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Trump’s ambassador Friedman: Biden hampering Israel war effort; talk of indiscriminate bombing an ‘outright lie’

David Friedman, ambassador to Israel under president Donald Trump, tells Channel 12 that President Joe Biden is hampering Israel’s war effort, and that the president’s charge last month of indiscriminate bombing by Israel in Gaza is a lie.

Friedman, who on October 12 tweeted his gratitude for “the moral, tactical, diplomatic and military support” that the Biden administration was providing for Israel, says he feels differently now and was always concerned “that the president’s commitment would fade.”

He says Biden has made “some inappropriate comments. He spoke about the ‘indiscriminate bombing’ that Israel engaged in, which I think is an outright lie… He speaks continuously about this need to impose a two-state solution, which I think is tone-deaf right now. He is, I think, to some extent hampering the war effort by this desire to force Israel to engage in I think what he refers to as low-intensity combat. Why are people on the ground blowing up an empty building when it could be done by the air? I don’t know. I’m certainly not in a position to cast blame. But that’s sort of the kind of messaging that America has been giving Israel.”

  • Asked what Trump meant when he said that October 7 would not have happened under his presidency, Friedman says the point is that “all this malign activity goes back to a strong Iran. When we left office, Iran was weak. If we were still in office, I think Iran would still be weak.”

He adds that there were Hamas attacks during his four years as ambassador, and “at no time did the United States put any handcuffs or limitations on Israel’s ability to respond.”

Friedman, who was in Israel on October 7, called the failure to prevent the Hamas onslaught “a colossal failure on the part of the Israeli military, intelligence and political arms together. It was a real mistake and I pray that this never happens again and those mistakes are corrected. And I assume they will be.”

He says the Palestinian Authority must not be allowed to run post-war Gaza.

“I don’t trust the Palestinian Authority,” he says.

  • “They pay terrorists to kill Jews. They are corrupt. They engage in all kinds of malign behavior. And they are not suited to run Gaza or to run Judea and Samaria.”

Friedman says Israel-Saudi normalization would have happened were Trump still in office, and will yet happen, and that a Palestinian state is not a prerequisite. He notes that the Trump administration brokered Israel-UAE normalization despite disagreements on that issue.

  • “A Palestinian state would be a terrorist state. And the last thing that the Saudis need, or the Emiratis need, or Israel needs or Jordan needs is a terrorist state smack in the middle of the Middle East.”

Friedman says he is “hoping and praying for a decisive [Israeli] military victory and then for a rebuilding — physically, politically, militarily and emotionally — of the Israeli people. We’re praying for that every day.”

Source: TOI