On Monday, speaking at AIPAC, Vice President Mike Pence powerfully condemned the Democratic Party for its tolerance of anti-Semitism in its ranks and slammed the Democratic presidential candidates who had refused to attend AIPAC, asserting, “And as I stand before you today, eight Democratic candidates for president are actually boycotting this conference. So let me be clear on this point: Anyone who aspires to the highest office in the land should not be afraid to stand with the strongest supporters of Israel in America. It is wrong to boycott Israel, and it is wrong to boycott AIPAC.”
Pence also targeted Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), whose anti-Semitic remarks had engendered widespread condemnation, albeit with a paucity of it from members of her own party:
Recently, a freshman Democrat in Congress trafficked in repeated anti-Semitic tropes. She alleged congressional support for Israel reflected “allegiance to a foreign country,” she said Israel “has hypnotized the world,” and she accused Americans who support Israel of being bought off by campaign donations. Anti-Semitism has no place in the Congress of the United States, and any member who slanders those who support the historic alliance between the United States and Israel with such rhetoric should not have a seat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Pence began by noting President Trump’s commitment to making America safer, pointing out Trump’s promise and subsequent delivery to strengthen the nation’s military and his successful fight against radical Islamic terrorism:
This President promised to rebuild our military, and he signed into law the largest investment in our national defense since the days of Ronald Reagan. And with that renewed American strength, he promised to take the fight to radical Islamist terrorism – on our terms, on their soil. And as the Department of Defense confirmed on Friday – thanks to the courage of our armed forces and our partners in the region – the last inch of ground controlled by the Islamic State in Syria has been captured.
Then he segued to the unprecedented support President Trump has given to the State of Israel as he spoke of the deep commitment the United States of America has for the Jewish state:
President Trump is a man of his word. And with respect to our most cherished ally, he has been much more than simply a man of his word. Under President Donald Trump, if the world knows nothing else, the world knows this: America stands with Israel … We stand with Israel today for the same reasons the American people have always stood with Israel. We stand with Israel because her cause is our cause, her values are our values, and her fight is our fight. We stand with Israel because we believe in right over wrong, in good over evil, in liberty over tyranny.
He spoke of the various ways in which the president has taken action which had been eschewed by his predecessors:
President Trump promised to shut down the PLO office in Washington if the Palestinian Authority refused to take immediate steps to stop funding terrorists who murder innocent Israeli civilians with American tax dollars. When the PLO refused, President Trump shut it down … When President Donald Trump promised to cut off funding to anti-Israel agencies at the UN, he meant it. And last year, the United States ended all U.S. contributions to UNRWA. And President Trump promised to stand up to the world’s leading state sponsor of terror, and he withdrew the United States from the disastrous Iran nuclear deal. There’ll be no more pallets of cash to the mullahs in Iran!
Pence then referenced Trump’s powerful stand to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, something no president before him had attempted to execute: “And last year, President Trump did what no president before him had the courage to do, when he moved the American embassy to Jerusalem, the capital of the State of Israel.”
Pence then cited the president’s most recent action supporting Israel: acknowledging Israeli sovereignty over the vital Golan heights: “And as though all this wasn’t enough, as Prime Minister Netanyahu said last week, ‘He did it again.’ For 20 years after Israel’s rebirth, Syria held the Golan Heights – and with its massive artillery, it held Israel hostage. This crucial region changed hands only after Israel won a war that was forced upon her.”
Pence recalled the astonishing story of one lone Israeli soldier who had held off a bevy of enemy tanks in the fight for the Golan Heights in the Yom Kippur War:
And years later, when Israel’s enemies attacked her on the holiest day of the Jewish year, thousands of patriots stepped up to defend their homeland – including a young tank commander who singlehandedly kept a fleet of enemy tanks at bay, the great Zvika Greengold. Late one night, all alone on the Tapline Route – as enemy tanks rolled into Israel – a miracle happened. Captain Greengold moved his lone tank back and forth in the darkness, firing in different directions to confound and delay a far larger enemy force. His actions not only helped turned the tide of battle in Israel’s favor – they secured the Golan Heights from enemy control and, with it, saved the State of Israel from the brink of disaster.
Pence mentioned the Trump administration’s crucial role in attempting to bring freedom to the people of Iran, and reminded the conference of Trump’s promise:
And the campaign is working; the Iranian people are protesting against the regime, the Iranian economy is reeling under unprecedented U.S. sanctions, and now Iran must choose between caring for its people and continuing to fund its proxies who are destabilizing the region. The Iranian regime openly advocates another holocaust and seeks the means to achieve it. But I can assure you, under President Donald Trump’s leadership, America will continue to stand strong. We will continue to oppose Iran’s malign influence. And I promise you: Under this President, America will never allow Iran to obtain a nuclear weapon.
Pence spoke of the recent trip he and his wife Karen had made to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi death camp in Poland, then promised: “And as we walked about those deserted grounds… as I looked at the gas chambers, the piles of suitcases, and the piles of little shoes, it reinforced my resolve that our answer to this unspeakable tragedy for this and every generation must be… never again … never again … never again!”
Ladies and gentlemen, Israel and the United States will always stand together because America and Israel are more than friends. We’re more than partners or allies. My friends, the United States and Israel are family. We’re “mishpacha.”
We are a family, descended from a common faith tradition. We are a family that upholds common values, and together, we share a common destiny. The American-Israeli Alliance is stronger than ever. Our friendship is greater than ever, and together our future can only be brighter. And as President Trump has said: “[Our] administration will always stand with our cherished friend and partner, the State of Israel.”
… With the unwavering support of all of you, and all who call these two great nations home, with the leadership of President Donald Trump and with God’s help, I say with confidence, the best days for Israel and the United States of America are yet to come. God bless you. God bless Israel. And God Bless the United States of America.
Watch Pence below: