Who should be president goes beyond Israel

Many of my fellow Zionists are supporting Donald Trump in the upcoming 2020 presidential election because they believe that he is the friendliest US president toward Israel since Israel was established in 1948. In this, they overlook Trump’s cruelty and outrageous behavior, citing the fact that the US Embassy was moved to Jerusalem at his behest and that he cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority for its “pay to slay” program, in which the Palestinian Authority monetarily rewards the families of Palestinian terrorists for murdering Jews.

Yes, on their face, these do appear to provide a compelling reason to support Trump. However, once again, these people fail to acknowledge the fact that in his own country, Trump’s behavior is so outrageous and bombastic that his points, no matter how well-intended, are lost in his delivery. Furthermore, I contend that since Israel’s establishment in 1948, the US-Israel relationship has remained strong, through the presidencies of those who were friendly toward Israel, like Harry Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Lyndon Johnson, and Ronald Reagan, and those who were not as friendly, like Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama. Each year, in spite of who the president has been, Congress has appropriated the necessary aid package to Israel, and Israel has endured and grown in a remarkably short time. The relationship between the United States and Israel is far stronger than the ephemeral effects of American politics.

Voting for a president of the United States based upon his/her perceived support for Israel is to underestimate the relationship between the US and Israel, and I will not do so. Israel will prosper as long as the United States exists, so I will vote for the president who shares my values most, not for who supports Israel most. If they happen to be the same person, then that is a stroke of luck, but if not, I will not worry.

This year, I am supporting Joe Biden for president.  He reflects my values and represents what I expect from my president:  integrity, kindness, strength, and humility.  Being sympathetic toward the Palestinians, no matter how egregious their behavior in the past, does not necessarily disqualify one from supporting Israel as well, although it could.  Nevertheless, I know that Israel will prosper regardless of who wins the election, because the values that the US and Israel share transcend politics.  In this, I am certain, and I hope that this puts to rest the inflammatory statements that I hear incessantly, telling me to vote for Donald Trump because Israel will not survive under a Democrat.  Those people obviously do not know Who is watching out for Israel; He is even mightier than the United States of America!

About the Author
Ryan Harrison Lee is an aspiring diplomat who is currently teaching Spanish, English, History, and Government at a private school outside of Washington, DC.
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