Thomas Nides, the new US ambassador in Israel, arrives in Israel Monday to begin his term as ambassador.
Following his arrival in Israel, Nides said, "I just arrived a few hours ago and I'm so honored that President Biden selected me to serve in this beautiful country."
"My first trip here was when I was fifteen years old, as a little Jewish kid from Duluth, Minnesota. It was a dream come true. I slept in the Sinai Desert, climbed Masada at three AM, and worked on a kibbutz. Trust me, it wasn't as easy as everyone told me it was going to be."
"As someone who has spent his career working in government and in business, my hope is that the experiences I bring will serve me well in this new assignment."
"I will be making my home in Jerusalem," Nides added, "and soon be traveling all over this country, to connect with Israelis' rich history and culture. As President Biden has said many, many times, America's strength is, and has always been, rooted in our diversity. I aspire to represent the full diversity of Americans, whose backgrounds and beliefs may differ but are united in the core US values of freedom, democracy, and opportunity."
"The same rings true for Israel. That's why the bonds between our two countries, as President Biden has said, are unbreakable. There's no greater privilege than what I have been asked to do, to represent the United States of America to the State of Israel."
He added: "I look forward to traveling all over this beautiful country, and meeting many, many of you in the weeks and months ahead. Toda raba (Hebrew for "thank you very much" - ed,)."
In a Monday morning tweet, Nides wrote, "After my first trip to Israel, I wrote in my local newspaper that “the moment I put my feet on the ground, I had a feeling which I will never forget."
"Landing today in Israel to be U.S. Ambassador is another moment I’ll never forget."
"I’ll spend my first couple days in quarantine," he added "following the latest COVID guidelines. My thanks to the dedicated medical staff at Ben Gurion working to keep us all safe. I'm eagerly awaiting a negative test result so I can begin to meet many of you soon!"
Nides served as the State Department’s Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources from 2010-2013 and is the current vice-chairman of the Morgan Stanley investment banking company. He has close ties with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.