Congressman Michael Guest
Congressman Michael Guest (MS-3) believes it is in the national security interest of the United States to unequivocally stand behind our longtime friend and greatest ally in the Middle East, Israel.
In 1945, when Allied troops liberated the concentration camps in Germany and they witnessed firsthand the horrors of the Holocaust, the world cried, “never again.” The Holocaust led to the tragic ending of 6 million innocent lives. Men, women, and children suffered and died only because they were Jews. The horrors of the Holocaust were detailed by those who survived and evidenced by those who lost their lives. Shock waves reverberated around the world at the massive destruction and death. In 1933 only 9.5 million Jews lived in Europe, and the Holocaust brought that number to a devastating low. By 1945 two out of every three European Jews had been killed.
The tragedies were mind boggling and left the Allies questioning how these things could have happened. At the Nuremberg trials the world learned more of the horrendous atrocities Holocaust victims suffered. Survivors spoke of how people were herded like cattle, and how men, women, and children were driven to their deaths in the Nazi gas chambers. These victims suffered only because of their Jewish heritage.
The Jewish people were not new to suffering, as they for nearly 2,000 years were without a homeland. They wandered the world seeking a place to belong, and the Holocaust nearly wiped out the entire European Jewish population. Upon the discovery of Nazi Germany’s slaughter of the Jewish people, the Allies rallied to establish the Nation of Israel and give the Jewish people back their homeland. In 1948 the Jewish nation-state of Israel was established.
Since regaining their homeland, the Jewish people have been a stalwart Middle Eastern ally of Americans. Israel remains a counterweight against radical forces in the Middle East, including radical Islam and violent extremism. Israel has also prevented the further proliferation of weapons of mass destruction in the region by thwarting Iran, Iraq, and Syria’s nuclear programs. This makes Israel our greatest ally and friend. Israel and America work together to ensure peace throughout the Middle East. Hamas, Hezbollah, and others surrounding Israel have no desire for peace, and the recent war in Israel is a reminder of that.
Since 1948, the Jewish people have fought to protect their homeland from various wars, daily encounters with terrorists, and a constant fear of losing their land. In this way, the current crisis in Israel is like other crises in Israel over the last 75 years. The Jewish people are resilient in their defense of their homeland; and with the reminder of the Holocaust less than one hundred years ago, it is imperative America stands with our ally and friend, Israel, and the Jewish people.
Last year, my wife, Haley, and I had the honor of visiting Israel and meeting the country’s incredible people. We are appalled by the actions of Hamas, an Iranian-backed terrorist organization. Hamas’s deliberate, gruesome attacks on innocent Israeli citizens are despicable acts of war, and I support Israel’s right to self-defense as the nation protects its people and homeland.
I have joined bipartisan legislation supporting Israel as it defends itself against the barbaric war launched by Hamas and other terrorists. This legislation condemns these horrific acts and reinforces support from the U.S. House of Representatives to help Israel in this time of distress, and I am pleased that the resolution was approved in a bipartisan vote recently. I also have joined letters to President Biden expressing concern about his Administration’s decision to unfreeze $6 billion in assets for Iran, and I have cosponsored legislation that would refreeze and ultimately redirect the $6 billion to support victims of terrorism.
You have likely seen news reports regarding American held hostages in Gaza. I, too, am closely monitoring the crisis, and I am in communication with our State Department and military authorities regarding Hamas’s continued terrorist activities. Please know that we will continue to work non-stop to see that all Americans return home safely.
Now, more than ever, the United States must support Israel. It is in the national security interest of the United States to unequivocally stand behind our longtime friend and greatest ally in the Middle East, Israel. I hope that you will join Haley and me as we “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem” (Psalm 122:6). May we, as a great and prayerful people, continue to offer our support to our Israeli brothers and sisters in their time of unexpected challenges.