Trump’s pick for US envoy to Israel wants embassy in Jerusalem

David Friedman, Trump’s choice as US envoy to Israel, is being celebrated by advocates for Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and for moving the American embassy to Jerusalem.

US President-elect Donald Trump’s nomination of David Friedman on Thursday as the American envoy to Israel drew applause from pro-Israel circles, especially among those committed to Israeli sovereignty in the biblical Jewish homeland and recognition of a united Jerusalem as capital of the Jewish state.

“I am deeply honored and humbled by the confidence placed in me by President-elect Trump to represent the United States as its Ambassador to Israel,” Friedman, 57, stated. “I intend to work tirelessly to strengthen the unbreakable bond between our two countries and advance the cause of peace within the region, and look forward to doing this from the US embassy in Israel’s eternal capital, Jerusalem.”

Earlier this week, Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, said that moving the US embassy to Jerusalem was “a very big priority” for the incoming president.

Friedman is a ‘Tremendous Asset to our Country’

“Mr. Friedman, a renowned attorney who has been counselor to some of the world’s top businessmen and companies, was one of the president-elect’s principal advisers on the US-Israel relationship during the campaign. With Mr. Friedman’s nomination, President-elect Trump expressed his commitment to further enhancing the US-Israel relationship and ensuring there will be extraordinary strategic, technological, military and intelligence cooperation between the two countries,” the announcement on the Trump-Pence Transition Team website read.

“’The bond between Israel and the United States runs deep, and I will ensure there is no daylight between us when I’m President,’” said President-elect Trump. “’As the United States’ Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman will maintain the special relationship between our two countries. He has been a long-time friend and trusted adviser to me. His strong relationships in Israel will form the foundation of his diplomatic mission and be a tremendous asset to our country as we strengthen the ties with our allies and strive for peace in the Middle East. Nothing is more critical than protecting the security of our citizens at home and abroad.’”

Elaborating on Friedman’s credentials, the site noted that “he is a founding partner of Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman LLP, a national law firm with approximately 350 attorneys. For the past 35 years, he has specialized in litigation and bankruptcy law, playing a leading role in restructuring many of the nation’s most complex financial and business operations. Mr. Friedman has been widely recognized for his outstanding contributions to the legal profession, and has been named one of the 500 leading lawyers in the United States.”

US-Israel Bond a ‘Model of Cooperation and Respect’

Friedman” has been a generous philanthropist to Jewish causes, including United Hatzalah of Israel, a nationwide volunteer service of first responders providing aid to all injured Israelis, regardless of race, religion or ethnicity, and Aleh Negev, one of the world’s most advanced facilities for the care of severely disabled children.

“Under his leadership and at the President-elect’s direction, the US-Israel relationship will be a model of cooperation and respect.”

Liberal US Jewish organizations such as J Street and Americans for Peace Now, who oppose Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria and are more in line with the Obama administration’s policies in favor of a two-state solution, slammed Trump’s choice.

“J Street is vehemently opposed to the nomination of David Friedman to be Ambassador to Israel,”J Street President Jeremy Ben Ami said in a statement. “This nomination is reckless, putting America’s reputation in the region and credibility around the world at risk.”

By: World Israel News Staff