October 12, 2023

Biden Urges Netanyahu to Minimize Civilian Casualties

The counterstrikes by Israel have been drawing some scrutiny because some of the strikes are hitting civilian targets.

This has created a bit of a dilemma for Joe Biden and the United States because of our unwavering support for Israel.

To that point, Biden reportedly told Netanyahu on Tuesday that he needs to minimize strikes in civilian areas to prevent unnecessary loss of life.

The Dilemma

Hamas is known to operate its headquarters in civilian areas. We have seen them occupy hospitals, schools, and even apartment buildings to shield themselves from attacks.

In a “normal” counterstrike, Israel would concentrate on military targets, but it does not have that luxury now that war has been declared.

By no means am I advocating for the killing of innocent civilians, which is tantamount to war crimes, but the fact of the matter is that these people know Hamas is operating in these locations and they should be leaving the area knowing full well that it will become a target.

Even so, Biden called Netanyahu to discuss the matter.

Biden made remarks after the call, stating, "Like every nation in the world, Israel has the right to respond — indeed, has a duty to respond — to these vicious attacks.”

Biden continued, "We also discussed how democracies like Israel and the United States are stronger and more secure when we act according to the rule of law. Terrorists purposefully target civilians, kill them. We uphold the laws of war — the law of war. It matters.”

Netanyahu has not wavered on the need to destroy Hamas, stating, "We’ve never seen such savagery in the history of the state. They’re even worse than ISIS.

"They’re even worse than ISIS, and we need to treat them as such."

The fact that Israel will be supplied with U.S. weapons made it even more of a conundrum for the United States in terms of what is being perceived as civilian targets.

I do not envy Netanyahu one bit, especially when it comes to taking out the tunnel system that Hamas uses, which is often routed beneath homes and civilian buildings.

With Palestinian sympathizers in our own Congress, this particular issue will surely be in the news and a topic in Congress throughout this conflict. Biden now bringing more attention to this issue will only increase the scrutiny.

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