What’s behind the Mormon relationship with Israel?
During their trip to Israel this past Sunday, Mitt Romney and his wife Ann, made an unscheduled stop at one of Judaism’s holiest sights, the Western Wall. As is customary, Romney, donning a black yarmulke and bowing his head, spent several solemn minutes at the wall—the largest remnant of the Second Temple, which Roman armies destroyed around 70 CE. Later at a speech in Jerusalem’s Old City, Romney collapsed America’s security interests with those of Israel. Quoting at length from the late Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, Romney declared, “[We] now have the responsibility to make sure that never again will our independence be destroyed, and never again will the Jew become homeless and or defenseless.”
Many see Romney’s staunchly pro-Israel stance as a political play for the Jewish vote, both in America, and in Israel (there are some 250,000 American citizens living in Israel and the vast majority of those voted for John McCain in 2008). Romney was also clearly after some Israeli campaign cash; the candidate raked in $1 million dollars from just 45 donors at his fundraiser on Monday.
Max Perry — “Mormonism’s Occasionally Unrequited Love for Israel”