Why is Biden Escalating the Gaza War?

By striking Yemen, President Biden has chosen to escalate conflict in the Middle East. As chances of a broader regional war increase by the day, there is a clear way to de-escalate: a ceasefire in Gaza. It is incumbent on the U.S. to use its leverage to bring about this end.

Watch this excellent video from QI Senior Video Producer Khody Akhavi and Senior Advisor Eli Clifton.

Script Below:

Israel’s war is expanding beyond Gaza’s borders. U.S. President Joe Biden has chosen to escalate the conflict and bomb Yemen in response to Houthi fighters’ Red Sea attacks.

Meanwhile, Israel is inching towards an all out war with Hezbollah in Lebanon, and U.S. troops continue to face near daily attacks in Syria and Iraq. Biden should be honest with Americans: the longer Israel’s siege of Gaza persists, the greater the chances of a regional conflagration that will put American lives in danger.

These incidents, increasing in frequency by the day, are the direct result of Israel’s campaign in Gaza – a brutal war that is turning global public opinion against Israel and the U.S. On the other hand, when a temporary ceasefire was implemented during six days in November, attacks on US forces in Syria and Iraq stopped. 

So why isn’t Biden considering a ceasefire? U.S. officials continue to express humanitarian concern, but their statements belie the administration’s policy. Biden’s deference to the Israeli war cabinet’s decisions stands to propel the US into a war that once again demands American lives and resources. The President continues to resist taking the one step that could prevent this outcome.

Let’s face it: We are facilitating the assault on Gaza by supplying Israel with the weapons to wage what is now considered among the deadliest wars for civilians in recent history. It’s absurd to suggest that the US lacks the leverage to constrain Israel given that Israel is the largest recipient of U.S military aid. That money alone should buy some influence over Israeli war policies, would that the US president choose to exert it.

Instead, the Biden administration has sent a constant flow of weapons to Israel, sidestepped congressional oversight to expedite arms transfers, and continued to veto UN resolutions aimed at stopping the war. Biden’s actions or, in this case, inactions have made it clear that stopping the bombardment of Gaza’s civilian population is not a priority.

But what about protecting vital US national security interests or protecting Americans from harm? For a President who pledged to extricate the U.S. from needless Middle East wars, isn’t that justification enough to act? It’s time to ask, not how the U.S. can Israel’s war further, but what actual steps the U.S. should take to end it. 

The most obvious way to reduce attacks on US troops and halt the risk of regional war is clear. If preventing a broader war is Biden’s priority – and it certainly should be – then the most effective way of protecting the U.S. from such a war is a ceasefire in Gaza.