Richard Grenell: Joe Biden’s Foreign Policy Advisers Wrong About Middle East


Richard Grenell, a key foreign policy adviser to President Donald Trump, called out an adviser to former Vice President Joe Biden on Thursday for wrongly predicting that Trump would make Middle East peace more difficult by strengthening ties with Israel.

Grenell was commenting in the wake of a surprise peace deal between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which Trump announced in the Oval Office earlier Thursday.

He singled out Harvard Professor R. Nicholas Burns in particular for predicting in 2017 that moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem would “weaken US credibility, inflame passions in Moslem World and put our own American diplomats at risk.”

Burns’s views were not uncommon among Biden advisers. Many others were on record opposing the Jerusalem embassy move for the same reason.

For example, Mara Rudman, head of Biden’s Middle East policy team, wrote in December 2016: “Moving the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem—which some Trump senior advisors have suggested as a top priority—could end up isolating both Israel and the United States in the broader Middle East, where the issue of Jerusalem’s status remains an unresolved question subject to negotiations.”

Grenell also took the Obama-Biden administration, and the foreign policy establishment in general, to task:

Some on the left, like the anti-war group Codepink, opposed the deal, largely because it strengthened Israel. Ben Rhodes, a former adviser to President Barack Obama, tried to claim that it “excluded” Palestinians — even though it compromised on Israeli efforts to extend sovereignty to Jewish communities in Judea and Samara, which Palestinian leaders oppose.

Biden attempted to claim partial credit for the agreement, even though U.S. relations with the Sunni Arab states declined under the Obama-Biden administration in the wake of the Iran nuclear deal, which strengthened the Iranian regime.

Grenell served in the Trump administration as ambassador to Germany, and also as Acting Director of National Intelligence.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). His new book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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