Republican Senator Lindsey Graham met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday and vowed more protection from Hamas, while Ted Cruz visited homes destroyed in rocket attacks.
Graham and Netanyahu held talks as the Israeli PM faced an ousting after 12 years in office from a left-wing coalition.
His rivals are seeking to finalize a unity coalition between secular centrist opposition chief Yair Lapid, ultranationalist Naftali Bennett, and other left-wing parties for a ‘change’ government of ideologically disparate rivals.
Netanyahu told Graham ‘there is no person who has done more for Israel than you’ and thanked him for being an ‘excellent friend and devoted ally’ as the South Carolina senator said he would help protect Israel from Hamas rocket attacks.
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday and vowed more protection from Hamas offensives
Graham and Netanyahu held talks as the Israeli PM faced an ousting after 12 years in office from a left-wing coalition
Defense Minister Benny Gantz also met Graham in Jerusalem and thanked him for the ‘great support for Israel and for maintaining its security and qualitative advantage over its enemies and in the Middle East in general,’ the Jerusalem Post reported.
Sen. Ted Cruz also visited Israel Sunday and posted images of a bombed-out home following Israel’s 11-day war with Hamas.
‘Heartbreaking,’ Cruz wrote, in a comment he attached to a picture of the bombed out vestiges of a home where he said the caregiver to an elderly woman was killed by a Hamas rocket attack.
‘Countless times, I’ve seen a Mezuzah hanging on a door frame. This is the first time I’ve seen one on a home bombed by terrorists. A Hamas rocket killed the caretaker of the elderly lady who lived here in Ashkelon, in southern Israel. This is all that remains,’ Cruz wrote.
‘Here’s her walker,’ Cruz wrote in a subsequent post, which showed a walker and a fan atop a pile of rubble.
The Texas Republican senator was traveling along with Tennessee Republican Sen. Bill Hagerty, whose spokesman told DailyMail.com the senator planned to meet with embattled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli cabinet members during the visit. A Cruz spokesperson said Cruz would be meeting with leaders but would not share details, citing security reasons.
Sen. Ted Cruz posted images from his trip to Israeli settlements following the 11-day war between Israel and Hamas
In a post on his official Senate account, Cruz retweeted an image by Israeli conservative columnist Caroline Glick thanking Cruz and Hagerty for a ‘terrific dinner with 2 true friends of Israel and the Jewish people in Jerusalem tonight.’
That post also tagged the right-wing Kohelet forum, an influential group in the Israeli Knesset. Cruz sent out the images of the settlement wreckage from his separate personal account.
The visit comes during a tumultuous time in Israeli politics. Longtime Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was on the brink of losing power, as right-wing Naftali Benett engaged in talks with centrist Yair Lapid over a new ‘change’ alliance seeking to form a new government, following a series of inconclusive elections.
He said the caregiver to an ‘elderly lady’ was killed in the attack
He said a Hamas rocket took out the home
Israel Columnist Caroline Glick posted this photo after a dinner in Israel. Cruz and Hagerty are pictured third and second from right
Neighbors gather to watch the cleanup of a crater full of water and sewage after the home of Ramez al-Masri was destroyed by an air-strike prior to a cease-fire reached after an 11-day war between Gaza’s Hamas rulers and Israel, Sunday, May 23, 2021, in Beit Hanoun, the northern Gaza Strip
Palestinian volunteers continue to clean up the debris with brooms and cleaning supplies after last Israeli attacks following the Gaza Municipality’s slogan ‘We will reconstruct’ in the Gaza Strip, where great destruction occurred due to 11-day intense bombardment of Israel in Gaza City, Gaza on May 26, 2021
Cruz is calling to immediately replenish Israel’s Iron Dome missile system
The trip follows the 11-day war between Israel and Hamas
Israel and Hamas reached a cease fire May 21 after an 11-day war that featured a barrage of Hamas attacks fired from Gaza, and an Israeli bombing campaign.
Cruz also tweeted out a video appeal for President Biden to immediately replace the missiles to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome defenses.
Hagerty tweeted that he visited the country with Cruz ‘to visit Israel and stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our allies after they endured the worst terrorist attacks in recent years because I want to see firsthand what more the U.S. can do to strengthen our vital alliance with Israel … at a time when terrorists like Hamas & terror-sponsoring regimes in Iran & Syria are making the Middle East more dangerous.’
‘I also want to discuss with Israeli leadership what the U.S. can do to maintain the momentum for peace that the landmark Abraham Accords started,’ Hagerty wrote – although he did not specifically mention a meeting with Netanyahu.
The visit comes as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces a new threat to his leadership
Cruz is a potential presidential candidate who like other top Republicans has embraced the Israeli government and joined with Netanyahu in blasting the Iran nuclear deal.
The war between Israel and Hamas forced a public split among Democrats, as Biden held repeated conversations with Netanyahu in private, while some Democratic House members said the U.S. should push an immediate cease fire.