US patience looks like: Biden lashes out at Israel after attack on aid workers

US patience looks like: Biden lashes out at Israel after attack on aid workers
US patience looks like: Biden lashes out at Israel after attack on aid workers
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Not only did the American president express his ‘displeasure’ about the attack in a press statement last night, he also pointed out that, in his opinion, Israel has done too little to protect aid workers in the Gaza war. “This is a key reason why delivering humanitarian aid to Gaza is so difficult,” Biden said. He called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to at least speed up an investigation into the incident and share its findings publicly.

‘A remarkable diplomatic reprimand’, which according to Politico indicates ‘cracks’ in the cooperation between the Israeli and American governments. “Fiery and blunt language,” the American CNN also described the statement.

About the author
Maartje Geels is a general reporter for de Volkskrant.

Since the outbreak of the Gaza war last October, the White House has virtually refrained from direct criticism of Israel. For a long time, Biden stuck to the promise of more humanitarian aid to Gaza and predictions that the Israeli government would back down under diplomatic pressure. This seems to have changed in recent weeks.

Veto right

Last month, the US president stated that Netanyahu is ‘doing more harm than good’ for his country, referring to the war in Gaza. Later, the US even abstained when the UN Security Council considered a far-reaching resolution calling for a ceasefire in Gaza. While Washington had resorted to the veto three times previously, to please Israel. Now, open criticism of the attack has been added by World Central Kitchen. In view of the presidential elections in November, Washington’s patience with Israel now appears to be running out, although according to The Washington Post the White House last week gave the green light to approximately 2.5 billion dollars in arms deliveries.

The White House is not alone in its criticism of the attack on the aid convoy. Several governments of victimized countries publicly expressed their outrage towards the Israeli government. For example, the British called on the Israeli ambassador in London to ‘unequivocally’ distance himself from the ‘horrible’ fatal attack, which claimed the lives of three Britons.

In a telephone conversation with Netanyahu, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak also described the situation in Gaza as “increasingly unacceptable,” his office said. Like Washington, Downing Street has rarely been so fiercely against their ally.

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Tap the fingers

Sunak’s Australian counterpart Anthony Albanese also conveyed his anger to Netanyahu by telephone. “I have made it clear to Prime Minister Netanyahu that Australia is outraged by this tragedy,” Albanese said of the Australian victim. Canada has now announced that Netanyahu can count on a formal diplomatic slap on the wrist.

On Tuesday, the Israeli army acknowledged that it was guilty of the fatal airstrike. According to army spokesman Herzi Halevi, the aid workers were wrongly identified as targets during the night. “It shouldn’t have happened,” he stated.

The spokesperson also promised a thorough investigation. Netanyahu himself did not seem willing to go that far. He spoke of a ‘tragic incident’ as these simply ‘occur in times of war’.

The article is in Dutch

Tags: patience Biden lashes Israel attack aid workers

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