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An Update from CUFI Action Fund













In this week’s Update we are pleased to open with some tremendous success on the state front. We’ll then delve into some recent events in the Middle East. And finally, we take a moment to reflect on the commemoration and celebration that Israelis are engaged in this week.

From West Virginia to Idaho

This year, we set out to enhance our efforts to advance policy at the state level. In terms of the effort to combat the BDS movement, we zeroed in on Utah, Idaho and West Virginia as states where we wanted to advance legislation.

A few weeks ago, we reported that Utah had become the 31st state in the union to sign an anti-BDS provision into law. This week, the West Virginia legislature sent their state’s anti-BDS bill to the Governor for his signature. And in Idaho similar legislation advanced through a key committee in the state’s House of Representatives.

Once the Idaho bill clears the House and governors of both Idaho and West Virginia enact their respective bills into law, 33 states in the union will have advanced anti-BDS legislation or executive orders. This sends a clear and unambiguous message to those who would try to bully companies into boycotting the Jewish state: Americans stand with Israel.

Iran Suffers a Setback

As you may have read, a few days ago Iran’s primary nuclear enrichment facility suffered a devastating setback leaving thousands of centrifuges – complex devices used to enrich uranium for use in a nuclear weapon – damaged or destroyed. Israel has not commented on the incident, though numerous press reports indicate that Israel’s foreign intelligence service was responsible for the event.

Early estimates are that Iran’s nuclear program has been set back by at least nine months, but as more information is revealed by the Iranian regime, it is plausible that the damage was even more extensive. Iran’s has predictably responded by stating that they will now enrich uranium to 60% (as opposed to the 20% level to which they were originally enriching the nuclear material).

Time will tell what Iran will do and how harmful the incident was to their nuclear program, but what is clear is that the Israelis – assuming it was in fact Jerusalem that was responsible for this event– are not going to sit back and allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon.

While some in the foreign policy intelligentsia fear that the event at Natanz may make diplomacy with Iran more difficult, they are completely misunderstanding the situation. Diplomacy is an end, not a means. The goal is a non-nuclear, non-terror sponsoring Iran. And however thousands of Iran’s centrifuges became inoperable – the reality is that the US, Israel, and the world have more time to try to find a way to make that goal a reality.

First Memorial Day, Then Independence Day

Each year, in accordance with the Jewish calendar, Israelis commemorate their annual memorial day. A siren blares across the entire country and everyone stops. They stop driving and get out of their vehicles. They stop working or eating or playing. They hang up the phone and they stand up and they take two minutes to reflect on those who have fallen in defense of the Jewish state. The entire country stands still. And throughout Israel’s Memorial Day, there is an Israeli TV channel that doesn’t air regular programing. Instead, the name of every person who gave their lives for Israel is shown for a brief moment on the screen. One of our own staff at the CUFI Action Fund had an uncle whose name appears on that screen.

The next day, Israelis gather with family and friends to celebrate their Independence Day. It doesn’t look much differently from what you might see here in the US. There are barbecues in the backyard and official government ceremonies. But before they celebrate their freedom, Israelis remember those who died to ensure their freedom.

Next week, we’ll be talking about the Biden administration’s plans to give more of your money to the Palestinian Authority among a number of other issues. As always thank you for taking the time to stand up for Israel and stay abreast of the latest developments in the effort to strengthen the US-Israel relationship.

Sincerely,

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