than government to government, it is unique among all our relationships in the world. [The Strategic relationship]—did not grow without rough spots along the way in the relationship. What did it take to build that relationship? US- Israel has an unwritten alliance, no treaty… Agreements exist in many understandings, congressional acts, letters of assurance, promises to supply weapons, but there is no formal treaty. There is formal access and so many channels… A spider web of support exists from the history, values, strategic issues, as good a relationship as if there were a treaty…The relationship is deeper and wider than government to government, it is so unique among all our relationships in the world.”
The US-Israeli relationship exists like a Catholic marriage of old: you can love each other, yell at each other, disagree with each other, even leave each other for a period of time, but you do not get a divorce.” Remarks by Samuel W. Lewis, Conference on the US-Israeli relationship, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, Miami, Florida, January 17, 2011.
September 15, 2010 – U.S. Middle East Negotiator Senator George Mitchell at the Sharm el-Sheikh Summit
“We have said many times that our vision is for a two-state solution that includes a Jewish, democratic state of Israel living side by side in peace and security with a viable, independent, sovereign, and contiguous state of Palestine. But of course, this is one of many sensitive issues that the parties will need to resolve themselves, and that is the point of negotiations. The parties will reach agreement on all major issues.”
September 1, 2010 –U.S. President Barak Obama
“The purpose of these talks is clear. These will be direct negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. These negotiations are intended to resolve all final status issues. The goal is a settlement, negotiated between the parties, that ends the occupation which began in 1967 and results in the emergence of an independent, democratic, and viable Palestinian state, living side by side in peace and security with a Jewish state of Israel and its other neighbors. That is the vision we are pursuing.”
November 25, 2009 – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
“We believe that through good-faith negotiations the parties can mutually agree on an outcome which ends the conflict and reconciles the Palestinian goal of an independent and viable state based on the 1967 lines, with agreed swaps, and the Israel goal of a Jewish state with secure and recognized borders that reflect subsequent developments and meet Israeli security requirements. Let me say to all the people of the region and world; our commitment to achieving a solution with two states living side by side in peace and security is unwavering.”
June 4, 2009 – U.S. President Barack Obama
“America’s strong bonds with Israel are well known. This bond is unbreakable. It is based upon cultural and historical ties, and the recognition that the aspiration for a Jewish homeland is rooted in a tragic history than cannot be denied. Threatening Israel with destruction –or repeating vile stereotypes about Jews—is deeply wrong…Let there be no doubt: the situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable. And America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspirations for dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own. …The only resolution is for the aspirations of both sides to be met through two states, where Israelis and Palestinians each live in peace and security.” “The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. This construction [of settlements] violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace. It is time for these settlements to stop.”
May 18, 2009 – U.S. President Barak Obama with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
“I have said before and I will repeat again that it is, I believe, in the interest not only of the Palestinians, but also the Israelis and the United States and the international community to achieve a two-state solution in which Israelis and Palestinians are living side by side in peace and security. And I am confident that in the days, weeks and months to come we are going to be able to make progress on that issue.”
June 24, 2002 – U.S. President George Bush
“My vision is two states, living side by side in peace and security… the United States of America will support the creation of a Palestinian state whose borders and certain aspects of its sovereignty will be provisional until resolved as part of a final settlement in the Middle East. A Palestinian state will require a vibrant economy, where honest enterprise is encouraged by honest government. The United States, the international donor community and the World Bank stand ready to work with Palestinians on a major project of economic reform and development. The United States will not support the establishment of a Palestinian state until its leaders engage in a sustained fight against the terrorists and dismantle their infrastructure. This will require an externally supervised effort to rebuild and reform the Palestinian security services. The security system must have clear lines of authority and accountability and a unified chain of command.
America is pursuing this reform along with key regional states. The world is prepared to help, yet ultimately these steps toward statehood depend on the Palestinian people and their leaders.”
November 19, 2001 – U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell
“We have a vision of a region where Israelis and Arabs can live together in peace, security and dignity. We have a vision of a region where two states, Israel and Palestine, live side by side within secure and recognized borders.”
January 7, 2001 –President Bill Clinton at Israel Policy Forum
“The fact is that the people of Israel dreamed of a homeland. The dream came through; but when they came home, the land was not all vacant. Your land is also their land, it is the homeland of two people. And, therefore, there is no choice but to create two states and make the best of
July 9, 1996 – Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Bill Clinton
Dennis Ross described Bibi Netanyahu’s first meeting with President Clinton in 1996: Noted
Ross, after his election, “Bibi was overcome by hubris. He had surprised us all by winning: the Americans, the Israeli media, and even his own party leaders. Now he would prove to the world that he knew best how to deal with the Arabs and the Palestinians…he was coming to Washington not as leader of the [Israeli] opposition but as the Prime Minister of Israel—and he would teach us the realities of the Middle East, or at least that is what he thought. In the meeting with President Clinton, Netanyahu was nearly insufferable, lecturing and telling us how to deal with the Arabs. He would respect the Oslo agreement because a democratically elected government in Israel had adopted it, but there would have to be adjustments and new negotiations over part of it…After Netanyahu was gone, President Clinton observed: “He thinks he is the superpower, and we are here to do whatever he requires.” No one on our side disagreed with that assessment.” Dennis Ross, The Missing Peace, Farrar Strauss and Giroux, 2004, pp. 261-262.
June 1992 – U.S. Secretary of State James A. Baker
“The chill in [Israel] relations with the United States as a result of an intransigent settlements policy cost Likud dearly [in the June 1992 elections], because proper management of the US relationship is a must for any Israeli government to succeed. When we were accused of trying to dictate to Israel on a domestic policy matter (settlements), our position simply was that we weren’t saying Israelis weren’t free to live anywhere they chose, or that the government wasn’t free to build settlements in the territories—but simply that we weren’t going to furnish U.S. tax dollars to pursue a course that ran counter to American policy under all previous administrations, Republicans and Democrats.” James A. Baker, The Politics of Diplomacy, Putnam, 1995, pp.
1991 – Former U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon, Career US Diplomat Morris Draper
“I met with such organizations like AIPAC (American Israel Political Action Committee) every once in a while. I met with Tom Dyne, the Executive Director. I met with him every January as what was called the “Javits report” was sent to Congress. That was the annual forecast of our security assistance sales for the coming year would be. I would brief them about what sales were anticipated in the Middle East. Occasionally, they would object to a specific anticipated sale– although since this was a briefing, we would not change our position–, but because of that annual briefing AIPAC was never surprised by our sale announcements. These meetings enabled me to defend our sales policies; then I would occasionally meet with AIPAC in other venues. I did not deal with them on a weekly basis, which did not enhance my standing with them; all of my predecessors had told me that relationships with AIPAC were difficult and tortured.
I met regularly with the Conference of Presidents of major Jewish Organizations, which represented all of the large Jewish groups in the US. Those sessions were separate and apart from my meetings with AIPAC. I felt that it was a disservice to American Jewish community for me to communicate with it only through AIPAC. The Conference of Presidents is a much broader organization than AIPAC. I also met regularly with the Presidents of major American-Arab organizations. I tried to cover as many of these constituent groups as I could–not only those interested in the Middle East, but also those representing former South Asian people.”
AIPAC, and other constituent groups, have their own agendas and I doubt that any meeting that I might have with them would have changed their views. They had their views and our differing perceptions, freely expressed, is the core strength of a democracy.” Remarks by Morris Draper, Oral History Interview, US Ambassador to Lebanon, US Department of State, February 27, 1991, http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/r?ammem/mfdip:@field(DOCID+mfdip2004dra01)
November 11, 1978 – U.S. President Jimmy Carter
Carter told Anwar Sadat, “I will represent your interests as if they were my own. You are my brother. I hope I will never let you down. You are probably the most admired statesman in the US. On the other hand said ZB, “In contrast, exchanges between Carter and Begin were icy, and even mutual praise was formalistic and devoid of any personal feeling.” Zbigniew
Brzezinski, Power and Principle, p. 284.
1978 – U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Roy Atherton
“Israelis were worried about being stampeded about starting down the slippery slope [withdrawal to the 1967 lines]. There was inadequate understanding of the sort of political psychology of Israel, and how you deal with the Israelis, and what their own complexes and hang-ups were.
And Carter and Brzezinski and company talked to them without really understanding how difficult some of these issues were in terms of their domestic political [world].” Ken Stein interview with Roy Atherton, formerly Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, Washington, DC. October 30, 1992.
1978 – U.S National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski
According to Zbigniew Brzezinski, Carter’s National Security Adviser, Carter, “increasingly frustrated by Begin’s provocations on the settlements decided to increase the number of planes to Egypt…” Carter remarked to Brzezinski how irritated he was that some Senators like Frank Church had promised to support the arms package deal and then backed away. Brzezinski acknowledged that he developed the package deal as a “strategy to paralyze the powerful Israeli lobby on the Hill.” Said Carter, “it was striking the degree to which some senators are afraid to stand up for the American national interest and will simply do the bidding of a powerful lobby.” Zbigniew Brzezinski, Power and Principle, p 247-249.
May 1, 1978 – U.S President Jimmy Carter
“My belief is that a permanent settlement will not include an independent Palestinian nation on the West Bank, my belief is that a permanent settlement will not call for a complete withdrawal of Israel from occupied territories. My belief is that a permanent settlement will be based substantially upon the home rule proposal [for the West Bank] that Prime Minister Begin has put forward. I have never favoured an independent Palestinian state. I still don’t favour one and I have no intention of deviating from that position. The suffering of European Jews under the Nazis in Germany has not been as vivid in the memory of most of us as it has been to the Jews themselves, particularly those whose families were among the victims. During World War II, we ignored –sometimes deliberately ignored –the suffering of European Jews under Hitler. I think this fact alone explains why Jews, particularly those in Israel, now feel that they cannot depend upon verbal assurances or written guarantees. It explains why Israelis seek to be self-sufficient, to rely upon themselves.” President Jimmy Carter, New York Post, May 1, 1978 was also quoted in Journal of Palestine Studies, Spring 1978, Vol. VII, No. 4, Issue 28, pp. 168-171.
1978 – Deputy to the White House Chief of Staff Hamilton Jordan, Mark Siegel Siegel’s recollection of Brzezinski’s anti-Israeli and anti-AIPAC sentiment, “there was an incident after the joint Soviet-American communiqué and all of the uproar about that. I
scheduled a series of monthly meetings where I would bring in Jewish leadership into the White House in to the state dining room for luncheons. The President spoke once. The Vice President spoke once, whatever. There was one occasion where Brzezinski spoke, I don’t know if it was a solo speak or after, but no one else in the administration on a high level was there, but we had the cream of the crop, the President’s conference, I think. Someone was complaining about the . . . this was actually later on, now I remember it, but someone was complaining about the arms F-15 sale to Saudi Arabia, which ultimately led me to leave. So this had to be in February of 1978 and Brzezinski, remember the whole point of these meetings was to reassure the community.[This was] February 1978 and the whole point of me bringing these people from all over the country every month was to reassure them that we, the White House, had the best interest of Israel. We were a friend, we were not an enemy, we were not hostile. Someone, one of the Presidents, complained about the F-15 sale. Brzezinski got up and he pointed his finger away like this and he said, “You people have to decide whether you are Americans or whether your Jews”. There was an audible gasp. I was the classic dual loyalty, but for him “you people” from a pole, you could just . . .” Ken Stein interview with Mark Siegel, July 21, 2010. Washington DC, recollections of the meeting in the White House with Jewish leaders, February 1978.
March 1977 – U.S. President Jimmy Carter interview with Ken Stein
Stein: In Keeping Faith, you say your meeting with Yitzhak Rabin was an “unpleasant surprise”–those were your terms there, “unpleasant surprise.” You went on to speak about his strange reticence to speak about the negotiating progress. Was it the substance or was it the format that surprised you about Rabin?
Carter: The fact that he had no interest in it at all.
JC: It was just like talking to a dead fish. I was so committed at that time to move forward with Rabin, with Hussein, with Sadat, and with Assad. And when Rabin came, whom I had known before–he had just been in Atlanta in 1972–and when I went and visited (it may have been 1971), when I visited Israel, Rabin flew back from (as Governor), he flew back from South Africa just to be with me, he was down on a diamond-buying mission. And so he was kind of my host in Israel and had arranged for Golda Meir to furnish us a driver in Israel, so I was looking forward to meeting with Rabin, you know, as kind of a peg on which I could hang my whole Mideast peace ambitions. And he was absolutely and totally uninterested.” Ken Stein interview with Jimmy Carter, Atlanta, Georgia, February 19, 1991.
December 17, 1975 – U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger
“We don’t need Israel for influence in the Arab world. On the contrary, Israel does us more harm than good in the Arab world. You yourself said your objection to us is Israel. Except maybe that we are capitalists. We can’t negotiate about the existence of Israel, but we can reduce its size to historical proportions. I don’t agree that Israel is a permanent threat. How can a nation of three million be a permanent threat? They have a technical advantage now. But it is inconceivable that peoples with wealth and skill and the tradition of the Arabs won’t develop the capacity that is needed. So I think in ten to fifteen years, Israel will be- like Lebanon—struggling for existence, with no influence in the Arab world. If the issue is the existence of Israel, we can’t cooperate.
But if the issue is more normal borders, we can cooperate.” Memorandum of Conversation between Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and Saddun Hammadi, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Iraq.
March 1975 – U.S. Secretary of State Kissinger to President Ford
A breakdown in negotiations over the second phase of Israeli disengagement from the Sinai— Prime Minister Rabin had rejected President Sadat’s offer–led Ford and Kissinger to threaten a re-evaluation of U.S. policy. A phone conversation between Kissinger and Max Fisher, a Republican supporter active in Jewish causes, captured the state of tension as controversy over Sinai II unfolded. The next day, speaking with President Ford, Kissinger said that “Fisher called me in a state of agitation.” Believing that the Israelis were being uncooperative and worried that the U.S. Jewish community would attack the administration’s step-by-step diplomacy, Kissinger advised Ford that “We have to show Israel that we are a great power, and they don’t run our foreign policy.” Foreign Relations Documents of the United States, 1968-1976.
1971 – (no date provided) US. President Nixon to White House Chief of State H.R. Haldeman
“Convinced by Rogers that Sadat was mellowing in his attitude towards Israel and that the expulsion of Soviet military advisers from Egypt could be had in exchange for Israeli carrots, he authorized the secretary to press the Israelis into an interim agreement on the Suez Canal, providing this explanation: ‘[I]t is essential that no more aid programs for Israel be approved until they agree to some kind of interim action on the Suez or some other issue…the interests of the United States will be served […] by tilting the policy […] on the side of 100 million Arabs rather than on the side of two million Israelis.’ In June, Nixon coupled word with deed and suspended the delivery of Phantoms, telling his chief of staff and confidante H.R. Haldeman that he would not ‘play the Jewish game’ of ‘strin[ging] us along until the elections […] when they hope to replace us. Noam Kochavi, “Joining the Conservative Brotherhood: Israel, President Nixon, and the political consolidation of the ‘special relationship’, 1969-73. Cold War History. Vol 8, No. 4, November 2008, pp. 460.
Early 1970s –U.S. State Department Official David Korn
“Things were still under the shadow of the 1967 war. The feeling was that we had some moral commitment to the Israelis. We left them to go alone. We didn’t fulfill on this commitment. We arranged their withdrawal from Sinai in 1957 and the UN forces and all that and gave some commitments there, but they were not hard and fast. When Nasser sent his forces into the Sinai in 1967 and closed the Straits of Tiran, the Johnson Administration flailed around. It was too heavily committed in Vietnam to be able to mount a real effort in the Middle East. Then finally the Israelis took things into their own hands. This really meant that the United States was not pushing the Israelis very hard on anything. (Korn started his Foreign Service career in 1956 and left the department in the late 1970s. Korn served in various positions working primarily on Arab-Israeli and Arab affairs. He was a desk officer during the 1967 war, was the State Department official who handled Henry Kissinger’s visit to Damascus in December 1973, and among other assignments, he staffed several negotiating missions in the aftermath of Sadat’s 1977 visit to Jerusalem. Interview with David A. Korn, Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training Foreign Affairs Oral History Project; Charles Stuart Kennedy December 11, 1990.
1970s –U.S. State Department Official Hal Saunders
“Frankly speaking, the Israeli lobby in the United States has created a number of American anti- Semites. The people you mentioned were on the Israeli ‘character assassination’ list. If you look in the editions of the ‘Near East Report’ over the years, you can see how certain people who were significantly involved in Middle East policy development were treated. Many of them were subjected to character assassination. It is to these officials’ credit that they made pro-US policy and did not succumb to lobbying pressures. In the days when the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee was run by a humane person like Isaiah (Sy) Kenan, the Department’s NEA assistant secretaries and their deputies had very good relationships with the Israeli lobby. Then the dialogue was civil and serious. I don’t think that Isaiah (Sy) Kenan would ever have maligned the State officials as some of the other Israeli publicists did later.” Remarks by Harold Saunders, Undersecretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, Oral History Interview, US, Department of State, November 24, 1993.
1969 – U.S. Under-Secretary for Political Affairs Joseph Sisco
“Our interests in the Middle East do not center on Israel alone. Our moral and practical commitment to Israel is by no means toward everything Israel wants or does. Let me tell you frankly: If our friendship with Israel is the only thing the United States is left with in the Middle East, that will be a catastrophic setback for American policy. We must work for a political solution because it is the only thing that will safeguard our own array of [national] interests in the region.” Remarks by Joseph Sisco, Under-Secretary for Political Affairs, US Department of State to Israel Ambassador to the US. Yitzhak Rabin, circa June 1969, as quoted in Yitzhak Rabin, The Rabin Memoirs, Boston: Little Brown and Co, 1979, p.149.
1968 – U.S. President Lyndon Johnson
“We can’t support an Israel that sits tight [vis a vis] the territories. The Israelis should be avoiding permanent moves in [the] occupied lands [and by foreswearing ‘nuclear weapons and missiles.’ Eshkol could have the Skyhawks, but unless Israel endorsed UN Resolution 242 and renewed its pledge not to go nuclear, there would be no Phantoms.” Quoted in Douglas Little,” The United States and Israel, 1957-1968,” International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, Vol 25, No. 4 (Nov 1993), pp. 579.
December 29, 1967 –U.S. National Security Council Adviser on the Middle East, Harold Saunders
“We’ll make sure Israel has our political support and equipment it needs to defend itself. But we can’t tie ourselves to ‘fortress’ Israel, especially if Israel gets SSMS or decides to build nuclear weapons.” Remarks by Harold Saunders, National Security Advisor, Middle East, “Rough Sketch of Package for Eshkol,” December 29, 1967, Countries: Israel, Box 144, National Security Files, LBJ Library.
June 19, 1967 – U.S. President Lyndon Johnson’s Five Principles of Peace
“[Fundamental right] to live in peace, justice for refugees, protection of maritime rights, restricting arms race, respect for political independence and territorial integrity of all states. And ‘return to the situation as it was on June 4’ is not a prescription for peace but for renewed hostilities.”
January 1957 – U.S. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles
“If the United states does not make itself felt strongly in the [Middle East] area, I think it is ‘curtains” for Israel.” John Foster Dulles, Testimony Executive Session of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, January 2, 1957. Foreign Relations of the United States- Near East, Vol. 9, p. 29.
August 21, 1955 – U.S. Secretary of State John Foster Dulles
“What are the principal remaining problems? They are those which were unresolved by the armistices of 1949 which ended the fighting between Israelis and Arabs. Before taking up these problems specifically, I would first pay high tribute to what the United Nations has done to preserve tranquility and to serve humanity in the area. Despite these indispensable efforts, three problems remain that conspicuously require to be solved.
The first is the tragic plight of the 900,000 refugees who formerly lived in the territory that is now occupied by Israel. These uprooted people should, through resettlement and—to such an extent as may be feasible —repatriation, be enabled to resume a life of dignity and self- respect. To this end, there is need to create more arable land where refugees can find permanent homes and gain their own livelihood through their own work.
The second is the pall of fear that hangs over the Arab and Israel people alike. The Arab countries fear that Israel will seek by violent means to expand at their expense. The Israelis fear that the Arabs will gradually marshal superior forces to be used to drive them into the sea, and they suffer from the economic measures now taken against them.
The third is the lack of fixed permanent boundaries between Israel and its Arab neighbors. The United States, as a friend of both Israelis and Arabs, has given the situation deep and anxious thought and has come to certain conclusions, the expression of which may help men of good will within the area to fresh constructive efforts.
I speak in this matter with the authority of President Eisenhower. Compensation is due from Israel to the refugees. However, it may be that Israel cannot, unaided, now make adequate compensation. If so, there might be an international loan to enable Israel to pay the compensation which is due and which would enable many of the refugees to find for themselves a better way of life. President Eisenhower has authorized me to say that, given a solution of the other related problems, he would recommend that the United States join in formal treaty engagements to prevent or thwart any effort by either side to alter by force the boundaries between Israel and its Arab neighbors. The existing lines separating Israel and the Arab States were fixed by the armistice agreements of 1949. They were not designed to be permanent frontiers in every respect; in part, at least, they reflected the status of the fighting at the moment. If agreement can be reached on these basic problems of refugees, fear, and boundaries, it should prove possible to find solutions for other questions, largely economic, which presently fan the flames of hostility and resentment.
It should also be possible to reach agreement on the status of Jerusalem. The United States would give its support to a United Nations review of this problem.” Remarks by Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, August 21, 1955, Department of State Bulletin, Vol. 33, July – September 1955, pp. 378-380.
July 10, 1948 – Phillip Jessup, Acting U.S Representative at the United Nations to the Secretary of State (US position on why to accept 10 day truce in Arab-Israeli war, 1948)
“Delay will reflect very adversely on prestige and effectiveness of the Security Council; of delay will increase risk of new dissension between the US and UK; delay will risk of serious break in our bipartisan foreign policy and of hindering thereby a settlement, in view of the fact that both our parties are wholly committed to support Israel and that in the present political circumstances one or the other party may feel impelled to take some precipitate action.
“Arabs are living in a dream world where the political fact of existence of Israel (supported by the USSR and US—in the US strongly by both political parties) is denied and where it is imagined that even the ghost of this fact may be laid by resort to arms, It is wholly contrary to our political and strategic interests and our oft repeated professions of friendship for Arabs to allow them to continue to delude themselves in this manner.”
“While we must so far as possible try to maintain maximum possible friendly relations with Arab states, we cannot ignore our relations with Israel. Failure to support Israel, in the Security Council would almost certainly induce pressures which might be irresistible and because not planned by us, far less satisfactory than a well-considered policy of strong public support.” Delay weakens, or equivocation in our policy will unquestionably give Russians strong propaganda advantage not only in the Security Council and in Israel but also among world Jewry.”
“Our representatives should point out that apparent Arab reliance on theory that the US support for Israel is inspired by local political considerations is specious; both major political parties emphatically taking the same position; no change is this bipartisan position is conceivable. We fully recognize that this action requires a great deal of courage in light of probably shock to Arabs and resultant risks of Arab action re oil concessions, air base facilities, etc. On the other hand, this action in views of strong bipartisan support of Israel in this country will have to be faced up to sooner or later, and we are not at all convinced that the risk of Arab retaliation is nearly as great as they would have us believe, particularly from the long run viewpoint. We believe that Bernadotte (the UN mediator) in theory that the Arabs would be relieved to yield to strong UN pressure.”
Foreign Relations of the United States, Near East, Volume 5, 1948, pp. 1206-1207; 1209.
May 14, 1948- US Secretary of State Marshall sends letter of Jewish State recognition to Jewish Agency Representative, Eliyahu Esptein
“I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of May 14, 1948 and to inform you that on May 14, 1948at 6:11pm, Washington time, The President of the United States issued the following statement:
“This Government has been informed that a Jewish state has been proclaimed in Palestine, and recognition has been requested by the provisional government thereof.
“The United States recognizes the provisional government as the defacto authority of the new State of Israel.” Foreign Relations of the United States, The Near East, South Asia, and Africa, Volume 5, 1948, Part 2, p. 992.
March 15, 1948 – President Truman’s Special Counsel Clark Clifford Doubting Impact of Arab Oil if U.S. Supports a Jewish State
“It is argued that our Arabian oil supplies will be imperiled if we support the [UN] Assembly’s resolution for partition of Palestine. There are those who say that such a course of action will not get us oil, that the Arabs will not sell us oil if we back up the United Nations partition plan. The fact of the matter is that the Arab states must have oil royalties or go broke. For example, 90% of Saudi Arabia’s revenues come from American oil royalties. Their need of the United States is greater than our need for them. …the United States appears in the ridiculous role of trembling before threats of a few nomadic desert tribes. This has done us irreparable damage. Why should Russia or Yugoslavia, or any other nation treats us with anything but contempt in light of our shillyshallying appeasement of the Arabs. After all, the only successful opposition to the Russian advance has been in Greece and Turkey. You proclaimed a bold policy and stood your ground.
The Truman Doctrine, so far, has been the one outstanding success in a disintegrating situation.” Foreign Relations of the United States, 1948, Memorandum to President Truman, March 15, 1948, Vol. V, 1948, pp. 694-95.
February 24, 1948 – U.S. Government Views Opposing Jewish State after November 1947 Partition Vote
March 15, 1948 – President Truman’s Special Counsel Clark Clifford Doubting Impact of Arab Oil if U.S. Supports a Jewish State
“It is argued that our Arabian oil supplies will be imperiled if we support the [UN] Assembly’s resolution for partition of Palestine. There are those who say that such a course of action will not get us oil, that the Arabs will not sell us oil if we back up the United Nations partition plan. The fact of the matter is that the Arab states must have oil royalties or go broke. For example, 90% of Saudi Arabia’s revenues come from American oil royalties. Their need of the United States is greater than our need for them. …the United States appears in the ridiculous role of trembling before threats of a few nomadic desert tribes. This has done us irreparable damage. Why should Russia or Yugoslavia, or any other nation treats us with anything but contempt in light of our shillyshallying appeasement of the Arabs. After all, the only successful opposition to the Russian advance has been in Greece and Turkey. You proclaimed a bold policy and stood your ground.
The Truman Doctrine, so far, has been the one outstanding success in a disintegrating situation.” Foreign Relations of the United States, 1948, Memorandum to President Truman, March 15, 1948, Vol. V, 1948, pp. 694-95.
September 22, 1947 – U.S. Department of State, Head of Near Eastern Affairs Loy Henderson opposes Zionism and Jewish state
“The UNSCOP Majority Plan  is not only unworkable; if adopted, it would guarantee that the Palestine problem would be permanent and still more complicated in the future…The proposals contained in the UNSCOP plan are not only not based on any principles of an international character, the maintenance of which would be in the interests of the United States, but they are in definite contravention to various principles laid down in the Charter as well as to principle on which American concepts of Government are based…These proposals, for instance, ignore such principles as self-determination and majority rule. They recognize the principle of a theocratic racial state and even go so far in several instance as to discriminate on the grounds of religion and race against persons outside of Palestine…We are under no obligations to the Jews to set up a Jewish state. The Balfour Declaration and the Mandate provided not for a Jewish state, but for a Jewish national home. Neither the United States nor the British Government has ever interpreted the term ‘Jewish national home’ to be a Jewish national state.” Foreign Relations of the United States, “The Director of the Office of Near Eastern and African Affairs. Loy Henderson to the Secretary of State George C. Marshall,” Sept. 22, 1947.
https://history.state.gov/historicaldocuments/frus1947v05/d804 For Henderson’s views of Zionism, Jews, the Arab world, the Arab world, and his diplomatic postings, see Loy W. Henderson Oral History Interview, Harry S Truman Library, June 14, 1973 and July 5, 1973, https://www.trumanlibrary.gov/library/oral-histories/hendrson
June 1940 – US State Department officials anti-Jewish outlooks from the early 1930s through the mid-1940s systematically worked and applied anti-(Jewish) immigration policy, denying Jews access to visas and immigration to the US. In context, American immigration policy was by shaped by anti-Communism, fear of US being flooded by ethnic and political refugees in the depression; concerted efforts were enforced to deny immigrants opportunities to apply for US visas. Restrictions on immigration to the US were inserted in US immigration laws in 1917 and 1924, before the Nazi rise to power in Germany. This general policy of curtailing foreign immigration merged conveniently with deeply held personal an anti-Jewish and anti-Semitic views. These were espoused in varying degrees of anti-Jewish antipathy; those who espoused anti-Jewish views either moderately or rabidly included, Jay Pierrepoint Moffat, William Phillips, Cordell Hull, Loy Henderson, Breckrinridge Long, Dean Atcheston, among others. Additional evidence of their anti-semitism and racism emerged from American politicians from members of congress. This helped form a key basis for emerging anti-Zionist outlooks. Some who served in the State Department under FDR, implemented policy. Breckinridge Long stated in June 1940, “We can delay and effectively stop for a temporary period of indefinite length the number of immigrants into the United States. We could do this by simply advising our consuls to put every obstacle in the way and to require additional evidence and to resort to various administrative devices which would postpone and postpone and postpone the granting of the visas.” Long stonewalled initiatives to save European Jews; congressional testimony in 1943 and 1944 revealed “the apathy and callousness [against Jews] of Long and his compatriots at the State Department,” See Kathy Warnes, “Wilbur Carr, The Imperial State Department and Immigration: 1920-1945,” pp. 18-19, 2011, https://historybecauseitshere.weebly.com/uploads/1/2/9/3/12938817/wilburcarr.pdf
September 21, 1922, US Senate and Congress endorse Jewish National Home idea
“Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress Assembled: That the United States of America favors the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of Christians and all other non-Jewish communities in Palestine, and that the holy place and religious buildings and sites in Palestine shall be adequately protected.” United States. Congress. Senate and the House of Representatives. U.S. Public Resolution No. 73. Res. 73, 67th Congress, 2nd Session. Washington DC: n.p., 1922.