President Biden will attend a roundtable with Jewish community leaders on Wednesday afternoon. He will discuss his administration’s support for Israel in the wake of an unprecedented attack by the Hamas militant group last weekend, which resulted in 1,200 fatalities and over 2,700 injuries.
The White House said the event is due to start at 1615 ET (he was 90 minutes late yesterday).
President Biden will deliver remarks on his unwavering support for Israel and his administration’s work to ‘combat Antisemitism.’
Earlier in the day, Biden said, “There is no justification for terrorism. No excuse,” adding he spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – his fourth call in recent days – reiterating the US “will make sure Israel has what it needs to take care of its citizens, defend itself, and respond to this attack.”
On Tuesday, Biden denounced the Hamas attack and vowed to stand by Israel’s side without equivocation. The president called the attack on Israel “pure, unadulterated evil,” “sheer evil” and “indiscriminate evil.”
Reuters cited a person familiar with the matter earlier who said the White House is considering military aid to Israel and Ukraine. NBC also reported the White House is preparing to seek supplemental funding from lawmakers on Capitol Hill for both countries, Taiwan and US border security.
At a press briefing on Wednesday, US National Security Council Coordinator John Kirby said the administration’s additional funding request to Congress has yet to be finalized.
According to the Israel Defense Forces, at least 1,200 Israelis – including more than 150 soldiers – have been killed and more than 2,700 injured. The number of Americans killed jumped to 22 today, up from 14 on Tuesday.
In Gaza, nearly 1,100 have been killed with 5,000 injured, according to the health ministries in Gaza and the West Bank. Israeli fighter jets have bombed 450 targets in northern Gaza in 24 hours.
An IDF spokesman said that “fighting will intensify” in the coming days. Washington Post said IDF forces are “signaling that it’s preparing a ground invasion.”
And maybe that ‘support’ Biden speaks of is in the form of the US military sending the second carrier strike group to the Middle East region.
Finally, as we have noted several times in the last few days, Biden will have to tread a fine line of supporting US’ close ally Israel (despite its so-called ultra-far-right government) while not upsetting ‘The Squad’ and their vociferous support of Palestine and whatever it takes for them to achieve freedom from their apartheid oppressors.