The Biden administration’s effort to promote “deescalation” between Israel and Hamas will now include sending Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Israeli-Palestinian Affairs Hady Amr to the region on Wednesday. Amr, however, has taken a stance against U.S.-ally Israel on the conflict even before he stepped foot in the administration and before he is to land in Israel for his latest trip.
Amr, who was born in Beirut, has also been actively working on the Biden administration’s plan to restore U.S. funding to the Palestinians. In a March 1 memo, “The US Palestinian Reset and the Path Forward,” he wrote that “State and USAID are working towards a restart of US assistance to the Palestinians in late March or early April.”
He also indicated that the U.S. would restore contact with the Palestinian Authority, which ceased under former President Donald Trump over continued payments to terrorists and their families.
As the national coordinator of the anti-Israel Middle East Justice Network, Amr once reportedly wrote a year after the September 11 terror attacks that he “was inspired by the Palestinian intifada.” Moreover, Amr previously accused Israel of “ethnic cleansing.”
In 2002, after the head of Hamas’s Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades was killed in an Israeli airstrike, Amr reportedly wrote in a column that has since been scrubbed from the internet, “I have news for every Israeli,” warning that Arabs “now have televisions, and they will never, never forget what the Israeli people, the Israeli military and Israeli democracy have done to Palestinian children. And there will be thousands who will seek to avenge these brutal murders of innocents.”
Amr also worked with the Brookings Institution to found their Doha Center. Qatar funded the think tank to the tune of $14.8 million and its Prime Minister and members of its royal family sit on the Brookings advisory board. Qatar is one of the largest sponsors of global terrorism and one of its beneficiaries is Hamas.
In Doha, while working for Brookings, Amr once urged, “Muslim Brotherhood organizations across the Muslim World should be engaged.”
The State Department and the White House didn’t respond to this reporter’s requests for comment. The story will be updated if and when a response is given.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken told reporters Wednesday that Amr will be the U.S. official to advocate for the Biden administration’s position on the issue as Hamas continues firing hundreds of rockets into Israel.
“I’ve asked Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Hady Amr to go to the region immediately to meet with Israeli and Palestinian leaders,” Blinken said. “He will bring to bear his decades of experience and in particular he will urge on my behalf and on behalf of President Biden deescalation of violence. We are very focused on this.”
He continued, “The United States remains committed to a two-state solution. This violence takes us further away from that goal. We fully support Israel’s legitimate right to defend itself. We’ve condemned and I condemn again the rocket attacks in the strongest possible terms. We believe Palestinians and Israelis equally deserve to live with safety and security and we’ll continue to engage with Israelis, Palestinians, and. other regional partners to urge deescalation and to bring calm.”
You can follow Jennie Taer on Twitter @JennieSTaer
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CIA director meets with Israeli PM to arouse regional support following drone attack
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By Jenny Goldsberry
Central Intelligence Agency Director William Burns visited Israel Wednesday in an effort to rally regional support amidst attacks from Iran. Burns discussed possibilities for regional cooperation with Israel Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.
Late July, drones struck an Israeli tanker off the coast of Oman. As a result, two crew members died. Since then, the United States blamed Tehran for the attack. Iranian officials deny their involvement.
At the time, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the White House was noticing a disturbing pattern. “We feel it follows a pattern of attacks and other belligerent behavior,” Psaki said. “And these actions also threaten freedom of navigation through crucial waterways — something that is posing a risk to a range of countries around the world.”
Therefore, the press secretary suggested that countries get involved. “You know, I would also note that we know our British partners have called for action, called for steps in a coordinated way from international bodies, including the United Nations, which we would certainly support,” Psaki said. Now, Burns’ visit symbolizes the United State following through on the White House’s comments.
According to a statement from Burns’ office, he met with Bennett after meeting with the head of Israel’s Mossad intelligency agency David Barnea. Burns met the Israeli leader in Tel-Aviv. “They discussed the situation in the Middle East, with emphasis on Iran, and possibilities for expanding and deepening regional cooperation,” the statement read.
Next, Burns will meet with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.
You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.
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