In a rare address from the Oval Office, President Joe Biden made a passionate case for supporting Ukraine and Israel as vital interests of the United States. He drew a striking parallel between Hamas and Russian President Vladimir Putin, noting that both entities aim to “completely annihilate a neighboring democracy.”
“We can’t let petty partisan politics obstruct our responsibility as a great nation,” Biden emphasized. “We must not allow terrorists like Hamas and tyrants like Putin to succeed. I am determined to prevent that from happening.”
President Biden announced his intention to seek significant funding from Congress to aid Ukraine and Israel, positioning it as an investment in America’s future as a global leader.
“It’s a wise investment that will yield dividends in terms of American security for generations to come,” said the 80-year-old President. He stressed the importance of American leadership, alliances, and values in maintaining global stability.
“America remains a beacon to the world,” he affirmed.
Fresh from a recent visit to Israel, Biden’s speech was an effort to win over war-weary voters and gain support from hardline Republicans as he gears up for his 2024 re-election campaign.
The White House is preparing a substantial request to Congress, reportedly amounting to $100 billion. This funding package includes support for Israel in its conflict with Hamas and assistance for Ukraine in its battle against Russia.
By linking these two conflicts, President Biden aims to frame them as part of a broader struggle to shape the global order and protect American interests.
Traditionally, the Oval Office is reserved for speeches of national significance. President Biden’s previous address from this historic location was in June when he celebrated an agreement with Congress to avert a potential US debt default.
The current political deadlock in Congress has extended for over two weeks, with divided Republicans failing to agree on electing a House speaker. Additionally, a growing number of voters and hard-right Republicans oppose further financial assistance to Ukraine.
Reports suggest that the funding request to be submitted on Friday will include $10 billion in emergency aid for Israel and $60 billion for Ukraine.
President Biden also spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky prior to his speech. Zelensky expressed his gratitude for the substantial US support in Ukraine’s fight for freedom against Russian aggression.
Biden has adopted a statesmanlike approach in addressing the Israel-Hamas conflict, appealing to American voters who widely support Israel. He has also brokered a deal to facilitate humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip through Egypt, despite the ongoing violence in the region.
Amidst these developments, there is concern about the potential for a broader Middle Eastern conflict. The United States has deployed two aircraft carriers in the eastern Mediterranean to deter any regional involvement by Iran or Lebanon’s Hezbollah, both of which are aligned with Hamas.