Photo Credit: Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz
President Joe Biden talks on the phone with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, November 7, 2022.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Joe Biden spoke by phone on Sunday in advance of the final day of the Passover holiday, which lasts seven days in Israel and eight days outside the Jewish State.

According to a readout of the call released by the White House, Biden “reaffirmed his ironclad commitment to Israel’s security following the successful defense against Iran’s unprecedented missile and drone attack earlier this month.”


The two leaders also reviewed ongoing talks to secure the release of hostages together with “an immediate ceasefire in Gaza,” the White House said.

During the call, Biden referred to his statement with 17 other world leaders demanding that Hamas release their citizens without delay to secure a ceasefire and relief for the people of Gaza.

Biden and Netanyahu “also discussed increases in the delivery of humanitarian assistance into Gaza including through preparations to open new northern crossings starting this week. The president stressed the need for this progress to be sustained and enhanced in full coordination with humanitarian organizations,” according to the readout, which added that the two men “discussed Rafah and the president reiterated his clear position.”

That “clear position” is the Biden Administration’s firm opposition to an IDF invasion of Rafah, where the remaining four Hamas battalions and the terror group’s leadership is holed up, possibly with at least some of the hostages abducted from Israel on October 7, 2023.

The Biden Administration has for months demanded that Israel provide the White House with a “clear and actionable plan” to evacuate and provide for the more than one million Gazans who currently reside in Rafah, many of whom evacuated their homes in combat zones elsewhere in Gaza at the urging of the IDF, which provided humanitarian corridors and safe zones for them.

Multiple rocket attacks have since been fired at southern Israel from within those safe zones. Moreover, it is important to note that in multiple surveys since the October 7 massacre perpetuated by Hamas-led terrorists in southern Israel, at least 70 percent of Gaza’s civilians have consistently expressed support for Hamas and the October 7 attack.

Israel’s prime minister and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant have both pledged not to end the war with Hamas before rescuing all of the hostages, destroying the ability of Hamas to control Gaza and wage war, and ensuring that Gaza and its terrorist groups can never again pose a threat to the State of Israel and its people.

White House National Security communications adviser John Kirby told ABC’s “This Week” program on Sunday that US is still working on reaching a deal with Hamas terrorists that would include a temporary ceasefire and the release of hostages with the aim of transitioning into an end to the war.

“If we’re able to get this hostage deal in place, and we are still working at that, Hamas has not fully rejected it, they are considering this proposal on the table, if we can get that in place, then that gives you six weeks of peace. It gives you no fighting for six weeks, and that includes no fighting in Rafah,” Kirby said.

“And what we’re hoping is that after six weeks of a temporary ceasefire, we can maybe get something more enduring in place. We want to see an end to the conflict as soon as possible,” he added.

Earlier this month, Biden signed into law a $26.3 billion aid package for Israel that included $9 billion for additional humanitarian aid to Gaza and $17 billion in defense aid for the Jewish State.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.