The Knesset’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, headed by MK Zvi Hauser (Derech Eretz) held a special meeting Monday morning in honor of US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman.
MKs bid farewell to Friedman, ahead of the transition from the Trump administration to the incoming Biden administration, set for next week.
During the event, Friedman touted the Trump administration’s achievements over the past four years in strengthening the relationship between Israel and the US.
“I’m leaving my post in nine days. It has flown by. I can’t believe it has almost been four years since I’ve had this post, it has been more than four years since I was nominated.”
“We’ve had an extraordinary relationship, all of us, from the President of the United States with the Prime Minister to the cabinet secretaries of the United States to their counterparts in ministries here, to all the military and intelligence personnel who don’t appear in public but who I had to privilege of sitting with.”
“I think we succeeded in strengthening the US-Israel relationship… in making it stronger than ever before.”
Friedman ticked off the Trump administration’s accomplishments vis-à-vis Israel, listing: “recognizing Jerusalem, Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, the non-illegality of communities in Judea and Samaria, to all the other accomplishments.”
“When people ask what was the most important, I struggle because I’m asked that question so often. People say, ‘What was the most important?’”
“I think that having the benefit now of four years of perspective, I do think the most important thing that we did was what we did early on, which was recognizing the capital of Israel. That set the right tone, the right theme for our presidency.”
“That strengthened the president not just here but throughout the world. It strengthened him with Iran, with North Korea, because we took the position that America will stand with its friends, America will not flinch, be afraid of its enemies or those that challenge it. America will stand for the truth and do the right thing, and if there are consequences we’ll protect our friends and our allies and our citizens.”
“Everybody thought that in the aftermath of the recognition [of Jerusalem] there would be an explosion. And they were right. But it was an explosion of peace, not an explosion of violence.”
“From that moment forward we had set the right track in our relationship.”