hello. i'm jake tapper in for wolf blitzer. whmp you're watching from around the world thank you for joining us. right now we begin with a rather stunning speech from secretary of state john kerry in which he harshly criticized the government of israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu suggesting his government is pursuing policies that would preclude a two-state solution and any sort of peace in the region. he outlined the obama administration's vision for a two-state solution for israel
and palestine. this comes five days after the u.s. aloud that controversial united nations security council resolution to pass, which condemned israeli settlements from being built in east jerusalem and the west bank, kerry suggesting the u.s. vote was in opposition to the most extreme lem ex-elements -- extreme elements of the society. >> this administration has been israel's greatest friend and supporter with an absolutely unwavering effort to protect his security and legitimacy. on this point i want to be very clear -- no american administration has done more for israel's security than barack obama's. despite our best efforts over the years, the two-state solution is now in serious jeopardy. the truth is, that trends on the ground, violence, terrorism,
incitement, settlement expansion and the seemingly endless occupation, they are combining to destroy hopes for peace on both sides, and increasingly cementing and irreversible one-state reality that most people do not actually want. here is a fundamental reality -- if the choice is one state, israel can either be jewish or democratic. it cannot be both. >> now to mr. kerry's critics, the speech coming less than a month before president-elect trump takes office was an unwelcome shot at an american ally, israel. one that attempted to make a moral equivalence between the construction of settlements and acts of terrorism by palestinians. a small issue in the view of the israeli government compared to other more pressing issues in the region including the mass murder in syria by assad and the rise of isis.
for more on all of this, oren lieberman and global afars correspondent elise labott at the state department and national correspondent suzanne malveaux. >> oren start with you. the city of jerusalem cancel add vote to approve new construction in east juices lerusalem about request of prime minister netanyahu. what is the reaction? >> reporter: interesting point. the speech wasn't carried live on israeli television. part may be the decision many here didn't want to hear what ker hi to say after the u.n. security council resolution vote. many israelis content to read about it tomorrow. as for reaction from the leadership here, prime minister benjamin netanyahu and palestinian president musahmoud abbas, taking time to respond. they haven't responded yet. one of the responses we have gotten is from the education minister here, naftali bennett. leader of the right wing party, saying basically, a one-state
solution and israel will not accept a terrorist state next door. contactly have who secretary kerry called out in this speech saying it's the settler movement leading the israeli government. something bennett already responded to and something we can expect prime minister netanyahu to respond to. one of the things we listened to here, what are kerry's ideas, specific solutions how to solve the complex issues. refugees, jerusalem. where we were looking for a lot more detail and specific answers what he would do. in fact, comparing this speech, jake, to clinton's parameters, clinton gave more detail how to handle that than kerry. now saying we'll find a solution. here's kind of how you make it work. more reaction as they have time to look over this 70-minute speech particular kerry. >> elise, at the say the department, little the obama administration can do before they leave office. what was kerry hoping to
accomplish with this speech today? >> reporter: i think a couple of things, jake. first of all, i think a dose of duff love. -- tough love. he talks's u.s. support for israel and also said that doesn't mean we agree with every policy and when we don't agree. prime minister netanyahu says he wants a two-state solution and secretary kerry, primary argument, that the expansion of settlements, why the u.s. agreed to abstain from that vote and let it pass, are hurting the chances of what he says he wants. a two-state solution. i don't think secretary kerry expects the parties will get back to the table immediately and take up his ideas. he knows the trump administration will want to come in, but he worked on this four years. he led those peace talks for a year between israelis and palestinians. they did kind of move the ball forward on some issues, not all, but he's hoping this could,
perhaps, be the basis for where the parties pick up when they decide to get back to the table, because he says that's what's really going to be the only thing that solves the conflict is a peace negotiation. >> although, suzanne, obviously president-elect trump and his team come at this from a very different direction. the president-elect criticized the u.n. following the security council vote. what are we hearing from president-elect trump today about the future of relations between the u.s. and israel? >> reporter: for donald trump jumping to the role of president january 20th more like a suggestion. weighing in heavily. tweeted this morning, this is hours before secretary of state kerry's speech in two parts, because not everything can fit into 140 characters saying we cannot continue to let israel be treated with such total disdain and disrespect. they used to have a great friend in the u.s., but not anymore. the beginning of the end was the horrible iran deal and now this, u.n. stay strong, israel. january 20th is fast approaching. and then this morning, jake,
netanyahu tweeted him back thanking him for that support also this morning on a conference call with sean spicer, incoming press secretary who said that the u.s. relationship with israel under trump in fact would be stronger. we have seen signs that trump wants to go in that direction. he has selected david friedman the new u.s. ambassador to israel, supporting israeli settlements, moving the embassy from tell leitel aviv to jerusa. also today house republican leaders announced when the new congress does come back in january, they're going to introduce a measure denouncing the u.n. for that very resolution. i've also been told this morning that trump received his intelligence briefing. he met with his national security team and spicer says trump will make some kind of statement later this afternoon on the economy, but we're going to look to see if he has more reacting to kerry's speech. jake? >> suzanne malveaux, oren
lieberman, elise labott. read more of the mission to save diplomacy on cnn.com. talk of secretary of state kerry's assertion a short time ago "the two-state solution is in serious jeopardy." our panel, hala gorani, and our other panel members. hala, stasht with yrt with you. did secretary kerry's speech do anything to change the chance of peace in the middle east or is it possible it might have even made it tougher? >> well, at this late stage perhaps in the obama administration with three more weeks to go, it's difficult to argue a speech would make really a tangible difference on the ground, because three weeks from now, of course, we have an administration, the administration of current president-elect donald trump that will take over with very different views on what needs to be done. in fact, the president-elect
already tweeting his opposition to what president obama and john kerry have been saying, and the u.s. abstention at the u.n. security council. so i don't think that's really what the administration is trying to do here. perhaps the audience is an israeli one here as far as john kerry is concerned. perhaps also it's simply putting it on the record at this very late stage with just weeks to go where the obama administration stands on settlements in particular, because 70 minutes of this speech, most of it, devoted to these settlements in east jerusalem and these outposts that the knesset, israeli parliament, or voting to legalize. that really was the intent, i think. not with really kind of the idea that this would make any difference on the ground. especially with the prime minister, benjamin netanyahu, coming out so sort of like, an aggressive way criticizing the obama administration for moves
in the u.n., jake? >> suzanne malveaux a minute ago alluded to the tweet benjamin netanyahu the prime minister of israel wrote. wrote, thank you for your warm friendship, president-elect trump, put the u.s. and israeli flag emojis. the question is -- with this obviously very fastly solidifying relationship between netanyahu and trump, why even bother giving the speech today? everybody knows the obama administration position on the settlements and the u.n. vote last week made it pretty clear? >> partly kerry wanted to push back at the israeli criticism that the obama administration was betraying israel, indicating hundreds of calms with israeli prime minister netanyahu and all of this was quite predictable. and he said, you know, look, in the end we could not in good conscience protect the most extreme elements of the settler
movement, as it destroyed the two-state solution, which he said is in u.s. interests. >> interesting. and obviously, john, you know, the idea of the settlements, they're very controversial, but i think one of the points we keep hearing from the israelis, and it's -- they have a point which is, this is what the obama administration wants to go out fighting for? i mean, syria is in tatters. there's a war going on in yemen. i could go on, but you get the point. why make israeli settlements the focus of your foreign policy on your way out the door? >> right. the israeli response has been the obama administration has been consistently mrs. guid lmi naive. the government has been consistently short sightsed. each one going out arguing the case they've arg yued for quite some time. that john kerry wanted to make the point to just correct the
record, to push back, but in some ways a lot of the speech was either talking to the historical record or digging out talking points from two years ago that they had on the shelf sitting there, and just said, well, for the record, we're going to put that out, too. >> hala, reading to you the statement from the spokesman for netanyahu. david keyes which we just got. "like the security council resolution that secretary kerry advanced in the u.n., his speech tonight was skewed against israel." obviously it's night in israel. "for over an hour kerry obsessively dealt with settlements and barely touched poon the root of the conflict. palestinian opposition to a jewish state and any boundaries." what's your response? >> that's the criticism of course from the netanyahu government, one we've heard time and time again. important to note several months ago, of course, the u.s., under the obama administration, the
largest ever security aid package to israel was authorized. we're talking $38 billion over ten years. so you do have this spat. it could have, perhaps, some of its roots in a very difficult personal relationship between the u.s. president and benjamin netanyahu, but strategically speaking it's difficult to argue that the united states is somehow turning its back on israel under president obama, because the aid, the strategic relationship is still very much there. so coming from the netanyahu government, it is expected we'd hear from david keyes say something like that, but really practically the relationship is still in terms of the strategic financial -- in terms of the security aid package still very much there, jake. >> and, john, one of the points secretary kerry was trying to make, in the long term, israel can't be both jewish and democratic, unless there is also a palestinian state. some of that sound. let's roll that.
>> -- the united states does israel no favors when we fail to couple an unwavering commitment with security with an insistence that israel respect the legitimate claims and rights of the palestinians. and -- and nations within this body do the palestinians no favors when they choose vitt tr vitriol -- >> obviously the wrong sound. respond to that. that's president obama speaking at the united nations in 2009, first broaching the idea of an israeli/palestinian peace process. >> look, i think the president feels he's been right on this. two interesting consequences of a different u.s. policy towards israel. one is that israeli governments have relied on the united states to restrain the right wing in
israel. that you want the opposition to the u.s. government to avoid having to capitulate to the right wing and seems with a trump administration, the netanyahu government, relied on that you as much as any won't have that. the other thing, greater polarization in the american jewish community, because there are a lot of people who agree very much with what kerry said today. i think, in my view, that speech was directed more at americans than israelis, and there are a lot of americans who agree much more with john kerry than they're going to agree with donald trump or with his ambassador to israel. i think the future of u.s./israeli relations when the american jewish community is more split is one of the really important things that we may be looking at in the years to come. >> laura, run the sound i actually wanted to run and get your reaction. john kerry talking about the challenge or if not impossibility of israel without a palestinian state next to it staying both jewish and democratic. let's tlaun sound. run that sound. >> -- here is a fundamental
reality. if the choice is one state, israel can either be jewish, or democratic. it cannot be both. >> you know, this is the argument that as john was sayings netanyahu government and obama administration had for eight years. which is the u.s. saying the status quo will not hold and israel saying, kick it down the road and we'll be ready later. you saw kerry answering what is the status quo going to lead to? but permanent occupation. >> yes. and came very close, although he didn't use the world apartheid, but came close to saying it, although he's used the term in the past talking about separate but unequal society in the west bank. hala and others, thank you for being here. secretary kerry may have had good intentions but "divorced
from reality," that and more when we come back. anything else to talk about. s but then i realized there was. so, i finally broke the silence with my doctor about what i was experiencing. he said humira is for people like me who have tried other medications but still experience the symptoms of moderate to severe crohn's disease. in clinical studies, the majority of patients on humira saw significant symptom relief. and many achieved remission. humira can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened; as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems, serious allergic reactions, and new or worsening heart failure. before treatment, get tested for tb. tell your doctor if you've been to areas where certain fungal infections are common, and if you've had tb, hepatitis b, are prone to infections, or have flu-like symptoms or sores. don't start humira if you have an infection. if you're still just managing your symptoms, talk with your gastroenterologist about humira.
welcome back. secretary of state john kerry this morning saying that the two-state solution for mideast peace is in jeopardy. kerry saying israeli settlements are not the only obstacle but seemed to focus on them as the main part of the problem. kerry says that's why the united states chose to abstain rather than veto the united nations security council resolution condemning the settlements on friday. >> in literally hundreds of conversations with prime minister netanyahu, i have made clear that continued settlements activity would only increase pressure for an international response.
in the end, we could not in good conscience protect the most extreme elements of the settler movement as it tries to destroy the two-state solution. we could not in good conscience turn a blind eye to palestinian actions that fan hatred and violence. it is not in u.s. interests to help anyone on either side create a unitary state, and we may not be able to stop them, but we cannot be expected to defend them. >> joining us live from jude m jerusalem, what it's your reaction to secretary of state kerry's argument about the necessary way forward, in his view y. well, secretary kerry's speech is not unlike the obama policy. it's divorced from reality, but with good intentions. it's left the middle east in flames, a genocide in syria. iraq falling apart.
iran on a path to nuclear weapon, and abandoning the only free democracy in the middle east, israel. it's wrong. it's immoral, but we will prevail. we're strong. we're fighting against radical islamic terror in the midst of the middle east, and we expected back wind and hope to get some. >> so let's focus on the settlements issue since it is what secretary kerry talked about and the folk is of the united nations security council resolution on friday. what is the -- building settlements, not the part of west bank or jerusalem likely to become israel in any part of a two-state solution, but the nar parts that will not become israel? what's the justification for building those settlements? >> there is already a palestinian state formed in 2005
in gaza and they turned it into a terror state. pulled out all the jews, handed it over to abu mazen and he turned it into a terror state. anyone in their right mind cannot fathom forming another one. aoppose forming a second palestinian state in what you call the west bank, judea and summaria, they have been a jewish state for roughly 3300 years well before the new continent of america were reached. we're going to stay here forever. >> israel can become -- remove gaza. israel can be jewish or democratic, but cannot be both. how do you solve that problem of the fact that there will be millions of palestinians that, i
don't presume you would be giving voting rights or travel rights to, to the extent they would seek? >> of course they would have voting rights. they would have voting rights for their entity. they can exercise it in the palestinian state in gaza or in the autonomy in the west bank. that's up to them. they have voting rights like any other person in the world. i profoundly disagree with this it stark vision of secretary kerry. we're the ones fighting, out there fighting for the defense of the free world, and within smaller israel, it's quite the contrary. we have supreme court judges that are arabs. members of our parliament that are arabs. so the only free democracy in the middle east is, in fact, israel, and sort of abandoning israel while we're out there fighting isis and hamas and hezbollah is simply wrong. >> your government says that israel has "ironclad information" proving that the
obama administration orchestrated the u.n. security council vote and that you will turn it over to the trump administration. that seems odd. why not just present it to the public? it's a rather stark charge to make, especially consideringed obama administration disputes it? >> well, we know that it's a premeditated plan, but you know, the bonds between the american people who seek freedom and democracy and the israeli people which are in the midst of the toughest area in the world, goes so deep, way beyond one administration or another. it's unfortunate that kerry and obama have decided to go down this track, both vis-a-vis aaron a iran and the security council. in brussels, in london, we're the ones. i've been fighting hezbollah and hamas over 20 years, myself. i've lost friends. we want peace, but the only way to achieve peace in the middle
east is by being strong and fighting the bad and evil forces of iran and isis. that's exactly what we're doing. >> minister bennett, the vote in the u.n. security council resolution as you know was 14 in favor of the anti-settlements resolution. 1 abstention, the united states. now your netanyahu government is taking steps to curb diplomatic with countries that include the uk, france, spain, u krairn and on and on. new zealand, egypt. is israel not isolating itself from the rest of the world by not taking the message that people think these settlements are a true impediment to peace? >> you just said twice the term settlements. you know, we're not occupying any land. one cannot occupy his own home. this city behind me is jerusalem. it's been our capital for 3,000 years. >> you dispute the idea that these are settlements? >> way before washington, d.c.
was the american capital. these are not settlements. we've got about 650,000 israelis living in jerusalem and east jerusalem and judea and summaria. big cities. you know, one might match an small tent on a hill. that's not what we're talking about. we've been here for thousands of years. we're staying here. we're going to live side-by-side in peace, with the arabs here. but not by forcing our hand and not by security council decisions giving back wind to the worst terrorists in the world, because they say, here, the only free democracy fighting terror is thrown under the bus. >> you're proving my point, because you're even disputing the idea it's occupied territory or settlements, which the entire international community with the exception of the netanyahu government thinks it is. >> but absolutely i am disputing that. how long have you, have americans been living in america? >> how long have americans been living in america? >> a few hundred -- correct.
a few hundred years. how long have jews been living in the holy land? 4,000 years. so how dare anyone call the land of israel occupied territory? how dare anyone. this has been our home forever, and will be our home forever. yes, there's arabs here. some of them are in our parliament, and we have freedom that no other middle east country has, and we're proud of it. we will prevail, even when we're trying to be forced down a bad path. >> well, i think a lot of people who live on the west bank would dispute the notion they have freedom, but minister bennett, thank you for your time. happy hanukkah. we appreciate it. secretary kerry argued both he and president obama were not only critical of israel but palestine as well. what he had to say about hamas. >> most truoubling of all, hama continues to pursue an extremist
agenda. they refuse to accept israel's very right to exist. they have a one-state vision of their own. all of the land is palestine. hamas and other radical factions are responsible for the most explicit forms of incitement to violence, and many of the images that they use are truly appalling. and they are willing to kill innocents in israel and put the people of gaza at risk in order to advance that agenda. >> let's talk more about this with political analyst diana beaut t bea butu. thanks for joining us. what ask your response to secretary of state john kerry just then in the speech he said that hamas is part of the problem as well? they are demanding a one-state solution, and they are perpetrating violence against innocent israelis? >> well, you know, violence wouldn't exist if it weren't for the fact there are palestinians who are being denied their
freedom. the fact palestinians have been living under a brutal regime even your past guest denied exists. this is the root of violence. if we want to address violence we have to address the root causes. ending the ounce and giving palestinians their freedom. the only way forward. >> the argument that people like naftali bennett make is, look what happened when we gave land to the palestinians. we withdrew from gaza. and they created a terrorist state with hamas attacking israel. even after they had their own country. what's your response to that? >> well, actually, they didn't end their occupation. israel still controls all of the borders and still controls the airspace. it still control the very food that gets into the gaza strip. they control every aspect of palestinian life around the perimeter of the gaza strip. more than that, have gone to continue to bomb gaza throughout
this period when they claim it's a state. it hasn't been something turned into a state and then attacked israel. quite the opposite. it's that all that israel did was turn it into an open-air prison and drop bombs on gaza. >> obviously, the israelis would note that there were rockets fired upon israel by gaza, but i don't want to relitigate the gaza/israel war. i want your response to secretary kerry's speech. what was your response? >> look, i think it's about time that this administration recognize that the settlements are an issue and about time they recognize that they have been an enabler of israel's continued military rule. what i'm disheartened by is the fact they didn't end up coming up with something different. rather than simply allowing israel to continue its military rule, i would have expected that after eight years of seeing this, after having to go so far as to abstain on a u.n. resolution, that the obama administration would actually do
something rather than give israel $38 billion. so while the formula was nice, i don't think that at the 11th hour this administration is capable of doing anything, and certainly the next administration has made it clear they're not going to do anything. this is why it's so important global citizenry come together and focus on boycotting israel, divesting from israel and putting sanctions on israel. it's the only way forward to hold israel accountable. >> why should israel be held accountable for its treatments of the palestinians as opposed to the way that so many other arab countries treat their citizens? i could point to any number of countries and sure you would likely agree where they do not have rights. why focus on israel and not, for instance, the way that the saudis treat their sins s saudis treat their sins tiffens qataris, et cetera? >> those are also problems. the difference, israelis get $38
billion a year from the united states, first of all. secondly, the way that, the reason israel continues to do this is because the world has turned a blind eye to it. i don't see that the world has turned a blind eye to these other human rights abuses. you've name add few. the fact of the matter is the u.s. role is central, and the u.s. role enabled israel to continue to deny palestinians their freedom and that's why it's imperative the u.s. take steps to curtail and scale back israel's actions. sadly, this speech does not do it. while we all welcome the idea of the u.s. involvement in actually putting forward a final resolution to this, it is not going to come at the 11th hour, sadly. >> one last question for you. how are palestinians especially the palestinian leadership, i know you're not a member of it but have friends and contacts in the palestinian leadership, how are they preparing for the trump administration? >> it's not clear. one thing that is clear is that the u.s. has made it -- this
next administration made it clear they're going to be very right wing, very pro-settlement and they are going to push for an extreme agenda in the same way this current netanyahu add min installation been pushing for. i don't know if that mean as human rights struggle. i hope they do, and pushing for a two-state solution, they focus on a one-state solution. it's not clear. one thing that is clear, however, is that palestinians are not going to sit by idly and watch more of their land taken. there are other options such as taking israel to court, and sump as engaging in a civil rights struggle and i hope that it happens soon. >> thank you very much. happy new year to you. you're looking at live pictures now from jerusalem. israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu will take the podium to react to secretary of state
back now to our discussion on the comments on middle east peace from secretary of state john kerry later this hour we expect to hear live from prime minister benjamin netanyahu who will react to comments such as this one from secretary kerry. take a listen. >> president obama and i know that the incoming administration has signalled that they may take a different path. and even suggested breaking from the long-standing u.s. policies on settlements. jerusalem, and the possibility of a two-state solution. that is for them to decide. that's how we work. but we cannot in good conscience do nothing, and say nothing,
when we se the hope of peace slipping away. >> let's bring in former cia director james woolsey, also a senior adviser to the trump campaign. what's your general reaction to the speech we heard? >> i think the main point is that there's an elephant in the living room that particularly i think the palestinians and those who support their position won't notice, refuse to notice, which is that they have to stop killing israelis and jews, or there's not going to be a one-state or two-state solution or anything. you can't do a deal as long as the israelis who want to live on the west bank have to build shelters around themselves in order to exist. with the palestinian arabs, the israeli arabs, citizens of israel, about one-sixth of israel is palestinian, if --
when they are in a, running a country, or partially running a country, they get representatives in the knesset, they have a supreme court justice, cabinet members, they have publications and are not afraid somebody's going to come kill them in the middle of the night, but jews trying to live peacefully somewhere in the west bank do have to be afraid. they've got have is a settlement. we just had -- 92 young russians killed in the black sea air -- a terrible tragedy. but nobody came along and said, you know, every few months we're going to kill 92 people, just kind of don't bother us, because it would offend us if you bothered us. you know, they have to begin the process of working together with the israelis, and i think the israelis would do a two-state
deal if it were run by somebody other than the way things have worked out. look at the clinton parameters at the end of the clinton administration. >> uh-huh. >> it was tough on israel but one that, a deal that could have been accepted and barack got it accepted by the knesset. >> ahab barack, yes. >> and that was fine, and the palestinians gave it the back of their hand. >> let me ask you a question. john kerry said something that i have been hearing a long, long time. which is it's in israel's futch less there's a two-state solution, israel will have to choose being a jewish state, unless it will let palestinians have voting rights, under current, in the autonomous regions, a jewish state or democracy, but it will have to choose, unless there is a two-state solution, and you flared the education minister a rising star on the right in
israel, you know, that benjamin netanyahu is always looking over his shoulder to see where bennett is, and there's no two-state solution coming from that guy? >> well, there's -- that's the conventional wisdom, i understand that. but i think that it matters a huge amount parties are living for a while at peace the way the israels and the israeli arabs do, or whether they're living only with guns lowered and in shelter, the way one has to on the west bank if one wants to live on the west bank, and i think that there are a lot of people in israel who would go along with something, if the palestinians stopped killing them. but you look at what's happening out of gaza. you look at what's happened with the attack with knives. it just goes on and on and on, and i must say, i don't think israel is the provocateur in
this. the only way that they're the provocateur is that they exist and palestinians don't want a jewish state or poshly jewish state or any jews at all in that part of the world and that's the problem. >> what seemed to prompt secretary kerry's speech today are two things. one, the u.n. resolution and the israelis pushing back really strongly against the obama administration for not vetoes it, and, two, the notion that in the view of secretary kerry and the obama administration, the netanyahu government says publicly they want a two-state solution, but when you look at their policies, and the settlements that have grown in the west bank, including outside areas that would be possibly part of israel in a land swap in any sort of peace process, they are undermining any ability to create a two-state solution by just demolishing the idea of any contiguous state there. is that not -- is that not legitimate? >> well, the -- israelis have,
like i say, about five-sixth citizens. the others are arabs. nobody worries about continuity and consous state. they live in all sorts of different places, and it's -- it's two people that at least, in middle east terms, are getting along reasonably well with one another, and would it be that different if it was one-third palestinian and two-thirds israeli? which might be a single state? i don't know. i don't know that it would be all that different, if people just stopped murdering their opponents. that's -- that has to happen, or nothing works. >> you heard bennett, who said they wouldn't be giving them voting rights. they would let them live in ot ton mou autonomous regions? >> i would like somebody to look into a one-state solution with full rights and see how it would work.
i don't know. it might be hard, but i don't think it's as impossible as trying to make something work while the palestinians keep killing jews. >> all right. i don't think we'll solve this problem right now. former cia director james woolsey, thank you. merry christmas, happy new year. donald trump taking a swipe at president obama, responding, really. what he's saying and what his team is now saying to clarify the tweets. thae that's next. live pictures from jerusalem the prime minister benjamin netanyahu expected to respond to secretary of state kerry's speech. we'll bring that live to you.
john kerry. we'll bring that to you live when the prime minister comes to the podium. let us turn in our moments we have left to the president-elect, donald trump, who's back in meetings today after taking a break for christmas and as he works to fill his final cabinet slots. mr. trump now blaming president obama for what he says will be anything but a smooth transition tweeting a short time ago, "doing my best to disregard the many inflammatory o statements and road blocks." "thought it would be a smooth transition. not." not. talk with me panel. joining me, thank you for being with me. what he's talking about there, what do they say? >> nothing to see here. the transition is going smoothly and talking regularly. what trump was saying. >> but he said, not. >> right.
obama may have started this. saying if he was on the ballot, running a third temple, of course couldn't mean, these you saw each other. and they were -- then trump said nice things about obama but, you know, the gloves are off again with this and so i think we'll see more of this. these -- they're two competitive guys and when it comes to trump he is a little thin skinned and i think you can also argue that obama didn't have to say that. he didn't -- he lost. in some ways obamaism lost, right? i mean, if anything donald trump ran as the anti-obama and he ended up winning.
>> although -- yes, that's all true. to be devils advocate, maybe somebody supporting president obama would say, betsy, well donald trump hasn't behaved the way a normal president-elect do does. they normally go and huddle and form administrations and don't make policy and don't dispute current policy until they become the the president and donald trump has violated that tradition. >> almost like donald trump isn't a traditional candidate handling his presidency in a different way. perplexing. i think the loves wi s wils wil out. one thing that strikes me is how little trump has changed. every since he started back in june, people expected a serious trump to come out. this is the reminder that this is who he is. this is how he's going to approach his presidency. >> there's no pivot. >> none at all. but his staff is going to get whiplash. a few days ago sean spicer was going really well, they were
grateful to obama and his team for bending over backwards to help them go through this process, now you have trump on twitte twitter in all caps saying wrong, that's not true so he's making his team's life really hard and that won't change, either. >> it's also interesting, nia, normally presidents just leave and they're quiet, they don't say anything, maybe every now and again they pop up, they are always deferential. i'm talking about george w. bush and george h.w. bush more than anyone else, bill clinton has popped up but he's still stayed fairly cautious in terms of criticizing any current president. barack obama is going to stay here in washington, vice president biden will stay here in washington and i have a very difficult time imagining president obama staying quiet. >> following the bush model. he has said he likes that model. bush basically went back to texas and hadn't said much about
anything about obama's presidency. there was a smooth transition, obama said he wanted to do that. in the meantime he's trying to secure his legacy in terms of criminal justice, in terms of the environment as well because he know whos once trump gets in he wants to undo many parts of that legacy. but when you think about obama, his political identity, activism, grass-roots, wanting to have a viable democratic part y par party. he sees himself still as someone who would have won and mobilized that progressive base that wasn't mobilized? this last election. >> those are issues that i would expect president obama to stay active in pushing criminal justice reform and combatting climate change. do you think palestinian rights will now be part of the soon to be ex-president obama's portfolio? is this going to be an issue? i'm surprised, i have to say,
that this has erupted on his way out the door, pushing the israelis as he is doing and when you consider the fact that donald trump seems to be very close with benjamin netanyahu, assuming he gets confirmed, the new u.s. ambassador to israel is somebody who supports the settlements, i would guess if i had to make a prediction will visit settlements as an ambassador, i'm going out on a limb here. do you think president obama will make palestinian rights one of his causes? >> i doubt it would be a signature cause but i think it will be something he'll be comfortable bringing up and needling trump on. remember, this question of how transitional presidencies handle the israeli/palestinian conflict isn't a new one. in 2008 during a transition period the gaza war was on going and obama was aassiduously careful not to assert himself and make sure there was only one president at a time during this tense moment in that region. of course the situations are not identical. 2016 is not the same as 2008. however, i think there's a
certain respect for precedent and tradition that obama showed in 2008 that he's likely to maintain in his post-presidency here. that said, of course, the acrimony between him and netanyahu can't be overstated. hard to overstate that so wouldn't surprise me if he finds ways to capitalize on that. >> we're talking about the many ways president-elect trump has voiced disagreement with the current president. one of them has to do with his rejection of what the 17 u.s. intelligence agencies have to say in terms of russia hacking. listen to senator lindsey graham talking about what the senate feels on that issue. >> i would say that 99 of us believe the russians did this and we're going to do something about it along with senator mccain after this trip is over we'll put sanctions together that hit putin and his inner circle for for interfering in our election. >> where does this go if president-elect trump doesn't believe it? >> i think you'll have different
sides with donald trump trying to have a different relationship with putin. this is someone he said warm things about and essentially defended the russian against these charges so you'll see this play out in the tillerson nomination, the nomination for secretary of state but this could get ugly because it's donald trump going against gop orthodoxy. the hawks in that party, the folks who believe what mitt romney said which is that russia is the number one geopolitical foe, this is going to get testy between those wings of the party. >> do you think president-elect trump will be facing off against the republican senate? >> without a doubt. but there's not any chance whatsoever he would sign off on sanctions like this. >> i have to interrupt. we're seeing israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu making remarks, his response to secretary of state john kerry. >> translator: i have to say that i'm surprised. that's what the security of state of the biggest empire in the world has to say. this is one of the speeches that
will conclude his administration, the obama administrati administration. whole countries in the middle east are collapsing, terror is everywhere and for an entire hour the secretary of state of the united states talks only about the only democracy in the middle east, a democracy that is one of the only stable places in the entire middle east. we are now celebrating christmas maybe secretary of state john kerry didn't see that israel is the only place in the middle east where christians can celebrate christmas in security and peace and happiness. unfortunately, that doesn't interest the president of the
united states. he makes a biased comparison between building houses in the east of jerusalem and terror that kills innocents and after that he talks only about israel and only merely condemns terror. the settlements, that's israel, but palestinian incitement, it happens, they don't say who incites. if the u.s. administration would have taken the same energies that they put in condemning israel in stopping the palestinian terror, maybe they would have helped the peace
process more. i talked today with the ferret of a person killed in the settlement. this is what he said. in these days of the chanukah holiday the light must overcome the darkness. and israel's light must light to the distance and overcome all challenges. i must say that the jewish menorah lights and i would like to embark light in the world. >> before i explain why this speech was so deeply painful to
me, i want to explain why the united states is so deeply grateful to israel, the american congress and the american people. we're grateful for the support israel has received over many, many decades. our lives are based on shared values, shared interests, a sense of shared destiny. and a partnership that has endured differences of opinions between our two governments over the best way to advance peace and stability in the middle east, i have no doubt our lives will endure through this profound disagreement we have had with the obama administration and will become even stronger in the fuch. but now i must stress my deep disappointment with the speech today of john kerry. i speech that was almost as unbalanced as the anti-israel resolution passed at the u.n. last week.