The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation’s largest mainstream Orthodox Jewish synagogue organization, today applauded the passage of the Iran-Libya Sanctions Extension Act of 2001 in the House and Senate by overwhelming majority votes. This important legislation, designed to combat Iranian and Libyan efforts to fund terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction through energy development projects, is crucial to protecting the global community against terrorism.
Since Iran and Libya are the most dangerous supporters of terrorism in the world, the U.S. Congress has wisely taken the lead with this necessary and crucial step in the ongoing battle against international terrorism, which has become a global scourge. Terrorism is no longer isolated to one region of the world and it is therefore important to eliminate the revenues that allow Iran to continue to be the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism. As the preeminent sponsor of Islamic radical extremist and terrorist groups including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah, Iran provides these organizations with funds, weapons, and training. These are the very groups that attack innocent citizens in Israel and that target American interests in the Gulf. They are making every effort to destabilize moderate Arab regimes and threaten Western interests around the world. The Libyan government refuses to acknowledge its responsibilities in the horrific bombing of Pan Am 103 and has refused to live up to its commitments to the families of the victims as demanded by the UN. Neither Iran nor Libya has moderated their policies; in fact, their support of Islamic terrorist groups has never been greater.
Countries that sponsor and support terrorism must be made accountable and have to know that the civilizations of the world will not allow their vicious acts to go unpunished. We applaud the Senate and House for passing the ILSA Extension Act of 2001 as a vital part of the continued struggle against terrorism and extremism. We call on other world governments to recognize the wisdom of this legislation and to adopt similar measures as acts of global terrorism increase, threatening innocent people all over the world.