PM Benjamin Netanyahu with US General Martin Dempsey. (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO) (Amos Ben Gershom/GPO)
Netanyahu Dempsey

The Israeli prime minister joined the president and the IDF leadership in thanking US General Martin Dempsey for his strong friendship and security cooperation.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Thursday morning in Jerusalem with US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey, who is in Israel for meetings with its security leadership.

Netanyahu praised Dempsey for his close relationship with the Jewish State. “You’ve been a wonderful friend and a grand champion of America and of America-Israel relations. We appreciate it.”

The Israeli premier also thanked the American armed forces for their contribution to Israel’s security. “I want to take this opportunity to also express our respect and deep admiration for America’s fighting men and women. We know you’re extended around the world, including in our region. We know we have no better friends than the American people, the American governments, the American fighting men and women. You fight for America, but you also fight for freedom.”

Dempsey, who is on his sixth visit to Israel and fifth in his current position, responded in kind, saying that “the greatest gift has been the friendship that we’ve managed to forge with the leaders in the IDF, and I know you’re proud of them, but we are too. It’s our constitution, and you know that that’s what inspires us as I know service to your nation inspires you.”

Dempsey also met with IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkot, Minister of Defense Moshe Ya’alon and President Reuven Rivlin, who said that Dempsey’s friendship with Israel “will be well remembered.”