As any bleary-eyed, sexed-up Birthright participant can tell you, there are two ways to get to the top of Masada: Climb it like the Romans did in the year 73 CE (yes, I know you don’t use the exact same ramp they did. Fuck you), or take a short cable car ride to the summit. Simple. Easy.
…Unless you’re Donald Trump, a giant whiny baby who abhors physical exercise. Then you try to land a goddamned helicopter on the mountaintop, and—upon being told that, nah, a giant whirlybird kicking up dust all over an active archeological site is, y’know, a very dumb idea—you throw a hissy fit, and decide that maybe you didn’t want to go to Masada anyway, so there.
From Israel’s Arutz Sheva news agency:
Trump’s aides were told that landing a helicopter on the summit of Masada would harm archaeological artifacts at the site, due to the wind movements when helicopters land and take off. Trump’s preparation team was asked to land the helicopter at the base of Masada and to go up the mountain in a cable car just as former US president George Bush did in the past.
However Trump’s aides refused to accede to this suggestion and instead cancelled the Masada trip and it was decided that the president will present his keynote address at the Israel Museum instead.
Trump will be in Israel this coming week as part of his first international trip, where he will also stop in Saudi Arabia, and Vatican City. While in the Holy Land, Trump will reportedly spend 15 minutes at Yad V’Shem, the Holocaust Memorial Museum, where he will presumably wonder why his trusted advisors Steve and Seb never told him the Holocaust was such a bummer for the Jews.