All Israel

In pair of interviews, Blinken says Rafah operation would not remove Hamas from Gaza

State secretary says despite weapons holdup, ‘no red lines’ for Israel

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken interviewed by NBC News’ “Meet the Press”, On May 11, 2024 (Photo: Screenshot).

In an interview with CBS News’ “Meet the Nation,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken shared White House concerns over the war in Gaza, particularly regarding the situation following any Rafah operation. 

Blinken stated that even if Israel moves into Rafah, there will still be a Hamas presence in the Gaza Strip that will cause problems. 

“Without a plan for the day after the war, Israel will be left holding the bag on an enduring insurgency because a lot of armed Hamas [terrorists] will be left, no matter what they do in Rafah,” Blinken stated. 

Speaking to NBC News’ “Meet the Press”, the state secretary also confirmed that the U.S. and Israel agree on the need to remove Hamas from leadership in Gaza. 

“We share Israel's objective of making sure that Hamas cannot govern Gaza anymore, that it be demilitarized, that Israel get its leaders,” he said. “We continue to support that.” 

The issue for the White House, Blinken said, is the belief that “there's a better way of achieving that than going headlong into Rafah.” 

Blinken did not elaborate on what the Biden administration’s “better way” would be, however, he did say that previous IDF operations did not remove all Hamas presence. 

“Right now, the trajectory that Israel is on is, even if it goes in and takes heavy action in Rafah, there will still be thousands of armed Hamas left,” Blinken stated. “We've seen in areas that Israel has cleared in the north, even in Khan Younis, Hamas coming back.” 

Over the past few days, the IDF has been involved in operations to prevent Hamas from re-establishing itself in the northern Gaza Strip. 

Blinken restated U.S. President Joe Biden's decision to withhold certain weapons from the Israeli army in the event of a major Rafah military operation.

“There are certain [weapons] systems that we will not provide Israel that would aid in that effort because it’s something that we do not want to be part of, given the damage that it would do to civilians,” Blinken clarified. 

In the CBS interview, Blinken clarified that most of these weapons are larger than 2,000-pound bombs, which would cause significant collateral damage in densely packed urban areas. 

“Biden doesn’t want to see American weapons used in that kind of operation. That’s not to say that he is going to abandon Israel or cut them off from weapons,” Blinken explained. 

“He was focused on a particular operation that he doesn’t believe will succeed in defeating Hamas and that will cause grievous harm” to civilians, he continued. 

However, the secretary also said that Biden is not talking about red lines

“Look, when it comes to Israel, we don't talk about red lines,” Blinken said. 

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

All Israel
Receive latest news & updates
    A message from All Israel News
    Help us educate Christians on a daily basis about what is happening in Israel & the Middle East and why it matters.
    For as little as $5, you can support ALL ISRAEL NEWS, a non-profit media organization that is supported by readers like you.
    Donate to ALL ISRAEL NEWS
    Popular Articles
    Latest Stories