On Tuesday, Knesset member and former deputy minister of defense to Netanyahu, Danny Danon, appeared on the Steve Malzberg Show to talk about the situation in Gaza. During the conversation, Danon described the increasingly strained relationship between the United States and Israel under the leadership and apparent ill will of President Obama.
Danon, a member of the Likud party, described the private phone conversation, leaked in a controversial reported transcript released by The Times of Israel earlier the same day, which both the Prime Minister and the President claim has been grossly mischaracterized. Danon says the President yelled and made demands, and has in general dealt unfairly with Israel throughout the conflict.
"I don't know if it was published in the U.S., but here in Israel we all talk about the phone conversation between President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu," said Danon. "It was not a pleasant conversation. If you saw what happened there, it was not pleasant."
Danon then made an even more stark comparison:
"He was yelling, and telling Prime Minister Netanyahu what he should do and what he should not do. And I tell you frankly we have a very close relationship with the U.S., the strongest ally of Israel, but this is not a way to treat the leader of an ally country. He is not talking - President Obama - with a leader of the Taliban. He is talking with the leader of the state of Israel, of the Jewish people. And when we are in a time of war we need the backing and the support of the U.S. Unfortunately we do not have it now."
Danon urges the Prime Minister to put the priorities of Israel and its citizens first, even if it means telling Obama no. He concluded by saying that it is very hard for the people of Israel to hear such a lack of support from the United States when they are burying their troops. "It is not the time when you expect to get such a conversation, such an attitude from a friend."