Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has received much negative press in the last few weeks. First, he made a deal with the Otzma Yehudit party, the successor to Rabbi Meir Kahane’s racist Kach party, leading to criticism from many in Israel, as well as American organizations including AIPAC and the American Jewish Committee. Then, Israeli Attorney General Avihai Mandelblit announced that Netanyahu will be indicted for fraud, bribery and breach of trust. This comes at the same time that President Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen testified before Congress, calling Trump a racist, a conman, and a cheat, and noting that the Southern District of New York is investigating Trump for unnamed illegal acts. It is also expected that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report will be issued soon, possibly presenting other charges against Trump. Last year, Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke of President Trump and his support of Israel, referencing what famous king?
A. When President Trump announced that he would be moving the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, he said, “Today we finally acknowledge the obvious–that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital. This is nothing more or less than a recognition of reality.” In response, Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “The President is a wise man, a modern-day King Solomon. You know, King Solomon is famous for suggesting that a baby be split in half, so that each of the two women claiming to be the mother could receive half of what they claimed belonged to them. President Trump understands as King Solomon did, that just like that baby, Jerusalem must not be divided, and can only really belong to one people, and that is the Jewish people.”
B. After Trump declared that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital, and announced his plans to scrap the Iranian nuclear deal, Netanyahu spoke of Trump’s deeds, noting, “I want to tell you that the Jewish people have a long memory, so we remember the proclamation of the great king, Cyrus the Great, the Persian king 2,500 years ago. He proclaimed that the Jewish exiles in Babylon could come back and rebuild our Temple in Jerusalem.” He then said that similarly, “we remember how a few weeks ago, President Donald J. Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Mr. President, this will be remembered by our people through the ages.”
C. On May 14, 2018, the United States Embassy in Jerusalem was opened. As part of his remarks at the ceremony, Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “President Trump’s decision to move the embassy to Jerusalem places him with other great leaders in history who demonstrated that they stood side by side with the Jewish people. Great leaders who understood that history and justice are with us. People like King Christian, of Denmark, who wore a Jewish star to stand with our people during the dark days of the Holocaust.”
D. While President Trump did not attend the opening of the United States embassy in Jerusalem last May, he did address the event via a videotaped message where he said, “Today, Jerusalem is the seat of the Israeli government, the home of the Israeli legislature and the Israeli Supreme Court and Israel’s prime minister and president. For many years, we failed to acknowledge the obvious ... the plain reality that Israel’s capital is Jerusalem.” Following those remarks, Prime Minister Netanyahu thanked the President, and addressed Trump’s daughter Ivanka, who was in attendance. “Your father is a great man,” he said. “Around 3000 years ago, David became King of Israel, and he named Jerusalem the capital. Now your father echoes the great deed of David Melech Yisrael, by again recognizing that Jerusalem is our capital, for now and forever.”
E. Speaking at the opening of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem, Netanyahu said, “I particularly want to thank President Donald Trump. He and I are so much alike. We both love Israel. We both have Jewish grandchildren. And we both have similar futures ahead of us. In fact, the great King of Rock 'n' Roll, Elvis Presley, could have been speaking about Donald and me when he sang ‘Let’s rock, everybody, let’s rock. Everybody in the whole cell block. We’ll be dancin’ to the Jailhouse Rock’.”
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