Democrats Reject Platform Change Condemning Construction in Judea and Samaria


A move to insert a demand into the Democratic party platform that Israel “end occupation and illegal settlements” was shot down this weekend, with the drafters of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) voting no on the amendment proposed by the Bernie Sanders-appointed committee member James Zogby.

James Zogby, Bernie Sanders pick for the DNC. (Wikimedia Commons)
James Zogby, founder of Arab American Institute and Bernie Sanders pick for DNC. (Wikimedia Commons)

Zogby,  the founder and head of the Arab American Institute, is known for his outspoken criticism of Israel and his support of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. He was nominated to the committee by the super-liberal Bernie Sanders, who is technically still in the running for the Democratic presidential nomination despite rival Hillary Clinton’s near-official clinching of the candidacy.

Zogby proposed the anti-Israel amendment to the party platform, which calls for Israel to cease construction in the Biblical heartland of Judea and Samaria and in eastern Jerusalem, and for the international community to rebuild and strengthen the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.

Such a move is unlikely to change the situation on the ground, as the billions of dollars in international aid which have poured into Gaza over the past years have failed to help create viable infrastructure or a stable economy, largely because of Gaza’s leadership’s well-known practice of appropriating money and goods to shore up its terror activities.

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The DNC amendment reflects Sanders’ own platform on Israel, which heavily favors the rights of Palestinians over the security of the Jewish state.

However, the proposal was defeated, with the eventual language chosen reflecting Hillary Clinton’s Israel stance by calling for Israel and the Palestinians to work together towards a “two-state solution of the Israel-Palestinian conflict”.

The new DNC platform would give Israel secure and established borders and the Palestinians “independence, sovereignty, and dignity”, reported the AP, though what that means was not defined in the document.

While Hillary Clinton is certainly the more pro-Israel of the two Democratic candidates, many voters fear her presidency would not represent a significant change from President Barack Obama’s current Israel policies. However, recent polls show that she and Republican opponent Donald Trump are evenly matched in terms of popularity in Israel.

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Source: Israel in the News