Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is optimistic that President-elect Trump will restore relations with the Jewish State, according to a Senate chairman just back from the nation.
"I think they're optimistic," Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Chairman Sen. Ron Johnson said following his weekend trip to Israel and meeting with Netanyahu.
"The primary point that he wanted to make to me is that Israel is America's best friend in the region, the most important ally, and he wants to strengthen that relationship and so do I," Johnson said.
The senator visited Israel to meet with their foreign policy, border and cybersecurity experts.
What impressed him most was how Israel strives to work with Palestinian officials, even delivering 800 trucks a day of food and supplies, while most reports in Washington suggest instead that Tel Aviv is persecuting its neighbor.
For that, Johnson blamed several administrations, but said that President Obama's team have been among the worst for U.S.-Israel relations.
"America, on a bipartisan basis, multiple administrations, have put Israel under tremendous pressure to make unilateral concession after unilateral concession offering a deal to make peace so that they can have two people, two states live in peace," he said.
But the other side never recognizes those efforts, said Johnson. "Their goal is to destroy the state of Israel. And we have to face that unfortunate reality. And it looks like the Trump administration will and from my standpoint, I think American foreign policy ought to recognize that you achieve peace through strength."
He said that America must "Do everything you can to strengthen your friends and weaken your enemies which has been the exact opposite of what the current administration has been doing. We need to reverse that trend and recognize that Israel is America's best friend, best ally, represents the greatest hope for the Middle East."
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at email@example.com