Diary

Trump puts brakes on his promises to Israel

In a piece I wrote yesterday, I shared my concerns over the nomination of Rex Tillerson to be the next Secretary of State. Part of my objection with the former ExxonMobil CEO was based on the relationship he has with the man responsible for endorsing him to the Trump team, former Secretary of State under George H. W. Bush, James Baker.

Particularly troubling to me is the pro-Palestine, anti-Israel bias Baker displayed during a CNN interview when he provided his opinion on the recent UN resolution condemning Israel for developing the West Bank.

“The reason why I think settlements are a bad idea is they tend to create facts on the ground which make it hard to negotiate for that piece of land. If you create facts on the ground there is nothing really left to discuss about trading land for peace.”

Land for peace? That’s code for returning to pre-1967 borders.

Besides the fact that the Palestinians refuse to recognize Israel as a Jewish state, the UN resolution would prevent Jews from praying at the Western Wall, and would evict Jewish families from the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem where they have lived for thousands of years; turning East Jerusalem over to the Palestinians.

This trepidatious attitude concerning our closest democratic ally in the region is made more uncertain when you add Trump’s vacillating positions concerning Israel. Trump currently claims to support Israel–including officially recognizing Jerusalem as its undivided capital–yet during his campaign to become the GOP nominee, he wasn’t all that clear on the matter.

Unfortunately, it appears Trump may have returned to his earlier position.

Despite his “January 20th” promise, it was announced yesterday by Israel’s Channel 2 News that Trump’s bankruptcy and real estate lawyer turned Israeli ambassador, David Friedman, will maintain the status quo; which is to say, no relocation of the embassy. Instead, he will work in an existing consulate building in Jerusalem.

This decision runs contrary to promises made by the Trump transition team when Friedman’s nomination was announced. In an official statement, they told how Friedman intends “to work tirelessly to strengthen the unbreakable bond between our two countries and advance the cause of peace within the region, and look forward to doing this from the U.S. embassy in Israel’s eternal capital, Jerusalem.”

In the days following the passage of the UN resolution, there have been efforts on Capitol Hill to pass a law moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem–although a law allowing the move has existed since 1995–along with officially recognizing Jerusalem as the undivided capital of Israel.

However, when you consider the anti-Israeli attitude at the UN, the Palestinian opposition to making Jerusalem Israel’s capital, Trump’s vacillating approach to Israel, and the baggage some of Trump’s nominees are carrying, would he sign such a bill if it was put on his desk?

Originally posted at The Strident Conservative

 

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David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative, your source for opinion that’s politically-incorrect and always “right.” His articles can also be found on RedState.com.

His daily radio commentary is nationally syndicated with Salem Radio Network and can be heard on stations across America.