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Obama cautions that Israel’s actions in Gaza could have unintended consequences, highlighting potential backlash.

Obama: Israel’s Actions in Gaza Could Backfire, Warns Former U.S. President

Former U.S. President Barack Obama expresses concerns over Israel’s actions in Gaza

In a rare comment on an ongoing foreign policy crisis, former U.S. President Barack Obama has warned that some of Israel’s actions in its war against Hamas may have long-term consequences. He specifically highlighted the cutting off of food and water supplies to Gaza, stating that such actions could “harden Palestinian attitudes for generations” and weaken international support for Israel. Obama emphasized that any military strategy that disregards the human costs of the conflict could ultimately backfire.

Obama criticizes Israeli government’s decision and its potential consequences

Obama criticized the Israeli government’s decision to cut off essential supplies to the civilian population in Gaza, stating that it not only worsens the existing humanitarian crisis but also has the potential to further harden Palestinian attitudes and erode global support for Israel. He expressed concerns that such actions could play into the hands of Israel’s enemies and undermine long-term peace and stability in the region.

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Obama acknowledges the right to self-defense but cautions about civilian risks

While condemning Hamas’ attack on Israel, Obama reiterated his support for Israel’s right to defend itself. However, he also cautioned about the risks to civilians in such conflicts. Obama’s statement did not indicate whether it was coordinated with current U.S. President Joe Biden, who served as his vice president during his tenure.

Gaza’s situation and failed peace negotiations

Gaza, a strip of land home to 2.3 million people, has been ruled by Hamas since 2007 and faces a blockade from Israel. The Obama administration attempted to broker a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians but was ultimately unsuccessful. Since taking office in 2021, President Biden has not pursued renewed talks, citing intransigence from both sides and an unfavorable climate for negotiations.

Obama’s relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu

During his time in office, Obama had a strained relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, particularly during negotiations for a nuclear deal with Iran. Biden, as Obama’s vice president, often acted as a mediator between the two leaders.

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Reflecting on past mistakes and the need for better values

In his statement, Obama acknowledged that the United States, like any other nation engaged in war, has fallen short of its higher values. He specifically mentioned the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks. The former president emphasized the importance of considering the human costs and upholding higher values during conflicts.

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