For the first time, US-Israel alliance cracks 

 US-Israel alliance cracks 

US-Israel alliance cracks 

The longstanding alliance between the United States and Israel has experienced a significant crack as President Joe Biden made the unprecedented decision to withhold arms shipments to Israel. This move comes amidst mounting pressure to prevent further civilian casualties and address the worsening humanitarian crisis in Gaza. The decision marks the first time in four decades that the US-Israel alliance has faced such a fracture.

President Biden has found himself caught in a political divide between the pro-Israel Republican party and his own divided Democratic Party. Until now, he has been reluctant to take any action that could potentially damage the US-Israel relationship. However, his view changed when he believed that Israel was on the verge of invading Rafah, a move that could undermine efforts to de-escalate the conflict and free hostages held by Hamas.

The Arms Shipment Pause

In the lead-up to President Biden's TV interview, the US temporarily paused an arms shipment to Israel, including 2,000-pound and 500-pound bombs. Concerns were raised about the potential impact of these high payload weapons in densely populated urban areas, considering the dire humanitarian conditions already present in Gaza. The pause also allowed for a review of shipments of Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM) kits, which convert unguided bombs into guided ones.

Political Fallout

While the paused shipment may have limited impact on an assault on Rafah, it has not dampened the political fallout from President Biden's decision. Republicans in the US Senate have expressed outrage, viewing the move as a betrayal of Israel and a sign of weakness on the part of the president. However, within President Biden's own Democratic Party, there has been a warmer reception for the shift, with some senators calling for restrictions on military assistance to Israel if civilian treatment and protection are not improved.

Ceasefire Negotiations and Hostage Release

The timing of the crack in the US-Israel alliance is critical, as it coincides with attempts to reach a ceasefire and secure the release of hostages held by Hamas. Talks in Cairo have not yielded a resolution, and some Israeli commentators suggest that President Biden's move could compromise the negotiations. The main stumbling block remains Hamas' demand for a permanent end to the war, which Israel rejects.

The crack in the US-Israel alliance, resulting from President Biden's decision to withhold arms shipments, marks a significant shift in the relationship between the two countries. While the move has received criticism from Republicans, it has been met with a more positive response within President Biden's own party. The impact on ceasefire negotiations and the release of hostages remains uncertain, but the decision reflects President Biden's concerns about civilian casualties and the humanitarian crisis in Gaza. The future of the US-Israel alliance hangs in the balance as both countries navigate this new dynamic.


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