Israel may lose America
The intensification of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict has put the Joe Biden administration in a very difficult position. It is not so much about the fact that this complicates the initiative to return to the "nuclear deal" with Iran, but that this incident shows a major change that has taken place in the US Democratic Party itself.
Initially, the new White House administration ignored the escalation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Former US President Donald Trump even managed to criticise the White House for the lack of clear support for Israel.
When it became clear that the standoff was dragging on, Biden nevertheless called Netanyahu, and on Monday, May 18, Biden already made the third call in the last six days.
In a statement, the White House said that during the call, Biden reaffirmed Israel's right to self-defence, but "called on Israel to make every effort to ensure the protection of innocent civilians”. He also "expressed his support for the cease-fire and discussed US engagement with Egypt and other partners to achieve this goal”.
It was the first time the White House has officially mentioned a cease-fire in negotiations with Israel. The fact is that Biden has long resisted calls from fellow Democrats to publicly increase pressure on Israel amid rising violence.
The vision of American policy in the Middle East is undergoing a change as a result of the increasing influence of the "progressive wing" in the Democratic Party. Part of the Congressmen openly supports the Palestinians and condemns Israel's actions, and the White House Press Secretary refuses to criticise them for this position.
Even the Senate Majority leader, Democrat Chuck Schumer, who has strong pro-Israel beliefs and supports Israel's right to self-defence, issued a strong call for a cease-fire: "I want a ceasefire to be reached quickly and people's losses should be mourned”. CNN links this statement to the fact that there is direct pressure on Chuck Schumer from the “progressive wing” of the democratic party and, not least, from his colleague Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, who called Israel an “apartheid” state.
CNN also notes that the "progressive wing" clearly threatens to weaken Israel's position in Congress. Several prominent Democrats are calling on the administration to impose additional conditions on the delivery of $735 million in precision weapons to Israel.
In the foreign policy field, the US adheres to the previous strategy. It was the third time in the past week that they blocked the UN Security Council from adopting a statement calling for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.
The Republicans note the shakiness of this position on this issue. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said that "President Biden must remain strong against the growing voices within his own party that create a false equivalence between terrorist aggressors and a responsible state defending itself."
US Vice President Kamala Harris refrained from making statements about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, but her niece Meena Harris said: "You cannot stand up for racial equality, LGBT and women's rights, condemn corrupt and brutal regimes and other injustices, and at the same time to ignore the oppression of the Palestinians."
On October 18, US President Joe Biden, speaking at the Ford plant, in Michigan, personally addressed Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, of Palestinian descent, and wholeheartedly paid tribute to her passionate struggle, and promised to pray for her relatives in the West Bank.
It is widely known that Rashida Tlaib openly supports the refusal of the US in any support for Israel and accuses this country of war crimes against the Palestinians. Therefore, such a statement by Joe Biden speaks of a serious change in US policy towards Israel.
And experts have already noted this. In particular, the Telegram channel "Russian Demiurge" wrote already on May 10: "We disagree a little with our colleagues – it was possible to speak unequivocally about the pro-Israeli position of the US administration under Trump. Today, the Biden administration is in power in the US, and there are many questions here, starting with the almost ready-to-resume deal with Iran. Therefore, what is happening in Jerusalem these days should be considered as a provocation of part of the Israeli leadership in order to force the United States to support Israel."
Therefore, Netanyahu's risky provocation may dearly cost not only the Prime Minister himself, but also Israel.