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Biden is not the prime minister… Who are the American presidents who drew a red line for Israel?

US President Joe Biden caused a stir last week when he threatened to cut off military aid to Israel if it occupied the town of Rafah, but he is not the first US president to draw a red line for Israel.

US website “Axios” pointed to the importance of Biden’s warning in the face of a challenge from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, another sign of the strained relationship between them. A potential invasion of Rafah has been the biggest source of tension between them, and US officials have expressed concern about the humanitarian impact it could have.

The website added that Biden first raised the possibility of a “red line” with Israel over the Rafah operation in March, and Netanyahu responded by saying that “his red line is to prevent a repeat of the October 7 attack by Hamas.” .”

Children in Gaza (AFP)

Last week, Israeli forces seized the Rafah border crossing between Egypt and Gaza, but the White House says it still doesn’t believe Israel’s actions have crossed the red line set by Biden… which calls for a shift in U.S. policy.

Biden’s threat to Israel drew the ire of many Republicans, with Senator Ted Cruz saying at a press conference Thursday that Biden is “the best friend on earth (Hamas) and (Hezbollah) and Senator Tom Cotton wrote on the “X” website »: “This is for our ally for political reasons. Disgraceful betrayal,” and former Vice President Mike Pence described Biden’s statement as “absolutely unacceptable.”

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On the other hand, Biden’s statement was welcomed by many progressive Democrats, as Senator Bernie Sanders said in a statement: “President Biden is right. “The United States cannot continue to provide more bombs and missiles to support Netanyahu’s disastrous and inhumane policies.”

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez described Biden’s terms on Israel as “the responsible, safe and fair thing to do.”

Axios reviews other US presidents who have threatened to end aid to Israel.

Dwight Eisenhower

During the Suez Crisis (a trilateral invasion of Egypt in 1956), Dwight Eisenhower threatened Israel with economic sanctions to force it to withdraw from the Sinai Peninsula, according to the American Associated Press.

Also in 1953, the Eisenhower administration temporarily delayed $26 million in funding to Israel due to construction of a hydroelectric project on the Jordan River.

Ronald Reagan

In 1981, former President Ronald Reagan indefinitely delayed two shipments of F-16 fighter jets to Israel due to “escalating violence” in the Middle East.

The following year, the Reagan administration warned Congress that Israel may have violated an arms treaty with the United States, while the New York Times reported that Israel had used American-made weapons during its invasion of Lebanon.

Former US President Ronald Reagan (AFP)

In 1983, Reagan reaffirmed that he would not send F-16s to Israel until it withdrew its forces from Lebanon: “When these forces are in a position to occupy another country that has asked them to leave, we are prohibited by law from sending those planes.”

George Bush Sr

Bush Sr. (AFP)

The Washington Post reported in 1992 that the Bush administration threatened to withhold $10 billion worth of loan guarantees if Israel continued to build settlements in the occupied West Bank.

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