WASHINGTON – The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) and the American Jewish Committee (AJC) issued statements on Wednesday congratulating Israel’s incoming government, hours after prime minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu informed President Isaac Herzog that he succeeded in forming a coalition.
Despite Netanyahu’s announcement, as of Thursday night the agreements with UTJ’s Degel HaTorah and Agudat Yisrael as well as with Shas were still not finalized.
“AIPAC congratulates the people of Israel and Benjamin Netanyahu on the announcement of the formation of the new government,” the group said in a statement. “Once again, the Jewish state has demonstrated that it is a robust democracy with the freedoms that Americans also cherish.”
The statement continued: “America stands with Israel as our democratic ally continues to confront dangerous security challenges from the Iranian regime and its terrorist proxies. These threats to Israel’s security – and to the security of the region – have grown more ominous as Iran deepens its military alliance with Russia and accelerates its efforts to obtain a nuclear weapon.”
“We look forward to working with the Biden administration and Democrats and Republicans in Congress to address these threats and further strengthen the US-Israel relationship, which advances our common strategic interests and protects our shared values,” AIPAC said.
“We look forward to working closely once again with Prime Minister Netanyahu, having conferred with him for more than 40 years, including in his previous tenures as Prime Minister from 1996 to 1999 and from 2009 to 2021, and earlier during his service as Deputy Chief of Mission in Washington and as Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations,” the statement reads.
AJC congratulates Netanyahu
“Due to AJC’s long-standing working relationships with Israeli government officials on shared priorities, as well as our profound admiration and respect for Israel’s vibrant democracy and civil society, we trust that Israel will continue to uphold the values that have allowed it to stand out as a beacon of freedom in the Middle East and as a source of pride and spiritual sustenance for the Jewish people as a whole,” the group said.
The organization said it “will continue to work closely with the Prime Minister and Israeli policy makers to help ensure that the inflammatory rhetoric that has been employed by some members of the governing coalition – rhetoric unrepresentative of Israel’s democratic values, its role as a homeland for all Jews, and its unwavering quest for peace – will not define the domestic and foreign policies of the new government,” the AJC said.
“We firmly believe that the Jewish and democratic State of Israel will continue to embrace all Jews regardless of their beliefs or practice; that it will strive to live up to its promise of equality for all its citizens, regardless of religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or gender identity; and that it will continue to pursue prospects for peace,” said AJC.
“AJC remains committed to addressing ongoing threats to Israel’s security, strengthening Israel’s place in the world, standing up to those who seek to delegitimize Israel, enhancing the deep bonds between Israeli and American Jews, expanding Israel’s circle of peace, and amplifying the shared values that unite Israel, the United States, and our allies,” the group said.