USA officials reinforce Trump support for two-state solution

Camille Rivera
February 17, 2017

An anti-settlement demonstrator interrupts David Friedman, the Trump administration's nominee to be U.S. Ambassador to Israel, as he spoke at a hearing in front of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations on February 16, 2016.

Friedman was further accused of holding extremist and radical views, leading the ambassadors to question his temperament, due to various remarks that accused former U.S. president Barack Obama and the State Department of being anti-Semitic and "propagating false conspiracy theories that Hillary Clinton's adviser Huma Abedin" had "well-established ties to the Muslim Brotherhood".

As Friedman prepared to read his opening statement at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, a protestor stood up waving a Palestinian flag and raising the issue of Palestinian refugees.

J Street explains that it does not support BDS unconditionally, but does not oppose initiatives to boycott, divest from, or impose sanctions on Israel if these aid the progress towards a two-state solution, recognize Israel's right to exist, and focus only on "occupied territory" beyond the Green Line. He has also raised millions of dollars toward settlements, including one near the Palestinian city of Ramallah.

Friedman has also insulted some American Jewish groups after he said supporters of a liberal pro-Israel group were "worse than kapos", Jewish prisoners who worked for the Nazis in Holocaust internment camps.

Five former USA ambassadors to Israel have said Donald Trump's choice of envoy is "unqualified for the position", in an unprecedented diplomatic slap. Being a "friend of the settlement movement" is apparently a crime in J Street's book.

"I'm having difficulty understand whether you really can be a diplomat", said Sen. He specifically mentioned an exchange with Jonathan Greenblatt, the CEO of the anti-Defamation league, which he called a bunch of "morons". To best do so, the United States must be an honest broker, a position already severely undermined by massive U.S. taxpayer-financed weapons to Israel which entrench its fifty-year military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, by the diplomatic protection the United States provides to Israel shielding it from the consequences of its violations of UN Security Council resolutions and global law, and by the biased role it plays in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations during which the United States and Israel tag-team to propose resolutions inimical to Palestinian rights.

During a news conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, Trump was evasive about whether he would support a two-state solution that would include a Palestinian state.

On Thursday, Friedman seemed more skeptical, saying "the challenges are daunting".

"I have reached out over the last few months to a number of people who have been hurt by the things I have said", David Friedman, an attorney, told lawmakers. He asked him to clarify why he's willing to reverse himself on so many previous statements. "This is something I really want to do because I think I can do it well".

In fact, however, many politicians and thinkers on both sides of the Israeli spectrum have declared the two-state plan unworkable. Cory Booker, D-New Jersey, if Friedman believes Obama is an anti-Semite, he replied, "Not at all".

Trump said that the United States would work toward peace but said he was leaving it up to the parties themselves ultimately to decide on the terms of any agreement.

Udall went on to call Friedman "completely unfit for this or any other diplomatic office". Marco Rubio of Florida and Sen.

The committee is scheduled to meet Thursday for Friedman's confirmation hearing.

Other reports by VideoGamingPros

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