Herzog pans Ben Gvir’s ‘insulting’ tweet, hails Biden as ‘a great friend of Israel’

Sam Sokol is the Times of Israel's political correspondent. He was previously a reporter for the Jerusalem Post, Jewish Telegraphic Agency and Haaretz. He is the author of "Putin’s Hybrid War and the Jews"

President Isaac Herzog attends a ceremony in which Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron's tenure is extended for another five-year term, at the President's Residence, in Jerusalem, December 18, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/ FLASH90)
File: President Isaac Herzog attends a ceremony in which Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron's tenure is extended for another five-year term, at the President's Residence, in Jerusalem, December 18, 2023. (Chaim Goldberg/ FLASH90)

Repudiating National Security Minister Itamar Ben Gvir’s “irresponsible and insulting” criticism of US President Joe Biden, President Isaac Herzog calls the American leader “a great friend of the State of Israel.”

Speaking at a state ceremony commemorating the Allies’ victory over Nazi Germany, Herzog says that the event constitutes “a notable opportunity to thank the State of Israel’s allies also today, and especially our greatest ally the United States of America. I would like to say thank you to President Biden who is a great friend of the State of Israel, and who has proved as much from the first day of the war.”

In a swipe at Ben Gvir, Herzog says that “in the context of this morning’s news, it is important for me to say that even when there are disagreements and moments of disappointment between friends and allies, the disputes should be resolved in a certain way, and it is beholden upon all of us to avoid baseless, irresponsible and insulting statements and tweets that harm the national security and the interests of the State of Israel.”

Responding to the US president’s threat to withhold arms in the event of a full-on Rafah incursion, Ben Gvir had tweeted that “Hamas loves Biden.”

Victory Day, marked in Russia on May 9, is the country’s most important secular holiday, commemorating the Soviet Red Army’s determination and losses in World War II.

Israel also holds events on that day for immigrants from Russia and former Soviet countries, military veterans among them. The UK, the US, France and other countries hold Victory in Europe Day (V-E Day) on May 8, when Germany officially surrendered to the Allied forces.

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