U.S. Sends in Marines to Mideast Embassies

YERUSHALAYIM -

Reinforced security for the opening of the U.S. embassy in Yerushalayim includes not only the Israeli capital but American embassies across the Middle East, according to media reports.

The U.S. has sent Marine units to beef up security at its diplomatic facilities in the region, amid anti-American demonstrations in recent days in Tunisia, Jordan, and Indonesia.

“For weeks, the State Department has been working to bolster security at U.S. diplomatic posts around the Muslim world in advance of the embassy move,” CNN reported.

It said officials anticipate possible violence even though “they say the issue no longer galvanizes the Mideast the way it once did. The embassy move, they say, will eventually lead to greater regional stability.”

Jewish and Israeli institutions abroad were also reportedly increasing security ahead of the embassy opening, and Israeli diplomats have been ordered to take precautions.

Meanwhile on Friday, Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said that the embassy move was taken in America’s interests and was not part of any “give and take” [quid pro quo] with Israel.

“It was an American interest to open the embassy,” he said. “The Israelis were obviously desirous of this and they requested this — they’re very happy by it — but the decision was made because it seemed to be in the best interests of the United States [and] it was something the president promised during the campaign. There was no give and take with Israel in regards to this decision.”