Cruz: God Bless AIPAC, Palestine Hasn't Existed Since 1948

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Texas Senator and US Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz addresses the 2016 American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference at the Verizon Center March 21, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Texas Senator and US Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz addresses the 2016 American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference at the Verizon Center March 21, 2016 in Washington, DC. Credit: AFP
Updates

Cruz: God bless AIPAC, Palestine hasn't existed since 1948

Speaking to AIPAC, Ted Cruz began by saying "God bless AIPAC, I am thrilled to be here today. Palestine has not existed since 1948."

Invoking the story of Purim, Cruz said that it "tells the miraculous rescue of Jews from an evil Persian king today we are reliving history. But in the next couple months we will bring this country, first by uniting the Republican party and then reaching out to unite Americans which will lead to a commanding victory in November."

"Let me be very, very clear," Cruz said. "As president I will not be neutral. America will stand unapologetically with the nation of Israel." Read full story

Trump: Jerusalem is Jewish people's eternal capital

Addressing AIPAC, Trump touched the perennial issue of Jerusalem, telling the crowd that "Jerusalem is the eternal capital of the Jewish people.

"We will send a clear signal there's no daylight between America and its most reliable ally, the state of Israel. The Palestinians must come to the table knowing that our ties are totally unbreakable. They should come willing to stop the terror. They must accept that Israel is a Jewish state, and will forever exist as a Jewish state. Read full story

Trump: Clinton is a disaster, Obama treated Israel badly

"Hillary Clinton is a total disaster," Trump told AIPAC to massive applause. "She and Obama treated Israel very very badly. It's a pattern that repeated again and again. Obama thinks that pressure to Israel will force the issue, but the opposite is what is happening.

Trump: Obama may be the worst thing to happen to Israel ever

"Obama may be the worst thing to ever happen to Israel," Trump told AIPAC on Monday to applause. Beforehand he blasted the nuclear deal with Iran and what he called Israel's "lack of confidence" in the UN: "The UN isnt a friend of democracy, not a friend to U.S., certainly not a friend to Israel."

"Let me be clear (on a UN Security Council resolution on peace between Israel and Palestinians): Any agreement imposed by the UN would be a total and complete disaster. U.S. should veto this resolution. That's not how you make a deal. This will only further delegitimization of Israel. Its not going to happen. Therell be more Palestinians terrorism," he said.

Trump: Iran is the biggest sponsor of global terrorism

"Iran is the biggest sponsor of global terrorism, and well work to dismantle that reach," Trump told AIPAC on Monday. "At the very least, we will enforce the deal to hold Iran totally accountable.

"Iran has already test fired missiles three times. The missiles were designed to intimidate not only Israel, but also Europe, and someday even the US.

"Well not let that happen. And were not going to let that happen to Israel," he said to a booming applause,

"Many of those missiles were inscribed with Hebrew Israel will be wiped off the earth. You can forget about that.

"Heres another twisted part: testing those missiles doesn't even violate the terms of the deal. But they do violate the UN Security Council resolution."

Trump takes on Iran deal in address to AIPAC

Israel is our cultural brother, only democracy in the middle east, Donald Trump told AIPAC, before taking on the nuclear deal with Iran.

"My number one priority is to dismantle the disastrous deal with Iran," he said to applause.  "This deal is catastrophic, for America, for Israel and for the middle east.

"We rewarded Iran with 150 billion dollars, received nothing in return. The biggest concern with the deal isn't that Iran will violate deal, it's that they can get the bomb by simply running out the clock... As president, he will: stand up to Iran's push to destabilize region.  

Ryan promises first trip overseas as speaker would be to Israel

House Speaker Paul Ryan announces at AIPAC speech that his first overseas trip as speaker will be to Israel.

Regarding the Iran deal, Ryan said that he believes it was a "terrible deal," the worst deal since 1939, in reference to the Munich Agreement.

Kasich says would suspend U.S. participation in Iran deal as president

In AIPAC address, U.S. presidential candidate John Kasich calls for "active steps" to strengthen ties between the U.S. and Israel, including suspending U.S. participation in the Iran deal and helping the Jewish state strengthen relationships with Arab countries in the Persian Gulf. 

Kasich said: "I applaud our continued legacy of support for the Jewish state," adding, "I condemn all attempts to isolate, pressure and delegitimize the State of Israel."

Trump ahead of AIPAC speech: Israel should pay for U.S. aid

Hours before his AIPAC address on Monday, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said that as president, he would require Israel to pay back the United States for the foreign aid it received.

Talking to reporters in Washington, Trump was asked about his previously stated stance that the U.S. should charge its allies for its assistance in their defense. "I want them to pay us some money," Trump said. When asked specifically about Israel, the Republican frontrunner replied: "I think Israel would do that also. There are many countries that can pay, and they can pay big-league."

According to the Dallas Morning News, Trump reversed himself shortly after. "They help us greatly," he told reporters during a tour of the Old Post Office, a historic building near the White House he turned into a hotel. Read full story

Clinton blasts Trump's foreign policy as 'dangerous'

JTA - Hillary Clinton derided Donald Trump as a feckless negotiator and said Candidates for president who thinks the United States of America can outsource Israels security to dictators or that America no longer has vital interests in this region are dangerously wrong, in broadside against the Republican front-runner that signaled her general election strategy.

We need steady hands, not a president who says he is neutral on Monday, pro-Israel on Tuesday and who knows what on Wednesday, the former secretary of state and front-runner for the Democratic presidential nod said Monday addressing the annual American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

Read full story

Clinton attacks Trump's deportation threats: We remember

AP - Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton attacked Republican Donald Trump on Monday for vowing that, if elected, he would deport illegal immigrants and bar Muslims temporarily from entering the United States.

"We've had dark chapters in our history before," Clinton said. "We remember the nearly 1,000 Jews aboard the St. Louis who were refused entry in 1939 and sent back to Europe. But America should be better than this. And I believe it is our responsibility to say so.

"If you see bigotry, oppose it, if you see violence, condemn it, if you see a bully, stand up to him," she said.

Read full story

Clinton: U.S. inaction for Middle East peace 'cannot be an option'

"Despite the setbacks I remain convinced peace with security is possible," Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton told AIPAC on Monday, adding that "walking away is not an option."

"Only a negotiated two state agreement can provide" peace and security in the region.

Clinton said the threats poed by Iran and attempts to delegitimise Israel showed how the U.S.-Israel alliance were "more indispensable than ever."

Read full story

Hillary Clinton speaks at the 2016 American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Policy Conference, March 21, 2016, at the Verizon Center in Washington.Credit: AP

Clinton threatens force to stop Iran developing atomic arms

"I really believe the Unites States, Israel and the world are safer as a result" of the agreement, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said in her speech to AIPAC on Monday.

But she added: "If I'm elected leaders of Iran will have no doubt that (if Iran tries to develop nuclear weapons against the deal) the U.S. will act to stop it and will do so with force if necessary."

"The United States must also continue to endorce existing sanctions and impose additional sanctions as needed on Iran and the Revolutionary Guards for their illegal arms transfers and support for terrorism," she said.

Clinton also said that Washington "must work with Israel and other partners to cut off flow of money and arms from Iran to Hezbollah."

Read full story

Clinton pledges even tighter U.S.-Israel ties

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton pledged to build an even strong U.S.-Israel alliance if she's elected in November.

"One of the first things I'll do as president is to invite the prime minister to visit the White House," she said.

"At a time of unprecedented chaos and conflict in the region America needs an Israel strong enough to deter and defend against its enemies, strong enough to tackle shared challenges and strong enough to take bold steps in the pursuit of peace."

That is why I believe we must take our alliance to the next level," she said.

"As president I will make a firm commitment to assure Israel maintains its qualitative military edge.

"The United States should provide Israel with most sophisticated defense technology that includes bolstering Israeli missile defenses," she said.

"We should work together to develop better tunnel detection, to prevent kidnappings and terrorist attacks.

Read full story

Clinton: Palestinian leaders must stop inciting violence

U.S. Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton says the United States and Israel "must be closer than ever and stronger than ever to prevail against our common adversaries and advance our shared values."

"This is especially true while Israel faces brutal stabbings and shootings," Clinton said, while criticizing the Palestinian leadership. "These attacks must end immediately. And Palestinian leaders need to stop inciting violence and stop celebrating terrorists as martyrs and stop paying rewards to their families."

In her remakrs, Clinton mentioned Taylor Force, an American citizen who "was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist near the Jaffa port."

Herzog: Realistic peace with Palestinians not around the corner

Opposition leader Isaac Herzog opened the AIPAC conference by discussing his recently revealed policy that Israel should separate from East Jerusalem.

According to Herzog, a realistic peace deal with the Palestinians is not around the corner. 

He also said that terror in Istanbul, Paris and Jerusalem is the same and must be confronted, before expressing confidence that Israel would overcome the current bout of violence in the West Bank. 

However, said Herzog, "We should not lose sight of the final objective of reaching a two-state solution."

A screenshot of Isaac Herzog answering questions at AIPAC's policy conference on March 21, 2016.Credit: Screenshot

Clinton expected to go after Trump at AIPAC address

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is expected to strike out at Republican contender Donald Trump for his stated positions on Israel and conflict in the Middle East, according to a Politico report. 

Clinton is expected to reject the notion of neutrality in considering Israel's safety, said the Politico report, which would be in direct reference to Trump's position that he would remain neutral in an attempt to broker a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians.

According to the report, "Clinton is expected to underscore the importance of a steady hand - as opposed to an unpredictable showman - when it comes to standing by American allies like Israel."

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