Joe Biden


This post raises the question of whether President Biden’s quest for re-election in 2024 will be negatively affected by his pledge to continue America’s support for Israel and its war on Gaza.

President Biden has put his 2024 re-election at risk by supporting Israel’s genocidal war against Gaza.

Early in this war, Biden unequivocally supported Israel’s military response to the Hamas attack on southern Israel. In just over a week after Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, Biden met with Netanyahu to express his and America’s unequivocal and unconditional support for Israel


Biden did this without anticipating the devastation and harm Israel was about to afflict on Gaza and the 2.2 or 2.3 million Palestinian people living there. He did it without knowing how widespread and outraged the opposition to Israel’s military attacks and to the intensification of the blockade would be. The bombardment and invasion have led to ever-increasing human death, suffering, and destruction. And, having belatedly realized all this, Biden has continued to support Netanyahu’s policies, while trying to figure out a way to stop the bloodbath without undermining U.S.-Israeli relations.

Blocking a cease fire proposal at the U.N.

At various times Biden and Anthony Blinken, the U.S. Secretary of State, have successfully influenced Netanyahu to support a number of short “pauses” in the war, accompanied by the exchange of “hostages” for Palestinian prisoners. The pauses also allowed trucks carrying food, sanitation, and medical supplies to enter, but never nearly enough to satisfy the growing needs. At the same time, the U.S. has gone along with Israel’s opposition to a cease fire and has supported Israel at the U.N. on this issue.

Prem Thakker reports on the U.S. role in blocking support for a cease fire at the U.N. Security Council ( Here’s some of what he writes.

“Amid all of this suffering, President Joe Biden delayed a United Nations vote for humanitarian aid to Gaza  eight times, watering it down until he felt satisfied enough to not veto it.

“The vote is on a U.N. Security Council proposal, put forward by the United Arab Emirates and repeatedly whittled down just for Biden, that calls for limiting the hostilities in Gaza and expanding aid distribution. Officials reportedly crafted the resolution in such a way that it would be ‘tolerable’ enough for the Biden administration to avoid a veto. The U.S. has long been Israel’s guarantor at the Security Council, using its veto as a permanent member of the council to block almost every measure critical of Israel.

“For Biden, the preemptive concessions were not enough, and he continued to delay the UAE resolution. The main sticking points for Biden were the resolution’s use of the word ‘cessation’ in a call to end fighting and on allowing an independent inspection of aid going into Gaza, rather than the Israel-administered checks that have slowed aid shipments to a crawl.

“As negotiations edged into Thursday evening, the vote was kicked once again, to Friday [Dec 22] — but not without reward for Biden. He was able to force out language that does not establish a mechanism for U.N. inspection of aid, nor call for the ‘suspension of hostilities.’

“On Friday, the fateful vote was finally held — after the U.S. first vetoed a Russian amendment to restore the resolution’s originally stronger language for a ‘suspension.’ Indeed, the 15 member nations [in the Security Council] instead voted on a resolution calling for ‘the conditions for a sustainable cessation of hostilities.’ The resolution passed, 13-0-2. Russia abstained out of frustration. The United States abstained, even after getting what it wanted.”

The Israeli claim of precision bombing is unpersuasive

 Israeli officials says that the massive and increasing bombing of Gaza is precise and aimed at non-civilian targets. They also claim that the 1.1 million Gazan residents in the northern parts of Gaza have been notified to move south, away from the Gaza/Israel border and ostensibly away from Israeli bombing. However, the Israeli bombing is occurring everywhere in Gaza,

The idea of precise bombing to avoid Palestinian deaths and injuries, and the destruction of residences and building of all kinds, including schools, hospitals, residences, and other structures, is hard to believe, given the dense population of the tiny Gazan strip and the extensive and increasing destruction and death that comes with the bombing.

The effects of Israel’s war in Gaza.

Thakker writes,

“An estimated 570,000 people in the Gaza strip are now starving. Three-quarters of the territory’s 36 hospitals are closed. The remaining nine, all in southern Gaza, are ‘partially functional.’ The shuttered hospitals in the north are serving as impromptu shelters for some of the 85 percent of Palestinians in Gaza who have been displaced, but did not trek south to escape the ravages of Israel’s ground invasion. Beyond an estimated death toll of 20,000 according to the Gaza Ministry of Health, a devastating 355,000 are suffering from infectious diseases as conditions in the territory worsen.” These numbers continue rising.

U.S. influence on Netanyahu is limited

Phillis Bennie points out, “The Biden administration’s increasingly public requests for Israel to pay more attention to civilian safety have so far failed — and will continue to fail so long as Israel understands there will be no consequences for saying no” (

Those “requests” must be turned into requirements, linked to direct changes in actual U.S. policy — such as conditioning all aid to Israel on ending its violations of the Geneva Conventions and other parts of international humanitarian law, and ending the longstanding U.S. protection of Israeli officials from accountability in the International Criminal Court. Otherwise polite requests will continue to fail.

Israel withdraws some troops from Gaza

Aaron Boxerman, Isabel Kershner and Eric Schmitt report on small, and temporary, withdrawal and what it may mean

“The Israeli military said on Monday that it would begin withdrawing several thousand troops from the Gaza Strip at least temporarily, in what was the most significant publicly announced reduction since the war with Hamas began.

“The military cited a growing toll on the Israeli economy after nearly three months of wartime mobilization with little end in sight to the fighting. Israel had been considering scaling back its operations, and the United States has been prodding it to do so more quickly as the death toll and privation in Gaza rose.”

“Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, the Israeli military spokesman, emphasized that the move to demobilize some soldiers did not suggest any compromise of Israel’s intention to continue fighting until it destroys Hamas, and the fighting across Gaza remained intense. Admiral Hagari, who had said he expected “warfare throughout this year,” indicated that some troops would be called back to service in 2024.

“He did not mention the American requests to scale back, and Israeli officials have not declared any shift toward a more limited, targeted phase of the war in Gaza, though they have said such a transition would come.

“But military analysts and U.S. officials say the troop withdrawal probably signals that such a change has begun, though they caution that the war is nowhere near over.

“Reservists from at least two brigades will be sent home this week, the Israeli military said in a statement, and three brigades will be taken back for “scheduled” training. Brigades vary in size, up to roughly 4,000 troops, and the Israeli military does not disclose how many troops it has deployed in Gaza, so it was unclear how many would remain.”

U.S. supports Israel and its war with money and weapons

The U.S. government continues to supply Israel with money and weapons for its war machine. This makes the U.S., and American taxpayers, complicit in the death and destruction.

Nader criticizes the Biden administration’s request for $14 billion in additional aid for Israel in an article published on Nov. 23, 2023 ( It was part of a larger package that Congress has yet to approve, including $106 billion supplemental funding request from October that includes $61.4 billion for Ukraine and $14.3 billion for Israel—which already receives $3.8 billion in U.S. military aid annually and is now getting some weapons for its war effort without congressional oversight.

However, the Republicans in the House of representatives have yet to allow a vote on the issue. The Biden administration still wants to give the money to Israel. Nader points out that there are other domestic needs on which this 14.3 billion could be better used.

“That sum of money…is greater than the combined annual budgets of the FDA, OSHA, NHTSA and the section of HHS, whose missions are to reduce the loss of hundreds of thousands of preventable American fatalities in the workplace, on the highways, and in the marketplace and the hospitals. (See, the 2016 peer-reviewed study from the John Hopkins University of Medicine).

“Lastly,” Nader writes, “still not calling for a ceasefire, Biden is disregarding his own military’s private advice against an Israeli ground invasion of Gaza as raising the risk of a larger war in the Middle East that would clearly be against the national interests of the American people and U.S. security.

“He could have done what President Eisenhower did in 1956, when he demanded that the Israeli, British and French attack on Egypt stop immediately.

And stop, they did!”

“Moreover, Biden seems unwilling to recognize the historical origins of this conflict that now has mighty Israel occupying, colonizing, brutalizing and stealing land and water from the twenty-two percent of the original Palestine left for millions of Palestinians under Israeli daily control.”

As Nader points out, Biden pays no meaningful attention to the historical context of Israel’s blockade of Gaza, Israel’s five previous wars, or, little significant influence on the continuing onslaught of Palestinians in the current war.

 Netanyahu and his extreme right-wing government have said the war will continue until the hostages are returned and Hamas is destroyed. However, Netanyahu has also said at various times that he would like the Gaza strip cleansed of Palestinians, that Palestinians living in Gaza would be limited to the southern parts of this land, or that there would not be a permanent occupation, but, confusingly that Israel would determine how Gaza would be governed and secured. He has not made it clear what Israel’s objectives are, but has said it will be a long war. Although Biden keeps referring to a two-state solution, Netanyahu ignores or rejects this possibility.

Biden approves the sale of weapons to Israel

John Hudson and Mikail Klimentov report that on the sale of weapons


“Secretary of State Antony Blinken approved the sale of 155 mm artillery shells and related equipment to Israel by invoking an emergency authority that bypasses the standard congressional review for arms sales, the Biden administration said on Friday.

“A State Department spokesman said that ‘given the urgency of Israel’s defensive needs, the secretary notified Congress that he had exercised his delegated authority to determine an emergency existed necessitating the immediate approval of the transfer.’

“The $147.5 million sale comes as Israel steps up its intense bombing campaign in the Gaza Strip, and as the Biden administration’s rhetoric surrounding the conflict emphasizes the importance of Israel minimizing casualties and scaling back its offensive.”

Death, destruction, and misery increase

Unsurprisingly, the number of reported Palestinian deaths goes up day after day, along with the devastation of medical facilities, schools, whole communities, UN facilities, housing, and more. No place is safe for Palestinians. Hamas also has launched hundreds or thousands of missiles toward Israel, but most have been destroyed by Israeli “iron dome” defenses. As it stands, the blockade, siege, the severe limiting of humanitarian aid, the Israeli efforts at ethnic cleansing of at least northern and central Gaza – perhaps all of the strip -  all contribute to a rising human catastrophe of enormous and tragic proportions.

The most devastating in history

Brett Wilkins cites experts who maintain that “Israeli Bombing of Gaza Ranks Among 'Most Devastating' in History” ( The article was published on Dec. 23, 2023. The numbers have continue to rise since then. Wilkins writes: “Gaza health officials said Friday [Dec. 22] that 390 Palestinians were killed and 734 others wounded in the besieged strip over the previous 48 hours, driving the death toll from 77 days of near-relentless Israeli attacks to 20,057, with another 53,320 people injured. More than 6,000 women and over 8,000 children have been killed—approximately 70% of all fatalities.

“That's more than twice the number of civilians—and over 14 times as many children—as Russian forces have killed in Ukraine since February 2022.

“Thousands more Palestinians are missing and feared buried beneath the rubble of the hundreds of thousands of buildings destroyed or damaged by Israeli bombardment.

“‘The scale of Palestinian civilian deaths in such a short period of time appears to be the highest such civilian casualty rate in the 21st century,’ Michael Lynk, who served as the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories from 2016 to 2022, told The Washington Post on Saturday.”

And it’s hardly over. The death, destruction, and carnage continue to rise.

Israel uses one of the most destructive bombs in Gaza

Robin Stein and colleagues report on Israel’s use of one of the most destructive bombs in human history – manufactured in and exported from the U.S. (

“A Times investigation used aerial imagery and artificial intelligence to detect bomb craters that showed that one of Israel’s biggest bombs was used routinely in south Gaza.

This is an area in Gaza where, for weeks, civilians fled to find safety. These are 2,000-pound bombs, one of the most destructive munitions in Western military arsenals. When a 2,000-pound bomb detonates, it unleashes a blast wave and metal fragments thousands of feet in every direction.”

“Munitions experts say 2,000-pound bombs are almost never used by the U.S. military anymore in densely populated areas. Israel says it must destroy Hamas above and below ground to prevent terrorist attacks like Oct. 7… and claims it’s taking extraordinary measures to protect civilians. But a Times investigation using aerial imagery and artificial intelligence found visual evidence suggesting Israel used these munitions in the area it designated safe for civilians at least 200 times.

“Our analysis indicates 2,000-pound bombs were dropped on a routine basis in south Gaza during the first six weeks of the war. And it suggests that even for those who followed every Israeli evacuation order and advisory, there was still no safety to be found in a war zone that’s more dangerous for civilians than any in recent history. Amplifying the danger are many factors. Hamas intentionally uses dense civilian areas to position military personnel and weapons. Buried underground are vast tunnel networks used by Hamas fighters, but no bomb shelters for civilians. When the war started, Israel completely sealed off Gaza’s borders and claimed it was going to keep civilians out of the crossfire by establishing a safe zone and issuing evacuation orders. By air, phone and social media, over a million people living in northern Gaza were told they must move to the south to be safe. “The I.D.F. is calling for the people of Gaza to evacuate to southern Gaza.” “To go south.” “South of this river.” “Move south. For your own safety, move south.” But the evacuation routes and the safe zone were anything but safe. How often the attacks were launched by Hamas is unclear. But visual evidence indicates Israel was dropping 2,000-pound bombs in the area it was ordering civilians to go. The Times programmed an artificial intelligence tool to analyze satellite imagery of south Gaza to search for bomb craters. The A.I. tool detected over 1,600 possible craters.”

U.S. complicity

Phyllis Bennis argues that “Washington’s acquiescence to Israel’s continuing violations of international humanitarian law makes the U.S. complicit in these crimes (

“The U.S. failure even to acknowledge Israel’s violations sends a message to governments and people around the world that the much-vaunted U.S. commitment to international law is conditional on whether the government violating international law is deemed a close ally or a potential opponent.”

“According to many influential scholars of genocide studies,” Bennis reports, “Israeli violations may be approaching specific violations of the Genocide Convention. As a signatory to the Convention, the U.S. is obligated to do whatever is in its power to prevent a potential genocide. But instead of using its influence to stop these dangerous Israeli actions, the U.S. is enabling them by sending money and arms without conditions, which would certainly violate the Convention’s specific crime of complicity in the crimes of collective punishment, genocide, and ethnic cleansing.”

“The U.S. failure even to acknowledge Israel’s violations sends a message to governments and people around the world that the much-vaunted U.S. commitment to international law is conditional on whether the government violating international law is deemed a close ally or a potential opponent.”

Destruction, death, and misery

Bennis also considers the conditions and effects of Israel’s war on Gaza.

She maintains, “…it is not possible to end or even significantly reduce the direct killing of civilians as long as the bombardment continues (and now combined with a ground invasion).

“Gaza was one of the most crowded pieces of land on earth before this most recent assault. Now almost all of the 2.3 million people imprisoned in the Strip have been forced to move to the southern third of the territory. That means the lack of water, sanitation, electricity, fuel, food, medicine are all much more drastic and urgent.

“According to the World Food Program, 90 percent of Gazan families are now hungry and half the population is starving, while diseases are spreading due to the lack of clean water and sanitation as well as shelter.

“Israel’s bombing has destroyed about 60 percent of all housing in the Strip, and most of the rest is severely damaged. Israel has also targeted UN facilities, schools, hospitals, clinics, mosques, and churches — all of which had been serving as overcrowded shelters for the 85 percent of Gazans forced from their homes.”

More evidence on how Gaza’s residents are affected by Israel’s war.

“In Gaza, at least 21,110 people have been killed and 55,243 injured in Israeli attacks since October 7 (and through Dec. 28). (

Israeli deaths and injuries

The death toll of Israelis from Hamas’s attack on Israel stands at 1,400.

There is no doubt that the barbaric attack on Oct. 7 by Hamas in southern Israel must be condemned. Reporting for ABC News, Bill Hutchinson describes the attack ( The article was published on October 19.

“The conflict was touched off by the Oct. 7 sneak attack, which included thousands of armed Hamas fighters breaching a border security fence and indiscriminately gunning down Israeli civilians and soldiers taken off guard. Other militants stormed beaches in Israel in motorboats and some brought death from the sky, swooping in on paragliders.

More than 1,400 people were killed in Israel, including children, and more than 4,500 people were injured, Israeli officials said. At least 32 of those killed in Israel were Americans, according to the U.S. State Department.” Over 200 hostages were taken by Hamas. That number has subsequently fallen as a result of the exchange of some of the hostages for Palestinian prisoners.

In addition, more than 500 Israeli soldiers, officers, and reservists have been killed in the ongoing war against Hamas which began on October 7, the IDF says, as reported by Emanuel Fabian for the Times of Israel, Dec 28, 2023 ( “The IDF’s list does not include 57 police officers killed during the October 7 attack, as well as an officer killed in a terror attack in Jerusalem, and another officer killed during clashes with terror operatives in the West Bank.”

Ahmed Asmar reports on other injuries to Israeli soldiers (

“At least 1,600 Israeli soldiers have developed shell-shock symptoms since Israel expanded its ground offensive in the Gaza Strip on Oct. 27, according to local media on Tuesday.

“Data obtained by the Walla news website showed that 76% of these soldiers returned to the battlefield after initial treatment in the field.

“Nearly 1,000 soldiers, however, did not improve and required further rehabilitation at military centers, data showed.

“Some 250 Israeli soldiers were discharged from service as they continued to suffer shell-shock symptoms from the war, Walla said.

“According to the news portal, around 3,475 injured soldiers have been treated at the army’s rehabilitation center since the outbreak of the Gaza conflict on Oct. 7.”

Israeli propaganda is not persausive

But the destruction and death levied by Israel are far greater than what Israel forces have suffered. Israeli journalist and author Gideon Levy offers one description in an article published by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz (

Here’s some of what he considers.

There is no way to ‘explain’ Israel's conduct in the Gaza Strip. Destruction, killing, starvation and siege in such monstrous dimensions can no longer be explained or justified, even by an effective propaganda machine like Israeli public diplomacy (hasbara; or pro-Israel propaganda).

“The evil,” Levy writes, “can no longer be hidden by any propaganda. Even the winning Israeli combo of victimhood, Yiddishkeit [being Jewish], chosen people and Holocaust can no longer blur the picture. The horrifying October 7 events have not been forgotten by anyone, but they cannot justify the spectacles in Gaza. The propagandist who could explain killing 162 infants in one day – a figure reported by social media this week – is yet to be born, not to mention killing some 10,000 children in two months.

“Israel is already setting up its updated ‘Yad Vashem’ [Israel’s official memorial to the victims of the Holocaust]. Hundreds of Jewish functionaries from the United States are being flown by air shuttle to the burnt kibbutzim in the south.”

“No official guest will be able to land in Israel from now on without being forced to pass through Kibbutz Be'eri [one of the Israeli communities attacked by Hamas]. And afterward if he dares turn his gaze to the Gaza Strip, he will be labeled antisemitic.”

“It is very doubtful this will do any good. Hasbara is now an immoral machine. Anyone who makes do with being shocked at what has been done to us while disregarding what we've been doing since has no integrity or conscience…. Of course it's compulsory to tell and show the world what Hamas did to us. But the story only begins there. It doesn't end there. Not telling its sequel is a despicable act.”

The children of Gaza

Steve Sosebee, founder of the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, is a guest on Democracy Now and talks with hosts Nermeen Shaikh and Amy Goodman about the absolute unimaginable suffering of the children under the Israeli war

( “It is an organization that provides medical and humanitarian aid to Palestinian children in Gaza and the West Bank. The fund, founded in 1991, has helped build pediatric cancer center units, emergency departments and ICUs in Gaza.”

Here are excerpts from the interview.

NERMEEN SHAIKH: We continue to look at Israel’s war on Gaza and turn now to the war’s impact on children. According to Palestinian officials, the Israeli assault has killed more than 8,200 children in Gaza over the past 11 weeks. At least 8,600 children have been injured. UNICEF says some 1,000 Palestinian children have had limbs amputated without anesthesia due to the lack of basic medical resources….[By the time you read this post, the numbers will have risen.]

NERMEEN SHAIKH: So, Steve Sosebee, you mentioned, of course, that even before October 7th, the care for amputees in Gaza was very, very poor. If you could talk about what you’re hearing from your colleagues in Gaza now, where there are so many children who are in need of prosthetic limbs? What is the situation there now, especially since also, as we reported, you know, there isn’t even anesthesia available for operations for children who are so much in need?

STEVE SOSEBEE: Yeah, it’s hard to even convey the idea that in this world today that children are being amputated, having limbs amputated, as a result of traumatic injury, without anesthesia. And by the way, there’s plenty of anesthesia medicine at the border of Egypt waiting to enter Gaza. There’s plenty of food at the border of Egypt ready to enter Gaza. Children are starving. People are starving in Gaza. It’s not as if there’s some kind of natural disaster that’s preventing anesthesia medicine to come into Gaza and be able to be utilized to treat injured children. This is absolutely unimaginable that this is happening in this modern world. And we’re witnessing it, and everybody sees it, and nothing is changing.

“The fact that there’s now 1,000 new amputees, at least — and that number is going to grow, because a lot of these kids are with significant injuries in which their limbs are going to have to be amputated in the coming weeks and months. Let’s keep in mind, not only were they amputated without anesthesia, but many of them were amputated in a very quick fashion. And, you know, God bless the doctors and nurses in the health sector in Gaza. They are the true heroes in this, if there are any heroes in this, and there are, of course, among the Palestinian health workers. They’re the ones who are, day and night, in the hospitals, exhausted, as their own families are living under bombs and being killed, trying to help their own patients. And they’re doing these amputations in a very quick manner, because they have so many injured cases coming in. And a lot of these kids who are suffering traumatic amputations have to have surgery again in the future and even further amputations, because they’re not getting the adequate care in the initial stages of an amputation. So they’re going to need revision surgery.” ….

“There is no services at all in Gaza for amputees. The hundreds of kids that we’ve treated over the years who’ve suffered traumatic amputations in Gaza,” as “their limbs are breaking down. They’re being destroyed. They’re being — they need to be adjusted. They need to be repaired. So these kids are now going again without limbs.

“And you can imagine, under these circumstances, once again being dependent on others to carry you around, or being on crutches while your neighborhoods are being bombed or your refugee camps are being bombed, is just an unimaginable situation.”

STEVE SOSEBEE: “Yeah. So, prior to October 7th, we were on the ground in Gaza identifying needs in all of the various specialties in the health sector and developing programs to support the improvement of patient care and reducing the need for patients to leave the Gaza Strip for medical treatment that they should be getting locally. We were training doctors. We were bringing in medication, medical support.

“We were bringing in medical teams from all over the world — we’re the main organization doing this — and providing hands-on training and support in various specialties that don’t exist in Gaza — open-heart surgery for children, neurosurgery, orthopedic surgery, and so on and so forth, reconstructive surgery. These were all specialties that we were identifying as a need on the ground and bringing in teams to address those needs.

“And in addition to that, we were identifying significant gaps in the health sector, like the lack of pediatric cancer treatment for children, in which prior to our opening of the only cancer department in Gaza in 2019, every single child in Gaza with cancer had to travel outside for treatment. And a lot of them were suffering, and in many cases even dying, due to the lack of permits being issued or the access to care.

“After October 7th, the health sector, as you all know, has been almost completely destroyed. There’s only a few hospitals now functioning, most of them in the south. The European Gaza Hospital, Nasser Hospital, Al-Aqsa Hospital are the three main hospitals in the center and in the south of the Gaza Strip that are now operating, but they’re basically just triage centers.”

“And this is what needs to be pointed out, as Amy said in the early part of the show when she mentioned the statistics of over 8,000 children in Gaza have been killed [now over 10,000]. They’ve been killed by bombings. They’ve been killed by traumatic injury. What about the children who have heart disease, who need medical care they can’t get in Gaza anymore? What about the kids who have neurological disorders or have cancer or have other types of, in many cases, quite serious injuries or diseases, that they otherwise would get through our medical teams coming in or through the health system being available that can do elective surgeries, no longer having access to treatment, kids with diabetes, kids with dialysis? All of these children no longer have medical care, and they’re dying, or they’re not getting treatment. In many cases, their conditions are getting worse, and they’re suffering.” ….

“Add to that the fact that a significant number of children now in Gaza are suffering from hunger and from starvation. All of these factors, in addition to the over 8,000 children that have been killed through bombings of their homes and of their schools and of their mosques and churches and hospitals, you add all of those numbers up, and it’s an absolute humanitarian catastrophe, far beyond what anybody can even articulate properly in words. It’s unimaginable.”

A letter from MECA on the horrendous conditions facing children

Here is a copy of a letter sent out on the Internet by Wafaa El-Derawi, the MECA [the Middle East Childrens’ Alliance] Nutrition Coordinator in Gaza (

“My name is Wafaa El-Derawi and you may know that I’m the MECA Nutrition Coordinator in Gaza. There are no ‘normal times’ in Gaza but usually my work is focused on getting healthy meals to children in kindergartens, supporting women with small food businesses, and delivering food parcels to vulnerable families.

“The hunger I’m seeing now is unbelievable. So is the strength and determination of the MECA partners and volunteers in Gaza.  Please donate now so we can continue getting food to children every day.

“Israel is deliberately starving us. A report on hunger in Gaza just came out from a UN agency called the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC). It’s filled with numbers, diagrams, and dry language but the story it tells is very real and very terrifying:

 • More than half a million people are facing catastrophic levels of acute food insecurity. That is the last phase before famine.

 • All children under five in the Gaza Strip—335,000—are at high risk of severe malnutrition and preventable death

 • Four out of five households in the north, and half the displaced households in the south, go entire days and nights without eating. Many adults go hungry so children can eat.

These conditions are also ripe for the spread of disease.

Palestinian and foreign journalists targeted

Karen Attiah reports on this ( “According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, at least 64 journalists have been killed in the Israel-Gaza war; 57 were Palestinian, four were Israeli, and three were Lebanese. This war ‘has been the deadliest conflict for journalists that CPJ has ever recorded, in terms of documenting attacks on the press,’ CPJ President Jodie Ginsberg said in an interview with the New Yorker.

“For context, nearly as many journalists have been killed in two months in Gaza as were killed worldwide in 2022.

“It’s not just that journalists are being killed; some believe they have been explicitly targeted, even outside Gaza.”

For example: “On Oct. 13, an Israeli strike in Lebanon killed Reuters journalist Issam Abdallah and injured six others. Reuters, Agence France-Presse, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International assert that the Israeli strike was most likely deliberate and therefore a war crime. Israel has said that the strike was in an active combat zone and that the episode was “under review.”

Biden appears sensitive to the public outrage over his support of Israel but has little effect on the war

The Polls

Mark Murray reports for NBC News on the negative impact of Biden’s embrace of Israel’s policies ( Murray writes,

“President Joe Biden’s approval rating has declined to the lowest level of his presidency — 40% — as strong majorities of all voters disapprove of his handling of foreign policy and the Israel-Hamas war, according to the latest national NBC News poll.

“What’s more, the poll finds Biden behind former President Donald Trump for the first time in a hypothetical general-election matchup, although the deficit is well within the poll’s margin of error for a contest that’s still more than 11 months away.

“The erosion for Biden is most pronounced among Democrats, a majority of whom believe Israel has gone too far in its military action in Gaza, and among voters ages 18 to 34, with a whopping 70% of them disapproving of Biden’s handling of the war.”

Murray continues.

“…only 34% of all voters approve of Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war, versus 56% who say they disapprove.

“By party, only half of Democratic voters (51%) say they approve of Biden’s handling of the war, compared with majorities of independents (59%) and Republicans (69%) who say they disapprove.”

“And while a majority of all voters (55%) support the United States providing military aid to Israel, almost half of Democrats (49%) say they oppose this aid.”

What to do?

It is neither lawful nor morally justified for Israel to continue on its current path in Gaza. Therefore, there must be pressure from the U.S. on that country to stop the bombing, the ethnic cleansing, the siege, the collective punishment, and any genocidal policies advanced by Israel.

It may begin with a “humanitarian pause” that allows for an adequate supply of aid to enter Gaza, including fuel. It should be accompanied by a cease fire. Ideally, though presently unlikely, there would also be negotiations that ended Israeli bombing and lifted the siege and blockade. Hostages held by Hamas could be released as part of a peace settlement, perhaps in exchange for the release of Palestinian prisoners held by Israeli authorities.

Humanitarian pause

Nidal Al-Mughrabi and Emily Rose report on how the UN, US and Canada have at last appealed for a “humanitarian pause in the Israel-Hamas war to allow safe deliveries of aid to civilians short of food, water, medicine and electricity in the Israeli-besieged Gaza Strip” (

According to Reuters, “U.N. agencies were pleading ‘on our knees’ for emergency aid to be let into Gaza unimpeded, saying more than 20 times current deliveries were needed to support the narrow strip's 2.3 million people amid widespread devastation from Israel's aerial blitz.”

“The United States is negotiating with Israel, neighboring Egypt and the U.N. to smooth emergency deliveries into Gaza, but have wrangled over procedures for inspecting the aid and over bombardments on the Gaza side of the border.

"While we remain opposed to a ceasefire, we think humanitarian pauses linked to the delivery of aid that still allow Israel to conduct military operations to defend itself are worth consideration," a senior U.S. official said.”

“U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken told the Security Council: ‘Palestinian civilians are not to blame for the carnage committed by Hamas,’ referring to the militants' killing of 1,400 people, mainly civilians, and capture of over 200 in a one-day rampage through Israeli communities near Gaza.

“‘Palestinian civilians must be protected. That means Hamas must cease using them as human shields ... It means Israel must take all possible precautions to avoid harm to civilians,’ Blinken said.”

“The World Health Organization, in the latest of increasingly desperate U.N. appeals, called for "an immediate humanitarian ceasefire" to prevent food, medicines and fuel supplies from running out in Gaza.”

“Doctors in Gaza say patients arriving at hospitals are showing signs of disease caused by overcrowding and poor sanitation after more than 1.4 million people fled their homes for temporary shelters under Israel's heaviest-ever bombardment.

“All hospitals say they are running out of fuel to power their electricity generators, leaving them increasingly unable to treat the injured and ill. More than 40 medical centres have halted operations, a health ministry spokesman said.

UNRWA, the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees, warned in a post on messaging platform X that it would halt operations in Gaza on Wednesday night because of the lack of fuel.

“However, the Israeli military reaffirmed it would bar the entry of fuel to prevent Hamas from seizing it.”

Calls for a cease fire plus

Pleas for a “humanitarian pause” in Israel’s bombardment of Gaza and for increases in humanitarian aid are often combined with demands for a cease fire. But they also sometimes go beyond such demands to include an end to the blockade. the recognition of the Palestinians’ right to their own independent state, and the reclamation of some of the land in the West Bank taken forcibly by Israeli settlers, with backing by Israeli military forces. Right now, the call for cease fire is needed to end the slaughter of Palestinians and the danger the conflict poses to Israelis.

Concluding thoughts

Biden’s support of Israel’s genocidal war on Palestinians in Gaza is bound to have some negative electoral consequences for his 2024 presidential campaign. Those Democrats and Independents who oppose or are critical of the U.S. support of Israel will be in a quandary. The options.

(1) A vote for Trump would be a vote for an authoritarian candidate, who, with support from the Republican Party, broad swaths of corporate America, and his massive electoral base, would end democracy in America.

(2) Not voting would have the same effect. A vote for Biden would be a vote for letting Israel extend its un-democratic and violent suppression of Palestinians in Gaza, the West Bank (where Israeli settlements continue to expand), and in Jerusalem. In this case, the U.S. would continue to be complicit in the Israeli suppression or elimination of Palestinians through its financial and weapons support and thus would be guilty of war crimes. And, as in option #1, not voting would increase the chances that Trump wins in 2024.

(3) There are reasons for voting for Biden, to keep Trump out and to support a largely prosperous economy that reflects Biden’s policies. See David McCall’s article on “How Biden’s Economy Puts Money in Workers’ Pockets” ( McCall is the international president of the United Steelworkers Union (USW).