published : 2023-11-30
Democratic Senators Stress Need for US Assistance to Israel to Align with National Interests
White House meeting focuses on ongoing Israel-Hamas war and potential steps after cease-fire
More than a dozen Democratic senators visited the White House this week to discuss the Israel-Hamas war and its impact on Palestinian civilians in Gaza. The senators were joined by White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan for a meeting, where they condemned Hamas's brutal terror attacks and expressed support for funds to replenish Israel's defensive systems. However, the Democratic lawmakers emphasized that any assistance provided to Israel must align with U.S. interests, values, and international humanitarian law.
The senators released a statement detailing their discussions with the White House. They emphasized the need to find a better path toward helping Israel achieve legitimate military and security objectives. They also made it clear that U.S. assistance to Israel has never been a blank check, regardless of the recipient.
The ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas saw a temporary cease-fire extension, allowing the release of hostages and providing humanitarian relief to Palestinians in Gaza. However, the senators expressed concerns about a resumption of fighting, which could lead to high rates of civilian casualties and worsen the humanitarian crisis.
In a letter to President Biden, the Democratic senators raised key issues such as the return of hostages, reduction of civilian casualties, delivery of humanitarian aid, post-war governance, and addressing extremist violence in the West Bank. While appreciating the administration's leadership in negotiating the temporary ceasefire, they called for more measures to ensure the protection of innocent civilians.
The senators urged President Biden to publicly address his strategy and provide transparent responses to the American people. The current truce is set to expire on November 30.