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Comment and Opinion

Haaretz: Israel’s enthusiastic embrace of President Trump – and why it might be dangerous, by Chemi Shalev

I met some worried American Jewish acquaintances at the Institute for National Security Studies conference in Tel Aviv this week. They seemed troubled. These are people who visit Israel frequently, who know it well and support it, who are well acquainted with the political situation and who understand, or at least thought they did, the local mood. Nonetheless, they were astonished by the intensity of support for Donald Trump they encountered, in random conversations and in meetings with high officials. Israelis love Trump, they said, way more than Americans.

I told them that in the eyes of many Israelis, Trump’s main advantage is that he’s not Obama. The new president is a supporter of Israel, supposedly, and a backer of Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, allegedly. He won’t pressure Israel, reportedly, and will come to our aid in time of need, or so they say. He also seems to distrust if not hate Muslims, which, for many Israelis, is always a sign of sound judgment. Trump is erecting a wall with Mexico? Good for him, we have one too.

He is restricting entry of Muslims and casting them all as potential terrorists? Great, someone finally came to their senses. Trump is threatening to back out of international organizations, such as the United Nations, that have accepted the Palestinians or the PLO as full members? What more could we ask for? Did the messiah come and no one bothered to inform us?

Read the full article at Haaretz.