In a press briefing on Monday, State Department spokesman Ned Price was asked about A. Tweet by Representative Ilhan Omar, A Minnesota Democrat, who said that the Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem, in his defense of the proposed evictions, supported “ethnic cleansing.” Mr. Price said the claim “is not something that our analysis supports”.
Some analysts said that even if Mr. Biden shared the assessment that more pressure on the government of Israel would be effective, he might be wary of exacerbating tensions with Israeli leaders concerned about his top priority in the Middle East: An effort to restore the 2015 nuclear deal with IranThis has long been opposed by Netanyahu and other senior Israeli officials.
Mr. Biden also took office at a time of massive political change, as Israel has been in the midst of several failed efforts to form a permanent government and the Palestinians head towards elections – ever since. Delayed, Another source of current turmoil – which has complicated efforts to devise clear American policy. Mr. Netanyahu Struggling to cling to powerUS officials say Mr. Abbas’s influence on Palestinian protests and violence, which is being driven by activists and social media, is close to zero.
Mr. Biden also has memories from his days as Vice President of Mr. Obama’s call for an Israeli settlement freeze and territorial concessions, which had little impact on long-term politics but was met with a political backlash from Republicans and some Democrats who said Mr. Obama failed to understand Israel’s security needs.
Republicans continue to exploit tensions in the Democratic Party over Israeli policy. On Tuesday, Mr. Trump issued a statement accusing Mr. Biden of “not supporting Israel leading to new attacks on our allies.” But it was not clear what support Mr. Trump felt the United States was not providing, given that his statement of support for “Israel’s right to defend itself” was consistent with the Biden administration’s talking points.
Many Democrats, including Biden officials who spoke privately, say Mr. Trump is a major cause of the current troubles. Haley Swiffer, CEO of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, said that Mr. Trump, who has strongly supported Mr. Netanyahu’s pro-settlement policies and defied warnings of Palestinian unrest in Transfer of the US embassy to Jerusalem From Tel Aviv, “he was ready to intervene in Israeli domestic politics and elections to pursue his political agenda, regardless of their impact on the region or the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
Mrs. Swiffer said that Mr. Biden deserves to be commended for having supported, during the Obama administration, what is called Israel Iron Dome systemWhich was defending the Israeli cities from incoming fire.