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Georgia and Israel join forces to defeat shared threats

 Israeli soldiers return from Gaza on August 3, 2014 near the border with Gaza, Israel.
Israeli soldiers return from Gaza on August 3, 2014 near the border with Gaza, Israel.
Photo by Ilia Yefimovich/Getty Images

In a release sent to the news media on Sunday by the Deal for Governor Communications office, the state of Georgia, which buys millions in Israeli bonds annually, is currently engaged in cooperation with Israel on the front lines from anti-terrorism and cyber-security to trade and investment policy.

The write-up by Georgia Governor Nathan Deal and former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, John R. Bolton also appeared in the Washington Times said that as the U.S.-Israel bilateral relationship deteriorates at the national level, our states, local institutions and businesses are actually forging ever-closer relations with key Israeli institutions.

Relations between President Obama and his administration and the government of Israel has reached an all-time low to the point where Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told President Obama and his administration to back off and to stop second-guessing him on how he is dealing with Hamas.

Part of the fostering anger stems from Secretary of State, John Kerry’s proposal in calling for negotiations on Hamas demands, including opening border crossings into Gaza and relaxed boating restrictions off the Gaza coast. In addition, its language reportedly upgraded Hamas, a designated terrorist organization, to an equal plane with Israel, something that is annoying Netanyahu.

With the interference of the Obama administration, Deal and Bolton said, “Many among America’s media, university and even religious elites increasingly condemn Israel’s effort to protect its growing population, calling for sanctions, boycotts and divestitures against U.S. firms doing business with Israel. This “BDS movement” does not merely criticize specific Israeli policies, such as Protective Edge, but instead attacks the very legitimacy of Israel itself. It often masks an ill-concealed anti-Semitism, a stain we had hoped was long ago erased from American political discourse. It is reminiscent of former President Jimmy Carter’s view of Israel as an “apartheid state.”

In terms of cyber-security, Deal and Bolton referred to the growing threat of cyber-attacks against military information-technology networks, private corporations, U.S. infrastructures and against individual citizens.

For Georgia, Deal and Bolton said, “Military needs, technology, academic research and sophisticated workforces intersect in both Georgia and Israel. Georgia Tech’s Information Security Center and cybersecurity training at Fort Gordon, working closely with Israel’s new Advanced Technology Park on the campus of Ben Gurion University, are quickly becoming cybersecurity world leaders.”

Bolton said,” On a recent trade mission to Israel, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal met with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Given Israel and Georgia’s economic ties, existing technology hubs and military installations, a partnership between Georgia Tech and leading Israeli universities to combat this threat is a natural next step. Together, the “next Silicon Valley” and the “Silicon Valley of the Southeast” are joining to develop and strengthen our cyber-defenses.”

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