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U.S. ambassador unleashes rare public criticism on Israeli paper

David Friedman
David Friedman at his confirmation hearing last year. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman went on an unusual and probably unprecedented attack today against the Haaretz newspaper a day after one of its senior columnists published an op-ed criticizing his support for the Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Why it matters: It is very rare for foreign diplomats to attack the media in any democracy – especially in Israel – which is a close U.S. ally and a country with strong free press. In my 12 years as a reporter covering the diplomatic corps in Israel, I can't remember a similar case.