Mar 17, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Trump says Israel should quickly end the Gaza war, "we need peace"

Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a Buckeye Values PAC Rally in Vandalia, Ohio, on March 16, 2024. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP)

Former U.S. President and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a Buckeye Values PAC Rally in Vandalia, Ohio, on March 16, 2024. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP)

Former President Donald Trump called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to end the war in Gaza quickly during an interview with Fox News Channel's "MediaBuzz."

Why it matters: This is the first time Trump has called to end the war in Gaza since the Hamas attack in Israel on October 7.

  • Trump's comments in Sunday's aired interview follow calls he made on Friday with FNC's "Fox and Friends" host Brian Kilmeade that Israel should "finish the problem."
  • "You had a horrible invasion. It took place. It would have never happened if I was president, by the way," he added Friday.
  • On Sunday, the former president didn't mention hostages or any other conditions that he would back to broker a ceasefire.

What they are saying: "You have to finish it up and do it quickly and get back to the world of peace. We need peace in the world…we need peace in the Middle East," Trump said when asked by "MediaBuzz" host Howard Kurtz what he would tell Netanyahu about the war in Gaza.

  • Trump added that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer's (D-N.Y.) criticism of Israel was motivated by domestic politics.
  • "He looks at 'where do I get more votes' and I guess he's seeing, you know, the Palestinians and he's seeing marches and, you know, they are big, and he says 'I want to go that way instead of Israel,'" Trump said, later adding that Schumer "dumped Israel."

Flashback: In the early days after the Hamas attack, Trump criticized Netanyahu for failure to prevent it.

  • Since the war began, Trump has said multiple times that he was disappointed by Netanyahu for not helping in the mission that led to the assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani.
  • Trump has expressed support for Israel in recent months, but has avoided publicly backing Netanyahu.
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