US President Joe Biden on Tuesday said the Hamas attack on Israel was “unadulterated evil unleashed on the world”, adding that at least 14 US citizens were killed in the incident.
Biden also said that Hamas’s goal was to wipe out the state of Israel and kill the Jewish people.
“There are moments in this life – and I mean that literally – when pure, unadulterated evil is unleashed on this world. The people of Israel experienced one such moment this weekend. The bloody hands of the terrorist organization Hamas – a group that has declared its purpose of existence is to kill Jews, ” Biden said in his address to the nation from the White House.
The US president has previously pledged his administration’s “firm and unwavering” support for Israel. The United States has launched a major global diplomatic campaign to rally support for Israel and take necessary action against the Palestinian militant group Hamas.
Hamas launched a wave of attacks on Israel on Saturday, killing hundreds, in the biggest escalation of the conflict in decades. Israel has already responded with a wave of airstrikes on Gaza, killing over 800 people.
Biden said the U.S. has also strengthened its military presence in the region.
“It was an act of pure evil. More than 1,000 civilians were killed – not just killed, killed – in Israel. Among them were at least 14 American citizens. They massacred parents (who were) using their bodies to try to protect their children. News of “stomach-turning babies killed. Whole families killed. Young people massacred while attending a music festival to celebrate peace,” he said.
Biden claimed that Hamas’ actions in Israel were terrorism, saying they resembled “the worst rampages of ISIS.”
“It’s abhorrent. The brutality of Hamas – this bloodlust – is reminiscent of the worst, worst rampages of ISIS. This is terrorism. But for the Jewish people, unfortunately, this is nothing new,” he said.
“This attack has brought to the surface the painful memories and scars left by millennia of anti-Semitism and the genocide of the Jewish people. So at this point, we must be crystal clear. We stand with Israel. We stand with Israel. We will ensure that Israel has what it needs to take care of its citizens, defend itself, and respond to this attack. There is no justification for terrorism. There is no excuse,” the US president said.
Meanwhile, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said he will travel to Israel and Jordan from October 11 to 13 to meet with senior officials.
“The Secretary will reiterate his condolences to the victims of terrorist attacks against Israel and condemn them in the strongest possible terms. The Secretary will also reaffirm the solidarity of the United States with the government and people of Israel. He will also discuss measures to strengthen Israel’s security and underscore the United States’ unwavering support for Israel’s right to self-defense.” the foreign ministry said.
Blinken spoke with Israeli President Isaac Herzog to reaffirm unwavering US support for Israel’s right to self-defense. He reiterated his condolences to all those killed or injured and those still missing.
In his speech, Biden said Hamas does not stand up for the Palestinian people’s right to dignity and self-determination. Its stated purpose is the destruction of the state of Israel and the murder of the Jewish people, adding that they are using Palestinian civilians as human shields, he said.
“Hamas offers nothing but terror and bloodshed no matter who pays for it. The loss of innocent lives is heartbreaking. Like every nation in the world, Israel has the right to respond,” Biden said.
Biden also added that he spoke with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the third time since the Hamas attack. “I told him that if the United States experiences what Israel experiences, our response would be swift, decisive, and overwhelming,” he said.
Image Source: The New Republic