Five days into an unrelenting Israeli war on the Gaza Strip, US President Barack Obama has reiterated his unconditional support for the attack, saying he is “fully supportive” of Israel’s decision and adding that Israel has a “right to defend its borders.”
At the same time, Obama expressed some concern for the threatened Israeli ground invasion of the strip. Not that he was concerned that it would dramatically increase the civilian death toll, mind you, but that “if Israeli troops are in Gaza, they’re much more at risk of incurring fatalities or being wounded.”
And while Obama expressed concern that an “escalation” of the war might mean a further delay of peace talks, with the talks already stalled for well over a year and with Israeli officials repeatedly ruling out returning that is likely a very minor concern. Obama did reiterate that he would be fine with the invasion, however, only saying it was “preferable” for Israel to win without doing so.
Israel has continued to send more troops to the Gaza border for an eventual attack, and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he is prepared to “significantly expand” the war, while reiterating that no matter how aggressive Israel’s attack gets it is “purely defensive” in nature.