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2004 U.S. Presidential Campaign:
Howard Dean


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Learn More about Democratic Challenger Governor Howard Dean:
AICE does not rate or endorse any candidate for political office. This page is for informational purposes only.

Policy Statements

Howard Dean's "Statement of Principles on the Middle East Peace Process"

Howard Dean is committed to achieving a negotiated, comprehensive, and just peace between Palestinians and Israelis and remains optimistic about the chances for peace. The greatest asset in that effort is that majorities of both Palestinians and Israelis accept a two-state solution which would guarantee security, sovereignty, and dignity.

Recent developments in the region have created a new sense of opportunity. Any steps that lead away from violence and toward peace need to be encouraged and assisted. Continuing this progress will require the full engagement of the United States at the highest level. U.S. disengagement from the process during much of the Bush Administration has been unacceptable. No other country but the United States has the credibility necessary to facilitate negotiations and to mediate between the parties. Yet, in the end, only the Palestinians and the Israelis themselves can make and keep the peace and work out the specifics of a lasting agreement. Peace cannot be imposed by outside parties.

The basic framework for peace between the Israelis and Palestinians is a two state solution -- a Jewish state of Israel living side by side in peace and security with an independent, demilitarized Palestinian state. The best approach to achieving lasting peace is a comprehensive one, providing for fully normalized relations, peace, and security as part of an overall negotiated settlement between Israel and the Arab states.

To get there, the Palestinian Authority will have to fight terrorism and violence on a consistent basis to create the conditions necessary for a viable peace process. The Israeli government will have to work to improve the living conditions of the Palestinian people and ultimately will have to remove a number of existing settlements. These issues and others will all be elements of a final agreement negotiated by the parties.

Through it all, the United States will maintain its historic special relationship with the state of Israel, providing a guarantee of its long-term defense and security. And the United States will have to take responsibility with its international partners for helping the Palestinians establish a middle-class democratic society in which women fully participate in economic and political decision-making. The international community must support these economic reconstruction efforts which are essential to the long-term success of any agreement between the parties. (Dean for America)

On comparing his views to Americans for Peace Now and AIPAC, when asked if his views of the Middle East were closer to APN's views, Dean said, "No, my view is closer to AIPAC's view." (Forward, November 22, 2002)

On the Muslim world:

One of his foreign policy goals "is to bring democracy and freedom to Muslim nations. We can only do that with cooperation. Half of the Muslim world would not support Osama bin Laden if Arab and Muslim regimes were not so oppressive." (Forward, November 22, 2002)

On Saudi Arabia and Iran and reliance on Middle Eastern oil

"The United States has to... take a much harder line on Iran and Saudi Arabia because they're funding terrorism," Dean said. "We need conservation and renewable energy to lessen our dependence on Mideast oil and to have a lever on the funders of terror." (Forward, November 22, 2002)

On the Bush Administration at a February 2003 speech at Iowa's Drake University: ""The administration's guiding principles in the Middle East are the right ones. Terrorism against Israel must end. A two-state solution is the only path to eventual peace, but Palestinian territory cannot have the capability of being used as a platform for attacking Israel." (Salon, September 23, 2003)

On the Peace Process at an election event in Santa Fe in September 2003, "it is not our place to take sides."

Dean to the Washington Post a few days later, "the United States needs an evenhanded approach in the conflict." (Haaretz, September 12, 2003)

On US Policy if elected President

"The American policy is and will continue to be based on Israel's right to exist," (Washington Times, September 12, 2003)

On the Peace Process at the Congressional Black Caucus Debates (September 2003):

Juan WILLIAMS: Governor Dean, you recently said the United States should not, quote, "take sides in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict." Do you really mean that after all of these years of alliance and friendship between the United States and Israel that the U.S. should maintain some sort of neutral stance? And does that include cutting foreign aid and military supplies to Israel?

DEAN: Of course I don't mean any such thing, that we're going to take a stance that belies our historic relationship with Israel. We've had a special relationship with Israel since 1948 when we were the first country to recognize Israel.

What I do mean is we need to be a credible negotiator, a facilitator for peace in the Middle East. And that means we have to be trusted by both sides.

If we want peace in the Middle East, we need, first, not to do what this president did, which is to give the whole matter an 18-month holiday and pay no attention at all for the first 18 months of his term. We need to focus intensely on it. We need to focus intensely on it. And we also need, I might add, a renewable energy policy in this country, so we stop sending all our oil money to the Saudis and the Iranians and the Syrians, where they recycle it back into terror. " (Washington Post, September 9, 2003)

Palestinian State vs. the War in Iraq:

"What we should have done is tried to focus on establishing a democracy in a Palestinian state and bring peace to the Middle East instead of invading Iraq and causing more complications and more death and more pain for our American families." (Washington Post, September 9, 2003)

Dean on "evenhandedness":

DEAN: I am disappointed in Joe. My position on Israel is exactly the same as Bill Clinton's. ... I think America needs to be an honest broker. We desperately need peace in the Middle East. I can tell you, the Israelis can't go to school without wondering if their kids -- send their kids to school without wondering if they're coming back. The Palestinians now have 80 percent of the people living below the poverty line. We need peace.

It doesn't help, Joe, to demagogue this issue. We're all Democrats. We need to beat George Bush so we can have peace in the Middle East." (Washington Post, September 9, 2003)

"It is not our place to take sides" in the Middle East conflict. (Washington Post, September 9, 2003)

"I've since learned that that is a very sensitive word to use in certain communities, so perhaps I could have used a different euphemism" (CNN, September 10, 2003)

Dean on sending Bill Clinton to the Middle East:

“I think Bill Clinton is the president who has come the closest to bringing Israelis and Palestinians together,” Dean said. “Bill Clinton may just be the person we need to put those negotiations back on track.” (FrontPageMag.com, September 12, 2003; CNN, September 10, 2003)

"A Dean Administration will be committed to following in the footsteps of Bill Clinton from day one and to making every effort to bring peace to this troubled region." (Dean for America, Sept. 9, 2003)

Dean on Settlements and Hamas

Wold Blitzer: Let's go through some specifics to flesh it out. Israeli settlements. Should they dismantle them?

Howard Dean: I think that's going to be left up to the negotiation between the parties. Everybody, including Prime Minister Sharon, has said there will be a dismantling of some of the settlements. The question will be how many. The United States needs to play the role of bringing both parties together so she can negotiate that.

Wolf Blitzer: What about targeted killings, assassinations of Hamas militants?

Howard Dean: I think no one likes to see violence of any kind. That's why the United States is involved. I will say, however, there is a war going on in the Middle East, and members of Hamas are soldiers in that war, and, therefore, it seems to me, that they are going to be casualties if they are going to make war. (Source: CNN, Wolf Blitzer Reports; 9/10/03)

Dean on Hamas:

"“there is a war going on in the Middle East, and members of Hamas are soldiers in that war" (CNN, September 10, 2003; Reported on msnbc.com September 12)

Dean letter to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) clarifying his positions on the Middle East

I believe, however, that the United States has another important role to play in the region -- that of an honest broker at the negotiating table -- with the trust of both sides and able to facilitate direct talks between the parties. The U.S. must be able to understand the needs of both sides in order to help them find a truly lasting and comprehensive settlement through direct negotiation.

We are also in agreement that only the Palestinians and the Israelis themselves can make and keep the peace and work out the specifics of a lasting agreement. Peace cannot be imposed by outside parties. On the issue of settlements, both parties have acknowledged that Israel will have to remove a number of settlements. How many and which those are will have to be determined as part of a final agreement negotiated by the parties.

I deplore violence of any kind, especially violence perpetrated by terrorists against innocent civilians. The U.S. and Israel are partners in the war on terror. As long as that war continues, members of Hamas, who are enemies in that war, are going to be casualties if they continue to target innocent civilians with terrorist acts. Ending violence and stopping the terrorists is the first step toward a lasting peace in the Middle East.

I will follow in the footsteps of Bill Clinton from day one of a Dean Administration and make every effort to bring peace to this troubled region. I believe the United States is the only intermediary that can bring the parties to the peace table, and that playing the role of a fair and honest broker when there is consistent with the special relationship that the U.S. has with Israel. Preserving that role is key to achieving peace. A secure Israel is not only more likely to take risks for peace, but also underscores to the region that there is no alternative to peace. (Source: ADL, 9/12/03)

Dean statements about the Middle East at the Arab American Institute debates:

I want to talk a little bit about the Middle East, and I want you to know that I met with a group of Jewish leaders yesterday, and I intend to deliver the same message to you that I did to them. A few weeks ago, Secretary Powell addressed the U.S.-Arab Economic Forum in Detroit, and at that time he expressed a very pessimistic message about the future of United States relations with the Arab and the Muslim world. Now I’m here today to offer, I believe, a much more optimistic vision for addressing the problems that the people of this region face. ...

And I believe we would have been far better off if we had invested our time and our money in creating a two-state solution to the Middle East peace problems because I believe there is an enormous potential for a successful democratic state in the West Bank that is independent, free and to which the borders are guaranteed, just as the borders and safety of the State of Israel is guaranteed. Israel has a right to exist and everybody acknowledges that, and those that don’t are clearly obstructing peace. But Palestinians have a right, also, to a state, and the American foreign policy recognizes that.

...

Let me tell you what I often have said. People ask me about the Middle Eastern conflict all the time and ask me what I would do. I always talk about stopping the terror because we’re not going to get anywhere as long as we have terror. But I also tell people that they don’t understand the nature of what’s going on. Of all the Arab people, the Palestinians probably have the best opportunity to have a true democracy because more Palestinians have lived in democratic countries around the world than in any other place. Palestinians live next door to Israel, which is a democratic country and beams different – vastly different opinions every day in both Arabic and Hebrew. There is real opportunity. Women play a larger role in government among Palestinians than in any other Arab society. There was, before the second intifada, a higher level of university education among Palestinians as a percent of the entire population than in any other Arab society. There is real opportunity here, and we should be optimistic. It is easy to get ground down by the violence. We should be optimistic that we can get there. The first thing that needs to happen is to understand that only an American president can bring peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians. And I believe – I believe that this president missed an opportunity. His attitude when he first came to office was, well, we’ll sit this one out because these people are never going to settle their differences, so let’s keep off it. We can’t keep off it. If I were president tomorrow, the first thing I would do is pick up the telephone and ask Bill Clinton to go to the Middle East and represent me at a high-level delegation –

Eighty percent of Palestinians today live below the poverty line. The average Israeli parent does not know whether their child is going to come home from school or not when they send them off. Nobody is winning this fight. I was there in the Middle East. I met with some extraordinary people on both sides. There are Palestinian leaders who can bring democracy to a Palestinian state on the West Bank. Salam Fayyad, one of those I met with, is an extraordinary human being who is committed to this struggle and is very capable of being part of that leadership team. What I found when I was in the Middle East is that the majority of people on both sides of the green line want peace -- the majority of both Palestinians and Israelis. From the Israeli point of view, Israel wants to live in a Jewish democracy, and they know that they can’t have a Jewish democracy if they hold on to the West Bank. They’ll either have a democracy because there will be more Arabs than there are Jews and they’ll be outvoted, or there will be a Jewish state, but no democracy. That’s not the vision of the majority of Israelis.

The United States has to help these two people that are so hungry for peace, and we can do that. We can only do it if we can present a vision, which will demand sacrifice and commitment on both sides. The leadership will have to make a decision to abandon violence and the Israelis will have to make decisions which alleviate Palestinian suffering by easing the conditions and spurring in the West Bank, by making the concessions that are going to be necessary to be made in terms of territorial – what they now control. There is peace that we can achieve in the Middle East. We can’t impose a peace, but we can do what Bill Clinton almost did. We can sit down with the parties and continue to move each one closer to each other, and not let us give into the worst instincts that we have in trying to solve this. Fifty years of violence has not solved this problem. Both people are tired of this. We must find a way to do this; it’s possible. The one thing that we have to do, as I close, is to understand the – oh, I’m not going to close. I forgot a whole piece of this that’s really important domestically – – the one thing – – we need to be there. We need to be building economic opportunity in the West Bank, we need to help the Israelis understand that they are not going to be driven into the sea, which is their greatest fear, and we need to understand that Palestinian people can be a responsible, progressive partner in the struggle for peace, and that we should understand the assets that the Palestinian people have. (Arab American Institute, October 18, 2003)

Dean on the security fence:

...when I was in the Middle East, I actually saw some of the wall going up. Now this is a very difficult question because the Israelis clearly have the right to defend themselves against terrorists. On the other hand, it’s a very, very sad, sad story. I was near the village of Kukalia (ph). Kukalia? Kalkulia (ph) – if I was smart I would have had the text in front of me – and there were some old – older Israelis that were telling me that – you know, as you know, that most of the Israelis are not observant. So on the Sabbath, when the place shuts down, they – many of them do no go to synagogue, and they would go to Kalkulia – Kalkilia (ph) – Q-U-A – I know how to spell it, but I just – – Q-U-A-Q-U-I-L-I-Y-A – I just can’t pronounce it. And they had friends that were Muslims, Arabs, and – many of them Christian Arabs, and they would sit, they would visit, they would have lunch, they would have tea, and the Palestinians would return the favor. And there was really a sense of neighborliness, that they knew each other.

So the wall is a short-term tactic, no doubt for defense. I’m concerned about the course of the wall because – and I’ve shared this with the Jewish leadership as well – I need to learn more about – I mean, the wall as it is is going to be a very difficult issue in peace negotiations as it now appears. When I was there, that wasn’t the course that the wall was going to take.

But in the long term, the wall can’t be permanent because, in the long term, when we have two states, these states are going to have to live with each other. The truth of the matter is that Jews and Arabs can live in peace together. That has happened historically. It happened fairly recently after the Oslo peace agreements, and it can happen again. So the Israelis have the right to defend themselves, and I defend the Israelis right to defend themselves, but in the long term, I think everybody understands that there is going to be a two-state solution and that people are going to be crossing each other’s borders and living in peace.

The specific course of the wall is of concern to me and it’s of concern to others. I think it’s a very complicated issue, and I think, as it stands now, it is a short-term measure that I think is a reflection of the difficulties viewed that the Israelis face – that they believe they face with terror. But in the long term, the United States is going to have to find a way to make sure that the wall, if it continues to exist – which I hope it does not – does not disrupt the peace process and does not make it impossible to have an equitable two-state solution. (Arab American Institute, October 18, 2003)

“We have to get the Israelis out of the West Bank.”– August 20, 2003

“…While we focused on Iraq, the Israeli–Palestinian conflict was neglected. The President, despite knowing how critical his personal involvement was, refused to engage for over two full years squandering the momentum he inherited from the Clinton administration…. Most Israelis recognize that they will have to give back occupied land and give up settlements. Most Palestinians understand that there will never be a Palestinian state as long as terrorist attacks continue. Yet the Palestinians have assets that are often misunderstood. They have a high level of education. Palestinian women play a more significant role in government than in almost any other Arab society. And a large number of Palestinians have a significant experience with democracy having lived in Europe, the United States, and of course in Israel. Yassir Arafat is not the answer, but Abu Mazzen and Salim Fayed, who I met with in Jerusalem, may well be the answer….” – speech at the Council on Foreign Relations, Washington, DC, 6/25/2003 (Rescue Mideast Policy)

Dean on Saudi Arabia

Right now you can't get peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians because our oil money goes to the Saudis, who then spend it on terrorist groups and on teaching small children to hate Americans, Christians and Jews. We might have a president who would be willing to stand up to the Saudis if we weren't so dependent on foreign oil. (DNC Debate, 11/24/2003)

Dean on Palestinian democracy

``Palestinians have more experience with democracy. They have either lived in the United States, lived in Europe or lived in Israel, which are democracies.'' (Sun Herald, 12/13/03)

Dean on the Peace Process & the US-Israel Relationship

We also must bring skill and determination to a task at which the current administration has utterly failed: We can and we must work for a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

Our alliance with Israel is and must remain unshakeable, and so will be my commitment every day of our administration to work with the parties for a solution that ends decades of blood and tears.

I believe that, with new leadership, and strengthened partnerships, America can turn around the situation in the Middle East and in the Persian Gulf. I believe we can defeat terrorism and advance peace and progress. I believe these things because I believe in America,s promise. I believe in our capacity to come together as a people, and to act in the world with confidence, guided by our highest aspirations. (Source: Pacific Council on International Policy, 12/15/03)

Dean on "evenhandedness"

“I’ve discovered that ‘even-handedly’ is a code word to certain people who think that is being unfair, and I don’t want to ever repeat that word again.” (Source: JTA, 12/15/03)

Letter from the Howard Dean Campaign to the Jewish Community about his positions

December 18, 2003

Because so much inaccurate information has been transmitted over the Internet during the past few days about Howard Dean's positions and statements on the U.S.-Israel relationship, I want to share with you the real story.

Howard Dean believes that the United States must remain committed to the special, longstanding relationship we have with Israel, including providing the resources necessary to guarantee Israel's long-term defense and security. Maintaining Israel's security is a key U.S. interest.

Governor Dean also believes that the United States is the only intermediary that can bring the Israelis and Palestinians to the peace table, and that playing the role of a fair and honest broker is consistent with the special relationship the U.S. has with Israel.

Anti-Defamation League National Director Abe Foxman is defending Howard Dean against this unsigned email, calling it "intense," "venomous," and "dis- and mis-information." Furthermore, the Anti-Defamation League's "Debunking Internet Rumors" webpage at http://www.adl.org/rumors/dean_rumors.asp, refers to the email as "malicious, misleading and factually inaccurate."

I am proud to include statements made by and positions taken by Howard Dean on Israel, terrorism and Middle East peace, which represent his vision for the appropriate role of the President and the United States.

As someone who has devoted more then twenty-five years of my life to Jewish communal service, a strong and secure Israel, the US-Israel relationship and the Jewish people, I am proud to serve as Co-Chair of Howard Dean's presidential campaign. I have worked closely with him for many years, including when I chaired the Democratic National Committee. I believe that as President, Howard will consistently stand with the Jewish community on issues of mutual concern.

I look forward to hearing from you and wish you all a happy, healthy holiday season.

Steve Grossman

Co-Chair, Dean for America

GOVERNOR DEAN IN HIS OWN WORDS

Israel is not just an ally, but a beacon of hope for people who were abandoned 2,000 years ago and who are afraid of being abandoned again. I WILL NOT ABANDON ISRAEL, EVER. [Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Oct. 20, 2003]

The United States must remain committed to the special, longstanding relationship we have with Israel, including providing the resources necessary to guarantee Israel's long-term defense and security. Maintaining Israel's security is a key U.S. national security interest. [Letter to Abraham Foxman, ADL, Sept. 12, 2003]

I will follow in the footsteps of Bill Clinton from day one of a Dean Administration and make every effort to bring peace to this troubled region. I believe the United States is the only intermediary that can bring the parties to the peace table, and that playing the role of a fair and honest broker is consistent with the special relationship that the U.S. has with Israel. [Ibid.]

I deplore violence of any kind, especially violence perpetrated by terrorists against innocent civilians. THE U.S. AND ISRAEL ARE PARTNERS IN THE WAR ON TERROR. As long as that war continues, members of Hamas, who are enemies in that war, are going to be casualties if they continue to target innocent civilians with terrorist acts. [Ibid.]

OUR ALLIANCE WITH ISRAEL IS AND WILL ALWAYS BE AND MUST REMAIN UNSHAKEABLE. And so, too, will be my commitment every day of our administration to work with the parties for a solution that ends decades of blood and tears. [Fulfilling the Promise of America, Dec. 15, 2003]

Since Harry Truman's historic decision to make the United States the first nation to recognize the Jewish state, Americans have been united in their commitment to the State of Israel. I will not allow a crack to emerge in that important national consensus. [Letter to Abraham Foxman, ADL, Sept. 12, 2003]

People ask me about the Middle East conflict all the time and ask me what I would do. I ALWAYS TALK ABOUT STOPPING THE TERROR BECAUSE WE'RE NOT GOING TO GET ANYWHERE AS LONG AS WE HAVE TERROR. [Arab American Institute, Oct. 18, 2003]

The first thing I'm going to do if I get to be president of the United States is call Bill Clinton and ask him to go to the Middle East and represent me so we can have the presence of an American president trying to bring peace to that region. [Hardball with Chris Matthews Dec. 1, 2003]

Only an American president can ever be the catalyst for peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians, and the truth is that most people on both sides of the green line would very happily settle for a two-state solution if they could only guarantee the security of their borders. [Ibid.]

Having spent some time there, I now understand what this is all about. Israeli mothers have no idea if their children are coming home in one piece from school. Eighty percent of the Palestinians live now below the poverty line. Both people cry out for peace and the question is how to get the leadership to deliver it to them. [Fulfilling the Promise of America, Dec. 15, 2003]

The first thing we have to do is have an American president pay full attention to it, which this president did not do for the first 18 months. Dean expressed strong reservations about giving the United Nations a bigger role in Mideast peacemaking. [NY Jewish Week, Oct. 3, 2003]

Dean blasted recent anti-Semitic remarks by Malaysia's prime minister, called for U.S. efforts to curtail Saudi Arabian incitement and support for terrorism, and urged pressure to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons. [Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Oct. 20, 2003]

ONLY THE PALESTINIANS AND THE ISRAELIS THEMSELVES CAN MAKE AND KEEP THE PEACE AND WORK OUT THE SPECIFICS OF A LASTING AGREEMENT. Peace cannot be imposed by outside parties. [Letter to Abraham Foxman, ADL, Sept. 12, 2003]

We must stop the terror. We must stop the terror. You are not going to get the Israelis to withdraw from the West Bank if they think that by staying there they can protect their children. And when a bomb goes off in Jerusalem and kills 26 children, the Israelis will do whatever it takes to protect their children. We can't fix the Israeli-Palestinian problem without stopping the terror. [Fulfilling the Promise of America, Dec. 15, 2003]

Both parties have acknowledged that Israel will have to remove a number of settlements. How many and which those are will have to be determined as part of a final agreement negotiated by the parties. [Letter to Abraham Foxman, ADL Sept. 12, 2003]

Dean on Hamas

If Hamas took power, it might “actually have to be more responsible and start negotiations” with Israel. (In a 1998 interview with Canadian televion; Source: JTA, Jan. 11, 2004)

On January 9, 2004, Dean said that in the years since he gave the interview, “it has become crystal clear that Hamas is an unrepentant terrorist organization and the Palestinian Authority must live up to its obligations to the United States and Israel and dismantle Hamas and other terrorist groups.” (Source: JTA, January 11, 2004)

Dean Seeking More Fence Info

Howard Dean said he wants to hear more information from the Israeli government about the route of its West Bank security fence. Danny Siebright, a foreign policy adviser to the Democratic presidential candidate, told reporters Monday that Dean would like to be briefed by Israel as to why the fence crosses into the West Bank in some places. Leon Fuerth, the new chairman of Dean’s foreign policy team, said he believed Dean understands the rationale for the security fence. He also said he believed Israel “will have as good a friend in the White House as it has ever had” if Dean is elected. Fuerth also said he believed that, as president, Dean would be intimately involved in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Fuerth would not say whether Dean would move the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, as mandated by U.S. law, or whether he would exercise a presidential waiver on national security grounds. (JTA, 1/13/04)

Dean Statement to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

America’s challenges, of course, do not end at our borders. We must continue to wage a vigorous battle against terrorism— but without lying to the American people and to our brave soldiers.

And in this global fight, the United States and Israel are partners. Let me be clear: preserving Israel’s security is a bedrock principle that will guide my administration’s foreign policy.

On a tour of the Old City in Jerusalem during my 2002 trip to Israel, I experienced first-hand the miracle of the modern Jewish state.

I saw remains of a house next to a stone wall that King Hezekiah had ordered built to defend against invaders. In a neighboring house, I looked out the window down at the stone wall and the remains of that house and understood that 3,000 years ago people prayed the same prayers in the same Hebrew language.

That experience reinforced my commitment to the special relationship the United States has with Israel. Israel will always have the resources necessary to guarantee its long-term defense and security. And we do this not as a favor for Israel but because it is in America’s interests to do so.

I also believe that peace in the Middle East is a key U.S. interest and that the United States is the only intermediary that can bring the Israelis and Palestinians to the peace table. Playing the role of a fair and honest broker is consistent with the special relationship the United States has with Israel.

This land is holy to Jews, Muslims, and Christians and I am committed to working together to find solutions that are acceptable to the parties.

Ultimately, only the Palestinians and the Israelis themselves can make and keep the peace and work out the specifics of a lasting agreement. It seems clear that this will not happen as long as Yasser Arafat is in control.

People ask me about the Middle East conflict all the time and ask me what I would do. I remind them that I saw first-hand the horror of violence when I worked at hospitals as a medical student at Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein Medical College.

And I always say that we’re never going to get peace in the Middle East as long as we have terror. Israel has both the right and the responsibility to protect and defend its citizens against terrorists.

This president has implemented a foreign policy characterized by dominance, arrogance and intimidation. We are losing our role as a world leader. His brand of diplomacy has driven a deep wedge into the alliances and the security organizations we established to safeguard our freedoms and our safety.

This has put America and our allies in danger. There is perhaps no larger threat to the United States and Israel today than the pursuit of weapons of mass destruction by rogue states and terrorist groups — in particular Iran and North Korea.

I will lead a global alliance against terror, seeking to use improved relations with our friends to stop the flow of nuclear and missile technology to Iran.

I will also commit $30 billion to a global fund to seek and destroy weapons of mass destruction and their components, including purchasing nuclear fuel from the states of the former Soviet Union and working with the Russian government to stop transfers of weapons and know-how by Russian companies to Iran. (JTA, 1/12/04)


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