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Biden extends support to Israel and faces domestic criticism over Iran after Hamas assault

The United States has pledged support to Israel following a deadly attack by Palestinian militant group Hamas. President Joe Biden offered Israel “all appropriate means of support” and warned any party hostile to Israel not to seek advantage. U.S. and Israeli officials are coordinating on Israel’s military needs, with a decision expected soon. The U.S. is working with other governments to contain the crisis to Gaza and prevent it from spreading. The attack occurred amid efforts by the Biden administration to negotiate a normalization agreement between Israel and Saudi Arabia, as well as a U.S.-Saudi defense pact.

Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to express U.S. support. He emphasized that Israel has the right to defend itself and issued a warning to any party seeking to exploit the attacks. The U.S. is monitoring the situation and will investigate any potential involvement of Iran in the Hamas attack. Biden has directed his national security team to stay in touch with countries in the region, including Egypt, Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Oman, the United Arab Emirates, and European allies.

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The Hamas attack has sparked criticism from Republicans, who blame Biden’s policies for funding the war against Israel. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis accused Biden of going easy on Iran, which has allegedly helped fund the conflict. However, the Biden administration clarified that the funds involved in a prisoner swap deal with Iran have not been spent and are intended solely for humanitarian purposes.

The impact of the Hamas attack on the U.S.-Israel-Saudi normalization negotiations is uncertain. The U.S. official stated that Washington will not allow the militant group to derail the talks. The U.S. has been pushing for Israeli concessions to the Palestinians as part of any agreement, but the specifics are still under negotiation. Saudi Arabia remains committed to securing a military pact with the U.S., even if major concessions are not offered to the Palestinians.

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