President Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu Press Conference

February 15, 2017

 

Today the Prime Minister of Israel, Ben Netanyahu, visited the White House and had a joint press conference with President Trump. Here are some highlights.

 

Trump said Netanyahu was a long-time friend of his and his family, that Israel was a symbol to the world of resilience in the face of oppression and genocide, and that we would never forget what the Jewish people have endured. Trump said there are serious security challenges facing Israel — pointing to nuclear threats from Iran — and said he would prevent Iran from ever developing a nuclear weapon. He said the UN has treated Israel unfairly and would support Israel in peace talks with Palestine, and said Israel would have to make some compromises. Trump said it could be a two-state solution or a one-state solution, but he supports whatever both parties like. 

 

Netanyahu thanked Trump and his wife for the hospitality and said Israel has no better ally than the U.S. He said Israel and U.S. values are under attack by radical islamic terrorism and believed Trump can help to defeat this. 

 

Trump was asked about the resignation of Michael Flynn — and Trump said he was a wonderful man that was treated very unfairly by the media — the fake media. He also criticized the leaks from the intelligence community (that revealed Flynn did discuss Obama sanctions with a Russian diplomat) and said it was criminal. 

 

Trump then asked Netanyahu to hold back on building Israeli settlements until a new deal is made. 

 

Netanyahu said a “two-state solution” is just a label — but the substance is that Palestinians must recognize the Jewish state and stop calling for Israel’s destruction and stop teaching young kids in schools and in mosques to call for Israel’s destruction.

 

Trump said Israelites will need to show flexibility to make a deal and that he thinks Israel will be able to make a deal and said the Palestine had to acknowledge Israel in order to make a deal. 

 

Netanyahu said Iran must be prevented from ever getting nuclear weapons and brought up their ballistic missile tests an that they wrote in Hebrew on the missiles that said “Israel must be destroyed” — and said Iran could eventually want to bomb the U.S. 

 

He then said a two-state solution would only be possible if Palestine recognized Israel as a country and their security control of the entire area — otherwise it would be just a fantasy and will create another failed state that provides a terroristic Islamic dictatorship.

 

That was the end of the press conference. We’ll see what more emerges out of their meeting today in the White House. Trump gives Israel a very different relationship than Obama — who often butted heads with Netanyahu in being opposed to Israel expansion in disputed Palestine lands. 

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