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Alan Dershowitz: No “Buyer’s Remorse” For Voting For Obama

Alan Dershowitz

Photo Credit: Gidon Markowicz/Flash90

Republicans are trying to woo away Jews who voted for Barack Obama in 2008, hoping they have experienced “buyer’s remorse.” I, for one, have experienced no such remorse. I have gotten from President Obama pretty much what I expected when I voted for him: a pragmatic, centrist liberal who has managed—with some necessary compromises—to bring us the first important healthcare legislation in recent history, appointed excellent justices to the Supreme Court, supported women’s rights, eliminated the “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy, maintained the wall of separation between church and state, kept up an effective war against terrorism and generally made me proud to be an American who cast my vote for him.

Even with regard to his policy toward Israel, which has generated much of the impetus for this “buyer’s remorse” campaign, President Obama has kept his promises. During the last campaign, I and others urged candidate Obama to go to Israel and visit Sderot, which was being shelled by rockets from Hamas-controlled Gaza. He then went to Sderot and while standing in front of the lethal rockets that had inflicted so much damage—physical and psychological—to so many children and adults, this is what the candidate said:

“I don’t think any country would find it acceptable to have missiles raining down on the heads of their citizens. The first job of any nation state is to protect its citizens…If somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I’m going to do everything in my power to stop that. And I would expect Israelis to do the same.”

And when the Israeli Defense Forces finally had to respond to the rocket terror with Operation Cast Lead, President Obama supported Israel’s actions and his administration condemned the Goldstone Report as deeply flawed and biased against Israel.

Now, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is visiting Israel. I’m glad he is, because support for Israel must always remain bipartisan. No presidential election should ever become a referendum on support for Israel. Certainly the upcoming election will not be, because both candidates strongly support Israel’s security. Each candidate must earn the vote of each citizen based on the totality of their records, and must not take the support of any group for granted.

The Obama Administration has worked hand in hand with Israel in developing the Iron Dome, David’s Sling and Arrow Defense capabilities. It has approved the sale of F-35 stealth fighters to the Israeli Air Force. It has conducted large, joint military exercises and has coordinated intelligence operations with Israeli secret services. That is why I was not surprised when Israel’s Defense Minister Ehud Barak said that he could:

“hardly remember a better period of…American support and cooperation and similar strategic understanding…than what he have right now.”

The greatest threat Israel faces today is from Iran, a nation ruled by anti-Semitic, Holocaust-denying, terrorist-inciting Mullahs, who would sacrifice millions of their own citizens to destroy “the little Satan,” which is how they refer to Israel (the United States being “the big Satan.”) There are some, in both parties, who wrongly believe that a policy of “containment”—that is, allowing Iran to develop nuclear weapons but containing their use by the threat of tit-for-tat reprisal—is the right strategy. President Obama has explicitly rejected this benighted approach and has instead announced that his policy is to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, even if it takes military actions to do so. In the meantime, he has ratcheted up sanctions and diplomatic pressure while explicitly keeping the military option on the table.

Several months ago, President Obama invited me to the Oval Office to discuss his Iran strategy. He looked me in the eye and said, “I don’t bluff.” His actions with regard to Osama bin Laden and the Somali pirates who endangered Americans and threatened to kill them demonstrated his willingness to use force when warranted. So does his increased use of drones to target terrorists who are beyond the reach of capture. I believe President Obama when he says that Iran will not be allowed to develop nuclear weapons on his watch.

President Obama also understands that no sovereign nation can ever outsource the protection of its own citizens against a nuclear Holocaust. If Israel were to decide—as a last resort, after exhausting all diplomatic, economic, and intelligence options—that it had no choice but to take military action against Iran’s nuclear programs, I am confident that the Obama Administration would not condemn that action (as the Reagan Administration condemned Israel’s correct decision to destroy Iraq’s nuclear reactor in 1981!) These are President Obama’s own words on this important issue:

Iran’s leaders should have no doubt about the resolve of the United States – just as they should not doubt Israel’s sovereign right to make its own decisions about what is required to meet its security needs.

The issue of Israeli security must be distinguished from the issue of Israeli civilian settlements in the West Bank. Israel’s settlement policy is deeply controversial within Israel and among Jewish supporters of Israel in the United States. Both Republican and Democratic administrations have been critical of some Israeli decisions regarding the settlements. I have sometimes agreed and sometimes disagreed with these criticisms. Reasonable supporters of Israel will have different views on the settlements and on how best to move toward a two-state solution that assures Israel’s security.

When I decide who to vote for as President, I ask myself who will be best for America and for the world. An important component of my answer involves my assessment of the candidate’s willingness and ability to protect Israel’s security, since I strongly believe that a strong Israel serves the interests of the United States and of world peace. I am confident that President Obama will keep his promise “always [to] have Israel’s back” in the face of the continuing threats posed by Israel’s enemies.

Originally published by the Gatestone Institute http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org

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16 Responses to “Alan Dershowitz: No “Buyer’s Remorse” For Voting For Obama”

  1. Anonymous says:

    If Moses was the Republican candidate and Jimmy Carter was again the Democratic candidate, Allan Dershowitz along with the majority of American Jews would still vote for Jimmy Carter.

  2. Arthur Kurtz says:

    And in the same edition, Obama's press secretary would not even acknowledge Jerusalem as the capital of Israel…REALLY?

  3. Philip Melnick says:

    And Dershowitz just glosses over the fact that Obama did not just sit back, but encouraged Muslim extremist takeovers of Egypt and Libya. When Mubarak was debating wether to quell the uprising, Obama came out and DEMANDED that Mubarak step down. Now Egypt is more hostile to Israel than it has ever been since 1973, and Egypt has the largest Muslim population in the Middle East.

    Apart from the effect on Israel, Obama's action let our allies all over the world know that America is willing to stab it's friends I the back while bolstering it's enemies. Ask Poland and other Eastern European nations that were made to know that America will not stand up to Russia if they were threatened.

    Obama has been an absolute disaster for America in the foreign policy arena. Anything he has done for Israel has been little more than window dressing. In the past four years Iran has only gotten stronger and more bellicose. And Muslim extremists were allowed to take power right on Israel's doorstep.

  4. Charlie Hall says:

    Carter was better than Gerald Ford.

  5. Charlie Hall says:

    Muslim extremists have NOT taken over Libya. The liberals (oh, bad word!) won the election. And in fact Obama has had more foreign policy successes than anyone since the first Bush. Most of Al Qaeda's leaders are dead, as is Ghadafi, one of the most evil leaders in the world. We have a new strategic arms treaty with Russia and new free trade agreements with Columbia, Panama, and the Republic of Korea. American combat troops are OUT of Iraq. Iran is facing the most stringent economic sanctions since World War II. The Greek debt crisis has not destroyed the free world. And US Israel military cooperation is at the highest level in history.

    Obama is one of the ten greatest presidents of all time, and will be re-elected.

  6. Anonymous says:

    How and why should anyone expect that Dershowitz or any committed liberal would ever admit to being totally wrong about Obama? He hinges his support on so many statements by Obama, a man with an obvious and easily provable propensity to pander to whatever the audience or situation requires. To take him at his word is to ignore his obvious duplicity. Dershowitz and his ilk represent an even greater danger to America than the man and the party they idolize.

  7. Mark Belas says:

    And here I thought Mr. Dershowitz was intelligent. Silly me.

  8. Michael Frye says:

    I guess Dershowitz has been on the moon for the last three ans a half years drinking Kool Ade.

  9. Rc Fowler says:

    Alan Dershowitz–is Un-American–is a self hating Godless Jew!

    ANYONE who supports the policies of the Marxist democrat party–is not a genuine supporter of Israel–it is factually evident Barack H. Obama hates Jews and Israel–and is pro Arab murderer!

  10. Rc Fowler says:

    This is part of the murdering Islamic Arab narrative.

  11. Rc Fowler says:

    Very well written!

  12. Rc Fowler says:

    Charlie Hall If you truly believe what you wrote–you are an ignorant fool–a useful idiot of the Marxist democrat party!

  13. Rc Fowler says:

    This is very much true–well written!

  14. Rc Fowler says:

    Very well written was to Philip Melnik!

  15. Charlie Hall says:

    You think bin Laden is still alive?

    You don't think Ghadafi was evil?

    You don't believe we have the new treaties I mentioned?

    You think we still have combat troops in Iraq?

    You can name a country that has faced stiffer sanctions than does Iran today?

    I'm not the fool here!!!

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