Biden Administration Adds, Then Quickly Deletes ‘West Bank and Gaza’ From U.S. Ambassador to Israel Twitter Account
President Joe Biden’s administration immediately changed the U.S. Ambassador to Israel’s Twitter account to reflect the West Bank and Gaza.
Moments later, the administration removed West Bank and Gaza from the account.
Adam Kredo at The Washington Free Beacon noted:
The change in title marks a significant shift in policy toward Israel. The United States has for decades declined to take a policy position on the West Bank and Gaza territories, maintaining the Israelis and the Palestinians must decide in negotiations how the areas will be split up for a future Palestinian state. By including Gaza and the West Bank in the ambassador’s portfolio, the Biden administration appears to be determining that neither area is part of Israel—a move that is certain to rile Israeli leaders. The incoming administration’s move also signals that it will elevate the next ambassador’s role to include conducting direct diplomacy with Palestinian leaders, including in the Gaza Strip, where the Hamas terror group maintains control. This is the only ambassador tasked with conducting diplomacy in a region controlled by a U.S.-designated terror group.
Dan Shapiro used U.S. Ambassador to Israel during his tenure in President Barack Obama’s administration.
Biden said he will not move the U.S. Embassy out of Jerusalem. Tony Blinken, Biden’s choice for secretary of state, agreed with the move.
However, Blinken also wants a two-state solution:
Blinken indicated that Biden would try harder to pursue a separate Palestinian state but acknowledged the difficulties.
“The only way to ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic state and to give the Palestinians a state to which they are entitled is through the so-called two-state solution,” Blinken said.
But he added: “I think realistically it’s hard to see near-term prospects for moving forward on that.”
“What would be important is to make sure that neither party takes steps that make the already difficult process even more challenging,” he said.
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