Ron Paul Is No More Pro-Israel Than Barack Obama

Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) has been roundly criticized for his foreign policy. Sen. Rick Santorum neatly–and accurately–summarized Paul’s views as those of “the Dennis Kucinich wing of the Democratic Party” (at 6:02 in the video below):

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Paul’s views are not just libertarian. He is not simply concerned that “an overreaching military presence around the world is inconsistent with small, constitutional government at home,” as Edward Crane recently suggested. Paul goes further, blaming the U.S. for attacks against it, both foreign and domestic. That is a posture typically associated with the radical left.

It is clear that Paul is no friend of Israel. Gov. Sarah Palin, giving him the benefit of the doubt, suggested earlier today (with more than a hint of skepticism) that Paul is pro-Israel in his own way. It’s true that Paul’s suggestion that the U.S. end foreign aid to Israel (and all nations) is theoretically compatible with support for Israel. Privately, some of Israel’s staunchest defenders might agree that Israel should strive to outgrow the need for foreign assistance.

However, Paul’s voluminous public record–including his voting record in Congress–tells the real story. In one recent example, Ron Paul was one of only three Republicans to vote against a House of Representatives resolution condemning the Goldstone Report–a slanderous United Nations slur against Israel that even the report’s author, Richard Goldstone, later retracted. (Thirty-three Democrats also voted against; a bipartisan majority of 344 passed the pro-Israel resolution.)

Paul’s unabashed policy of appeasement towards Iran and his ludicrous claim that the Tehran regime is not pursuing a nuclear weapon are a clear indication that he is not pro-Israel–certainly no more pro-Israel than Barack Obama, who despite initiating several confrontations with Israel, and appeasing Israel’s enemies, has at least continued security cooperation with the Israeli military.

Recently, after being excluded from a presidential forum by the Republican Jewish Coalition, Ron Paul attempted to explain his long history of anti-Israel positions as support for Israeli independence and self-reliance. Paul pointed out that he defended Israel’s right to launch a pre-emptive strike on Iraq’s Osirak nuclear reactor in 1981. Yet he claimed, falsely–as do many of Israel’s left-wing critics–that American policy on Israel is “sort of dictated by one group.”

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The fact that the video above was posted by Paul’s supporters –who chose to highlight Paul’s comment about “one group”–speaks volumes about where they generally stand, and where he stands, on Israel: far outside the American mainstream, insensitive at best and downright hostile at worst.