Thursday, 25 April 2024

Biden Uses Aid Tragedy to Blame Israel for Civilian Deaths; Hamas Off the Hook


Biden Uses Aid Tragedy to Blame Israel for Civilian Deaths; Hamas Off the Hook
President Joe Biden pauses as he speaks about the bombings at the Kabul airport that killeAP Photo/Evan Vucci

President Joe Biden issued a statement late Tuesday in response to the accidental killing of seven aid workers in Gaza by an Israel airstrike, blaming Israel for aid distribution problems and claiming Israel is not doing enough to protect civilians.

Biden’s statement barely mentioned Hamas — neither its tactic of using civilians as human shields, nor its practice of stealing humanitarian aid. (The tragic airstrike was targeting an armed Hamas member who was not present.)

In his statement, Biden said (emphasis added):

I am outraged and heartbroken by the deaths of seven humanitarian workers from World Central Kitchen, including one American, in Gaza yesterday. They were providing food to hungry civilians in the middle of a war. They were brave and selfless. Their deaths are a tragedy.

Israel has pledged to conduct a thorough investigation into why the aid workers’ vehicles were hit by airstrikes. That investigation must be swift, it must bring accountability, and its findings must be made public.

Even more tragically, this is not a stand-alone incident. This conflict has been one of the worst in recent memory in terms of how many aid workers have been killed. This is a major reason why distributing humanitarian aid in Gaza has been so difficult – because Israel has not done enough to protect aid workers trying to deliver desperately needed help to civilians. Incidents like yesterday’s simply should not happen. Israel has also not done enough to protect civilians. The United States has repeatedly urged Israel to deconflict their military operations against Hamas with humanitarian operations, in order to avoid civilian casualties.

In 2021, the U.S. military killed ten civilians in Kabul, Afghanistan, in a drone attack. The Biden administration claimed that the strike had been “righteous,” but later admitted that it had made a terrible mistake.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken could not tell Congress at the time whether the person who had been killed — along with seven children — had been a civilian aid worker or a terrorist.

The Chief of Staff of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi, apologized publicly in a video statement, saying that the airstrike, which hit a World Central Kitchen (WCK) convoy, had been a case of mistaken identity.

“I want to be very clear—the strike was not carried out with the intention of harming WCK aid workers. It was a mistake that followed a misidentification–at night during a war in very complex conditions. It shouldn’t have happened.”

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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