After receiving blowback for criticizing Israel amid its war with Hamas, former President Donald Trump turned the blame to President Joe Biden’s policies, saying they exposed Israel to terrorist attacks.
“What a difference a president makes,” Trump concluded in a video posted to Truth Social on Friday night.
“Joe Biden’s total ineptitude, weakness, and incompetence has led to this horrible attack on on Israel; and it will only get worse,” the video began. “It’s only going to get worse.
“This guy cannot put two sentences together. He has no idea what’s happening.”
Trump hailed his administration for bringing peace in the Middle East, including the work to move toward diplomacy in the region.
“Just four years ago, we had the signing of the Abraham Accords. And today we have an attack on Israel,” Trump lamented.
That video followed an earlier one featuring Trump saying he was the only president who can keep Israel safe in the destabilized Middle East.
“I kept Israel safe. Remember that: I kept Israel safe,” Trump said in the other video posted to Truth Social. “Nobody else will; nobody else can. And I know all of the players.
“They can’t do it. But I kept Israel safe and I will keep Israel safe.”
Trump’s comments came after he had some criticism for the unrest in the Middle East, which some political rivals suggested was blaming the victims of the Hamas’ terrorist attacks last Saturday.
Referring to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu by his nickname, Trump posted “#IStandWithIsrael” and “#IStandWithBibi” on his Truth Social network Friday afternoon.
That stood in stark contrast to comments earlier this week, when Trump told a rally crowd in Florida that Netanyahu had “let us down” before the U.S. killed a top Iranian general. Trump further faulted the country’s intelligence agencies, saying they needed to “step up their game,” and referred to Hezbollah, the group Israel fears may launch a large-scale attack from the country’s north, as “very smart.”
The comments drew widespread condemnation from the White House as well as from Trump’s GOP rivals, who have generally avoided directly attacking the former president and GOP front-runner because he remains deeply popular with the party’s base.
“There was no better friend or ally of Israel than President Donald J. Trump,” Trump wrote in a post Thursday. He also praised the Israeli soldiers now fighting Hamas in response to the unprecedented surprise attack Oct. 7. The war has since claimed at least 3,200 lives on both sides.
While Trump and Netanyahu worked together closely while Trump was president, Trump responded with fury after Netanyahu congratulated then-President-elect Biden for winning the 2020 election while Trump was still trying to overturn the results. In interviews for a book about his Middle East peace efforts, Trump, according to its author, used an expletive to describe the embattled prime minister — “F*** him,” he reportedly said — and faulted Netanyahu for disloyalty.
“I liked Bibi,” Trump reportedly said. “I still like Bibi. But I also like loyalty. The first person to congratulate Biden was Bibi. And not only did he congratulate him, he did it on tape.”
Trump spokesman Steven Cheung denied there had been any walk-back and instead stressed Trump’s record on Israel as president, including moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem and the Abraham Accords.
“There was no bigger advocate and defender of Israel than President Trump,” he said.
Trump’s GOP rivals nonetheless continued to attack him over his comments.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, campaigning in New Hampshire, said he “found the former president’s comments to be reckless and irresponsible.”
“Leaders in this country should be sending no message other than America stands with Israel. To speak in a critical way about Prime Minister Netanyahu, to refer to the terrorist organization Hezbollah as very smart, I think was incomprehensible to me,” he said.
Nikki Haley, who served as Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, said the country needs a president who “knows the difference between good and evil.”
“I think to go and give credit to Hezbollah, to congratulate the Chinese Communist Party like he did, and to go and criticize the head of a country that just saw massive bloodshed, no, that’s not what we need in a president,” she said. “What we need in a president is someone who knows the difference between good and evil, who knows the difference between right and wrong.”
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
Eric Mack ✉
Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.
Vietnamese American Conservative Alliance (VACA)
Sent with Proton Mail secure email.