David Friedman, New U.S. Envoy to Israel, Visits Western Wall Upon Arrival

Friedman will present his credentials to President Reuven Rivlin on Tuesday before spending the week preparing for Trump's visit next week

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman visits the Western Wall, May 15, 2017.
MENAHEM KAHANA/AFP

David Friedman, the new U.S. ambassador to Israel, landed at Ben-Gurion International Airport on Monday and promptly visited the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

He will go to the President’s Residence in Jerusalem, together with the ambassadors of Spain and Thailand, on Tuesday to present his credentials to President Reuven Rivlin. He will then spend a week racing against the clock to finalize the preparations for Trump’s visit, on May 22.

Last week, Friedman met with Trump to receive the president’s final instructions and his best wishes for his new job. Friedman’s own views differ utterly from the president’s on the Israeli-Palestinian issue, but the new ambassador, whose loyalty to Trump is unassailable, intends to leave his personal opinions back home in America.

Friedman, has held quite a few conversations in recent weeks with diplomats and senior Israeli officials. In these conversations, he repeatedly stressed that given Trump’s strong desire to make the “ultimate deal” on the peace process, Israel must cooperate with his diplomatic initiative and help it succeed.