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White House rejects Netanyahu claim of US blocking arms shipments, says only one shipment held

Secretary Blinken denies any bottlenecks in support for Israel

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (Photo: Ron Przysucha/State Department)

The administration of U.S. President Joe Biden strongly denied Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s claim that the United States is withholding arms shipments from Israel. 

On Tuesday, Netanyahu released a video where he said he told U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken that “it's inconceivable that in the past few months, the administration has been withholding weapons and ammunitions to Israel.” 

Netanyahu also said, “Secretary Blinken assured me that the administration is working day and night to remove these bottlenecks.” 

“I certainly hope that's the case. It should be the case,” he added. 

Following the release of Netanyahu’s video, Blinken spoke at a news conference at the White House, where he confirmed that the U.S. has continued to hold up one shipment of 2,000-pound bombs, over concerns about their use in the densely populated Gaza Strip. 

Blinken said the U.S. is still reviewing that shipment but denied any other hold ups of weapons shipments to Israel. 

“But everything else is moving as it normally would move, and again, with the perspective of making sure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself against this multiplicity of challenges,” Blinken affirmed. 

Blinken also emphasized that the U.S. is still committed to Israel’s defense against a “multiplicity of threats” in the region. 

“It's very important to remember that our security relationship with Israel goes well beyond Gaza. Israel is facing a multiplicity of threats and challenges including in the north, from Hezbollah, from Iran, from the Houthis in the Red Sea," Blinken said, reassuring that “there has been no change in our posture” regarding support for Israel’s defense against the threats. 

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, commenting on Netanyahu’s video, said, “We genuinely do not know what he’s talking about.” 

She also affirmed the pause for the 2,000-pound bombs but said there have been no other holdups. 

“There are no other pauses, none,” she stated. 

Biden has faced increasing pressure from some members of his own Democratic party to reduce support for Israel. However, the president has used emergency authorities on two occasions since the start of the Gaza War to bypass Congress review and facilitate weapons shipments to Israel more quickly. 

Following the release of Netanyahu’s video, the White House canceled a strategic meeting scheduled for Thursday between U.S. officials and senior Israeli officials, including Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer and National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi. 

The meeting was intended to address critical matters regarding Israel’s security, such as the northern border situation with Hezbollah, ongoing IDF operations in Gaza, post-war plans for the Gaza Strip, and Iranian threats.

Several Israeli officials were reportedly already en route to Washington, D.C. when the decision was made to cancel.

According to Axios, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan will still meet his Israeli counterpart, Hanegbi.

In addition, Israel's Defense Minister Yoav Gallant is still scheduled to visit Washington early next week.


Following the publication of this article, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Biden administration is delaying the recently approved $18 billion sale of 50 F-15 fighter jets to Israel.

A State Department official told The Wall Street Journal that, “There is no policy guidance to slow down transfers to Israel."

He also said, “We are looking tactically at the timing. It is not a question of whether. It is a question of when.”

The White House has not yet commented on the situation.

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

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