The Celebrate Israel Festival on May 31 at Pier 94, slated to be the largest gathering to date of Israeli-Americans in New York.
The 2012 Democratic Party platform omits language recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and suggests that military force is “on the table” as an option for addressing the Iranian nuclear issue.
The platform released late Monday night makes no mention of Jerusalem or of the issue of Israel’s capital. By contrast, the 2008 platform stated that “Jerusalem is and will remain the capital of Israel.” The 2008 platform also stated that the parties to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict “have agreed that Jerusalem is a matter for final status negotiations.”
The new platform touts President Obama’s work on implementing tougher international sanctions against Iran. It says that Obama “is committed to using all instruments of national power to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.”
“President Obama believes that a diplomatic outcome remains the best and most enduring solution,” the platform states. “At the same time, he has also made clear that the window for diplomacy will not remain open indefinitely and that all options — including military force — remain on the table.”
The 2008 platform referred to “keeping all options on the table.”
On Israel, the new platform emphasizes the Obama administration’s support for Israeli security measures such as Iron Dome and refers to Obama’s “consistent support for Israel’s right to defend itself and his steadfast opposition to any attempt to delegitimize Israel.”
It also states that the president and his party are committed to seeking peace between Israelis and Palestinians.
“A just and lasting Israeli-Palestinian accord, producing two states for two peoples, would contribute to regional stability and help sustain Israel’s identity as a Jewish and democratic state,” the platform states. “At the same time, the President has made clear that there will be no lasting peace unless Israel’s security concerns are met.”
The Republican Jewish Coalition, on Twitter, criticized the omission in the new platform of language describing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. The current Republican platform refers to Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
The RJC also highlighted the absence from the new Democratic platform of language in the Democrats’ 2008 platform calling for Hamas to be isolated, Palestinian refugees to return to a future Palestinian state rather than to Israel, and stating that “it is unrealistic to expect the outcome of final status negotiations to be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.” The Republican platform also does not articulate these positions.
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