Texas Republican Senator Ted Cruz arrived Sunday on an official visit to Israel together with Tennessee Republican Senator Bill Hagerty, a former US Ambassador to Japan.
Both men, who are members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said they intend to meet with Israeli leaders to “reaffirm the Republican Party’s unwavering support for the security alliance with America.”
Cruz wrote last week in an op-ed for Newsweek that a reporter had told him that he was told by New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer that he “didn’t want to answer any questions on Israel,” which Cruz remarked was “no surprise. If Sen. Schumer doesn’t want Rep. Ocasio-Cortez to primary him from the left, he knows he can’t anger the extreme anti-Israel wing of the Democratic Party.”
He went on to write, “We should be clear: there is no moral equivalence between Israel — a sovereign nation defending itself – and Hamas terrorists who target and murder innocent civilians… Instead of condemning Hamas’ actions, Democrats like Reps. [Alexandria] Ocasio-Cortez (NY), [Ilhan] Omar (MI) and [Rashida] Tlaib (MN) act like they’re press secretaries for the terrorists,” Cruz added.
“We should stand unequivocally with Israel,” he wrote. “When the United States sends a clear message that we stand with Israel, there is more peace in the Middle East.”
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) May 30, 2021
“Democrats in Congress…have an opportunity right now to decide where they stand – do they stand with Israel, or do they stand with terrorists?” Cruz wrote, adding his trip to Israel comes in order “to assess directly what else the Israelis need to protect their national security, which is closely tied to our national security.”
The two senators will tour southern Israeli cities that were heavily targeted with rocket fire by Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror organizations.
Cruz told The Washington Free Beacon that he and Hagerty were traveling to Israel “to hear and see firsthand what our Israeli allies need to defend themselves, and to show the international community that we stand unequivocally with Israel.”
Prior to his arrival, Cruz introduced a resolution supporting arms sales to Israel. He also petitioned the Biden administration to immediately replenish Israel’s supply of Iron Dome Tamir interceptor missiles, which saved thousands of lives during the recent conflict.
Hagerty, who recently introduced the legislation to authorize the emergency resupply of Tamir, added in a separate statement that the trip would allow him to “see firsthand what more the US can do to strengthen our vital alliance with Israel at a time when terrorists like Hamas and Hezbollah and terror-sponsoring regimes in Iran and Syria are making the Middle East more dangerous.”