US frustration with Israel has grown in recent weeks – and new UN resolution is sign of that displeasure

US News

Washington’s unwavering diplomatic support for Israel at the UN has put the US in an increasingly isolated position as many of the world’s countries have called for an end to the fighting in Gaza.

President Biden is also under pressure domestically and within his own party to change the course of the war.

As one of the permanent members of the Security Council, the US has twice used its power of a veto to thwart resolutions aimed at stopping the war.

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It is expected to do so again on Tuesday afternoon, when an Algerian-sponsored proposal is put to the Security Council calling for an immediate and permanent ceasefire.

The White House argues that it would complicate ongoing negotiations for a new hostage deal – and a pause in fighting now, without a deal, could result in the hostages being held indefinitely.

But US frustration with Israel and Benjamin Netanyahu has steadily grown in recent weeks as civilian fatalities in Gaza have continued to rise rapidly, with aid into Gaza restricted despite US requests.

News of a US-drafted resolution is, presumably, a sign of that displeasure and an attempt to reshape global opinion that the country is complicit in the war.

The wording, insofar of what we know from reports, will call for a temporary ceasefire, itself a shift in US tone, but only “as soon as practicable”, which leaves the timing open for interpretation.

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Netanyahu defiant over Rafah

In what is effectively criticism of Israel, the resolution also intends to say that an invasion of Rafah, in southern Gaza, “would have serious implications for regional peace and security” but only “under current circumstances”, which again leaves the door ajar for Israel to deliver an agreeable plan for the 1.2 million civilians seeking refuge there.

The US resolution would also be based on the condition that all remaining hostages are released, and all barriers are removed to let more humanitarian aid in.

Read more:
Israel’s war cabinet indicates date for Rafah invasion
Gaza’s Nasser hospital ‘not functional’ following Israeli raid

Pic: Reuters
Palestinians gather in the hope of getting bags of flour loaded on aid trucks near an Israeli checkpoint, as Gaza residents face crisis levels of hunger, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Gaza City, February 19, 2024. REUTERS/Kosay Al Nemer
Image:
Palestinians gather in the hope of getting bags of flour in Gaza City. Pic Reuters

It’s unclear when this would be put to a vote – US diplomats at the UN have cautioned against it being today, saying that they are in no rush to push it forward.

Private discussions will first take place as the US will need to gather support and possibly tweak the wording to get it over the line.

Most UN Security Council members want an immediate ceasefire, so might object to it in its current format.

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