White House press secretary Jen Psaki argued Tuesday that former President Donald Trump did not help bring peace to the Middle East, even as historic violence has erupted between Israel and Palestine under President Joe Biden’s administration.
“Aside from putting forward a peace proposal that was dead on arrival, we don’t think they did anything constructive really to bring an end to the long-term conflict in the Middle East,” Psaki told reporters aboard Air Force One on Tuesday during a trip to Michigan.
Psaki reacted to a reporter’s mention of the Trump administration’s Abraham Accords that worked to normalize relations between Arab nations and Israel.
The diplomatic efforts of the Trump administration in the region with Israel and Middle Eastern countries were widely celebrated as a success.
.@SecPompeo says President Donald Trump directly confronting radical Islamic terrorism made the United States and the world a much safer place, paving the path for historic peace deals like the Abraham Accords. https://t.co/Reyqbh6UPJ
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) December 14, 2020
The violence in the region under Biden’s leadership is at the highest level since at least 2014, before Trump was president.
Last week, Trump issued a statement attributing the surge of violence in the region as a sign of Biden’s “weakness” and failure to support Israel.
“When I was in office we were known as the Peace Presidency because Israel’s adversaries knew that the United States stood strongly with Israel and there would be swift retribution if Israel was attacked,” Trump said.
But Psaki made a pointed effort to demonstrate the Biden administration is taking a much different approach on the issue.
“I would say that we are not following the same tactics of the previous administration,” she said.
The Biden administration, she said, restored foreign aid from the United States to the Palestinians that Trump cut during his presidency in 2018.
Biden also supported a “two-state solution,” Psaki said, which she argued will be the only way for a “long term” peaceful solution between Israelis and Palestinians.
Psaki repeated that President Biden and his team were working behind the scenes to end the violence, repeating they were focused on “quiet, intensive behind the scenes discussions” with the Israelis and Palestinians.
Iran throws around its weight now that China Joe is in the White House. https://t.co/xiByYqfo0V
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) February 9, 2021
“He’s been doing this long enough to know that the best way to end an international conflict is typically not to debate it in public,” she said.
Psaki’s rhetoric criticizing the Trump administration is a difference in the tone of Biden’s State Department signaling support for Trump’s achievements with the Abraham Accords.
“We very much support the Abraham Accords. We think that Israel normalizing relations with its neighbors and other countries in the region is a very positive development,” Secretary of State Tony Blinken said in January.