Pressure rises for Biden to drop military aid to Israel
After over two months of genocide, support for the US’s usual policy of unconditional aid to the Zionist state is dwindling.
Image from demonstration outside of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s house on Christmas morning, protesting US policy in Israel
Since October 7, Biden has added to Israel’s massive US-made military arsenal and sent more weapons to Israel as it carries out its genocide in the Gaza Strip, even bypassing Congressional review to do so. After nearly three months of war, however, support for the US’s usual policy of unconditional aid to the Zionist state is dwindling.
Some of the most bloody attacks against Palestinian civilians have been made possible with US-made bombs, such as the attack that leveled an apartment block in the Jabalya refugee camp, killing over 100 people.
Many of the atrocities perpetrated by Israel with US-made weaponry and funded by US money have been broadcast internationally across communications channels for even the people of the US to see. As a result, mass protests have erupted in the streets for months, often disrupting major commercial centers and events throughout the busy holiday season.
A recent poll shows that popular support for US aid to Israel has dropped since November. According to a poll from Quinnipiac University released on December 20, less than half (45%) of registered voters support sending “military aid to Israel for their efforts in the war.” This is a significant drop from the results of Quinnipiac’s previous poll from a month ago, in which 54% of voters expressed their support for military aid to Israel. A comparison of the two polls reveals that support for aid to Israel has dropped among voters in both the Republican and Democratic parties. In the November poll, 71% of Republicans and 45% Democratic voters said they were in favor of further military aid to Israel. Those numbers dropped in December, with 65% of Republicans and only 36% of Democrats supporting more US aid to Israel.
The dwindling support for US support to the Zionist state follows the trends of other polls in the growing popularity of the Palestinian cause, such as an early December Date for Progress poll which found that 61% of voters support calls for a permanent ceasefire—including nearly half, 49%, of Republicans.
Pressure for the Biden administration to shift its policies on Israel has also been coming from within Congress itself—not even necessarily from the most progressive elements of the legislature. Six members of security-oriented committees of the House of Representatives, including the Intelligence, Armed Services or Foreign Affairs committees, none of whom are known progressives, penned a letter to Biden on December 18, calling on the President to “use all of our nation’s leverage to shift the Israeli military’s strategy.”
“The mounting civilian death toll and humanitarian crisis are unacceptable and not in line with American interests,” the letter reads. The representatives also reference the history of “America’s war on terror” as a warning for the future, stating, “We know from personal and often painful experience that you can’t destroy a terror ideology with military force alone. And it can, in fact, make it worse.”
Several prominent humanitarian organizations, including Human Rights Watch, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders USA, Oxfam America, and Amnesty International, have also penned a letter to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, urging him to halt military aid to Israel. The organizations urge the Pentagon to “withhold U.S. assistance, in accordance with U.S. law and policy, that would facilitate violations of international humanitarian law.”
Biden himself has not responded to any of the outside pressures against his Israel policy, and has only dug his heels in. As his administration told CNN earlier this month, the US has no plans to place conditions on Israel aid as it carries out genocide in Gaza.