NEW YORK, Sep 20 (APP):Former US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that Israel “played” President Donald Trump and encouraged his former boss to use “a healthy amount of skepticism” in his conversations with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Tillerson, who learned he had been fired in March 2018 via a tweet from the president, made the comments while speaking at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, .
“In dealing with Bibi (Netanyahu) , it’s always useful to carry a healthy amount of skepticism in your discussions with him,” Tillerson said, adding that Israel would share “misinformation” to convince the United States of something.
“They did that with the president on a couple of occasions, to persuade him that ‘We’re the good guys, they’re the bad guys.’ We later exposed it to the president so he understood, ‘You’ve been played,’” Tillerson said, according to the Harvard Gazette. “It bothers me that an ally that’s that close and important to us would do that to us.”
Netanyahu, a close ally of Trump, is facing a possible end to his political career after Israel held its second parliamentary election in five months this week that ended inconclusively.
Trump recently doubted a report that said Israel was likely responsible for spying devices found near the White House last year. He told reporters last week that he “would find that hard to believe” the Israelis were spying on the U.S. because his relationship with the country “has been great.”