WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Antony Blinken mentioned Sunday the U.S. won’t shrink from its unwavering help for Israel regardless of stark variations with Prime Minister-elect Benjamin Netanyahu and considerations the Biden administration could have about potential members of his incoming right-wing authorities.
Talking to a left-leaning group that some on the suitable accuse of being too sympathetic to the Palestinians and Iran, Blinken mentioned the US will stay a stalwart good friend of Israel even because it pursues objectives that Netanyahu has opposed, together with a two-state decision to the Israeli-Palestinian battle and a restoration of the languishing 2015 Iran nuclear deal.
The U.S.-Israel “partnership — and all that it’s produced for the folks of our nations and the world — has at all times been underwritten by the US ironclad dedication to Israel’s safety, a dedication that has by no means been stronger than it’s at present,” he mentioned.
Blinken mentioned the Biden administration would have interaction with Netanyahu’s authorities primarily based on its insurance policies and never on personalities, together with potential senior Cupboard ministers who’ve expressed vehement anti-Palestinian and anti-Arab views previously.
However, Blinken additionally warned that the U.S. would object to insurance policies that marginalize the Palestinians, diminish their “horizon for hope,” or make a two-state decision tougher. He mentioned these could be detrimental to Israel’s long-term safety or future as a Jewish democratic state.
“We count on the brand new Israeli authorities to proceed to work with us to advance our shared values, simply as we now have earlier governments,” he mentioned.
“We are going to gauge the federal government by the insurance policies it pursues somewhat than particular person personalities. We are going to maintain it to the mutual requirements we now have established in our relationship over the previous seven a long time,” Blinken mentioned.
U.S. officers have beforehand expressed considerations concerning the attainable positions in Netanyahu’s authorities of at the least two right-wing Israeli politicians: Itamar Ben-Gvir and Bezalel Smotrich.
Ben-Gvir, a lawmaker recognized for anti-Arab vitriol and provocative stunts, has been supplied the job of nationwide safety minister, a strong place that can put him in control of Israel’s police pressure. In the meantime, Smotrich, chief of the Non secular Zionism get together, which shares anti-Palestinian and anti-gay views, has been supplied oversight over the Israeli company for Palestinian civil affairs.
Blinken famous that the U.S.-Israel relationship is seven a long time previous and the Biden administration would “converse actually” with the brand new Israeli authorities in addition to the Palestinians, whose leaders he mentioned should additionally chorus from elevating tensions that endanger a two-state answer.
He identified that the Biden administration continues to help its predecessor’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and is working to increase former President Donald Trump’s “Abraham Accords” that noticed a number of Arab nations normalize relations with Israel. He lauded the latest completion of a maritime border accord between Israel and Lebanon.
Blinken’s feedback got here on the annual convention of J Road, a pro-Israel group that has distinguished itself from the a lot bigger and older American Israel Public Affairs Committee by advancing positions usually supported by the Democratic get together.