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Arafat waging terrorism war, Gingrich says

SHARE Arafat waging terrorism war, Gingrich says

House Speaker Newt Gingrich is accusing Yasser Arafat of waging a terrorism war against Israel and the Clinton administration of undermining Israel's security.

Speaking Tuesday to a pro-Israel lobby, Gingrich said the administration should adopt "principles that say, `If you're a terrorist, you should not expect to live very long,"' and make a commitment "to pre-emptive strikes when we deem them appropriate."His speech to the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee underscored Israel's strong support in Congress even as the State Department seeks a compromise formula to reopen Mideast peace talks.

"It is extraordinarily dangerous to confuse the aggressor and the victim," Gingrich said in a speech that also attacked the news media for misrepresentation. "It is extraordinarily dangerous to confuse the terrorist and the democracy."

And, the speaker added: "It is extraordinarily dangerous to always impose the burden on those who are your friends because you're too timid to tell the truth to those who are your enemies."

As Gingrich spoke, the Palestinians took their place in the administration's revolving-door diplomacy. Two senior officials met for two hours with American mediator Dennis B. Ross.