Letters to the Editor, week of Dec. 28, 2011

Standing by Gov. Perry’s zero-budget proposal

Notwithstanding the fact that I’m a Jewish-American and a fervent supporter of Israel, I unequivocally endorse GOP presidential candidate Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s plan for a zero budget proposal for all countries that receive U.S. foreign aid, exclusive of aid for humanitarian purposes (all foreign aid considerations would start at zero). Our nation’s largesse would be predicated upon consideration of what is in the best interests of the U.S. 

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That said, if such a proposal were to be enacted, I assure fellow supporters of Israel not to worry; the Jewish State (currently receiving about $3 billion a year in foreign aid-mostly in military assistance) would, in all probability, continue to receive at least the same amount, and perhaps even more. 

Israel has been a very close ally of the U.S. since the nation’s founding in 1948, and is the only true democracy in the Middle East. Congress and our national leaders realize that supporting Israel is in our nation’s best interest -preserving the balance of power in the Middle East between pro-democracy forces and purveyors of fanatical Islam, a threat not only to Israel, but ultimately to the U.S. and the world.

The U.S. and Israel share an irrevocable bond through mutual interdependence, trust and friendship, and I commend Gov. Perry’s repeated acknowledgement and support of this kinship, and for his astute pragmatism that the U.S. should expect a return on its investment. With that thought in mind, it’s imperative that America’s foreign aid program be closely vetted.

Gene Carton

Olivette