“Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry’s remarks on Israel are causing some critics to revive charges that if Perry became president he would make policy decisions based on his personal religious beliefs.
“Perry was in New York Tuesday for meetings and to deliver his first major foreign policy address. After the speech, in which he endorsed strong U.S. support for Israel and criticized current Obama administration policy, Perry was asked about the influence his Christian faith has on his position on Israel. ‘As a Christian, I have a clear directive to support Israel, so from my perspective it’s pretty easy,’ Perry said. ‘Both as an American and as a Christian, I am going to stand with Israel.’…
“A Perry spokesman dismisses the critique. ‘We realize in some quarters it’s unacceptable for elected officials, especially conservatives, to discuss faith in the public arena,’ says spokesman Ray Sullivan. ‘However, throughout history American presidents and political leaders have cited their faith and America’s roots in Judeo-Christian values. Governor Perry believes support for our ally Israel is good for America, important to peace and stability in the Middle East and is consistent with Christian faith and with Jewish teachings.'”
“‘I’ve forgotten more about Israel than Rick Perry knows about Israel,’ Santorum said during a conversation with POLITICO on Tuesday, while Perry was addressing a rally of people opposed to the Palestinian statehood vote in New York. ‘There he is, reading a speech that I’m sure he didn’t write, and has never taken a position on any of this stuff before, and [the media is] taking this guy seriously.’…
“‘Rick Perry hammers Mitt Romney for being a flip-flopper and within a couple of weeks of being in the race, he’s already flipped-flopped on two issues,’ Santorum said, citing Perry’s positions on Israel and the HPV vaccine.”
“Asked for a response, Obama campaign adviser and former Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Fla, said, ‘Apparently Governor Perry needs to do some homework on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and particularly on Israeli security needs. His speech was riddled with misunderstandings of the conflict and with falsehoods about President Obama’s superb record on Israel. Prime Minister Netanyahu, Defense Minister Barak, and President Peres have all praised President Obama publicly for his work on Israel’s behalf and unprecedented US-Israeli security cooperation under Obama’s leadership. With all due respect to Governor Perry, what does he know about Israel’s interests that Netanyahu, Barak, and Peres dont know?’
“Wexler, currently the president of the S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace, charged that ‘Perry misrepresented Obama’s statements on the 1967 lines — as Netanyahu and Barak have both affirmed, the President said that Israel should NOT have to return to those lines. President Obama has consistently embraced the principles in support of Israel that Governor Perry outlined in his speech — publicly calling for the disarming of Hamas, recognition of Israel as a Jewish state and homeland of the Jewish people, and the direct negotiations to resolve the conflict. In fact, it is ironic that Perry chooses this week to level these unfounded criticisms at the President — since President Obama and his administration have been working tirelessly to head off the Palestinian’s unilateral statehood declaration at the UN this week.’
“Wexler continued, saying that ‘Perry’s demand that the US defund the Palestinian Authority would effectively dismantle the Palestinian security forces, forces that America built and trained — which would significantly endanger Israel security and the safety of ordinary Israelis. Perry’s demand is also in direct contradiction with an Israeli report that defunding the PA would not be in Israel’s interests.'”
“A top Palestine Liberation Organization official responded to Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s scathing criticisms of the PLO on Tuesday by telling The Cable that Perry’s comments were ‘discriminatory and racist.’…
“‘I thought the fundamental principles of the United States were to support people who are seeking freedom and liberty and justice and the Palestinian people are doing exactly that,’ [PLO representative Maen Rashid] Areikat continued. ‘To try to give the impression that there’s no moral equivalence between the struggle of the Palestinians and the Israelis is really something that requires condemnation. It is really surprising and unacceptable.’…
“‘Is he really contemplating that the United States loses its leverage in an important region in the Middle East? If he wants to close down the PLO office in Washington he is calling on the United States to call off its relationship with the Palestinian people, who are a crucial player in this conflict. So is that something that is in the interest of the United States? I don’t think so.’
“‘I thought he was an expert on creating jobs. I didn’t know he was an expert on Palestinian-Israeli affairs,’ Areikat quipped.”
“Deputy Knesset Speaker Danny Danon, who appeared Tuesday with Mr. Perry at a pro-Israel rally in New York, told The Washington Times that he had invited the Texas governor to visit the Jewish state.
“Mr. Perry ‘told me that he would be very happy to come, and we will try to work out a date that will be available for him to come — probably it will be in October or November — and I’m looking forward to hosting him in Israel,’ Mr. Danon said.
“A Perry spokesman told The Times that there was ‘nothing planned’ yet.”
Via Breitbart TV.