Israel’s ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, published a powerful and persuasive article in Foreign Policy magazine that highlights the numerous benefits the U.S. receives from its alliance with Israel. Oren argues that, despite what Israel’s critics say, the U.S. serves its interests well by allying itself with the Jewish state.
Oren writes that the bond between the U.S. and Israel goes well beyond shared values. Israel is not just the sole democracy in the Middle East — it has the most powerful army in the region, as well as the most stable government. Due to Israel’s strength and stability, it plays a critically important role in countering radical forces in the Middle East.
Oren’s article was written as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu prepares to visit the U.S. in May. During the trip, Netanyahu is scheduled to speak before Congress on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel is under pressure to offer the Palestinians something that would end the deadlock in peace talks before the Palestinian Authority attempts to declare statehood this September in the United Nations General Assembly.
The pressure on Israel, as usual, seems misplaced. Think about it: If the world put as much pressure on the Palestinians – to end officially sanctioned incitement against Israel and Jews, to stop terror attacks, to form a transparent, working system of government, and to end the corruption rife within the Palestinian Authority – as it does on Israel to make concessions for peace, might peace not be closer than it is now, when the onus is placed almost entirely on Israel?
Sadly, we may never know the answer to that question.