tv Today in Washington CSPAN May 24, 2011 6:00am-7:00am EDT
israel, and i always will. [applause] in congresses' budget last year with domestic and international spending was slashed, we made sure israel got the full funding it needs. [applause] frankly, that was no easy task, but my senators stood by israel. [applause] when congress' next budget, i support full funding for security assistance. [applause] we will face an even tougher budget environment this year, but i'm committed to defending this critical aid, but aid alone is not enough. we support israel because it's in our national and security
interests. [applause] we support israel because she is what isiah called a light into the nations. [applause] we also must sustain her glow with all of our political might. the history of the jewish people is in the land of israel. it's future will be there too. i support a strong democratic jewish state of israel living in peace and security with the palestinian state. like you -- [applause] like you, i hope sincerely for a true and lasting peace between israelis and the palestinian people. this conflict is older than us, but i refuse to believe it cannot be resolved by us in our lifetimes. these solutions are not simple. the only way to achieve delicate balance we seek between security and peace is through the hard work of negotiation. [applause]
i believe the parties that should lead these negotiations must be the party at the center of this conflict and no one else. [applause] the place where negotiation will happen must be at the negotiating table and nowhere else. [applause] these negotiations will not happen. their terms will not be set through speeches or in the streets or in the media. [applause] no one should set premature parameters about borders, about buildings, or about anything else. [cheers and applause] [applause]
i support strongly the resolution centers that carter and collins introduced saying a conflict should come through direct palestinian-israeli negotiations. [applause] we're going to have faith that peacetimes will be fruitful and know those having the conversation are doing so in good faith, and if we wish for these talks to be productive, to produce a fair ending, we must demand a fair beginning. [applause] what this means is that the pal stippians can want bring the negotiating table a terrorist organization that rejects israel lease right to -- israel's right to exist. [applause] nowhere else in the world, any
place in the world at no other time is one party expected to compromise with a partner who denies its very existence. [applause] a peace process can happen only when both sides seek peace. [applause] two partners cannot build a bridge when one party refuses to even admit there's something on the other side of the span. [applause] my friends, perez, is the most visionary foreign leader i've ever known. a government that includes hamas is a threat not to israel, but a threat to the palestinian state, the legitimacy of a new state, and threat to the state in the region. [applause] we must never forget that these are the hostage-taking
terrorists who kept car gents from their families and fellow soldiers for almost five years. [applause] their beginning of good faith talks also means the palestinians cannot stop by the negotiating table on the way to the united nations where they seek recognition where it's symbolic and dangerously counterproductive. [applause] a fair beginning to good faith talks, means israel cannot redefine its confines only to compromise its own security. [applause] palestinian's cooperation also determines american's willingness to continue our current aid program. [applause] i'll say this as clearly as i
can -- the united states of america will not give money to terrorists bent on the destruction of israel. [cheers and applause] [applause] the palestinian government, specifically including hamas, the united states continues to insist hamas recognizes israel's right to exist, renounce violence, and honor the commitments made by prior palestinian authority governments. [applause] i was there when the first of the governments was conceived. some of you were there too, and many of you remember clearly the sunny september day when the south won at the white house. we watched two sworn enemies sign a piece of paper and peace seemed within our grasp too.
the prime minister spoke about the promise of a new age. as a soldier and father talked of those tired of war and dreamed of child not knowing war. a child born on that day in 1993 turns 18 this summer. they shook hands in the city are counting down the days until they start their service to the idea, and now that child, a child with hope who would not know war finds himself or herself face to face with the same challenges of which its parents have grown very weary. we must remember the lessons, weigh both the potential and the peril of negotiating israel's future, and we must do better. [applause] the torah teaches us to honor
our father and ore mother, but also honor our children by giving them the chance to know peace. [applause] that mission may be more daunting and seem more improbable, but we've seen that faith and fearlessness have won us before. the next generation will face another menace as well, one on which we cannot afford to lose focus amid the frustration and fatigue of the stammering peace process. it cannot be overestimated. it is a common enemy to both israel and america. [applause] the president of iron has made anti-semitism his policy and preaches propaganda and his
regimes go erasing israel from the map. while iron torments neighbors, it brutalizes its own people and the world watched in hoer -- horror as they murdered their own citizens as they only asked for their basic freedoms that all people desire. sadly, these abuses continue today, unjust executions, abductions by security forces, arbitrary arrests, detention, and yes, torture. as long as the terrorist state of iran supports hamas and hezbollah and hides behind the terrorists and defines the international community, america will stand against iran. for our sake, and for israel's sake. [applause]
iran's terrorists are only the beginning of the problem. they are pursuing nuclear weapon cape the and the ability to launch them in israel. these weapons could reach europe. that would destabilize the region making existing conflicts volatile and more dangerous. the regime threatens the national security of israel and the united states. we will not sit back and watch it develop nuclear weapons capability. [applause] this is why we work so hard to pass last year's bill. it says if you pursue nuclear weapons, you put your economy at risk. i thank each of you here tonight because it was your hard work that got this bill to the president's desk. [applause] many of you personally came to capitol hill and made clear the
urgent case for passing these sanctions, not just any sanctions, the aipac team was there to make sure we pass the strongest legislation possible. you should be proud of what you accomplished. this program was comprehensive, and it's tough. our goal is to target iran where it hurts the regime the most, so we imposed sanctions on the refinery industry and banking institution that does business with the terrorist guard. we've seen these sanctions work, major international firms pulled out of iran because they didn't want to put their businesses at risk. iran's economy suffered as a result. of course, iran continues to get around these sanctions. we knew that would happen, so we have to keep our foot on the gas, ensure that the administration fully implements and forces sanctions and keeps the pressure on the allies to do their part. [applause]
the senate will be working on a new round of legislation to help tighten the sanctions we already passed. none of us wants to go to war with iran. on the other side it prevents human suffering, but we will not wait forever or take any option off the table. [applause] president kennedy speaking of the great nuclear challenge of his time reminded us that our problems are manmade and they can be solved by man. he said, man's reason and spirit often solved the seemingly unsolvable, and we believe they can do it again. israel and america have done the impossible before. we can do it again. we must do it again. let me close how i began with a story of a daring israeli rescue mission, one, to me, defines israel. this evening here, but in the
middle of the night in israel where it's already the 24th of may. it's now 20 years almost to the hour that operation solomon began. 20 years ago this month, civil war swept through ethiopia. over the previous year and a half, thousands of ethiopians have been brought to safety in israel, but thousands more remain. in may 1991, they fled and rebels controlled the capitol. time was ticking for the remaining jews and entire villages who were isolated from the diaspora continued this for thousands of years. again, israel government and its partners executed a covert, flawless air lift, flying 36 overloaded aircraft for 36 test hours to rescue more than 14,000 jews, nearly an entire jewish population. [applause]
the beta israel as they were called got no belongings or clothes. their feet were the first things to touch the ground. many did not have shoes. months after the rescue, my wife and i had the privilege of meeting with the new israelis in israel. i'll never forget the smiles they wore on their faces and the gratitude in their hearts for the state of israel. they were brought to an unfamiliar country with a vastly different culture, but they had come home and couldn't have been happier. fifteen years after and thousands of years after the exodus from egypt, israel demonstrated the lengths it travels and risks they take for the safety of the jewish people. [applause] israel demonstrated the unmatched precision and
professionalism of which it operates. twenty years ago tonight, israel's light into the nation shown as brightly as ever. this is the israel aipac and congress have to share with the world and the israel that does not define itself by war and worry and hope. this is the israel that's decided and dedicated itself that humanitarian aid and international development since the young country was called to share what little we have. this is the israel that worked for years with u.s.-aid to help unemployed egyptians plant farms in the desert. they flew into haiti hours after the earthquake to set up the first fully house. [applause] this is the israel that didn't wait a minute after hearing about the disaster of jay pap and going there -- japan and going there to help. [applause] this is the israel who works
with ethiopians to eradicate hiv. [applause] this is the israel that built the armor keeping american soldiers safe. [applause] this is the israel that gave a grant to jerusalem startup so it could invent the bandage to safe congresswoman gabrielle gifford's life. [applause] you see, this is the israel we love. this is the israel we supported since its earliest minutes, before the declaration of independence with the name of the state literally penciled in, we recognized their right to self-determination and self-defense. we were there from the beginning. [applause] we will be there with her for all times. [applause] american's commitment to israel
is uncorruptible, nonnegotiateble, and we will never, never leave her side. thank you very much. [applause] ♪ ♪ >> the american israel public affairs committee also heard from speaker john boehner for about 10 minutes. >> thank you for that kind introduction and to all of you, thank you for what you do.
you know, i had the chance to meet so many of you over the years, not just those of you from ohio, but throughout country. to asemilled under one roof feels like getting old friends back together again. we've got a lot of catching up to do, don't we? you know, recent events bring to mind henry kissinger's leapt at one point saying there can be no crisis next week, my schedule's already full. [laughter] i thought about that when i was thinking about what i was going to say tonight, and i began to recall the last time that i was in israel several years ago, and i'll never forget visiting the northern border with lebanon standing there with the solders, many of them 18 and 19 years old, and the closest of the enemy hit me how israel doesn't get to choose its batter space.
where i stood on the border is 100 miles from jerusalem, about the same distance my home in ohio is from our state capitol in columbus. i feel a responsibility to help ensure that our nation keeps its political and financial commitments and maintains this role as the beacon of freedom and democracy. [applause] it's in that spirit that i join with all of you tonight. much has been said about the special bond between israel and the united states. ambassador orrin called israel the ultimate ally, and i couldn't agree more. [applause] in the last 63 years through all the threats we have faced, america and israel have formed and honed a strategic alliance built on trust and based on
shared values. that is the reason we gather year in and year out to honor and sengthen in very public way the historic friendship between our two great democracies. we know the world is a dangerous place for democracies. we saw in this country on 9/11. israel sees in the terrorist attacks that seem to come every month or sometimes every day. now, the death of bin laden marks and important victory in the fight against al-qaeda and islamic extremism, and our nation's military and intelligence professionals have achieved an important goal in our nation's and in all three nation's fight against terrorism, and i think they deserve our deepest appreciation. [applause] the terrorist organizations are more resill yept than --
resilient than just one person. al-qaeda has been weakened, but they have not been destroyed. my job as speaker is ensure the house is focused on confronting and defeating the complex and evolving terrorist threats that still targets the united states and her allies. in lebanon, hezbollah casted out a freely elected government and dominates that country, and every day that terrorist organization committed to the destruction of israel with weapons from syria and iran, and looming over the entire region, of course, the iranian regime and the threat it poses there and in the wider world, and there's no doubt that the regime in iran has taken notice how the united states has responded to the threats in libya versus how it has responded to the threats in north korea. in anyone here doubts the
iranian's regime quest for nuclear weapons, i think you're awfully optimistic. anyone who thinks we can contain the aggression and terrorist's version of a nuclear armed iran, you may not just be on optimistic, but somewhat dilutional. [laughter] [applause] the best remedy to the threat of the world is for the people of iran to rise up and replace that regime just as the people of tunisia and egypt rose up and replaced their regimes. [applause] now, we all hope that the regimes in libya and syria will be replaced as well so that the peoples of those countries can escape tyranny and enter freedom. now, we should make a clear and clearer than it has been for the last two years that america is on the side of those who yearn and struggle for their own
freedoms. [applause] that is our historic and moral responsibility as a great and free nation, and we should never apologize or be ashamed of that role we play in the world. [applause] that's why america's commitment to the advancement of democracy in the middle east remains critical, and while those democracies is iraq. as president obama recently said, iraq represents the promise of a multiethnic, multisectarian democracy. iraq is more than a democracy on the making. it is in the position to become a vital strategic ally in the region, and this is a tribute to the resilience of the iraqi people, the sacrifices made by troops and diploms, and the many nations who played a role in this task, but we must remain committed to ensuring that iraq continues towards a transition
as a sovereign country capable of defending itself and is at peace with its neighbors. now, let me be clear. experience reminds us that one election does not constitute a transition to a viable and responsible democratic state. as americans, we know that democracy means not just majority rule, bu the rule of law, the protection of minority rights, t basic freeds of religion, speech, and assembly, and, yes, the arab spring marks and overdo rejection of corruption on police states, but now we're witnessing the battle of the region's political identity. build governments that respect human life and dignity, uphold human rights, and where the people rule? will we see women of religious minorities repressed and fundmental rights abridged? will we see one man, one vote, one time?
we are watching the struggle play out in egypt and fostering economic development in egypt is important, but just as critical is the work to secure a stray teemingic partnership with -- stratec partnership with the people of egypt to protect our interest and maintains their commitment to peace with israel. [applause] this brings me to israel and to peace. know the hour is late, but over in jerusalem,he sun is just gipping to rise, and with it, another day of uncertainty. the wo of achieving a safe and secure israel has never been easy, but the cause is right, and i will tell you that you have my 100% support for the cause of peace and support in israel. [applause]
israel has demonstratedime and again that it seeks negotiating table more than peace with its neighbors, and then on the negotiation, both sides need to make compromises and like every prime minister before him, prime minister benjaminetanyahu knows this and accepts it. what does the other side want? when it embraces a terrorist organization, it makes itself known. you are judged by the company you keep. [applause] you know, there are some out there who complain that the united states is too pro-israel. well, hit me tell you what i think? i doubt what america stands for and who america stands with slows the search for peace and stability in the region.
[applause] the president and the congress should work together so that the american people are our friends and yes, our enemies understand the national security policies and our goals, and so that our allyies, like israel, have no cause to doubt that we'll be with them through thick and thin. [applause] you know, before there was an aipac, securing american support for a jewish state was the work of a dedicated few including a historian by. he said at one point many people in those days had no faith. today, there's the same thing from people who believe israel must always give in. that view was wrong then, and it is wrong today.
[applause] tomorrow, his son, the prime minister of israel, will address the united states congress, marking another milestone in this historic friendship. i was honored to invite him, and it will be our honor to have him there. [applause] [cheers and applause] it will be our honor to have him there, the representative of a free people who have come, overcome, all odds to rebuild and ancient nation. ladies and gentlemen, congratulations on the larger aipac gathering ever. thank you for having me, and remember this, keep up the fight. [applause] thank you [applause] ♪ ♪
♪ [applause] my friends, before i talk about things about israel, i want to say something about the scenes on television i saw today, and you have been seeing as well. when tragedy strikes america, israel feels an immediate identification and tramming di has struck america. in recent days floods and tornadoes have claimed the lives of hundreds of americans
including today in joplin, missouri. all i can say is america, we're with you. on this day, on every day. [applause] that's very evident from the things i just heard from my two close friends, speaker of the house john boehner, senate majority leader harry reid. [applause] you lead the many friends who are here today, the distinguished senators and congressman and congresswomen of the united states of america. [applause] i want to greet aipac president
lee rosenberg. i learned the other day if i take you on, it's not going to be in basketball. it will be in soccer. [laughter] executive director howard cort. howard, you, i'm not going to take on in anything. [laughter] i want to welcome also the representatives of the government of israel, members of knesset, u.s. ambassador of israel, ambassador dan schipiro. my beloved wife and two boys, and finally, our terrific ambassador to the united states, a man who knows a few things
for thank you for standing by israel as it seeks a secure peace. now i heard tonight from all the speakers, something that you know that israel is america's indispensable ally. [applause] you understand that israel and america stand shoulder to shoulder, fighting the common enemies, protecting common interests. you know that the israeli innovators help power computers, fight disease, conserve water, clean the plan at. store support for israel flows from the heart. it's not just what israel does, it's what israel is.
[applause] now let me explain that. yesterday i had a great day. they let me out. sarah and i could actually go for a walk, and i have to congratulate american security services. they're a little more generous than ours. [applause] so we walked along the potomac, and we got to visit washington's majestic monreal to become a real. i read jefferson's the five words we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal. if i read lincoln's immortal address, government of the people, for the people, by the people. now let me tell you why these
words resonate so powerfully with me and all is really is. because they are rooted in ideas first by our people, the jewish people, the idea that all men are created in god's image, that no ruler is above the law, that everyone is entitled to justice. these are reza listen very jewish ideas, and they were spoken thousands of years ago when vast empires ruled the earth. a vast slave and players rule the world and the jews spoke these truths. israel is the cradle of our common civilization. it's the crucible of our common values, and the modern state of israel was founded precisely on these internal values and this
is why israel's more than 1 million muslims enjoy a full space rights. [applause] this is why the only place in the middle east with christians completely free to practice their faith is the democratic state of israel. [applause] this is why israel and only israel can be trusted to ensure the freedom for all faiths in our eternal capital, the united city of jerusalem. [applause]
unites the old and the young, liberals and conservatives, democrats and republicans, and yes, joe lieberman and even its independence. [applause] i want to take this opportunity to support one of the great centers in my lifetime, a man who has given unbelievable service to his country, america and has been unbelievably dedicated to israel and the jewish people. thank you, joe lieberman. [applause]
see this broad support for israel and the united states is a tremendous help and gives tremendous strength to my country, and since harry truman, israel has looked to american presidents to stand by as we meet the unfolding challenges of a changing world. yesterday president obama spoke about his ironclad commitment to israel's security. he rightly said that our security cooperation is unprecedented. he spoke of that commitment in front of apec, he spoke about it to speeches heard throughout the arab world and he has backed those words with deeds. i know these are tough economic
times so i want to thank the president and congress for providing israel with vital assistance so that israel can defend itself by itself. [applause] i want to thank you all for supporting the missile defense system. [applause] a few weeks ago there was in gaza fired eight rockets at our cities. now, these rockets never reached their targets. iron dome intercepted them in mid air. [applause] for the first time, a missile
protests in gaza? [laughter] what a way to get a standing ovation. thank you. [applause] so, one of those companies is investing just down the road in richmond. it's a company that is building its food factory. here's what it means, more business, more jobs and more homes. [applause] it brings more than just food to america. [applause] take medicine israel is advanced secure for multiple sclerosis, alzheimer's, cancer.
[applause] we've developed mechanical means to make paraplegics walk again. [applause] we placed a tiny diagnostic camera inside a pill. i did not swallow it but i understand it's quite effective. and you just heard of this miraculously bandage developed by an israeli company that is help save congresswoman giffords life. [applause] and i wish her a great friend of israel a happy and quick, speedy recovery. [applause] israel and america are also
cooperating to end the world's worst addiction, the addiction to oil. [applause] this dependence fuels' terrorism and poisons the planet so we have launched a ten year program in israel to kick the habit to find a substitute for gasoline, and if we succeed, we can change the world, we can change history. [applause] my friends, the american people's support for israel is reflected in my invitation to address a joint meeting of
congress tomorrow. thank you, john boehner for the invitation. [applause] now i will talk about the great convulsion taking place in the middle east, the risks and the opportunities, and i will talk of the dangers of a nuclear-armed iran, and i would also alkaline secure israeli peace. i intend to speak the honest truth. [applause] because now more than ever, what we need is clarity and evens in the region are finally opened people's eyes to a simple truth. [applause] [applause]
events in the region are opening people's eyes to a simple truth. the problems of the region are not rooted in israel. when [cheering] [applause] remarkable scenes we are witnessing in town square and across the middle east and north africa are occurring free simple reason, people want freedom. they want progress. they want a better life. for many of the people of the region, the 20th century skipped
them by come and now 21st century technology is telling them what they missed out on. you remember that a desperate food vendor, why did he set himself on fire? not because of israel, he set himself on fire because of decades of indignity, decades of intolerable corruption and the millions who poured into the streets of tehran, cairo, bin zazi, damascus, they are not thinking about israel, they are thinking of freedom collier and for opportunities, for hope for themselves and their children. so it's time to stop blaming israel for all of the region's problems. [applause]
[applause] let me stress one thing, peace between israelis and palestinians is a vital interest for us. it would be the realization of a powerful and internal dream, but it is not a panacea for the endemic problems of the middle east. will not give women in some arab countries the right to drive a car. it will not prevent churches from being bombed. it will not keep journalists out of jail. what will change this, one word, don walker see, real genuine democracy. [applause] i don't just mean the election, i mean freedom of speech,
freedom of press, freedom of assembly, the right for women, for gays, minorities, everyone, with the people of israel want. it's for the people of the middle east to have what you have in america, what we have in israel, democracy so it's time to recognize this basic truth israel is not what is wrong with the middle east, israel is what is right about the middle east. [applause] my friends, i want peace because
we know the pain of terror, and we know the agony of the war, we want peace and because we know the blessings peace can bring, what it can bring to us in and to our palestinian neighbors in. but if we hope to advance peace with the palestinians, then it's time that we had met another truth. this conflict is raised for nearly a century because the palestinians refused ended. but they refuse to accept the jewish state. this is what this conflict has always been about. there are many issues linked into this conflict that must be resolved between the israelis
and palestinians. we can, we must resolve them, but i repeat, we can only make peace for the palestinians as peace for the jewish state. [applause] tomorrow in congress i will describe what it used in a palestinian state and the jewish state can look like. but i want to assure you one thing, it must leave israel with security, and therefore, israel cannot return to the indefensible 1967 line. [applause]
[applause] i will talk about these and other aspects of peace tomorrow when congress and, but tonight i want to express israel's gratitude for all of you are doing to help strengthen israel and the great alliance that israel has with america. you help maintain a qualitative military edge. you back sanctions against iran, you supported genuine peace, you opposed to hamas and joined president obama and me in denouncing hamas and demanding the release our captive soldier. [applause]
[applause] that's another an outrageous crime of hamas, just imagine keeping a young soldier locked in a dark dungeon for five years without even a single visit, not even a single visit of the red cross the entire civilized community should join israel and the united states and all of us in a simple demand from hamas we leave. [applause] my friends i spent my high school years in philadelphia. it's developed quite a bit since then. during those years when it was a
sleepy town the, i used to go visit the liberty bell. now as the prime minister of israel, i can walk down the streets and see an exact replica of the bill in jerusalem's of liberty park. on both is the same inscription. it comes from the bible, from the book of leviticus, proclaim liberty throughout the land. my friends, this is the essence of the great alliance between the two nations. two people on it and liberty seeking freedom and peace for all what this alliance is all
>> several live events on our companion network, cspan 3 today. a senate judiciary subcommittee looks at prescription drug abuse with the heads of the white house office of drug control policy and the drug enforcement administration at 9:00 a.m. eastern. at 2:30 p.m. eastern, heads of the federal aviation administration and the air traffic controllers association testified at a hearing on the safety of the air traffic control system. in a few moments, today's headlines and your calls live on "washington journal." at 11:00 eastern, benjamin netanyahu addresses a joint meeting of congress. in about 45 minutes, we will talk about federal spending and deficit with republican senator mike lee of utah and