There’s a healthy debate raging in America right now over the issue of foreign aid. Millions of Americans rightly feel that our country is spending too much money on overseas projects while we’re still hurting here at home. To my fellow countrymen who hold this conviction, I add my hearty consent. America does spend too much money supporting countries around the world that hate us, and would seek to harm us at the first opportunity. America also spends too much money trying to defend allies who, in many cases, have come to rely so heavily on American military might that they do nothing to defend themselves. For these reasons, Americans should engage in a lively debate on the merits of our current foreign aid policy. For starters, the Congress should stop allocating all foreign aid in a single “take it or leave it” omnibus package that forces members to vote for all foreign aid in one annual bill. Nevertheless, while reforms are certainly needed, suddenly cutting-off all foreign aid to allies like Israel is not in the strategic national security interests of the United States.
There can be no greater return on the investment of American foreign aid dollars than on our investment in the State of Israel. This tiny nation, the only democracy in the Middle East, is an ally that America is blessed to have by our side. They are situated in part of the world that is increasingly afflicted by the scourge of radical Islam, which is becoming increasingly militant. They are also a country that doesn’t stand idly by waiting for America to defend them; they boast one of the best modern militaries not just in the Middle East, but in the entire world.
America doesn’t have a single boot on the ground in Israel, and we don’t maintain a standing army there to defend the Jewish State. Israel maintains its own standing army to defend its people and maintain peace and stability in the region. They also have a strong and vibrant economy; however, they are a nation much smaller than the U.S., with a much smaller economy on the whole. Their continual struggle against radical terrorists takes a toll on their ability to finance their military efforts, and that’s where American foreign aid funding helps to support our staunchest ally’s military capacities, thus ensuring that they can win against radical Islamic terrorists.
To some, even the idea of foreign aid to Israel is a step toward embroiling America in “foreign entanglements” the type which George Washington warned against. I take exception to such a suggestion, however, and would argue that a strong Israel in the Middle East makes America’s engagement in foreign entanglements much less likely. Israel acts as a “firewall” of sorts that helps hold the crazy, totalitarian ideology of Islamofacism at bay, lest such a worldview threaten Western Civilization in general and America in particular.
We should make no mistake: Islamic militants aren’t motivated to attack America because we’re engaged in the world; they want to destroy us because we are free and based on the Judeo-Christian value system. They will not stop trying to attack America even if we withdrew from the world tomorrow. That’s why having “soul mate” nations like America and Israel stand together against an ideology of hate and intolerance is imperative for our own national stability.
What the world is now witnessing in the Middle East, with Hamas terrorists in Gaza now having launched over 15,000 missiles into Israel, is the depth of the radicalism of radical Islam. America cannot now, or ever, turn its back on such an ally as Israel that not only fights for its very national survival, but for the freedom of our nation as well. For most of America’s history, we have been a nation that has spilled our blood and treasure to defend other nations; it is now a refreshing turn of events to have an ally like Israel that spills its blood and treasure fighting our common enemy and asks only that we stand by them while they do so. I believe that a strong Israel aides the cause of international stability, free peoples and free markets. These values are essential to America’s national and economic security.
Engaging in foreign entanglements just for the sake of engagement is never a good idea for America, and picking sides in bloody sectarian conflicts doesn’t serve us well; however, standing with allies like Israel makes the world a safer place for free peoples and free enterprise, and that actually prevents “foreign entanglements” from entangling us in the first place.