Retired Marine Corps General tipped by President-elect Donald Trump to become the defence secretary has warned Israel could become an apartheid state.
Marine General James Mattis met Trump on Saturday reportedly to discuss a cabinet post.
“General James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis, who is being considered for Secretary of Defence, was very impressive yesterday,” Trump tweeted after the meeting. “A true General’s General!”
Mattis, who is known to be outspoken about US policy in the Middle East, previously said that the US pays a “security price” in the Middle East because it is seen as biased in favour of Israel and that Israel is in danger of becoming an apartheid state due to its occupation of the West Bank.
In 2013 he was quoted as saying: “The current situation is unsustainable.”
Mattis’ view that Israel may become an apartheid state if the two-state solution is not implemented, may put him in conflict with Trump who has spoken out against the two-state settlement.
Mattis then sounded a prophecy of doom regarding what is liable to happen if a Palestinian state is not established: “If I’m in Jerusalem and I put 500 Jewish settlers out here to the east and there’s 10,000 Arab settlers in here, if we draw the border to include them, either it ceases to be a Jewish state or you say the Arabs don’t get to vote — apartheid,” he said.
“That didn’t work too well the last time I saw that practiced in a county.”