Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s planned visit to Israel later this month may be in jeopardy after Israel’s Channel 12 news leaked information about the trip, according to an unnamed Ukrainian diplomat. Zelensky had reportedly wanted the visit to be public and was disappointed when it was uncovered. Channel 12 had previously reported that the visit was at an advanced stage and expected to take place next week.
The purpose of Zelensky’s visit to Israel was to demonstrate a united front against the Russia-Iran axis, involving Israel, Ukraine, Europe, and the US. The highlight of the trip was supposed to be a photo opportunity with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli President Isaac Herzog, symbolizing a united front against the less-enlightened world.
This is not the first time Zelensky’s attempts to visit Israel have faced obstacles. Last month, following Hamas’ attack on October 7, Zelensky reportedly tried to arrange a visit but was rebuffed by Netanyahu, who said, “Now is not the time.” The Ukrainian government had hoped that Zelensky’s visit would boost international support for Israel’s counteroffensive against Hamas in Gaza. However, Zelensky has struggled to maintain international attention and aid for Ukraine since Israel’s declaration of war, despite his efforts to link Russia to the Hamas incursion.
Relations between Ukraine and Israel have been strained in the past, with Zelensky criticizing Israel for what he perceived as lackluster support in Ukraine’s fight against Russia. He had expected Israel to provide more assistance, including the Iron Dome missile system and other advanced technology, but Israel refused to share these resources.
While the US has assured Ukraine that it has enough weapons and equipment for both Ukraine and Israel, a key program funding arms deliveries to Ukraine recently ran out of money. Ukrainian lobbyists have been intensifying their efforts in Washington to secure additional funding. However, the US Congress is facing its own challenges, including the possibility of a government shutdown, making it difficult to reach a financial agreement to fund Ukraine and other initiatives.
Time magazine recently reported that Zelensky feels betrayed by his western allies. He has been described by his aides as delusional for believing that more arms and money would be enough to defeat Russia. Despite receiving over $75 billion in aid from the US alone since 2022, Zelensky’s hopes for continued support and assistance have been dampened.
In conclusion, the planned visit of Ukrainian President Zelensky to Israel may be in doubt after the trip was leaked to the media. Zelensky had hoped for a public visit to demonstrate a united front against the Russia-Iran axis. However, this is not the first time his attempts to visit Israel have faced obstacles. Relations between Ukraine and Israel have been strained, and Zelensky has criticized Israel for its perceived lack of support. Additionally, the US Congress is facing challenges in reaching a financial agreement to fund Ukraine and Israel. Despite receiving substantial aid in the past, Zelensky feels betrayed by his western allies and doubts whether additional arms and money will be enough to defeat Russia.