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Arizona Congresswoman Martha McSally speaks on Israel at UA dinner

Martha+McSally+gives+a+talk+at+the+leadership+conference+at+the+Hillel+Foundation+on+Second+Avenue+on+Oct.+26.
Logan Cook
Martha McSally gives a talk at the leadership conference at the Hillel Foundation on Second Avenue on Oct. 26.

Arizona Republican Congresswoman Martha McSally said it’s a Christian’s obligation to partner with Israel whileat a leadership dinner hosted by UA pro-Israel group CatPAC Tuesday night, where she talked about U.S.-Israel relations.

The former Air Force Colonel-turned-congresswoman spoke about Israel’s relationship with the rest of the world and the U.S. McSally said Israel represents a level of stability for the Middle East that’s vital to U.S. operations there.

“We have an obligation as Christians to partner with Israel,” McSally said. “It’s important to me that we don’t leave our partner hanging.”

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Jessica Bloom, a Jewish-American senior political science and Judaic studies major, said people need to understand Israel’s important role in Middle-Eastern politics. Bloom said McSally has been a strong voice for Israel and the point of the dinner was to raise awareness of that role.

“Israel is America’s greatest ally. They are the only country practicing democracy in the Middle East, and they are very receptive to Americans,” Bloom said. “Israel is a light in darkness.”

McSally said there are ways the U.S. can stand up for Israel. She attacked the Obama administration on the issue and pointed directly to the Iran nuclear deal, where she claimed the Obama administration gave $150 billion to Iran. She said right when the U.S. sanctions were taking effect, Obama made the deal that not only gave them a path to nuclear power but also a huge influx of cash they use to arm themselves and other groups.

The $150 billion to which McSally refers is money that belongs to Iran from various business deals, but to which they were forbidden access under a slew of economic sanctions imposed on the country by the United Nations, the U.S. and the European Union. The Iran nuclear deal gradually lifts some of these sanctions.

“If we could have shot down the Iran deal, that would have been a start,” McSally said. “We need to work together to stop the UN and other organizations from doing stupid stuff that harms Israel.”

McSally said she traveled to Israel on her “own dime” and saw what’s going on there first-hand. She said she could see missiles being fired from nearby hostiles and intercepted by Israeli defenses.

“We saw rockets being fired over at civilians,” McSally said. “People are used to having bomb shelters in their houses.This kind of living is not normal, but for them it has become normal.”

McSally went on to say the upcoming election will play a role in the future of U.S.-Israeli relations. She said, despite the results of the election, she believes America will survive.

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“I hope we recover from this in a way that resets our civility,” McSally said. “Regardless of the results, we’re going to get through this. It may get worse before it gets better.”

UA student and campus fellow for the Zionist Organization of America, Antar Davidson de Sa said McSally is a brave person that isn’t afraid to speak what she believes.

“Regardless of how people feel, Israel is America’s friend and she really rocked that home,” Davidson de Sa said. “There has been, and still is, a lot of tension with Israel, and she reminded us of the importance of loyalty to Israel.”


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