"During a JCRR leadership trip to the State of
Israel, I was able to more deeply understand the many
compelling and complex issues surrounding the relations
between the U.S., Israel and her neighbors. My trip, along
with my experience of being interned as a Japanese-American
during the World War II, have enabled me to develop an
understanding of what it means to be persecuted on the basis
of one's heritage. The issues currently facing the State of
Israel must be addressed by the U.S. in order to maintain
democracy in the Middle East."
Congressman Mike Honda
U.S. - Israel Relationship
The bond between the U. S. and the State of Israel is based upon friendship, common values of democracy and equality, and a strategic interest in ensuring a peaceful, prosperous future for the Middle East. As the only democracy in the Middle East, Israel must be able to rely on the U.S. during its efforts to form relationships with its neighbors, and to succeed economically and strategically. In Congress, Honda has made the continuing friendship between the United States and Israel a foreign policy priority.
Successful completion of the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians is necessary and vital to preserving American and Israeli security as well as the security in the region.
Mike has continually supported Israel in its quest to defend itself and secure it borders. He has urged an ending to the suicide bombings and a halting of the violence on both sides. No genuine solution to peace can be forced -- it must be negotiated and the U.S. must remain as an integral part of those negotiations.
Mike understands that the support of the U.S. to Israel is founded on mutual respect, and that understanding has allowed Israel to continue to take risks for peace, despite continued threats to her security.
Foreign Aid to countries such as Israel is vital to maintaining our own national security and protecting our interests abroad. The U.S. contributes less than 1% of its total budget to foreign aide. This serves to strengthen our allies, promote democracy across the globe, combat terrorism, and bring stability in volatile regions such as the Middle East. Israel is to be congratulated for its proposal to gradually eliminate the economic aid it receives, using the savings to maintain its qualitative edge in the Middle East. Mike Honda will work to ensure that the foreign aid bill and its aid to Israel remain as important components to the U.S. budget and will oppose any amendments cutting aid to Israel or attaching conditions to Israel's foreign aid.
Terrorism and Rogue States
The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, including chemical and biological weapons, in states that sponsor terrorism heightens security risks in the U.S. and abroad. Honda continues to support Israel in its fight to protect itself and to assist the United States in its continuing war on terrorism.
In addition, Mike will supports continued sanctions against Iraq, Iran, and other countries as long as they continue to be responsible for terror on domestic and foreign soil. However, these sanctions should only continue if they demonstrate the intended effect and do not harm to populous of a nation.
Jerusalem is and should remain the eternal capital of the Jewish people and the State of Israel. Mike continues to support enforcement of the Jerusalem Embassy Relocation Act of 1995 and fight the anomalous policy of the U.S. in regards to recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. In any final peace, the religious sites of Jerusalem must remain freely accessible to people of all faiths.
Crimes against a person based solely upon their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or ethnic origin are not only morally wrong, but go against the very fabric of tolerance and openness that exist in our country today. This includes profiling a certain race or nationality.
In Congress, Mike has worked tirelessly to combat racial profiling, even as the United States took steps to increase security in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks.
Throughout his career in public service, Mike has always supported legislation that expands the definition of what constitutes a hate crime, extending the penalties for those who commit crimes of hate, and working to eliminate the presence of bigotry, hate and discrimination in our schools and towards our children.
Terrorism can be understood as a global hate crime, deeply rooted in history and misinformation. Mike would like to see the same efforts that are used to fight hate crimes, including education and open dialogue, used to fight global terrorism.