Obama backs Israel in tough foreign policy speech
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Democratic candidate Barack Obama took a firm stance against Iran and pledged support to Israel in his first foreign policy speech since clinching the Democratic nomination for president.
He vowed to stop
Obama, who clinched the nomination late on Tuesday, has faced some wariness among Jewish voters over his commitment to
Obama, a Christian, vowed in his speech to work for peace with a Palestinian state alongside
"Let me be clear.
"But any agreement with the Palestinian people must preserve
The issue is central to the negotiations President George W. Bush hopes to conclude before he steps down in January.
Obama alluded to the rumor campaign in his speech telling his audience they may have received e-mails telling "tall tales" about him.
"All I want to say is -- let me know if you see this guy named Barack Obama, because he sounds pretty frightening," joked Obama, appearing upbeat and energetic after securing the nomination in a battle with fellow Democrat Hillary Clinton.
McCain has been assailing Obama in recent weeks on his previous statements suggesting a willingness to talk directly to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who has called for
Obama has since said he would not guarantee a meeting with the Iranian president. He went a step further in the AIPAC speech by laying down conditions for what he said would "tough and principled diplomacy" with
"There will be careful preparation. We will open up lines of communication, build an agenda, coordinate closely with our allies, and evaluate the potential for progress," Obama said.
"I have no interest in sitting down with our adversaries just for the sake of talking," he said.
"But as president of the
Obama said the danger from
"I will do everything in my power to prevent
The McCain campaign has taken aim at Obama for what it says is a pattern of "flip-flops" in his positions on
McCain addressed the AIPAC conference on Monday and promised to pursue tougher financial sanctions on
Also speaking at the AIPAC conference was