TIMES OF ISRAEL
Departing Mattis said to cancel Israel trip, as Israel feels ‘betrayed’ on Syria
December 21, 2018
US Defense Secretary James Mattis has cancelled a trip to Israel planned for next week after submitting his resignation in the wake of President Donald Trump’s decision to pull US forces out of Syria, Israeli television reported Friday…The TV report described the US move as “a slap in the face” for Israel, noting that the US presence in Syria was “the only bargaining chip” in Israel’s efforts to persuade Russia to prevent Iran deepening its entrenchment in Syria… Channel 10 news reported Wednesday that Netanyahu tried in vain to persuade Trump to change his mind, and that there was tremendous “disappointment” in Jerusalem over the pullout, which is regarded as a victory for Russia, Iran and Hezbollah. READ MORE
TIMES OF ISRAEL Trump’s Syria pullout was last straw for Mattis; others may quit Pentagon His departure was immediately lamented by foreign policy hands and lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, who viewed the retired Marine general as a sober voice of experience in the ear of a president who had never held political office or served in the military. Even Trump allies expressed fear over Mattis’ decision to quit, believing him to be an important moderating force on the president.