Jewish Right To Israel

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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Is Sarah Palin Pro-Israel: See For Yourself! (3 Updates)

Cindy emailed a link to Alaska HDTV on February 20, 2008.
Watch the video--and note at about 7:12 you can clearly see an Israeli flag in the background and what seems to be an Israeli flag in Sarah Palin's left lapel.


Cindy earlier posted a comment:
Fantastic decision all way around, and best possible choice for Israel and the war on terror in general I might add. (based on her church, since I too attend an Independent Bible church and know well the worldview that goes with that) [emphasis added]
So is Sarah Palin pro-Israel?
See for yourself.

(But don't ask about Obama--he's not even into showing off American flags.)

UPDATE: This emphasizes the foolishness of Rep. Robert Wexler of Florida's attack on Palin as a supporter of Buchanan:

John McCain's decision to select a vice presidential running mate that endorsed Pat Buchanan for president in 2000 is a direct affront to all Jewish Americans. Pat Buchanan is a Nazi sympathizer with a uniquely atrocious record on Israel, even going as far as to denounce bringing former Nazi soldiers to justice and praising Adolf Hitler for his "great courage."

At a time when standing up for Israel's right to self-defense has never been more critical, John McCain has failed his first test of leadership and judgment by selecting a running mate who has aligned herself with a leading anti-Israel voice in American politics. It is frightening that John McCain would select someone one heartbeat away from the presidency who supported a man who embodies vitriolic anti-Israel sentiments.

In his rush to criticize Palin, Wexler has failed a test of his own.

On the other hand, over at Politico, Ben Smith confirms that little is actually known about Palin's personal view of Israel:
In reality, Palin's record on Israel, while friendly, is as thin as you'd expect from the first-term governor of Alaska.

RJC spokeswoman Suzanne Kurtz said, however, that based on conversations with Alaska Jews, she's confident Palin is a friend of Israel.

I spoke to two of Palin's Jewish allies in Alaska (of the roughly 6,000 Jews there), both of whom stressed that she'd signed a resolution supporting Israel and Alaska's ties to the Jewish state. (She's pictured above right at the signing.)

The resolution (after the jump) is supportive but unexceptional. Both of the Alaska Jews, rabbi Joseph Greenberg and businessman Terry Gorlick, said she was "conservative" on foreign affairs but that they'd never discussed the details of Israel policy with her.

Gorlick said she had never visited Israel, had promised to visit and recently postponed plans to work on Alaska pipeline issues.

"She's absolutely a friend of the Jewish community in Alaska," he said, adding that she had a "confirmed commitment" to visit Israel.

As Smith notes, the statement put out by the Republican Jewish Coalition never mentions Israel at all--instead noting that:
As governor of Alaska, Palin has enjoyed a strong working relationship with Alaska's Jewish community. She has demonstrated sensitivity to the concerns of the community and has been accessible and responsive.
Hopefully, we will soon be hearing more about Palin's stand on Israel from Palin herself.

Another Update: Israel Matzav writes about a visit to the website of Palin's church:
Free Republic points to Palin's church's web site. The church web site has several sermons online. I clicked on one - a Word document called The Jerusalem Dilemma. It turns out to come from a guest preacher - one David Brickner who is a member of Jews for Jesus...

...Am I thrilled about this? No. Is this worse than Jeremiah Wright? In its own way, it's not better. Jews don't proselytize and don't want to be proselytized by others. But Brickner is a guest preacher and not the regular preacher. Do I expect Sarah Palin to start proselytizing Jews for Jesus? No. Do I expect Barack Hussein Obama to be influenced by his Muslim upbringing and his Jew-hating Israel-hating preacher? Yes. So are we better off with Obama? Sorry Bob Wexler, but no.

What does Palin have to do to convince Israelis and Jews to vote for herself and McCain? Let's start with disowning that sermon by Brickner, which took place just two weeks ago. Let's continue with hearing more specifics about where she stands on Israel and other issues that are important to Jews. We're listening.
Read the whole thing.

Yes, some specifics would be nice right about now.

Another Update: Soccer Dad has posted an explanation from Cindy about Sarah Palin's church and what its members believe. Cindy is the one who originally alerted Soccer Dad and me about the video of Palin's interview.

Also, The Dallas Morning News has a Religion Blog that has a post about Sarah Palin's religious beliefs.

Crossposted on Soccer Dad

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