Biden Administration's Efforts to Prevent Escalation Between Israel and Hezbollah
Biden Administration's Effor...
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Biden Administration's Efforts to Prevent Escalation Between Israel and Hezbollah

27 June 2024
2567
2 min.
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Biden Administration's Efforts to Prevent Escalation Between Israel and Hezbollah

Diplomatic Deadlock

The Biden administration's efforts to mitigate escalating clashes between Israel and Hezbollah in southern Lebanon are facing major obstacles, primarily due to challenges in arranging a cease-fire in Gaza, according to U.S. officials.

The Biden administration faces obstacles in mitigating clashes between Israel and Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, complicated by the Gaza cease-fire issue. The White House aims to prevent a wider war involving Iran and insists that northern de-escalation is independent of Gaza. “We have a diplomatic process under way,” a senior administration official said. “We’re in fairly intensive consultations with the Israelis, Lebanese and others.”

Hezbollah, a U.S.-designated terrorist group allied with Hamas, has intensified attacks on northern Israel, increasing pressure on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government. Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah's secretary-general, warned Israel: “No place in the country is safe from our rockets.” A senior Biden administration official rejected this logic.

U.S. envoy Amos Hochstein's attempts to mediate a Hezbollah border pullback have seen little success. Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant stressed Israel's preference for peace but readiness for all outcomes, saying, “Israel wants to find a solution that will change the security situation in the north. We don’t want war, but we are preparing for every scenario.”

Since October 7, Israel and Hezbollah have exchanged attacks, raising fears of escalation. This risk has prompted countries like Canada and Germany to advise their citizens to leave Lebanon.

Israel faces a tougher challenge with Hezbollah than with Hamas, as Hezbollah possesses over 150,000 rockets and missiles that can reach major Israeli cities. The conflict has led to significant casualties, with at least 338 Hezbollah fighters killed. Former State Department official David Schenker noted the Biden administration's efforts to prevent a wider conflict, given concerns about a potential Hezbollah-Israel war and Iran's possible involvement.

The U.S. is proposing to deploy Lebanese Armed Forces to border areas and expand the U.N. peacekeeping force in southern Lebanon, in exchange for Israel limiting its aerial operations over Lebanon.

Persons6 and Companies1 in the news

Deputy Assistant to the President and Senior Adviser for Energy and Investment under U.S. President Joe Biden
1 place
American diplomat
2 place
Israeli politician and retired military general
3 place
Lebanese cleric and the secretary-general of Hezbollah
4 place
Prime minister of Israel
5 place
46th President of the United States
6 place
White House
1 place
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