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Jewish conference to honor Susan Rice

The Obama administration may not be getting a whole lot of love from the pro-Israel community these days, but tonight, the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations is giving their annual National Service Award to U.N. Representative Susan Rice. Rice plans to use her acceptance speech at tonight’s event in New York to both ...

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The Obama administration may not be getting a whole lot of love from the pro-Israel community these days, but tonight, the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations is giving their annual National Service Award to U.N. Representative Susan Rice.

Rice plans to use her acceptance speech at tonight’s event in New York to both defend the Obama administration’s record on Israel and spell out the increased military and security cooperation that’s taken place on Obama’s watch. Previous winners include House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD).

Here are some excerpts of Rice’s speech, obtained by The Cable:

"America remains deeply and permanently committed to Israel’s peace and security. It is a commitment for this president and this Administration. It spans generations. It spans political parties. It is not negotiable. And it never will be," Rice will say.

"From the moment he took office, President Obama’s guidance has been clear: to strengthen and deepen that commitment. He has been clear all along that our special relationship with Israel is deeply rooted in our common interests and our common values."

"That’s why we’ve increased cooperation between our militaries to unprecedented levels. That’s why, even in these tough fiscal times, we’ve increased foreign military financing to record levels. That’s why we’ve also included additional support for the lifesaving Iron Dome anti-rocket system — which saw action just days ago in defense of innocent Israelis who live near the Gaza frontier."

"That’s why we’re working jointly to toughen up Israel’s security through the Arrow system; and through David’s Sling; and through joint military exercises that have never been more robust."

"That’s why, if you ask members of the uniformed military of Israel or the United States, if you talk to leaders at the Kirya or the Pentagon, you’ll hear the same assessment: the American commitment to Israel’s qualitative military edge has never been stronger. That’s a fact, plain and simple."

"Of course, the Arab world is undergoing unprecedented political change, and the calls for freedom across the region have brought legitimate security concerns. But let there be no doubt: we are doing all we can to ensure that Israel remains secure even as the region becomes more free."

The Obama administration may not be getting a whole lot of love from the pro-Israel community these days, but tonight, the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations is giving their annual National Service Award to U.N. Representative Susan Rice.

Rice plans to use her acceptance speech at tonight’s event in New York to both defend the Obama administration’s record on Israel and spell out the increased military and security cooperation that’s taken place on Obama’s watch. Previous winners include House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD).

Here are some excerpts of Rice’s speech, obtained by The Cable:

"America remains deeply and permanently committed to Israel’s peace and security. It is a commitment for this president and this Administration. It spans generations. It spans political parties. It is not negotiable. And it never will be," Rice will say.

"From the moment he took office, President Obama’s guidance has been clear: to strengthen and deepen that commitment. He has been clear all along that our special relationship with Israel is deeply rooted in our common interests and our common values."

"That’s why we’ve increased cooperation between our militaries to unprecedented levels. That’s why, even in these tough fiscal times, we’ve increased foreign military financing to record levels. That’s why we’ve also included additional support for the lifesaving Iron Dome anti-rocket system — which saw action just days ago in defense of innocent Israelis who live near the Gaza frontier."

"That’s why we’re working jointly to toughen up Israel’s security through the Arrow system; and through David’s Sling; and through joint military exercises that have never been more robust."

"That’s why, if you ask members of the uniformed military of Israel or the United States, if you talk to leaders at the Kirya or the Pentagon, you’ll hear the same assessment: the American commitment to Israel’s qualitative military edge has never been stronger. That’s a fact, plain and simple."

"Of course, the Arab world is undergoing unprecedented political change, and the calls for freedom across the region have brought legitimate security concerns. But let there be no doubt: we are doing all we can to ensure that Israel remains secure even as the region becomes more free."

Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at josh.rogin@foreignpolicy.com.

Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.

A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.

Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C. Twitter: @joshrogin

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