MIDDLE EAST

Past U.S. policy toward Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat has failed. Several presidents have attempted to engage him and have trusted his word, only to hear him reiterate his hatred for Jews, Israel, and the United States over Arab radio waves. Arafat has proven himself as much a terrorist as Osama bin Laden or Saddam Hussein. It is clear that for peace in the Middle East to become a reality, Yasser Arafatís tyrannical rule over the Palestinian Authority must end. The Arab-Israeli peace process has collapsed because of the continuing Palestinian terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens, which Arafat once explicitly endorsed and still tacitly supports. Arafat wants war and destruction, not peace. Throughout Israelís democracy, Arafat has had countless opportunities to accept Palestinian Statehood, only to demagogue the offer and demonize Israel.

As the only democracy in the Middle East and one of the United Statesí true allies, we must stand by Israel, support her in defending herself, and be cautious in doubting her leadership. My support for Israel as a country and for peace in the region is unwavering, and I welcome the day when Israel finds herself at peace.