The international news agency Bloomberg reports that the Israeli decision to not let Polish President Andrzej Duda speak at the World Holocaust Forum in Jerusalem has been met with disapproval from the Trump administration.
The decision to give Russian President Vladimir Putin a prominent role at the World Holocaust Forum at Yad Vashem while denying the Polish President a speaking slot, comes after a recent offensive by the Russian president who has accused the pre-war Polish state on multiple occasions of antisemitism and collaboration with Nazi Germany in the lead up to the Second World War.
Polish President Andrzej Duda was wary of becoming embroiled in a situation where he would be present for another scathing attack on Poland but being unable to counter it with a speech of his own.
After being denied a 7 minute speaking slot by the Israeli President Reuven Rivlin, President Duda decided it would be better to stay back in Poland. Top US officials interviewed by Bloomberg say the US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and Tom Rose, Senior Advisor to Mike Pence, both tried to intervene with the Israeli authorities.
Tom Rose told Bloomberg that the US is “very disappointed by what we view as a preventable and unnecessary snub by one strong American ally of another strong American ally”.
The American are worried that Israel's actions will make it harder for the US to build a coalition of states in Central Eastern Europe which would be prepared to join the US campaign of maximum pressure on Iran. The Americans had hoped that such an alliance would serve as a counterbalance to Germany and France in the EU, two states that are determined to salvage the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran.
Instead of participating in the World Holocaust Forum, President Duda will focus on hosting the official commemoration ceremony in Auschwitz on January 27th, the 75th anniversary of the camp’s liberation by the Soviet Red Army.