Stained Relations? Bibi Brings His Dirty Laundry to Washington
Story Code : 888326
Benjamin and Sara Netanyahu have developed a reputation for lugging bags and suitcases of dirty clothes on foreign trips to be laundered at another country’s expense, a practice noticed by staff at the White House guesthouse, according to the Washington Post.
“The Netanyahus are the only ones who bring actual suitcases of dirty laundry for us to clean,” the paper quoted an unnamed US official as saying. “After multiple trips, it became clear this was intentional.”
The “Israeli” prime minister’s office has denied the allegation, but it is not the first time the 70-year-old leader has been accused of taking soiled clothes abroad for a rinse.
In 2018, leaked transcripts emerged containing allegations that Sara Netanyahu packed “four or five” suitcases worth of laundry. Two years previously, Netanyahu successfully launched a legal bid to have his domestic laundry bills remain private.
The “Israeli” entity’s embassy in Washington said in a statement the allegations were “groundless and absurd”, and aimed at distracting from Netanyahu’s recent US visit, where he signed accords to normalize relations with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.
“On this visit, for example, there was no dry cleaning, only a couple of shirts were laundered for the public meeting, and the prime minister’s suit and Mrs. Netanyahu’s dress were ironed also for the public meeting,” the embassy statement said. “Oh yes, a pair of pajamas that the prime minister wore on the 12-hour flight from ‘Israel’ to Washington was also laundered.”
In its report, the Washington Post said last week’s visit did not include multiple suitcases of laundry, but that “political and career officials spanning the Trump and Obama administrations” had confirmed several previous mass cleaning incidents.
The allegations have compounded accusations in the “Israeli” entity that the Netanyahus have sought to exploit the benefits of high office, no matter how small.
Last year, Sara Netanyahu was convicted of illegally misusing tens of thousands of pounds of public funds on lavish meals, despite having an in-house cook provided by the government.
Meanwhile, Netanyahu is on trial in three corruption cases, including charges he accepted expensive gifts including jewelry and cigars. Netanyahu denies all accusations.