According to a recent report on npr.org, Israeli right wing lobbyists are looking toward the new Trump campaign with a sense of optimism. The post specifically takes readers to a gathering of lobbyists in Tel Aviv, who are collected in order to celebrate, raising their glasses and toasting the incoming Trump with Trump-brand vodka and sparkling wine.
As “Mazel tov!” and "L'chaim!" echoed throughout the room, the gatherers toasted to life, and to hope—that this newly elected President will be a shift in the right direction for the right wing supporters in Israel. "I hope [Trump] is better than his vodka," one activist joked with a lighthearted chuckle; yet the words rang true, with those encircling this round table of sorts each eyeing these next four years with an air of expectation.
Much of this hope is due to the fact that, when Trump becomes president in January, it will be the first time that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will hold office opposite a Republican in the White House. It is known that the conservative Netanyahu has shared a tense relationship with President Obama in the recent years, and now, Israel’s Right Wing party’s hope is that this new Trump era will bring along with it much better relations, as well as “great gains,” particularly involving the pressure surrounding Israeli settlements.
Prime Minister Netanyahu also recently welcomed Trump's proposal to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. According to ChristianToday.com, Netanyahu said the move would be "great."
The gathering’s guest of honor, Yossi Dagan, who is the leader of the Shomron Regional Council, an Israeli settlement council in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, weighed in on his own thoughts regarding the new Presidency and its proposed effects to come. "I think the last eight years... have been a catastrophe," he said, referring to Obama's tenure. Dagan’s expectations for Trump’s leading is that the new President will adopt a different approach: one that does not pressure Israel regarding settlements.
Dimitri Diliani, a member of a leadership council for the governing Fatah party in the West Bank, also weighed in on what he feels about Trump’s incoming agenda. "I don't think that the Palestinian leadership views Trump's victory as positive for our cause," Diliani said, while yet admitting that there are, however, still many in the Palestinian private sector who remain optimistic about Trump.
"President Trump would be more decisive when it comes to the Palestinian cause," Diliani offered. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas also chimed in with his opinion in a recent speech, asserting simply that “We know nothing about him,” which would suggest the dignitary is at least keeping an open mind about Trump.
Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
Publication date: December 14, 2016