The White House said Tuesday that it opposes Israel’s plan to attack Hamas terrorists in the southern portion of the Gaza Strip unless it can provide an “accounting” for all of the internally displaced Palestinian civilians in the war.
White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby spoke to reporters on Air Force One, and said: “We don’t support southern operations, unless or until the Israelis can show that they’ve accounted for all the internally displaced people of Gaza.”
Asked whether that meant the White House was abandoning support for Israel’s goal of eliminating Hamas, Kirby replied that Israel had the “right and responsibility to eliminate this terrorist threat.”
But he also said that there was an “added burden on Israel” to “account” for “the extra innocent life that is now in south Gaza” as a result of Israel Defense Forces (IDF) operations in the northern Gaza Strip.
Israel has not yet completed its operations in northern Gaza, though it has taken key parts of Gaza City. It says it will continue fighting until Hamas is no longer a military threat.
Kirby said that the White House hoped for further “pauses” in fighting, beyond the six days already agreed to (through mediation by Egypt and Qatar), during which Hamas released a few dozen hostages in return for over 150 Palestinian terror convicts.
The White House placed no burden whatsoever on Hamas, Palestinian leaders, or Arab countries in supporting Palestinian civilians.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.