July 24, 2024

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Biden cornered by Israel’s occupation of Gaza: ‘Government must act’

Biden cornered by Israel’s occupation of Gaza: ‘Government must act’

Israeli forces have captured the strategic Rafah crossing in southern Gaza. The transition is an important access point for humanitarian aid for Palestinians. The attack puts strain on relations with the US.

Before the attack on Rafah, US President Biden had already spoken out against the Israeli ground attack. In a phone conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, Biden tried in vain to convince him not to do this.

Hard parquet

According to American expert Kenneth Manusama, this puts Biden in a difficult position. “I think Biden will respond with what he’s always been doing lately, and that’s in small steps,” Manusama said. He sees Biden being pushed into a corner with Israel, Prime Minister Netanyahu and the home front to reckon with.

Manusama refers not only to Republicans, but also to protests on university campuses, which have been organized in other Western countries, including the Netherlands, in addition to the United States.

Election year

The US expert sees Biden as ever cautious. He wanted to avoid offending his supporters, especially with the presidential election coming up in November. “Israel likes to take small steps in American politics, which forces him to keep all parties happy, but at the same time make progress,” Manusama explains.

According to Manusama, it is characteristic of Biden that he is reserved. “Not just as a person, but for his whole policy toward Israel. It’s a very difficult balancing act.”

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The raid in Rafah is straining ties with Israel

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‘Take Compulsory Action’

The US State Department’s report will be released this week and will likely be made public on Wednesday. It will continue The Washington Post Clarify whether Israel violated US or international law in its war with Gaza. Manusama expects the report to have major ramifications for the Biden administration.

“If we decide that Israel has violated human rights on a large scale, there should be consequences. What those consequences will be depends on which law you apply,” explains the American expert. For example, aid to Israel could be withdrawn. “The danger with this statement is that the Biden administration is forced to take a step. A small step will turn into a big step,” predicts Manusama.

Student protest

In recent weeks, Biden has come under increasing pressure from students protesting on university campuses to demand a cease-fire in Gaza. Also in Amsterdam, students attempted to set up a tent on the campus of the University of Amsterdam on Monday evening in support of the Palestinians.

Manusama expects the protesting students in the US to be satisfied only with a ceasefire, but whether the US can enforce this with Israel is questionable. “That’s very unrealistic. America can’t always control Israel from doing what America wants.”

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