A top defense official said today that the recent attacks on Israel by Hamas from Gaza are more severe than previous ones. President Joe Biden mentioned that these attacks have caused the deaths of hundreds of Israelis, including 11 Americans. Additionally, Hamas terrorists have kidnapped people from Israel and taken them to Gaza.
President Biden stated that it’s possible that American citizens are among those held by Hamas. He has instructed his team to work closely with Israeli authorities to address the hostage crisis. This includes sharing intelligence and sending experts from the U.S. government to help with hostage rescue efforts.
The defense official emphasized that this Hamas attack is unlike previous conflicts between Israel and Hamas. It’s marked by extreme violence, similar to what ISIS has done. Israeli civilians have suffered greatly, with homes burned down, and young people killed even at music festivals.
Since the attack began, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III has been very clear that the U.S. fully supports Israel’s right to defend itself. He and the National Security Council have been reaching out to allies in the Middle East and Europe to convey this message. They’re also warning potential adversaries not to exploit the situation and escalate the conflict.
Secretary Austin has been in touch with Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant to get updates on the situation and find out what equipment Israel needs to defend itself.
The United States is sending increased support to Israel, including air defense systems and ammunition. They are working closely with Israeli counterparts to meet their urgent requirements. Additionally, the U.S. is expediting the shipment of military equipment that Israel had already ordered. They’re also assessing U.S. inventories to provide equipment quickly.
To strengthen its presence in the region, the U.S. has sent the USS Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group to the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. This group includes an aircraft carrier, cruisers, and destroyers and will conduct maritime and air operations to support allies and maintain regional stability. It’s ready for various missions.
Furthermore, Secretary Austin has dispatched more Air Force fighter aircraft to the region, including F-35, F-15, F-16, and A-10 planes.
All these actions are meant to show, through actions and not just words, that the U.S. stands firmly with Israel in its defense and to deter any regional actors from escalating the conflict.
While Iran is suspected of supporting groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, there’s no specific evidence of their direct involvement in these recent attacks. However, Iran has a history of aiding and training such militant groups, and their role in promoting instability and violence in the region has been a longstanding concern.
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