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Lankford, Cruz, Gallagher Recognize Israeli Sovereignty

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator James Lankford (R-OK) joined Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) to introduce the Israeli Sovereignty Reassurance Act of 2021 (ISRA), legislation to prohibit the State Department from reversing the US recognition of Israel’s sovereignty over the Golan Heights. ISRA ensures no funds go to “prepare, propose, draft, review, or promulgate any regulation, guidance, or executive order or to otherwise implement, administer, or enforce any policy” reversing the recognition. The legislation was introduced against the backdrop of Iran-backed Palestinian terrorists escalating their attacks on Israel. Senate cosponsors include Sens. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) , Steve Daines (R-MT) , John Thune (R-SD), Roger Marshall (R-KS), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Rick Scott (R-FL), Mike Braun (R-IN), and Tommy Tuberville (R-AL).

“For nearly seven decades, Israel has been America’s strongest ally in the Middle East,” said Lankford. “The US must remain committed to Israel as it defends itself from Hamas and other external threats. The ongoing conflict in Jerusalem and Gaza shows that President Biden’s calls for de-escalation are not enough. In 2019, President Trump affirmed the obvious: the Golan Heights are within Israel.  We must stand by this recognition and affirm Israel’s right to self-defense everywhere within its sovereign borders, both now and in the future.”


“The United States must make it clear that it stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Israel, and the Biden administration must stop equivocating between our Israeli allies and the Iran-backed Palestinian terrorists who are attacking them,” said Cruz. “Israel has not just the right but the obligation to defend its citizens, and while Israel’s leaders may decide that restraint and de-escalation are in their national security interests, the US has no place pressuring them to do so. Similarly, the US should not be in the business of dictating to Israel what it should do with its territories, including the Golan Heights. This bill is an unfortunately necessary measure to protect the security of Israel and ultimately the United States, and a timely reminder of those basic facts.”


“The Golan Heights provide Israel with defensible borders and serve as a key buffer between Israel and the chaos in Syria,” said Gallagher. “At a time when Israel – our most important ally in the Middle East – is literally under attack, we should do everything in our power to ensure they can defend themselves. Ensuring we continue to recognize their sovereignty over the Golan Heights is the most basic way we can do so.”


You can read the full text of the bill here.


Earlier this week Lankford joined his colleagues in a letter to President Biden to stand with Israel and withdraw from its negotiations with Iran in the wake of attacks from Gaza. Lankford also penned a letter to the international business community warning them against resuming business with Iran. Lankford attended the signing ceremony of the Abraham Accords in 2020 and applauded President Trump’s success toward peace in the Middle East. He also supported moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem, the rightful capital of Israel.