When President Obama knifed Israel in the back at the United Nations just before Christmas, it came as a (hopefully) final insult to a nation he has betrayed numerous times. It was something that Donald Trump clearly wasn’t going to let go — even if it meant going after the president during his New Year’s Eve party.
According to RealClearPolitics, Trump criticized Obama’s Israel policy during an impromptu news conference down at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, where the president-elect and his wife Melania were ringing in the year in which he will become president.
A reporter had asked the president-elect if he felt “like president Obama has been trying to undermine you at all in some of the last-minute actions he’s taken?”
“I spoke to him yesterday. He’s been very nice on the phone. We have a very good relationship,” Trump began.
“Look, we have to protect Israel. Israel to me is very, very important. We have to protect Israel. And I disagree with what he’s done there. I listened to Secretary Kerry’s speech, I think it’s very unfair to Israel what happened,” he continued.
It didn’t take long for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to thank the president-elect, and he even did it in Trump’s favorite medium:
תודה על תמיכתך הנשיא הנבחר טראמפ! 🇺🇸🇮🇱
— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) January 1, 2017
Netanyahu tweeted “Thanks for your support, President-elect Trump!” in both Hebrew and English, combined with the flags of the United States and Israel.
Given that this came a little less than a week after one of the most divisive moments in the recent relationship between Israel and the United States, it was a major development.
Netanyahu had already been critical of the Obama administration’s failure to veto a resolution that condemned the Jewish state for its settler activity in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. According to the Economic Times, he called Kerry’s speech on the matter — in which the secretary of state accused Israel of jettisoning the two-state solution — a “great disappointment.”
“For a full hour, the secretary of state attacked the only democracy in the Middle East,” Netanyahu said.
That sort of attack seems unlikely to happen under a Trump administration — and we couldn’t be happier.
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