Biden Attacked from Both Sides over Ceasefire Vote

( – Pro-Israel lawmakers from both the Democratic and the Republican parties have voiced their frustration with the White House following a U.S. abstention that allowed a UN resolution to be passed. The resolution, which is non-binding, calls for both the release of the hostages taken by Hamas and for a temporary ceasefire.

By stepping back from the UN Security Council vote, the Biden administration has angered Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, resulting in a strain on diplomatic relations between the two long-term allies. Following the vote on Monday, March 25th, Netanyahu canceled a senior delegation scheduled to visit Washington D.C. and claimed that the US refusing to veto the resolution would harm the war effort.

The White House denied that there had been any “shift in policy” towards Israel, although it would appear to represent a departure from the usual public show of firm support for Israel. Relations between the two countries had already worsened in recent weeks as Biden made clear his disapproval of any invasion of the Gazan city of Rafah, where many Gazans have sought safety during the war. Israel has emphasized its commitment to destroying the terrorist group and ruling body of Gaza, Hamas, which it says has a strong presence in Rafah.

Despite these conflicts between Israel and the U.S., Israel still enjoys support from many US lawmakers across the political divide. The day after the controversial UN vote, Rep. Anthony D’Esposito (R-NY) tabled a resolution that demanded all future resolutions relating to the war take place only with Israel’s approval and cooperation.

Several Democrats have also expressed their concern with Biden’s recent approach to Israel, with Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.) blasting the UN resolution for its failure to condemn Hamas, whose October 7th, 2023, rampage through Israel, including the taking of 250 hostages, triggered Israel’s military response. Two more Democratic representatives, Tom Suozzi (D-NY) and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) said they feared the resolution would only “embolden” Hamas, who still have more than 100 hostages under their control.

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