Biden’s whole-of-government hostility to Israel

The top U.S.-Israel story of the week is the prospect of a massive ground war in Lebanon.

The main question dominating the discourse is whether the Biden administration intends to provide Israel with the munitions it requires to prosecute such a war successfully. The White House says it has Israel’s back. But recent U.S.-Israel backstories indicate that Israeli anxiety about the U.S. position on munitions is well founded.

Two back stories that have generated minor splashes signal clearly that contrary to President Joe Biden’s oft repeated “ironclad commitment to Israel’s security,” his administration is implementing a whole-of-government policy of criminalizing Israel and its citizens.

The first story relates to stepped-up U.S. sanctions against Israeli nationals and organizations. The second is the reported change in U.S. policy regarding visa and immigration applications from Israeli citizens.

Immediately after the Hamas-led Palestinian invasion and slaughter of Oct. 7, the Egyptian government announced that contrary to the binding requirements of international humanitarian law, Egypt would prohibit Gaza residents from transiting Gaza’s international border into Egypt to seek refuge either in Egypt or in third countries through Egypt.

Far from opposing Egypt’s unlawful action, the U.S. administration supported it. Egypt was not responsible for protecting the residents of Gaza from the war their regime opened against Israel. Israel was.

Days after Oct. 7, the administration began demanding that Israel provide a constant and ever-growing supply of food, water, medicine and other goods to the residents of Gaza. As the administration routinely ratcheted up its demands, it cited wholly unsupported, and now discredited, claims from the U.N. that Gaza was on the verge of famine.

Although the Netanyahu government quickly folded under the administration’s barely disguised threats to accuse Israel of war crimes, the Israeli public has been all but united in its opposition to the U.S. position.

Videos from Gaza have emerged daily since November showing Hamas gunmen seizing the aid trucks and shooting civilians who try to seize bags of flour and other goods from the trucks. Last week, former U.S. Middle East envoy Dennis Ross reported on his X account, “A UN official told me lately that 80 percent of the humanitarian assistance going into Gaza has been looted by criminal gangs or Hamas.”

After Israel began permitting hundreds of truckloads of supplies to enter Gaza directly from Israel in late January, a Direct Polls survey found that 82% of Israelis believed that the trucks should only be allowed to enter Gaza if Hamas released all the hostages.

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Caroline Glick

Caroline B. Glick is a Senior Fellow with the Center for Security Policy. She is a senior columnist at Israel Hayom and the author of The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East, (Crown Forum, 2014). From 1994 to 1996, she served as a core member of Israel’s negotiating team with the Palestine Liberation Organization.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Center for Security Policy column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

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