It was one of the best, most clear and resolute speeches calling out the evil of Hamas, clearly branding them as terrorists, and making the case why Israel needs to defeat this Islamist enemy.
“Hamas does not stand for the Palestinian people’s right to dignity and self-determination. (Hamas’) stated purpose is the annihilation of the state of Israel and murder of the Jewish people. They use Palestinian civilians as human shields. Hamas offers nothing but terror and bloodshed (with) no regard who pays the price.”
At a time of war, one would expect such words from a leader of Israel. Indeed, these words are not new. Just now, more people are listening. But this was not a speech by an Israeli leader but President Joe Biden who describes himself as a Christian Zionist. Biden is set to touch down in Israel on Wednesday.
The words may not be surprising. Indeed, more than any US President in recent history, Biden understands the loss of loved ones.
In Israel, Biden’s words were celebrated and appreciated. He understands that it’s the same evil Iranian-backed Islamist terrorists who are firing rockets at Israel and just slaughtered more than 1300 people as who would shoot down Air Force One when he arrives in Israel if they could.
President Biden also probably knows that while the inhuman Hamas slaughter was planned for some time, the timing is not a coincidence. For months, Israel and Saudi Arabia have moved closer to peace, to normalization of relations between two important countries that have common interests, and a common enemy: Iran. Theres little coincidence that Hamas’ slaughter was timed now. The same terrorists who would shoot down Biden’s plane want to shoot down peace.
As much as Biden’s remarks were bold and unequivocal, I hope he learns some things from his visit to Israel. First, that repeated and reflexive reliance on the worn out “two state solution” illusion is naive at best. Biden stated there “Needs to be a PA and path to a Palestinian state.” It’s a faulty premise. Even if it were a reasonable strategy, the question is how. With whom? Without a plan and strategy to create “self-determination” for Palestinian Arabs that won’t leave a vacuum to be filled by the need to play an antiterrorist “Wack a Mole,” just parroting “two states” emboldens those who think they can get something without ending terror, incitement, and brainwashing of generations who believe that Israel has no legitimacy. Biden knows better. There is no peace partner the idea of a terrorist state on our borders from which to perpetrate more terror cannot happen. Biden needs a better strategy.
The other thing Biden may know but needs to articulate is that it all starts in Tehran. Iran is the largest perpetrator and supporter of terrorism around the world. Today’s immediate threats are Iranian backed Hamas and Hezbollah, but there are more. If Hamas’ destruction is a legitimate policy, so too is the destruction of the Iranian Islamic regime.
Maybe he won’t acknowledge it publicly, after all he is a politician running for office, although sometimes admitting mistakes is refreshing and can serve one’s political advantage. However, Biden must understand that his policy of ransoming hostages in Iran emboldened terrorists everywhere. Even if the money never made it and has now been refrozen, terrorists smell weakness and $6 billion can kill a lot of people.
Hamas’ slaughter is case and point. While they have fired tens of thousands of rockets at Israeli communities, their most recent slaughter was decidedly low tech and inexpensive.
Nuclear weapons cost more, and the Iranians will get them if not stopped. It’s not the time to hesitate or show any weakness, bit a clear resolve to squeeze the terrorists financially, and cut off the head of the snake. In Genesis 3, the snake embodies evil. It is the same in Iran today, and with Hamas, and Hezbollah.
Cutting off the head of the snake is not just brazen military rhetoric. When the evil Islamist Hamas terrorists unleashed their slaughter, it was not just Shabbat, but Simchat Torah, the Biblical festival on which we complete the cycle of reading the Torah in Deuteronomy, and begin again in Genesis. It should have been a joyous day of celebration. Instead, it was and will forever be marked by a bloody, inhuman massacre.
As much as we read the Torah in an annual cycle, let’s not allow for use of another worn out phrase, “the cycle of violence.” It is not a cycle of violence, but a timeless war of good versus evil. A war cannot be won with words, or placating evil. Evil must be defeated. This is time to do that. It’s a huge job. Maybe President Biden can’t do it all, but he also cannot walk away from what can and must be done.
While Israeli’s appreciate President Biden’s visit and strong support, it must be clear that the threat is not just about Israel, but about Jews and Christians everywhere in the face of Islamic terror, and to America, which they refer to as the Big Satan. It is a threat to western civilization, to democracy, and it must be stopped.
Israel thanks President Biden for visiting, for his unequivocal support, and strong words. We pray that he will continue to stand strong and put substantial action behind these words. Even when it gets bloody, which it will.
Today’s evil snake has many heads. But the snake master is in Tehran. As much Biden supports and has articulated Israel’s need to destroy Hamas, that the war cannot be won without cutting off the head of the snake in Tehran.
I pray that Republican leaders will be waiting for you when you get home, lined up at the White House to support Biden, and to make sure America doesn’t waver. I pray Biden will listen to them. Embrace them. It’s time to stand together.
In the Bible, Joseph acknowledged that he was sent into a difficult position as “what man meant for evil, God meant for good.” I pray that Joe Biden will be clear about the evil we all face, and that he will stand firm to be as bold to defeat it, as his Biblical namesake was as a leader.