Biden Threatened to Withhold Weapons from Israel – Intercessors for America

Reading Time: 4 minutes

UPDATE: The House is scheduled to vote tomorrow on whether or not to compel Biden to send weapons to Israel. We pray that God would guide the voting process!

Has Biden abandoned Israel? Given Biden’s threat to withhold weapons from Israel if it does a full invasion of Rafah, many feel that this is the case.

From The Times of Israel. John Kirby, the National Security Council spokesman who has become the face of the Biden administration’s affection for Israel, had something to get off his chest: Joe Biden is not anti-Israel.

Who is praying on the wall?

“The arguments that somehow we’re walking away from Israel fly in the face of the facts,” Kirby said Thursday in a briefing call with reporters, his voice rising with passion.

Kirby was speaking a day after the president confirmed that he had suspended the delivery of some large bombs to Israel as it prepared to enter Rafah, the city on the Gaza-Egypt border believed to be the last redoubt of a major Hamas force. In an interview with CNN, the president also said he would not approve future transfers of offensive weapons to Israel should it invade Rafah.

“Civilians have been killed in Gaza as a consequence of those bombs and other ways in which [Israel] goes after population centers,” he said. “I made it clear that if they go into Rafah… I’m not supplying the weapons that have been used historically to deal with Rafah, to deal with the cities, to deal with that problem.” …

The comments indicated that the president now stands at risk of losing a pro-Israel reputation that he has, for decades, nurtured as a matter of personal pride and that he hoped to rely on in an election year; some appeared to hint that backing from Jewish donors and voters could dry up.

“Delaying arms transfers to Israel is dangerous,” the American Israel Public Affairs Committee said in an action alert to its members. “America must continue to stand firmly with our ally Israel as it works to defeat Hamas and defend its citizens.”

The message marked a shift in the pro-Israel lobby’s messaging since Hamas’s October 7 onslaught against southern Israel, which has repeatedly cited Biden’s pro-Israel record.

Abe Foxman, the retired national director of the Anti-Defamation League, who broke with decades of nonpartisanship in 2020 and campaigned for Biden, said Biden faced electoral peril, at least among Jewish voters, who have long favored Democrats.

“I hope that the response to what happened yesterday will send a message to him, that it’s not only Republicans that are criticizing you, but also Democrats,” Foxman said in an interview. …

The electoral warning was echoed by Haim Saban, an Israeli-American entertainment mogul and a major donor to Democrats, who appeared to hint that Jewish support for his campaign could dry up while accusing the president of playing for votes.

“Let’s not forget that there are more Jewish donors who care about Israel than Muslim voters who care about Hamas,” he said in an email to Biden that circulated widely on social media. “Bad…bad…bad… decision on all levels.” …

Biden’s decision “undermines our ally Israel, fails to put pressure on Hamas and emboldens terror while energizing Hezbollah and Iran, who specialize in toxic antisemitism and rabid anti-Zionism,” the ADL said. …

Biden throughout his career has made his attachment to Israel central to his political identity. He calls himself a Zionist. …

Nevertheless, criticism of Biden’s move also came from Israeli leaders.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose relationship with Biden has become more parlous in recent weeks, posted on X a speech of his from earlier in the week, in which he said that Israel will stand alone against Hamas if it must.

“I say to the leaders of the world — no amount of pressure, no decision from any international forum, will stop Israel from defending itself,” he said in the speech. …

Biden is caught in an electoral bind between a Democratic base that is increasingly turning against Israel and the anxieties of a Jewish community that has for decades reliably aligned itself with the party and remains mostly supportive of Israel.

“There’s just no question in my mind that it is hurting him with the larger pro-Israel community,”  said a senior pro-Israel Democrat, who asked not to be named in order to speak frankly. “And I see that in my inbox, I see it in people on Twitter who are talking about changing their positions. I’m still going to vote for him. A number of people aren’t.” …

The notion that Biden is embargoing Israel infuriated Kirby, who emphasized repeatedly that the suspension was confined to a limited class of weapons and that American arms otherwise continue to flow to Israel.

Biden “also said yesterday that he will continue to ensure that Israel has all the military gains it needs to defend itself against all of its enemies, including Hamas,” he said. “He’s going to continue to provide Israel with the capabilities it needs.”

Still, no president has withheld weapons from Israel as a means of pressure for more than 40 years. …

Share your prayers for Israel and its relationship with America below.

(Excerpt from The Times of Israel. Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America – Joe Biden, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia Commons)

Previous ArticleNext Article