Photo Credit: Koby Gideon / GPO
PM Benjamin Netanyahu meets with US Senator (R-SC) Lindsey Graham at the PMO in Jerusalem, May 31, 2021.

South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham was in Jerusalem on Monday (May 31) for talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Benny Gantz.

The prime minister called Graham a “devoted friend” in welcoming the senator to Israel.

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Netanyahu thanked Graham during the meeting for his support of Israel, saying “No one has done more for Israel than you, Senator Lindsey Graham, a stalwart champion of our alliance, and we have no better friend. I want to thank you for everything you’ve been doing over the years on our defenses, our security, on Iran. You’ve been a tremendous friend and a tremendous ally,” he said.

In response, Graham declared, “The eyes and ears of America is Israel. Nobody does more to protect America from radical Islam than our friends in Israel.

Holding up a blue-and-white sign that said, “More For Israel,” Graham went on, “I just want you to know this sign says all you need to know about my trip.

“To every American,” he continued, “What happens with Iran matters not only to America, but to the world.

“The worst possible outcome for the world is to allow the Iranian regime to acquire nuclear capability because our Arab friends will not tolerate that. They feel far more threatened by Iran than they do [by] Israel, so my hope is to find an alternative to the JCPOA that will allow for nuclear power but not create a nuclear arms race through enrichment — that’s the existential threat to the State of Israel, and the world at large.

“So what can you expect, my friends in Israel in the next coming days and weeks?” Graham concluded. “More.”

During their meeting, Gantz also updated the American lawmaker on security developments following Israel’s recent Operation Guardian of the Walls against Hamas in Gaza.

In brief comments, Gantz thanked Graham for his “great support for Israel and for maintaining its security and qualitative advantage over its enemies and in the Middle East in general.”

Graham and Gantz also discussed Iran’s continued aggression against Israel and the Islamic Republic’s actions that continue to affect stability in the region.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.