President Joe Biden is considering a potential trip to Israel in the near future, although no definite plans have been made yet, according to a senior official from his administration. The news comes amidst U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s recent travels in the Middle East, where he has been working to prevent the ongoing conflict between Hamas and Israel from escalating into a larger regional war. President Biden has been steadfast in his support for Israel, and a visit to the country would serve as a strong signal of this support, especially following the Hamas attack on October 7th. The official, speaking anonymously to The Associated Press, explained that they were unable to publicly comment on internal discussions regarding the potential trip.
President Biden’s Stance on Gaza
In an interview with CBS’ 60 Minutes that aired on Sunday, President Biden issued a warning to Israel, urging them not to reoccupy Gaza. This statement marks his most forceful public effort to restrain Israeli actions following the attack, which resulted in the deaths of over 1,300 individuals, including at least 30 U.S. citizens.
The president stated, “I think it’d be a big mistake… What happened in Gaza, in my view, is Hamas, and the extreme elements of Hamas don’t represent all the Palestinian people. And I think that it would be a mistake for Israel to occupy Gaza again.” Despite his reservations about reoccupation, President Biden emphasized the importance of addressing the extremists within Hamas, stating that it is a necessary requirement.
While President Biden and his administration have refrained from openly criticizing Israel or its bombing campaign that has resulted in civilian casualties in Gaza, his stance on the situation is clear. He supports Israel’s right to defend itself against attacks but also encourages restraint and a focus on targeting extremist elements rather than occupying Gaza once again.