Just over a week and a half after Hamas terrorists brutally attacked Israel, Joe Biden is heading to the Jewish state.
In Tel Aviv as a part of his shuttle diplomacy in the region, Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced the President’s Wednesday visit late tonight. “He’s coming here at a critical moment for Israel, and for the region and for the world,” Blinken said, as the news shot around the world online.
The presidential trip comes as the new national government in Israel has told citizens to leave the territory.
In the countdown to that evacuation, hundreds of thousands of Israeli troops are massing on the border with Gaza for a ground invasion widely expected in the next few days.
In fact, many assumed the invasion could start tomorrow – which will obviously not now be the case.
“Israel is going after a group of people who have engaged in barbarism that is as consequential as the Holocaust,” Biden told CBS’ 60 Minutes on Sunday when rumors of a possible visit to Israel started circulating. “So, I think Israel has to respond. They have to go after Hamas. Hamas is a bunch of cowards. They’re hiding behind the civilians.”
After repeatedly affirming over the past week his and the United States support for Israel after the October 7 attack that has seen over 1300 dead, including nearly 30 Americans, and dozens taken hostage, Biden will meet face-to-face with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu his trip.
Around 2,300 Palestinians have been killed over the last week and a half after Israeli jets targeted Hamas offices and more in Gaza.
Netanyahu invited an interested Biden when the two spoke on October 14, the White House said over the weekend
After being in Israel, President Biden will travel to Jordan to meet with King Abdullah, Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
Soon after Sec. Blinken confirmed Biden’s trip, and the White House released a statement of its own: “President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. will travel to Israel on Wednesday, October 18, to demonstrate his steadfast support for Israel in the face of Hamas’s brutal terrorist attack and to consult on next steps. President Biden will then travel to Amman, Jordan, where he will meet with His Majesty King Abdullah, Egyptian President Sisi, and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
“He will reiterate that Hamas does not stand for the Palestinian people’s right to dignity and self-determination and discuss the humanitarian needs of civilians in Gaza.”
Secretary Blinken said Monday that in that visit, Biden will “reaffirm the United States solidarity with Israel and our ironclad commitment to its security.”
In terms of security, there is a multi-billion dollar aid package to Israel anticipated, arms already transported to the nation, and American aircraft carriers and other naval forces off the coast in the Mediterranean Sea.
In addition, a 2,000-strong US Marines rapid response force is moving into position. Biden has warned potential bad actors like Iran and Syria, and indirectly Russia not to get involved in the conflict and certainly not to enlarge it. “Don’t,” the president has declared in a number of speeches, interviews and remarks since October 7.
That word is being backed up by munitions and personnel.
“The full force of US deference is on display here,” said Fox News’ John Roberts live today of the American military presence in the region as the announcement of Biden’s trip was made public. “With the idea that this could turn into a tinderbox very quickly if this ground operation gets underway.”
Along with Fox, CNN and MSNBC cut in with breaking news segments on the Biden visit.
With the invite to Israel by Netanyah on Saturday, the Beltway rumor mill went into overdrive on Monday about Biden heading to the Jewish state after a long-planned trip to Colorado was suddenly postponed this morning by the White House.