Trump Says US Jews ‘Either Don’t Like Israel or Don’t Care About Israel’
03:52 GMT 18.12.2021 (Updated: 03:53 GMT 18.12.2021)
During his presidency, Trump maintained a warm relationship with Israel. Among other things, he recognized Jerusalem as the "undivided" capital of Israel, although East Jerusalem is considered an "Occupied Palestinian Territory" by the UN. Trump has said that there's "nobody that's done more for Israel" than he has.
Former US President Donald Trump claimed in an interview on Friday that Jewish people in the US “either don’t like Israel or don’t care about Israel.”
Trump, who was widely supported by white evangelical voters during the 2016 and 2020 election campaigns, noted that “the evangelical Christians love Israel more than the Jews in this country.” Meanwhile, Jewish, as well as the Muslim, Buddhist and Hindu communities, have traditionally been more inclined to vote for Democratic candidates, such as Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, according to polls.
Trump recalled his father, a residential real estate developer, “was very close to many Jewish people, because it was Brooklyn real estate, Brooklyn and Queens.”
“Many Jewish friends, a great love of Israel, which has dissipated over the years for people in the United States. I must be honest, it’s a very dangerous thing that’s happening,” Trump said. “It used to be that Israel had absolute power over Congress, and today I think it’s the exact opposite.”
He also slammed Joe Biden and Barack Obama, who still “get a lot of votes from the Jewish people.”
“I mean, you look at The New York Times. The New York Times hates Israel. Hates ’em. And they’re Jewish people that run The New York Times, I mean the Sulzberger family,” the former president said, referring to the family that has operated the newspaper for more than a century.
His remarks were heavily criticized by the American Jewish Congress, who said Trump “fuels dangerous stereotypes about Jews.”
Meanwhile, Trump as president adopted a rather pro-Israeli policy that faced backlash from the Arab world. In particular, the US recognized an indivisible Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, although East Jerusalem is considered an Occupied Palestinian Territory under international law. The Trump administration also decided to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
Apart from that, Trump recognized Jewish settlements in the Palestinian territories as well as Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which the UN considers to be occupied Syrian lands.
With respect to Israeli interests, Washington withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, also known as the Iran nuclear deal, in 2018, which has been strongly opposed by Tel Aviv since it was agreed to in 2015.
In addition, the US mediated
and facilitated last year the Abraham Accords, agreements on the normalization of relations between Israel and some Arab countries, including the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.
Despite his strong policy tilt toward Israel, Trump appeared to be deeply disappointed
after then-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rushed to congratulate his Democratic opponent Joe Biden after the latter was declared the winner of the US presidential election.
"He was very early — like, earlier than most. I haven't spoken to him since. F*ck him," Trump was said to have told an Axios journalist.