HERMAN CAIN on the Middle East

In an interview with the magazine Israel Hayom, Herman Cain says he believes the “so-called Palestinian people” have this urge for unilateral recognition because they see this president as weak and Obama’s weakness invites attacks on Israel and America.


IH: What is your position on the Obama administration’s Middle East policy?

CAIN: I believe that his lack of a firm stand regarding Israel has emboldened Israel’s enemies, and America’s enemies. When I was in Israel in August, I met with the deputy prime minister and he said that this was one of the biggest concerns that they had. Because he threw Israel under the bus with the statement about the 1967 borders. He just threw them under the bus. He threw Prime Minister Netanyahu under the bus prior to his visit to America. In a Cain administration there would be no question in the minds of the world and the American people that we would stand with Israel. No question. It wasn’t the president’s right to suggest that they change those borders and I didn’t agree with that. For example, I think that the so-called Palestinian people have this urge for unilateral recognition because they see this president as weak. I haven’t seen all the facts but I think this whole assassination attempt [alleged Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador in Washington] was another example of seeing this president as weak, in that regard. So, weakness invites attack and I think that he has projected a sense of weakness.

IH: Would you transfer your embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem?

CAIN: Yes, I would.

Herman Cain traveled to Israel to attend Glenn’s Restoring Courage event and visited Judaism’s sacred Wailing (Western) Wall in Jerusalem

IH: What do you think of the Obama administration’s handling of Iran and what would you do differently, if anything?

CAIN: I don’t know if this is going to translate well in your language: Choke. Choke them economically. Here’s what I mean by that and I know that that’s not politically correct to say but here’s the idea: It costs them $70 a barrel to break even on their oil. It costs Saudi Arabia $30. We’re going to develop an energy-independent strategy. We will move toward energy independence in the Cain administration. We’ve got the resources to do it, we need the will, the leadership and we get some of these unnecessary regulations out of the way. We will impact the world price of oil. We get the price of oil down to $70 or below, and the Iranians won’t have enough money to build a nuclear program. They’re going to have to worry about feeding their people instead.

Second thing that we would do is that I would invest in our fleet of aegis-ballistic missile defense systems. We have the biggest fleet with that capability in the world. We need to upgrade it such that the ballistic-missile defense systems’ sea base would have the ability to detect threats for a longer period of time; strategically place some of those ships in that part of the world then let the Iranians know that we have that capability stationed there and let them know that if they wanted to attack our friends, attack Israel or the United States, that we won’t hesitate to retaliate.

Cain placing a prayer note, as is customary, into the cracks of the Wailing (Western) Wall.

IH: Do you think this president represents American values?

CAIN: I do not believe he represents American values. One of our American values is: America is an exceptional country. He appears to want to try and apologize for that. Americans hate that. They hate that. It’s not that Americans feel arrogant but the opportunities that people have in this country, the standard of living that people have in this country, is exceptional. Our military capability, it’s exceptional. It’s weaker now, but it’s exceptional. That’s a huge American value. That same attitude is what started this country. And it appears as if he is trying to diminish and mitigate that. So from that standpoint he doesn’t represent American values. There’s another American value he doesn’t represent. He’s a distributionist. Most of the people in this country believe in the free market system. If you’re able to take an idea or a business and build it and you’re rewarded for it, then God bless you, that’s good for you, that’s the way America is supposed to work. Do we show compassion to give people a helping hand? Yes! In various ways, but I believe more in what I call an empowerment rather than an entitlement. In other words, give people an opportunity to help themselves.

IH: And that’s why he is going to be a one-term president?

CAIN: That’s why he’s going to be a one-term president.