Christians are Israel’s best friends

Christians are Israel’s best friends
The Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu referred to an audience of evangelical Christians as Israel’s best friends. Netanyahu made the remarks while speaking in Washington, America. Israel and the US are staunch allies. Israel plays a key role in America’s overall policy..

The Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu referred to an audience of evangelical Christians as Israel’s best friends.

Netanyahu made the remarks while speaking in Washington, America.

Background

Israel and the US are staunch allies. Israel plays a key role in America’s overall policy in the Middle East. Israel was the largest annual recipient of American aid from 1976 to 2004. It receives $3 billion in grants every year from the US through Foreign Military Financing (FMF).

Israel also looks to US to support it during many conflicts that arise in the region. An overview of Israel’s history can be found here.

Analysis

In the speech that Netanyahu delivered in America, he did not overtly mention the US President Donald Trump. Instead he focused on the shared values between Judaism and Christianity. He noted that support of Christians was vital to Israel. He said, “When I say we have no greater friends than Christian supporters of Israel, I know you’ve always stood with us.  You stand with us because you stand with yourselves because we represent that common heritage of freedom that goes back thousands of years.”

He said that there is a common misconception that Islamic terrorists hate the West because of Israel. He added, “They hate Israel because of the west – because we represent a free society built on the foundation of Judeo-Christian heritage.”

Assessment

Our assessment is that Netanyahu has positioned Israel as a defender of Western values in the Middle East. The evangelical Christian bloc in the US is highly influential in the country’s politics. They were the single largest contributors to facilitate the movement of the Jewish diaspora to Israel. Perhaps Netanyahu is now feeling that he is politically losing his appeal to the American people and hence this outreach to the evangelical Christian. 

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