Past U.S. Presidential Visits to Israel

March 19, 2013, 2 a.m.

Pres­id­ent Obama leaves on Tues­day for Is­rael, mak­ing him one of five U.S. pres­id­ents to vis­it the Jew­ish state while in of­fice. George W. Bush, Bill Clin­ton, Jimmy Carter, and Richard Nix­on all made the trip while in the White House. 

Many past trips have in­volved cru­cial ne­go­ti­ations in the Middle East peace pro­cess or oth­er mile­stones. The main pur­pose of Obama’s trip is to firm up the close bond between the two na­tions.

Carter’s trip in March 1979 was part of his ef­fort to bring a peace agree­ment between Is­rael and Egypt, which was signed later that month. Clin­ton’s trip in 1994 brought about a peace treaty between Is­rael and Jordan, end­ing a 46-year state of war between the two coun­tries.

Obama does not have a ma­jor peace ac­cord or new policy to an­nounce. In­stead, he will meet with polit­ic­al lead­ers to re­as­sure them of his ad­min­is­tra­tion’s com­mit­ment to Is­rael. He will also de­liv­er a speech to an audi­ence of stu­dents and oth­er Is­rael­is in Jer­u­s­alem. The pres­id­ent’s trip in­cludes stops in the West Bank and Jordan to ad­dress sev­er­al press­ing is­sues in the re­gion, in­clud­ing the Syr­i­an con­flict.

Here is a look at the past U.S. pres­id­en­tial vis­its to Is­rael.