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VICTOR JOECKS: To win Muslim votes, Biden undercuts Israel

President Joe Biden is willing to trade thousands of Muslim votes now for the likelihood of hundreds of dead Israelis later.

Israel is preparing to invade Rafah, a city in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. That’s the only city Hamas still controls. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said four Hamas battalions, each with around 1,000 members, are in Rafah. Israel says it will invade on or after March 10 if Hamas hasn’t released the rest of hostages it kidnapped during its Oct. 7 massacre. That number is estimated to be more than 100.

Stop right there. Hamas, a terrorist group, holds 100 Israeli hostages. Biden’s position should be obvious. The terrorists should release the hostages before Israel agrees to a cease-fire or another pause in the fighting.

He may not remember it, but Biden held this position recently. “Israel has the right to defend itself and its people, full stop,” he said shortly after the terror attack.

Later that month, he said in a speech, “Hamas — its stated purpose for existing is the destruction of the State of Israel and the murder of Jewish people.”

But last week, Biden told Netanyahu that an invasion of Rafah “should not proceed without a credible and executable plan for ensuring the safety of and support for the civilians in Rafah,” according to a readout of the conversation. On Tuesday, the United States did veto a U.N. resolution calling for an immediate cease-fire. That’s good, but Biden’s support is wavering. On Monday, news broke that the Biden administration is currently circulating a “temporary cease-fire” resolution at the United Nations. It does call for hostages to be released, but it also warns against Israel invading Rafah.

It’s a morally indefensible position. The responsibility to protect those in Rafah lies with Hamas, the ruling government of Gaza. Hamas should release the hostages and surrender. Israel already does more than any government in world history to protect civilians.

But Israel exercising her right to self-defense gives Biden a major political problem. His age, senility, corruption and incompetence have already narrowed his re-election prospects. He desperately needs to win Michigan. He won there in 2020 by fewer than 3 percentage points, or less than 155,000 votes.

Michigan has a Muslim population of around 240,000. And many of them have made it clear they’re more supportive of Hamas than Israel. They’ve directed their fury at Biden. There’s a movement among some Muslims Americans not to vote for Biden unless he betrays Israel.

As detailed above, he’s doing just that.

This isn’t a small thing. If Hamas survives, it will regroup and launch new attacks with the goal of annihilating Israel. Its spokesman even said this on video.

This means Israel doesn’t just need to wipe out Hamas. It will need to militarily control Gaza for years with a focus on revamping its education system. The United Nations can’t be trusted. Its agency in Gaza was infested with Hamas members.

The United States should support Israel — “full stop.” Instead, Biden is backstabbing our closest Mideast ally to improve his re-election chances. Shame on him.

Victor Joecks’ column appears in the Opinion section each Sunday, Wednesday and Friday. Contact him at vjoecks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4698. Follow @victorjoecks on X.

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