Former Spanish PM: Without Israel, we are all lost

Thursday, September 16, 2010 |  Ryan Jones
Former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar this week took the message of his fledgling Friends of Israel Initiative to Washington, where he openly blasted the policies of US President Barack Obama vis-a-vis Israel and the Muslim world.

Aznar told The Jerusalem Post that while building friendly ties with Muslim countries is important, it must not come at “the cost of losing the trust and confidence of the Israeli people.”

Appearing before the Council on Foreign Relations on Wednesday, Aznar insisted that while all previous American governments had supported Israel unconditionally, “this administration, in my view, is a conditional supporter of Israel.”

On Tuesday evening, Aznar hosted a dinner event to officially launch the Friends of Israel Initiative in the US. He reminded those attending that “Israel is an integral part of the West, and the weaker it is, the weaker the entire West will be perceived to be.”

He want on to warn that “letting Israel be demonized will lead to the delegitimation of our own cherished values. If Israel were to disappear by the force of its enemies, I sincerely doubt the West could remain as we know it.”

A number of international figures have already joined the Friends of Israel Initiative, including former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and former First Minister of Northern Ireland David Trimble, and former Peruvian president Alejandro Toledo.

Aznar hopes to add the names of prominent US congressional leaders to the list.

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