Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson assured Israel in a video message that if he won the presidential race in the US next year, Israel would have a strong friend in the White House.
“Know that in a Carson administration you are going to have a very, very strong friend, and we appreciate your courage and example,” he said in the message broadcast at the conclusion of the Jerusalem Leaders Summit on Wednesday night and obtained exclusively by The Jerusalem Post.
Carson said that the United States and its Constitution had been formulated on the basis of Judeo-Christian principles.
“We need to keep that in mind, and we need to keep in mind the fact that our friends are our friends, our enemies are our enemies, and Israel is certainly our friend, surrounded by enemies, surrounded by people who not only want to do Israel harm, but want to do the United States harm. The global jihad movement is a tremendous enemy of us all. Iran has said that they want to wipe Israel off the face of the map, and they would like to wipe off America as well.”
He added that there had been “so many partnerships” between the US and Israel that were mutually beneficial, and he believed the two countries needed to work “hand in hand.”
“I want to cultivate those things. I want to strengthen those things, and only if we work together will we maximize and synergize our strengths,” he said.
After his first visit to Israel last December, Carson said he had left with the impression that Israelis had felt betrayed by the US.
“I could not find a single person who thought America had not turned its back on Israel,” he said, in a clear reference to the Obama administration.
“And that’s something that I think we need to reverse in a hurry. You know, Israel is one of our strongest friends and allies, and the tie between America and the Jewish community is something that cannot be broken.”
Carson said that what had struck him during his fact-finding trip was the resilience of the Israeli people. “I was so impressed by the people who refuse to be cowered by the violence and the hatred that surround them, and they refuse to allow terrorism to rule their lives,” Carson said. “I think there’s a lot to be learned from that spirit.”