As the US Presidential election approaches, many supporters of Israel are concerned about Joe Biden’s policies concerning Israel. Most experts warn that if the Democrats win the White House, the situation for Israel will be grim indeed.
Matthew Lee and Will Weissert published an article on Friday in the Times of Israel analyzing Biden’s policies which they described as a “tsunami of change” that would affect everything from the Middle East to Asia, Latin America to Africa and, particularly, Europe, and include issues concerning trade, terrorism, arms control, and immigration. The authors were pro-Biden, claiming “where the iconoclastic Trump has used blunt threats and insults to press his case, Biden, a former senator, would be more inclined to seek common ground.”
Despite this pro-Biden stance, their predictions of how Biden would relate to the situation in Israel are chilling to those who would like to see a secure Israel.
“[Biden will] restore assistance to the Palestinian Authority that the Trump administration has eliminated, as well as to agencies that support Palestinian refugees. Biden hasn’t said he will reverse Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital or return the embassy to Tel Aviv.”
It should be remembered that at least some of this funding to the PA goes to paying stipends to terrorists and their families.
This would include restoring assistance to UNESCO and the UN Human Rights Council. In the first year of its existence, 2006, the UNHRC condemned human rights violations in just one country – Israel. It should be noted that as per Agenda Item 7, the UNHRC debates Israel’s human rights record at every session. No other country has a dedicated agenda item. Both Israel and the US left UNESCO due to its blatant anti-Israel bias which included resolutions declaring the Temple Mount, Hebron, and other Jewish sites to be exclusively Muslim.
Biden has come out strongly against Israel expressing sovereignty over Judea and Samaria and, like his former boss Barack Obama, sees Jews living in the Biblical heartland as the biggest obstacle to “peace”.
In a speech to Jewish donors in May, Biden promised to reverse the Trump administration’s support of annexation.
“I do not support annexation,” Biden told the donors, according to a recording of the call shared with The Times of Israel. “I’m going to reverse the Trump administration’s steps that I think significantly undercut the prospects of peace.”
Though it is impossible to know what Biden would do if elected, he told Bloomberg in an interview in April that he would not move the US Embassy to Tel Aviv.
“The move shouldn’t have happened in the context as it did, it should happen in the context of a larger deal to help us achieve important concessions for peace in the process,” Biden said..”But now that is done, I would not move the embassy back to Tel Aviv.”
Biden has also stated his intention to reinstate the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, known commonly as the Iran nuclear deal.
Biden stated, “If Iran moves back into compliance with its nuclear obligations, I would re-enter the JCPOA as a starting point to work alongside our allies in Europe and other world powers to extend the deal’s nuclear constraints.”
It should be noted that the terms of the deal were highly criticized and it is clear that Iran violated the agreement. If the JCPOA were to be reinstated, it would require Iran dismantling elements of its nuclear program that is has built up since President Trump rejected the deal. It should also be noted that Iran was never in compliance with its agreements concerning its intercontinental ballistic missile program.
Perhaps the most poignant indication of Biden’s relationship with Israel is encapsulated in an exchange he had with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin 1982. When Begin met with senators at the U.S. Capitol, Biden told him the expansion of West Bank settlements would endanger support for foreign aid to Israel. Begin reportedly said, “Don’t threaten us with slashing aid. Do you think that because the US lends us money it is entitled to impose on us what we must do? We are grateful for the assistance we have received, but we are not to be threatened. I am a proud Jew. Three thousand years of culture are behind me, and you will not frighten me with threats.”