It’s no secret that many younger members of the Biden administration are not happy with the president’s policy of demonstrating strong support for Israel. Dozens of State Department members signed a “dissent cable” taking issue with the president’s decided tilt in favor of the Israelis.
Now, there’s a growing revolt in the White House as many junior aides are griping about the pro-Israel bias of the president.
“It has created great moral anxiety,” said one senior administration official. “But no one can say it because we all work at the pleasure of the president and he’s all in.”
There was fierce opposition from the Agency for International Development when an open letter signed by hundreds of USAID staffers urging the administration to call for a ceasefire was made public.
“For USAID efforts to be effective and for lives to be saved, we need an immediate ceasefire and cessation of hostilities,” the letter states. “We believe that further catastrophic loss of human life can only be avoided if the United States Government calls for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, the release of Israeli hostages, and the restoration of water, food, fuel, and electricity to the people of Gaza by the State of Israel.”
Sickening moral posturing. Hamas is not going to let the hostages go in exchange for a ceasefire. These well-meaning, naïve fools have no clue what they’re dealing with in Hamas.
The first cracks in the alliance emerged this week as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicated that the Israeli Defense Force would be in charge of security in Gaza for an unspecified length of time after the war is over. Both Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken rejected any move by Israel to “re-occupy” Gaza.
But that’s not the major complaint. Either senior administration officials were unaware of the difficulties Israel was going to have in rooting out Hamas terrorists from their hiding places behind civilians or they were unprepared for the fierce backlash by the international community.
Although US officials have said the Israeli government has been refining its offensive, frustration inside the Biden administration has only been growing as Israel has in different ways rebuffed US’ calls for the Israel Defense Forces to take painstaking efforts to limit civilian deaths, enact humanitarian pauses, stem growing violence in the West Bank and make long-term plans for Gaza. That reality is deepening Washington’s bind as it works to support its ally while also containing growing international backlash.
In conversations with their Israeli counterparts at different levels, Biden administration officials have been stepping up calls for Israel to scale back its relentless aerial bombardment of Gaza, which has claimed the lives of thousands of Palestinians, people familiar with the conversations said.
“They’re being told that they need to change course here,” one source said. “To pull back, to stop the bombing and engage in a more surgical, precise counterterrorism operation.”
“Surgical”? Pray tell, how do you “surgically” eliminate Hamas? And if Israel isn’t going to eliminate Hamas, why bother to go to war?
This is a war of annihilation. If these well-meaning but timid folks think that Hamas should survive as a fighting force, let them publicly state that goal. In the end, this is an either/or question, a yes or no answer. There’s no “middle ground.” There’s no “negotiations.” The only acceptable outcome for Israel is Hamas’s destruction. Otherwise, October 7 will endlessly repeat. This is Hamas’s stated goal: create a state of “permanent war” with Israel.
The goal of Hamas’s October 7 massacres in southern Israel was to “change the entire equation,” bring permanent war to Israel’s borders and renew attention to the Palestinian cause, a senior member of the terror group’s politburo in Qatar said.
“What could change the equation was a great act, and without a doubt, it was known that the reaction to this great act would be big,” Khalil al-Hayya told The New York Times in an interview published Wednesday. “We had to tell people that the Palestinian cause would not die.”
The “moral uneasiness” of White House and State Department aides is useless. There is a higher morality that the Israelis are listening to: the salvation of the state of Israel and the Jewish people.