Throughout the Israeli bombardment of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the US has taken a staunchly pro-Israel stance and provided extensive military and diplomatic support. Washington has authorised the sale to Israel of cutting-edge F-35 fighter jets, considered the most advanced in the world, and they have been used in air strikes on Gaza.
At the time of writing, 13,300 Palestinians have been killed, including 5,600 children and 3,550 women. More than 275,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed, and Israel has targeted hospitals, places of worship and other civilian infrastructure. According to the Nation, Israel “still relies heavily on US-supplied arms and technology, including hundreds of M-113A armoured personnel carriers, roughly 350 artillery pieces, large numbers of transport planes and helicopters, and the Israeli air force’s entire inventory of combat aircraft, including older generation F-15s and F-16s and two squadrons of current generation F-35s.”
Intelligence is a crucial aspect of modern warfare, and the US has been providing Israel with real-time data from its vast network of drones and satellites. This intelligence has been invaluable for identifying targets and coordinating attacks, raising questions about the extent of US involvement in the whole process.
John Kirby, a spokesman for the US National Security Council, said that intelligence from US-generated sources supported Israel’s claim that Hamas has tunnels under Al-Shifa and other hospitals. This makes the US complicit in Israel’s breach of international humanitarian law, and the death and suffering of the patients, doctors and internally displaced persons who took refuge in Al-Shifa.
Beyond the provision of hardware and intelligence, the US has reportedly been offering Israel tactical advice on how to conduct its offensive in Gaza. This includes recommendations on deployment strategies, target selection and weapon utilisation.
“The advisers include Lt. Gen. James Glynn, a [US] Marine three-star general who was involved in operations during the US fight against the Islamic State in Iraq,” reported the Times of Israel. “The senior US military officers are advising Israel on its seemingly imminent ground invasion, revealing the extent of US involvement in the IDF’s military preparations”. This all suggests a deeper level of involvement than the US government has acknowledged officially.
To protect Israel’s back during its Gaza operations, the US deployed two aircraft carrier strike groups and a nuclear submarine carrying tomahawk missiles in the eastern Mediterranean. This intimidating display of military might sends a clear message to any potential adversaries, effectively shielding Israel.
The US has long been Israel’s primary financial benefactor, providing billions of dollars in aid every year. This funding, much of which is military assistance, has enabled Israel to maintain its powerful arsenal and sustain its military campaigns. The Biden administration is said to have pledged another $14.5 billion to finance Israel’s war on Gaza.
Moreover, Washington has been involved in shaping the narrative surrounding the conflict, often siding with Israel’s version of events and downplaying the occupation and the context of the whole issue. This has backfired on President Joe Biden and his administration, as well as the mainstream media, when Israeli propaganda has been exposed as lies, including allegations that Hamas fighters beheaded babies and raped women on 7 October. The narrative has been debunked even further by reports in the Israeli media that the Israel’s own helicopters and tanks fired on the Israelis said to have been killed by the resistance movement. Selective reporting of the situation has helped to deflect international criticism and maintain public support for Israel’s actions. Despite mounting evidence of human rights violations and war crimes committed by Israel, the US has been staunch in its defence of the apartheid state. This refusal to hold Israel accountable has emboldened it and perpetuated the cycle of violence.
Israel commits genocide in Palestine while Washington deluges the world with slippery rhetoric about the two-state solution
At the UN, the US has used its veto in the Security Council to protect Israel and block resolutions aimed at ending the violence in Gaza. The result is that there has been no meaningful international action to end the bloodshed, and Israel has been allowed to continue to act with impunity. According to Biden, a ceasefire would only help Hamas. Israel commits genocide in Palestine while Washington deluges the world with slippery rhetoric about the (moribund) two-state solution.
Meanwhile, Israeli leaders have basically made it clear that they want to ethnically cleanse the Palestinian people by pushing them into the Sinai desert in Egypt. Their disgraceful rhetoric is backed up by Washington putting pressure on Cairo to block the flow of humanitarian aid through the Rafah crossing. This has made the suffering of civilians in Gaza even worse.
All of this has been done by the country which claims to carry the beacon of human rights and democracy to the rest of the world. It’s the kind of democracy that keeps quiet while Israel destroys the Palestinian Legislative Council building in Gaza and kills the acting Speaker, Dr Ahmed Bahr, and his family.
None of this should surprise us, though. To expect anything else from the US would belie the decades of the region’s experience of biased, pro-Israel US foreign policy. Hearing Biden and his Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying that they sympathise with Palestinian children makes me shiver with disgust. How can any human being stoop so low and be so hypocritical? Biden and Blinken can keep their sympathy. It means nothing at all.
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.