Joe Biden talked to Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the fourth time this week telling him he “expects” de-escalation of the conflict with Hamas terrorists today. Netanyahu reportedly told Biden that he was “determined to carry on with this operation” until Israel’s military objectives are achieved.
“I especially appreciate the support of US President Joe Biden, for the right to self-defense for the State of Israel,” tweeted Netanyahu. “I am determined to continue this operation until its goal is achieved, to restore peace and security to you, the citizens of Israel.”
International pressure has been building in recent days for Israel to end its retaliatory strikes in response to Hamas rocket attacks. But the U.S. is standing firm at the UN, blocking efforts by the Security Council to take any action,
The question is how much longer Biden can maintain his pro-Israel stance when so many leftists in the United States are screaming for him to turn on an ally.
So far, Israeli forces have destroyed more than 60 miles of underground tunnels, struck 80 rocket launchers and killed at least 130 militants, a senior Israeli military officer said Wednesday. The officer gave an initial assessment on the condition of anonymity, according to military protocol.
He said Israel had a “factory of targets” that had been prepared for years in advance to be used when the “opportunity” arose. Israel has achieved many of its objectives, but there is “still work to do,” he added.
Netanyahu may believe that Israel will achieve many of its objectives very soon. Haaretz reported that a “senior Israeli political official” says that a cease-fire in Gaza is expected on Thursday.
In Jerusalem, it is estimated that the military operation in Gaza will end within a few days, because the IDF and Hamas have reached their respective goals.
Despite this evaluation, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made it clear on Tuesday that he currently has no intention of halting Israel’s current operation in Gaza.
“We will continue for as long as necessary in order to restore quiet to all citizens of Israel,” Netanyahu said during a tour of the Hatzerim Israeli Air Force Base, hinting that the operation in Gaza was also intended to intimidate Hezbollah with the threat of an Israeli attack: “I am certain that all of our enemies all around us see the price for aggression against us and that they too will learn the lesson.”
Netanyahu is very aware of Biden’s precarious political position so the prospect of a cease-fire in the next 24-48 hours is real. But the Israeli prime minister is also determined to degrade Hamas’ capabilities to harm Israeli citizens and that includes taking out as many Palestinian fighters as possible and destroying as much military equipment as the IDF is able.