Trump’s intelligence gaffe creates tension with Israel

Israeli leaders are unlikely to let the revelation that President Donald Trump shared classified Israeli intelligence with Russian officials derail a critical state visit next week.

But behind the scenes, U.S. officials may have some groveling to do in order to regain the trust of one of their most critical intelligence partners.

“There is no doubt in my mind that the Mossad is raging angry right now, and the Israeli defense intelligence agency is questioning how much they should be sharing with the administration,” said Ilan Goldenberg, director of the Middle East security program at the Center for a New American Security, who worked under former Secretary of State John Kerry on Middle East issues. “That’s a profound national security problem.”

He added: “This is a disaster because we have few intelligence relationships that are more important.”

Nobody expects Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to confront Trump in public. Weakened politically at home and dependent on his far-right coalition government, the embattled Israeli politician needs to use Trump’s visit to project a tight bond. He is not expected to start a public feud over the New York Times report that it was Israeli intelligence about an Islamic State threat that Trump shared with Russian officials visiting the Oval Office last week.


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