US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said before taking off for Israel, “We stand resolutely against terrorism. We’ve seen the almost indescribable acts committed by Hamas against Israeli men, women, and children. Every day we’re learning more, and it is simply heartbreaking. Not since ISIS have we seen this kind of depravity, and we will continue to stand very resolutely against it.” Once on the ground, what we all anticipated as unimaginable proved to be an underestimation of the horror Hamas has brought on the Israeli people. According to the most recent update by The Washington Post, “The Hamas attack has killed at least 1,300 people in Israel and wounded about 3,300, authorities said. Palestinian officials said more than 1,417 people in Gaza were killed and some 6,268 were injured as a result of Israeli strikes.”
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken held a joint press conference addressing the ongoing crisis in the region. Netanyahu expressed gratitude for the United States’ support and labeled Hamas an enemy of civilization, drawing parallels to ISIS. He emphasized that Hamas must be crushed, much like ISIS was. Blinken, opening his statement as both the US Secretary of State and a Jew, condemned the atrocities committed by Hamas, including killing children, burning people alive, and beheadings. He reassured Israel of unwavering US support, with the first shipment of defense materials already delivered and more on the way.
Blinken warned potential adversaries against exploiting the crisis to attack Israel, asserting that the US has Israel’s back. He highlighted bipartisan support for Israel in Congress and stressed the absence of excuses or justifications for the atrocities committed. Additionally, Blinken emphasized that Hamas doesn’t represent the Palestinian people’s legitimate aspirations for security, freedom, and justice. The current death toll of Americans caught up in this conflict is 27.
Addressing the grim toll of the conflict, Blinken described the shocking photos and videos he reviewed, depicting the horrors inflicted by Hamas on Israeli civilians. He expressed the administration’s commitment to providing aid and military support to Israel, working closely with Congress to address evolving security needs. Netanyahu, in turn, characterized Blinken’s visit as a tangible demonstration of America’s unequivocal support.
The situation in Gaze is dire, with Israel massing troops for a potential ground assault. Hospitals in Gaza are running out of supplies. The Washington Post reported, “Israeli strikes on the Rafah land crossing between Gaza and Egypt have forced its closure, leaving residents of Gaza with nowhere to go. The United Nations said more than 338,000 people have been displaced in Gaza.” Blinken acknowledged the challenges both Israelis and Palestinians face in the middle of the conflict. He assured the American public and the watching world that the US and Qatar are blocking Iran’s access to $6 billion in funds for humanitarian assistance due to Hamas’s actions.
Photo Courtesy: ©Getty Images/Leigh Vogel / Stringer
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LISTEN: Special Update – Israel at War
This is a special episode of Inside The Epicenter. Joel and Carl delve into the current conflict taking place in Israel. They discuss the recent attacks, the implications of the conflict between Israel and Iran, the spiritual aspects of the situation, and the importance of supporting our brothers and sisters in Israel.
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