A Troubling Message from U.S. to Israel

Recent headlines have been filled with more troubling news concerning Israel and the Middle East.

  • Iran to increase attacks on US by arming groups in Syria” (Jerusalem Post)
  • “U.S. offers Israel-Saudi normalization for silence on Iran deal” (i24 News)
  • “Iran claims to test hypersonic missile that can breach all defense shields” (The Times of Israel)
  • “Netanyahu: Israel will do everything necessary to prevent Iran from getting nuclear weapons” (i24 News)

It should come as no surprise that many of the alarming headlines involve Iran since Iran is committed to ridding the world of Israel and her people.

But equally concerning were some other headlines because they involved the United States and its relationship with Israel.

  • “First Lady Jill Biden to Skip Israel on Trip to Middle East” (Breitbart)
  • “US Secretary of State Antony Blinken cancels planned Israel visit” (Jerusalem Post)
  • “US Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman” (AP News)

Question: What’s behind these headlines involving the United States and Israel?

Answer: Judicial Reform.

Since taking office, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has sought to reform Israel’s judicial system so that elected officials may select Israel’s justices in a manner that is similar to how federal judges are nominated and approved in the United States.

But the White House has repeatedly voiced its opposition to Netanyahu’s attempt to reform Israel’s judiciary. In fact, as a sign of his disapproval, on March 29, 2023, President Joe Biden said that he will not invite Prime Minister Netanyahu to the White House (The Times of Israel). Netanyahu has yet to receive an invitation from the White House.

Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Gilad Erdan, recently said that the United States is making a “serious mistake” by withholding an invitation to Netanyahu to Washington. Erdan observed, “This is without a doubt problematic. . . This is not the way to behave between friends, even when they disagree on issues. We are one of the closest allies the Americans have. There are always disputes, even within a family, but in the end everyone gets together at the holiday table. The visibility of such a situation has great importance.”

Erdan is correct. The United States is sending the wrong message to Israel and to her enemies. In these volatile times, words and actions matter. The United States has no better ally in the Middle East than Israel. And Israel has no stronger ally than the United States. Unity will send the right message and help restore stability to an unstable region. Please pray for the United States and Israel.

Those who bless Israel will be blessed (Genesis 12:3).

Dr. Matthew Dodd
June 7, 2023