Photo Credit: Flash 90
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) shakes hands with his Canadian counterpart Stephen Harper during a welcoming ceremony for Harper at Netanyahu's office in Jerusalem January 19, 2014.

(JNS) Jerusalem City Council member Dan Illouz (Hitorerut) on Tuesday (Dec. 17 2019) officially nominated former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper (2006-15) for the honor of having a Jerusalem street named after him.

Though tradition dictates that the honor be reserved for individuals who have been dead for at least three years, exceptions may be made, and “Harper is a strong case for such an exception,” Illouz told JNS. “Throughout his time in office, he was and continues to be today a devoted friend of Israel,” he said.

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Harper was the first Western leader to suspend aid to the Palestinian Authority after Hamas’s electoral victory in 2006.

In 2009, Harper was the first to withdraw from the infamous Durban Review Conference, saying the event would “scapegoat the Jewish people.”

In a 2014 Knesset speech, Harper committed to support Israel “through fire and water.” He is also known for changing Canada’s voting record in the United Nations in support of the Jewish state, ending funding to UNRWA, opposing Iran’s nuclear program, promoting investment in Israeli security and intelligence, and modernizing trade agreements between Israel and Canada to increase trade and business connections.

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Eliana Rudee is a fellow with the Salomon Center for American Jewish Thought and the author of the new “Aliyah Annotated” column for JNS.org. She is a graduate of Scripps College, where she studied International Relations and Jewish Studies. She was published in USA Today and Forbes after writing about her experiences in Israel last summer. Follow her aliyah column on JNS.org, Facebook, and Instagram.