The three major candidates for the US Presidency all voiced their overwhelming support for the state of Israel this week, at the annual conference of the American Israel Political Action Committee, or AIPAC.Democratic Senator Barack Obama took a much more hawkish stand than he has in the past.

In his speech to the pro-Israel group, Obama stated that he would meet with the leadership of Iran QUOTE "if and only if it can advance the interest of the United States."

This reverses a position he took last year that he would meet with Iranian leaders without preconditions.

Obama also took a position on the disputed city of Jerusalem, saying that Jerusalem should be the QUOTE 'undivided' capital of Israel. 

This statement goes even further than the position of George W. Bush, who met this week with Israel's Prime Minister to discuss the status of Jerusalem, among other issues.

John McCain and Hillary Clinton gave similar speeches to the pro-Israel lobby group, promising to continue the unconditional military and financial aid given by the US government to the Jewish state each year.

None of the three candidates brought up the issue of the siege on Gaza, the attacks on Palestinian civilians, or the ongoing Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.