In this week’s Action Update, we see both sides of the U.S.-Israel relationship under the current American administration and acknowledge that we should’ve known better than to think Harvard was going to do the right thing when it comes to anything pertaining to Israel. Let’s dive right in.

America and Israel, Shoulder-to-Shoulder

On Monday, the U.S. and Israel began what has been described by one senior defense official as “the most significant exercise between the United States and Israel to date.” According to reports, over 6,000 American and more than 1,000 Israeli military and defense personnel will participate in Operation Juniper Oak 23, an air, land and sea joint training exercise that sends a clear and resounding to Iran: Neither the Americans nor the Israelis are incapable of mounting a massive offensive if need be.

In addition to the raw number of troops, the volume of hardware being deployed is unprecedented. 100 U.S. aircraft - ranging from heavy bombers to the highly advanced F-35 Joint Strike Fighters - will be in the air alongside 42 Israeli planes. Likewise, the U.S. will be deploying a carrier strike group totaling six ships alongside six Israeli vessels.

It is important that the U.S. and Israel engage in this joint show of force, not just so that the two nations can practice working together but to ensure Tehran knows we’re not asleep at the wheel. Iran seems to be counting on the idea that with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the U.S. is distracted. But the Defense Department is making clear that Tehran should not delude itself into thinking that the world’s sole remaining superpower is incapable of walking, chewing gum and confronting evil, all at the same time.

U.S. and Israeli Governments (but not the people) Disagree on Palestinian Terror

While the joint military exercise is some good news that should be welcomed, all is not perfect between Washington and Jerusalem. Recently, the Israeli Government imposed sanctions on the Palestinian Authority (PA) in response to the PA’s continued support for terror and efforts to go after Israel at international organizations such as the UN. Specifically, Israel was reacting to the PA’s pay-to-slay policy as well as the PA’s successful effort to have the Jewish state referred to the anti-Israel International Court of Justice (ICJ).

While the Biden administration voted against the PA’s ICJ resolution in the UN General Assembly and condemned the PA’s move, team Biden also panned Israel’s decision to withhold tax revenue from the PA, which Jerusalem has chosen instead to divert to victims of Palestinian terror.  

This disagreement comes on the heels of a report that cousins Karim and Maher Younis, who were each recently released from prison after having served 40 years for the 1980 murder of IDF Cpl. Avraham Bromberg (of blessed memory). Not only did Karim receive a heroes’ welcome upon his release, but the two murderers have also received $100,000 under the PA’s pay-to-slay policy, making them the most highly paid Palestinian terrorists that we know of.

In sum, the PA continues to financially incentivize terror and demonize the Jewish state on the world’s stage. Jerusalem is refusing to enable such grotesque policies. Washington should do the same by living up to the word and spirit of U.S. law (Taylor Force Act) instead of criticizing Israel for attempting to curb Palestinian terrorism.

We Spoke Too Soon

In last week’s Action Update, we reported that Harvard had decided to deny the vehemently anti-Israel head of Human Rights Watch, Ken Roth, a fellowship. We commended Harvard for doing the right thing. Well, they reversed course. They will now give an individual who has destroyed the reputation of a once venerable human rights organization by infecting it with anti-Israel bias a prestigious fellowship.

We should’ve known better. We started the relevant section by noting that the storyline was unexpected and asking our readers to hear us out. Well, we were wrong. Harvard does not have a moral compass. (Maybe an immoral compass?).

Next week, Christians United for Israel will be holding its annual Leadership Summit in San Antonio. We expect we’ll see a number of our readers there, and our entire team will be speaking at one point or another during the event. If you’ll be there, we look forward to seeing you. But if you can’t make it, don’t worry, the Action Update will come out a bit later next week so that we can give you a proper rundown of this agenda-setting Summit.


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