Monday , 27 May 2024

Israel Under Attack – U.S. Administration Abandoning Its Ally?

gatestoneinstitute.org – Article 2, paragraph 4 of the UN Charter explicitly prohibits the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any member state, making Iran’s actions tantamount to an act of war.

The US administration’s call for Israel to refrain from responding to attacks while facing direct aggression is deeply troubling and raises significant questions about the principles of sovereignty and self-defense.

In the face of relentless attacks on Israel, Washington is sending a dangerous message of encouragement, if not outright approval, to aggressors and undermining Israel’s right to defend itself against existential threats.

Where is any real threat or pressure being paced on Hamas, Qatar or Iran, all of whom initiated the conflict in the first place? As far one can tell, nothing is even being done to eliminate Iran’s nuclear weapons program. If Iran had nuclear weapons, does anyone think it might hesitate to use them, even “just” as a means of coercion?

The expectation that Israel should tolerate such attacks not only undermines the principles of self-defense and sovereignty but also erodes the longstanding partnership between the United States and Israel, sending a disconcerting message to the world about the strength of any US alliance in the face of adversity.

The expectation that Israel should tolerate attacks by Iran not only undermines the principles of self-defense and sovereignty but also erodes the longstanding partnership between the United States and Israel, sending a disconcerting message to the world about the strength of any US alliance in the face of adversity. (Image source: iStock/Getty Images)

Amid the relentless assaults from multiple adversaries — Iran’s regime, Qatar, Hezbollah, Hamas and the Houthis — Israel finds itself surrounded by Iran’s “ring of fire” on all fronts.

These coordinated attacks, originating from both neighboring states and non-state actors, pose, as clearly intended, a threat to Israel’s existence. In these dire circumstances, Israel looks to its longstanding ally, the United States, for crucial support and solidarity. However, the Biden administration’s approach has left Israel feeling isolated and abandoned at a time when it most needs unwavering backing.

The lack of robust support from the United States has left Israel vulnerable and exposed, compounding the challenges it faces in confronting the mounting threats to its sovereignty and safety. As Israel grapples with the complexities of regional geopolitics and navigates the treacherous waters of conflict, the absence of unequivocal support from its traditional ally has only served to deepen its sense of isolation and uncertainty, and bolstered the Iranian regime and its militia and terror groups.

The Biden administration’s approach — characterized by a lack of leadership and giving substantial financial support worth billions of dollars to the Iranian regime — has bolstered the Iranian regime to unprecedented levels, culminating in a historic and unprecedented direct attack on Israel.

This bold move marks a significant departure from Iran’s traditional modus operandi of using proxies to target Israel and signifies a dramatic escalation in hostilities. The audacity of Iran’s direct assault on Israel underscores the regime’s newfound confidence in its capabilities and perceived impunity.

Iran’s decision to abandon its covert approach and openly attack Israel represents a blatant act of aggression, a clear violation of international law and the UN Charter, and an act of war. Article 2, paragraph 4 of the UN Charter explicitly prohibits the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any member state, making Iran’s actions tantamount to an act of war. In light of these developments, it is imperative for the international community to condemn Iran’s reckless behavior and take decisive action to uphold the principles of peace, security, and sovereignty outlined in the UN Charter.

It is crucial to emphasize the potential consequences of failing to intercept Iran’s ballistic missiles and killer drones — not to mention potential nuclear weapons later on. Had these deadly weapons not been intercepted, the result could have been catastrophic, leading to the loss of countless civilian lives. The indiscriminate nature of ballistic missiles and drone attacks means that they pose a significant threat to populated areas and civilian infrastructure.

The stance taken by the current US administration in response to Israel’s potential counterattack is deeply concerning and has significant implications for the dynamics of the conflict in the Middle East. Instead of offering unequivocal support to Israel in its efforts to defend itself against aggression, the administration has made it clear that it will not back any retaliatory measures by Israel. President Joe Biden’s direct communication to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, explicitly stating that the United States will not support an Israeli counterattack, sends a troubling message of reluctance to stand firmly alongside a key ally in the region, and can only embolden Israel’s enemies, as it did in the weeks leading up to October 7, 2023. Moreover, the decision to make this stance public further exacerbates the situation, effectively signaling to the Iranian regime that the United States is not fully committed to Israel’s security, and instead more inclined to appease Tehran.

This perceived abandonment of Israel in its hour of need amounts to a significant victory for the Iranian regime, which stands to benefit from the weakened resolve of its adversaries and the erosion of international support for Israel. The scenes of jubilation among Iranian agents following the attack on Israel underscore the extent to which the Biden administration’s actions have heartened Iran and undermined Israel’s position in the region.

The US administration’s call for Israel to refrain from responding to attacks while facing direct aggression is deeply troubling and raises significant questions about the principles of sovereignty and self-defense. In the face of relentless attacks on Israel, Washington is sending a dangerous message of encouragement, if not outright approval, to aggressors and undermining Israel’s right to defend itself against existential threats.

Moreover, the stark contrast between the administration’s response to Israel’s predicament and the hypothetical scenario of the United States coming under direct attack underscores a troubling double-standard in international relations. Where is any real threat or pressure being paced on Hamas, Qatar or Iran, all of whom initiated the conflict in the first place? As far one can tell, nothing is even being done to eliminate Iran’s nuclear weapons program. If Iran had nuclear weapons, does anyone think it might hesitate to use them, even as a means of coercion?

One cannot but wonder whether the Biden administration or the US would adopt a similar stance if confronted with a barrage of ballistic missiles from state and non-state actors targeting its territory. The expectation that Israel should tolerate such attacks not only undermines the principles of self-defense and sovereignty but also erodes the longstanding partnership between the United States and Israel, sending a disconcerting message to the world about the strength of any US alliance in the face of adversity.

Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is a business strategist and advisor, Harvard-educated scholar, political scientist, board member of Harvard International Review, and president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He has authored several books on Islam and US Foreign Policy. He can be reached at [email protected]

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