Biden finally admits that Israel is “losing support” as a result of its “indiscriminate bombing” of Gaza
12/18/2023 // Cassie B. // Views

President Biden has changed his tune toward Israel and its leadership in recent days, shifting from insisting everything is just fine despite the growing body count in Gaza to assertively calling for change in the way the country is handling its war against Hamas.

Although he may have had reservations about Israel’s approach privately, Biden has been unwavering in his public support for Israel until recently. In a speech to Democratic donors in Washington, D.C., he warned that Israel was losing support around the world for its campaign against Hamas.

He called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s current coalition government the “most conservative government in Israel’s history” and said that things need to change as its factions are strongly opposed to anything that resembles a two-state solution.

“I think he has to change, and with this government, this government in Israel is making it very difficult for him to move,” he said.

He also called Israel out for its disproportionate response to the October 7 attacks by Hamas, saying that while they have been enjoying some international support until now, that goodwill is quickly running out.

"Israel's security can rest on the United States, but right now it has more than the United States. It has the European Union, it has Europe, it has most of the world ... But they're starting to lose that support by indiscriminate bombing that takes place,” he cautioned.

He also said that the “world is looking at Israel,” referring to the Jewish state’s growing isolation as the war continues. The rising death toll in Gaza is impossible to ignore, with Palestinian sources reporting that more than 17,000 people have died in Gaza since the fighting began. Although Biden has publicly said that Israel has a right to defend itself, he has asked Netanyahu in phone calls to try harder to prevent civilian casualties.

Leaders at odds over future of Gaza after war ends

Another major point of contention between the U.S. and Israel is what will happen to Gaza when the war is over, with Biden complaining that the Israeli government “doesn’t want a two-state solution.”

Netanyahu has confirmed this, admitting that the two leaders disagree on the future of Gaza once the war ends.

“Yes, there is disagreement about ‘the day after Hamas’ and I hope that we will reach agreement here as well,” he said.

The Israeli leader has said that he will block any plans by the U.S. to allow the Palestinian Authority to have control in Gaza.

Netanyahu stated: “After the great sacrifice of our civilians and our soldiers, I will not allow the entry into Gaza of those who educate for terrorism, support terrorism and finance terrorism. I will not allow Israel to repeat the mistake of Oslo.”

Biden said the issue is non-negotiable, stating: "We have an opportunity to begin to unite the region ... and they still want to do it. But we have to make sure that Bibi (Netanyahu) understands that he's got to make some moves ... You cannot say no Palestinian state."

Although Biden may be more aggressive in his criticism of Israel lately, he has stopped short of calling for a ceasefire in Gaza, and the U.S. was the only party to vote against a simple resolution to this effect at a UN Security Council meeting last week.

It is not clear what finally caused Biden to shift his public stance on this matter. Although it has been reported that his advisors and many in the State Department took issue with his strong support for Israel, the fact that these comments were made to donors to his re-election campaign means that all this could just be an effort to appeal to his dwindling liberal base.

Sources for this article include:

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