Biden Administration Considers Pausing Weapon Deliveries to Israel as Diplomatic Leverage


The Biden administration is looking into a new way to use diplomacy to pressure Israel into selling more weapons while the fighting in the Gaza Strip continues. 

According to sources within the US government, discussions are underway to utilize these sales as a means to encourage Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government to scale back its military operations in Gaza, aligning with longstanding US calls for de-escalation.

At the behest of the White House, the Pentagon is conducting a review of Israel’s requested weaponry, identifying potential items that could serve as leverage in negotiations. While no definitive decisions have been reached, the possibility of withholding or delaying certain deliveries is being considered.

Israeli officials have persistently sought additional weaponry from the US, including large aerial bombs, ammunition, and air defense systems. 

However, the Biden administration, dissatisfied with the pace of change, is contemplating strategic pauses in deliveries to pressure Israel into taking actions such as opening humanitarian corridors for Palestinian civilians.

Biden’s Commitment to Diplomacy

The Biden administration is looking into a new way to use diplomacy to pressure Israel into selling more weapons while the fighting in the Gaza Strip continues.

Among the arsenal being discussed for potential leverage are 155 mm artillery rounds and joint direct attack munitions (JDAMs), alongside conversion kits aimed at enhancing the precision of Israeli munitions. Notably, defensive systems vital for protecting Israeli civilians and infrastructure are unlikely to be affected by any slowdown.

In a nuanced approach, the administration is also considering offering Israel increased access to requested weaponry as an incentive for adopting the US-recommended measures. This shift reflects President Biden’s commitment to move beyond mere rhetorical pressure, opting instead for tangible policy adjustments to influence Israeli actions.

Despite facing resistance from Netanyahu’s government, President Biden and his national security team remain steadfast in their pursuit of a more restrained approach in Gaza, prioritizing the mitigation of civilian casualties. This strategy marks a departure from previous administrations, signaling a willingness to exert diplomatic muscle in pursuit of peace.

The administration’s deliberations have garnered support from some Democrats in Congress, who have urged stronger measures to pressure Israel toward compliance. 

As the conflict continues to unfold, the Biden administration’s strategic recalibration underscores a commitment to proactive diplomacy and the pursuit of a sustainable resolution to the crisis in the Middle East.

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