“The obvious place for refugees to go temporarily is across the border into Egypt, where there are vast empty spaces and infrastructure for the United Nations and Egyptian authorities to provide shelter, aid and medical assistance. But the US draft resolution seems to exclude this possibility altogether.
Egypt is understandably fearful of Hamas terrorists and their supporters entering its territory; it already has enough of a threat from like-minded Muslim Brotherhood extremists and the plethora of terrorist gangs that share Hamas’s jihadist ideology.
But the terrain in northern Sinai should allow for measures to mitigate dangers such as these, especially given Egypt’s powerful security forces. Surely, if it were truly standing behind Israel, the US would have found a way to encourage Cairo to play a role here?
It is hard to escape the conclusion that, instead, Joe Biden is no longer committed to Israel finishing Hamas off, largely because of domestic political considerations. And the danger is that what he really wants is not a “temporary” cessation to the fighting, but to impose a “peace” deal that would leave Hamas’s terrorist organisation partially intact and end up solving nothing.
What President Biden and his ilk seem incapable of recognising is that the Israeli people can accept no “solution” to the current conflict that leaves the country in a weaker position to the one that it occupied on October 6.
Indeed, the wider West appears to be forgetting how this war started. Israel did not want the conflict. It was the necessary response to the shocking crimes of October 7, the slaughter of civilians, and the taking of hostages – evil terrorist acts that Israel rightly wants to ensure can never happen again.
If the IDF does not move forward with its plans, Israel knows that it will only be a matter of time before we see another conflict in Gaza, as well as emboldened terrorists in the West Bank and on its northern border. Worse, the terrorists would know that the United States would never allow Israel to truly defeat them.”
“Biden administration officials are increasingly at odds with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government over how it is conducting its military assault on Hamas and how the two countries envision the political future of Gaza, current and former U.S. officials say.
Amid dire scenes from hospitals in Gaza and a rising civilian death toll, frustration is building among administration officials who have repeatedly appealed to Netanyahu and his government to take more action to protect Palestinian civilians and allow more humanitarian aid into Gaza.
“We are concerned that they aren’t doing everything possible to reduce civilian casualties,” said one administration official. The comments came as Israeli forces moved in on Gaza City’s main hospital, where they said Hamas militants have been operating from an underground command center.
The friction between the two governments is over crucial long-term questions about who will govern the Palestinian enclave after Israel completes its military offensive. That includes the role of the Palestinian Authority — which currently governs the West Bank — and reviving diplomatic efforts for a two-state solution and the establishment of a Palestinian state, current and former officials said.
“There’s a looming gap between the U.S. and Israel on where we’re going to be in a month or two,” one former U.S. official said.
Although the U.S. and Israel have tried to present a united front publicly, the divide was exposed after Netanyahu last week said that Israel would have a security role in Gaza for an indefinite period.
Less than 24 hours later, Secretary of State Antony Blinken pushed back, making it clear the U.S. would not accept any suggestion of a reoccupation of the Gaza Strip or a blockade of the enclave.
The U.S. believes there can be “no reoccupation of Gaza after the conflict, hence, no attempt to blockade or besiege Gaza,” and “no reduction in the territory of Gaza,” Blinken said during a visit to Tokyo.
Blinken also laid out his most detailed vision yet for the future of Gaza, saying it “must include Palestinian-led governance and Gaza unified with the West Bank under the Palestinian Authority.”
The Palestinian Authority, which was pushed out of Gaza by its rivals in Hamas, administers semiautonomous areas of the Israeli-occupied West Bank. The U.S. and other world powers view the Palestinian Authority, which is internationally recognized but lacks strong popular support, as the only realistic alternative to Hamas, which the U.S. and other Western nations considers a terrorist organization.
Netanyahu, in turn, brushed off Blinken’s proposal, telling NBC News’ “Meet the Press” that Gaza needed to be demilitarized and deradicalized and any Palestinian force including the Palestinian Authority was not up to the job.”
“One of the militants interviewed in the videos said that Hamas leaders promised him a cash bounty for every hostage he brought back to Gaza. “Whoever kidnaps a hostage and brings them to Gaza gets a stipend … an apartment and $10,000,” said the man, who added that Hamas promised to pay him in U.S. currency.”
“Toward the end of the compilation the men are asked if killing women and children is allowed in Islam. They all answered no. The interrogators also asked if their actions were akin to those of the Islamic State terrorist group. All of the men answered yes.
Douglas said the video was also meant to send a message to Hamas members in Gaza. “They’re doing this to put it on video. I think the whole ISIS and Hamas, equating those two organizations, is a good takeaway for Israel,” Douglas said, adding that other Hamas members are likely included in the target audience.”
“Israel has resumed the supply of water to southern Gaza, Israel’s energy minister Israel Katz confirmed Sunday, following an agreement between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Biden. “This will push the civilian population to the southern (part of the) Strip,” Katz said in a statement, a week after Israel had cut off water and the provision of other supplies to the entire territory. The decision came as Israel demanded one million Palestinians evacuate from Gaza’s north, in advance of Israel’s anticipated ground invasion to confront Hamas. White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told CNN’s State of the Union that Israeli counterparts had told him “they have in fact turned the water pipe back on in southern Gaza.” Sullivan said the Biden administration’s goal had been “to make sure that innocent Palestinians get access to those basic necessities and are protected from bombardment.””