More on Clinton at AIPAC
Posted by jewsforhillary on February 4, 2007
Jacob Berkman at the JTA has this review on Senator Clinton’s keynote speech at the AIPAC Gala. Excerpt:
Observers say Clinton has made strides as a vocal supporter of Israel during her six years as a New York senator, even though she still may be a tough sell to those who have not forgiven her embrace and kiss with Suha Arafat at a November 1999 event in Gaza — just after Arafat had accused Israel of poisoning Palestinian babies.
Clinton claimed Arafat’s comments hadn’t been translated correctly and she became aware of the allegations only after the event.
Still, her supporters say that those who bring up that incident now — after Clinton has consistently supported legislation in support of Israel — are grasping at straws.
Speaking before a crowd of 1,700 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City, Clinton described the “unbreakable bond between Israel and the United States based on shared interests and rooted in strength.”
Israel, she said, is a beacon of democracy in a tyrannical neighborhood, and the threats it faces from Hezbollah and Iran are threats not just to Israel but to the entire Middle East, the United States and the rest of the world.
Clinton berated Iran and the Holocaust denial conference in December hosted by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran, though she didn’t mention Ahmadinejad’s name.
The conference “was beyond the pale of international discourse and acceptable behavior,” Clinton said, calling it an insult to survivors and Allied solders who bore witness to Nazi atrocities. “To deny the Holocaust places Iran’s leadership in the company of the most despicable bigots and historical revisionists.”
She said the conference only added urgency to the need to deal with Iran.
“U.S. policy must be clear and unequivocal: We cannot, we should not, we must not permit Iran to build or acquire nuclear weapons,” Clinton said. “As I have said for a long time, no option should be taken off the table” in dealing with this threat.