Likud MK Danny Danon and US politician Mike Huckabee in the West Bank, Sept. 7, 2014.
(photo credit: TOVAH LAZAROFF)
The US and Israel are fighting a common battle in the Middle East against the same terrorist forces linked to radical Islam, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee said while visiting Israel last week.
“One thing we hope Americans understand. The enemies of Israel are the enemies of the US. Whether it’s the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaida, Hezbollah, Hamas – all are branches from the same evil tree,” he said.
He called on supporters of the Jewish state to join him on October 5 for a “Stand with Israel” rally his America Takes Action organization is co-sponsoring in Washington DC together with Concerned Women for America. The rally will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. in Upper Senate Park.
“Most of us get it. We know who the good guys are, we know who the bad guys are. We want all of America to understand,” Huckabee said and added that Israel was America’s one true friend in the region.
Huckabee issued his call as he stood in Gush Etzion along with MK Danny Danon (Likud) and regional council head Davidi Perl.
Danon said that a strong show of support from Americans at the rally was important for Israel and would make an impression on the Obama administration.
“We always hear criticism coming from the White House and the United Nations. I know there is a majority in the US that supports Israel,” Danon said.
Huckabee noted that they stood close to where Hamas kidnapped and killed three Israeli teenagers in June. Their deaths, he said, were part of the larger conflict with radical Islam, whose extremist followers threaten to kill those who do not follow their interpretation of the religion.
Huckabee, who is a strong supporter of Israel and often visits the country, also expressed his support for a new plan to build a fifth Jewish city in Judea and Samaria, named Gva’ot.
Last week, Israel drew international and Palestinian condemnation when it reclassified close to 400 hectares from survey land to state land, an initial first step toward building that project.
The reclassification marked the end of a civil administration investigation into the land’s status which determined that none of the parcels in question was private Palestinian property. Palestinians have argued that the land belongs to five area villages.
There is now a 45-day objection period.
Danon, who met Huckabee at a lookout point by the Gva’ot property, said that US Secretary of State John Kerry should come to Gush Etzion to see the situation for himself before criticizing the land reclassification.
When “Palestinians build in Hebron, it is legitimate. But it is also legitimate that Jews will build neighborhoods in Gush Etzion,” Danon said.
The international community is incorrect when it charges that Israel expropriated the land, he said, because it already belongs to the Jewish homeland.
“I would invite Secretary Kerry to come here and see what we are talking about. [On] vacant land in the heart of Israel, we want to build another Jewish neighborhood,” Danon said.