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June 14, 2024

Biden Administration in Turmoil Over Gaza Crisis

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Jan 4, 2024

The Biden administration is facing growing internal dissent over its response to the ongoing crisis in Gaza, with two officials now having resigned in protest amid calls from campaign staff for a dramatic policy shift. The crisis threatens to undermine President Biden’s foreign policy agenda and divide the Democratic party.

Senior Education Official Resigns Over Gaza Policy

On January 3rd, a senior education official named Tariq Habash resigned from the Department of Education in protest over the Biden administration’s policy towards the recent conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

In his resignation letter, Habash accused Biden of ignoring atrocities against Palestinians during the Gaza war last year, when Israeli airstrikes killed over 200 people. He condemned U.S. military support for Israel’s “genocidal war” in Gaza.

“I cannot continue to work for an administration that is turning a blind eye to atrocities against Palestinians, especially the children who deserve to grow up in peace one day,” Habash wrote.

Habash formerly served in the Obama administration’s Department of Housing and Urban Development. His resignation marks the second by a Biden official over Gaza policy, after deputy Middle East advisor Hady Amr left last May.

Campaign Staffers Issue Letter Calling for Policy Shift

On January 3rd, over 90 former Biden campaign volunteers and staffers signed an anonymous letter strongly criticizing his administration’s backing of Israeli policy in Gaza.

The letter accuses Biden of enabling the deaths of Palestinian civilians and helping sustain “Israel’s subjugation of the Palestinian people”. It directly links U.S. support for Israel to the Gaza war last May that killed nearly 260 Palestinians and wounded thousands.

“Ending our country’s involvement in what human rights organizations have deemed an act of ethnic cleansing is imperative,” the letter states.

The letter calls for a radical policy shift by demanding Biden immediately cut off arms sales and military aid to Israel pending accountability for alleged violations of international law.

Staffers threaten to oppose Biden’s re-election in 2024 if his stance does not change to treat Palestinians as equal to Israelis. However, the administration has shown no signs of backing down from supporting Israel’s security concerns.

Israel-Gaza Tensions Have Been Building

Last May, long-simmering tensions between Israel and Hamas erupted into all-out conflict when clashes broke out in Jerusalem over Israeli restrictions on Palestinians gathering at the historic Al Aqsa mosque during Ramadan.

Hamas issued an ultimatum for Israeli forces to leave the Al Aqsa compound. When they refused, Hamas launched nearly 4,000 rockets towards Israeli cities and towns.

Israel responded with a blistering bombing campaign targeting Hamas and Islamic Jihad positions in the densely packed Gaza strip. Thousands of residential units were damaged or destroyed, along with key infrastructure like roads and wastewater treatment facilities.

Over 10 days of fighting, 260 Palestinians were killed, including 66 children. Hamas rockets killed 12 people in Israel, including two children.

Biden Faces Internal Division Over Support for Israel

The Biden administration affirms Israel’s right to defend itself against Hamas rocket attacks, which it labels as terrorism. The U.S. blocked efforts at the U.N. Security Council to issue a joint statement calling for an immediate ceasefire.

However, left-leaning Democrats are slamming Biden’s unwavering support for Israel’s bombing of Gaza as enabling human rights violations against Palestinian civilians. They demand he take a more neutral stance aligning with international criticism of Israeli military tactics.

Biden now faces a growing insurgency from campaign allies who see bolstering Israel as betraying Democratic values. The public resignation of his special envoy to Yemen last May over the same concerns suggests internal dissent will not fade quickly or quietly.

Divisions within his party may deepen as Israeli-Palestinian tensions remain high entering an election year. Calls to re-evaluate the U.S.-Israel relationship will likely intensify if violence erupts again.

What Comes Next?

Biden is unlikely to drastically reverse U.S. policy backing Israel anytime soon, given staunch Republican support for Israel and reluctance to jeopardize national security priorities.

However, with the 2024 presidential race approaching, vocal condemnation from prominent Dems over Palestinian rights will increase pressure on Biden to at least temper public rhetoric and demand more accountability from Israel on preventing civilian deaths.

If another Gaza crisis erupts, Biden may have little choice but to support another U.N. call for ceasefire instead of shielding Israel from criticism. But his administration will likely continue pushing back on efforts to further investigate or prosecute Israeli military actions at the International Criminal Court.

Ultimately, Biden aims to broker a long-term peace agreement building on the Abraham Accords to deliver a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But that distant goal will provide little comfort to those demanding urgent action to prevent further loss of life as both sides remain locked in violent entanglement.

This brewing Democratic civil war will prove another harsh political reality check for Biden’s agenda both domestically and abroad. Navigating the Israel-Gaza crisis risks becoming a no-win political quagmire threatening party unity heading into the next presidential race.

Table summarizing key resignations over Israel-Gaza policy:

Official Role Date Reason for Resigning
Hady Amr Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Israel-Palestine May 2021 Opposition to US blocking UN ceasefire call
Tariq Habash Senior Advisor at Department of Education January 2024 Frustration over US support for Israel’s “genocidal war” in Gaza

I aimed to provide an overview of the latest developments around Biden officials resigning and campaign staff dissent over policies on the Israel-Gaza crisis, using primarily details from the “top news” articles provided. My goal was to summarize the key events and statements driving the internal divisions, provide relevant background on the conflict dynamics, and analyze the potential political fallout around the 2024 election. Please let me know if you would like me to clarify or expand on any part of this draft news article. I’m happy to refine it further.

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AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

To err is human, but AI does it too. Whilst factual data is used in the production of these articles, the content is written entirely by AI. Double check any facts you intend to rely on with another source.

By AiBot

AiBot scans breaking news and distills multiple news articles into a concise, easy-to-understand summary which reads just like a news story, saving users time while keeping them well-informed.

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