Senator Daniel Inouye, “Israel’s contribution to US military intelligence is greater than all NATO countries combined.”
We mourn the passing of Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI) who received the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs’s (JINSA) Henry M. “Scoop” Jackson Distinguished Service Award in 1994 for his steadfast support for a strong American military capability and a resilient U.S. security relationship with Israel. Sen. Inouye continued his association with JINSA for more than a decade to include serving as honorary co-chairman of the annual awards dinner with Sen. John Warner.
Senator Inouye died December 17. He was 88 years old.
As the longtime chairman of the Subcommittee on Defense of the Senate Appropriations Committee and, after 2009, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee itself, Senator Inouye was widely regarded as a strong and uniting figure, a leader with integrity.
In 1943, when the U.S. Army dropped its ban on Japanese Americans, Senator Inouye immediately enlisted and then volunteered to be part of the all-Nisei 442nd Regimental Combat Team. Two years later, as a second lieutenant he had received a battlefield commission and a Bronze Star for heroism in a battle in France. He nearly single-handedly destroyed three enemy machine gun nests pinning down his platoon in Italy. The last was accomplished after he was grievously wounded in the right arm by a German grenade (it was later amputated at an Army hospital). At the battle’s conclusion, it was recorded that he had killed 25 Germans soldiers and wounded eight more. For his actions, Senator Inouye was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. The award was later upgraded to the Medal of Honor.
Senator Inouye was a stalwart friend to Israel and a tireless supporter of a strong national defense, and a close relationship between Washington and Jerusalem. When the value of the U.S.-Israel alliance was questioned, Sen. Inouye stood firm, asserting, “Israel’s contribution to U.S. military intelligence is greater than all NATO countries combined.”
Senator Inouye’s deep understanding of the importance of the U.S.-Israel relationship and his tireless efforts to ensure Israel always had the resources to defense herself, most recently by assisting Israel to acquire additional Iron Dome batteries, will be forever remembered by JINSA.
He was a giant of the U.S. Senate. He fought racism to serve his country in its time of greatest need. He proved to be the kind of hero the world needed to defeat the evil that was Nazi Germany. He became one of the most respected legislators to ever serve in Congress. Senator Inouye dedicated his life to serving America. He will be greatly missed.
We offer our condolences to his family and the citizens of his beloved Hawaii.
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