Underscoring the pernicious threat of a nuclear armed Iran, Ms. Bachmann said that “all options should be on the table” and did not rule out military force. “We must never allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons and we cannot outsource our national security to the UN.” Taking President Obama to task for his perceived laxity when dealing with the rogue state, she said that he has “given Iran the luxury of time to develop nuclear weapons” and called on the President “to accelerate covert operations and cyber operations in Iran and order the CIA Director to take all means necessary to stop Iran from getting the bomb before it is too late.”
Heaping substantive criticism on President Obama for his less than stellar track record as it pertains to Israel, Rep. Bachmann said, “The president supports the Occupy Wall Street protestors but fails to stand with Israel and that is not an acceptable way of treating our loyal ally.” Calling for an undivided Jerusalem recognized by the United States as Israel’s official capital she exclaimed, “On my first day in office I will issue an order to immediately move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.” Ms. Bachmann then brought the crowd to its feet concerning Jerusalem’s status when she said, “Not one acre, not one foot, not one inch of Jerusalem will ever be relinquished.”
Adding her voice to Ms. Bachmann’s was Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R) of Florida who was the recipient of the ZOA’s much heralded Cherna and Dr. Irving Moskowitz Award. Introduced by ZOA board member Harvey Friedman, he described Ros-Lehtinen as a “national treasure to every Jew in the U.S.” and spoke of her legislative efforts opposing US funding of both Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). Lauded for the tireless work that she’s done to protect Israel’s interests as Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Ms. Ros-Lehtinen, a Cuban-American, said, “Let us make no mistake about it. Ahmadinejad has clearly stated that his intentions are to destroy both Israel and America; the little Satan and the big Satan and we must take this very seriously.”
ZOA National Chairman of the Board, Dr. Michael Goldblatt, delivered the presentation to Maccabee Award recipients Judy and Jerome Taylor, noting that they had been “long-time pro-Israel activists” who had worked side by side for years on behalf of Israel. He also noted that Judy Taylor’s father had been involved in prosecuting Nazi war criminals at the Nuremberg war crime trials, so that working “to protect Jews was in her genes.”
The recipients of the 2011 Louis D. Brandeis Award were William K. Langfan and his son Mark Langfan, a New York attorney. Introducing the Langfans was Professor Ephraim Inbar, the director of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University in Ramat Gan, Israel.
Speaking about the seminal topographic map that he created, security analyst Mark Langfan took the audience on a spellbinding tour of the perils that Israel would find herself in if Judea and Samaria were relinquished to Arab hands. Pointing to the fact that Israel’s coastal region holds 70 percent of the Jewish population and 80 percent of its industrial base, such a scenario, he said, would inevitably lead to a massive barrage of Katyusha rockets carrying chemical warheads on major population centers including Tel Aviv, Netanya and Hadera.
“Without Israel as the bulwark against the waxing Islamic tsunami to the East,” Langfan said, “there will be a direct Islamic military threat to the very doorstep of Europe. Without Israel, how many trillions–trillions–of dollars will the US have to spend to defend Greece, and NATO from such ‘clear and present’ danger to Western civilization? Or, as the Visa commercial would say of Israel’s present-day strategic value to the US: Priceless.”
Serving as dinner co-chairmen were James A. Tisch, the former Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and New York Jewish Federation, and CEO of Loews Corporation and Martin Gross, President of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and Member of the Board of Trustees of Brandeis University. Among the prominent guests attending the dinner were Representatives Ann Marie Buerkle and Robert Turner from New York, Rep. Joe Walsh of Illinois, Richard Stone, Chair of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and terrorism expert, Steve Emerson.
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