Israeli official hits back at Trump’s ‘shameful’ comments in wake of Hamas attack

‘We don’t have to bother with him and the nonsense he spouts,’ says communications minister

Kelly Rissman
Thursday 12 October 2023 15:05 EDT
Donald Trump calls Hezbollah 'very smart'

Israel’s communications minister, Shlomo Karhi, has condemned former US president Donald Trump’s remarks in the wake of the Hamas terror attacks, which included the 2024 Republican frontrunner claiming that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “let us down.”

Mr Karhi told Israel’s Channel 13 that it is “shameful that a man like that, a former US president, abets propaganda and disseminates things that wound the spirit of Israel’s fighters and its citizens.”

“We don’t have to bother with him and the nonsense he spouts,” the communications minister said.

At a rally on Wednesday, the 2024 GOP frontrunner told the crowd in West Palm Beach, Florida that he felt compelled to share a “bad experience” he had with Israeli leaders as president.

“Israel was going to do this with us, and it was being planned and working on it for months,” Mr Trump said about the plan to kill Iranian Gen Qassem Soleimani. “We had everything all set to go, and the night before it happened, I got a call that Israel will not be participating in this attack.”

“Nobody’s heard this story before,” Mr Trump claimed. “They didn’t tell us why.”

“I’ll never forget that Bibi Netanyahu let us down,” he said, adding, “We were disappointed by that. Very disappointed.”

“But we did the job ourselves, with absolute precision … and then Bibi tried to take credit for it,” the former president alleged. Mr Trump also called Hezbollah “very smart.”

Mr Trump’s comments sharply contrasted with President Joe Biden’s support for Israel.

In a speech earlier this week, Mr Biden said, “The United States stands with Israel,” He continued, “We will never fail to have their back. We’ll make sure they have the help their citizens need and they can continue to defend themselves.”

The White House said on Thursday that 27 Americans have been killed after the attacks on Israel by Hamas. Spokesperson John Kirby said that 14 Americans remain “unaccounted for”.

White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates also slammed Mr Trump’s remarks, calling them “dangerous and unhinged”.

Earlier this week a retired US general reminded Republican critics of the Biden administration of the time Mr Trump, while president, leaked Israeli intelligence to senior officials of Russia, an ally of Iran.

Mark Hertling shared a story about allegations that the then-president told top Russian officials, during a meeting at the White House, that Israel had successfully hacked Isis computers in order to gain intelligence about bomb plots against the West in a meeting at the White House in 2017.

At the time, Mr Trump's actions reportedly ignited fears by Israel that Russia could have passed the information to its ally Iran, which has long been a supporter of the Palestinian cause.

Mr Trump responded to the uproar at the time by claiming he had the “absolute right” to share the information.

One of the four sets of criminal charges the former president is now facing relates to the alleged mishandling of secret documents after thousands of government papers, some of them designated top secret, were found at his Mar-a-Lago resort. He is accused of showing members of the public a secret plan relating to a possible attack on Iran. Mr Trump has denied any wrongdoing, saying he had the right to keep the documents after leaving office, and saying the papers he showed were not a war plan.

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