US President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence (L) and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster at the White House in Washington, US, July 18, 2017..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
WASHINGTON – US President Donald Trump has come to the defense of his embattled national security adviser, currently facing an onslaught of attacks from nationalist forces in the White House seeking his ouster.
Right-wing media targeted Gen. (ret.) H.R. McMaster in recent days by citing leaked anecdotes of him referring to Israel as “illegitimate” and an occupying power. McMaster is also dovish on Iran, according to these combative sources, who spoke largely with conservative journalists and commentators such as Breitbart and Conservative Review.
The Jerusalem Post could not independently verify these accounts. But a review of his statements on Iran turns up little evidence of support for rapprochement with the Islamic Republic. Israeli defense officials balked on Saturday at the suggestion that McMaster is somehow hostile to the Jewish state.
And a White House official notes that McMaster’s National Security Council has been a critical part of the interagency Middle East peace process currently led by Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law and senior adviser.
“General McMaster and I are working very well together,” the president said in a statement.
“He is a good man and very pro-Israel. I am grateful for the work he continues to do serving our country.”
McMaster has visited Israel at least four times, according to his own accounting, including during Trump’s visit in May.