Biden talks about the suffering of Israeli detainees and ignores any mention of Palestinian prisoners (Anatolia)

Washington — As Americans were busy shopping on the evening of Black Friday, President Joe Biden appeared from Nantucket, Massachusetts, where he is on a family holiday, to talk to the American people about the start of the release of hostages and detainees in implementation of the interim truce agreement in Gaza reached a few days ago.

Biden spoke of his personal role in reaching the temporary truce, spoke of the suffering of Israeli hostages and the joy of reuniting them with their families, ignored any mention of Palestinian prisoners, women and children, and did not mention the thousands of civilian casualties in the Gaza Strip.

In justifying his continued support for Israeli aggression, Biden echoes Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government's claim that its attacks forced Hamas to negotiate the release of prisoners and the start of a temporary truce.

In an interview with Al Jazeera Net, a former US diplomat (who preferred not to be named) pointed out that "Biden's calculations towards the Gaza crisis were simple from the beginning, he realizes that Israel has bipartisan support, hence his choice to support Israel came as an alternative that will not cause him any trouble."

But the continuation of the Israeli aggression for 50 days and the killing, destruction and unprecedented Israeli brutality in Gaza caused great embarrassment to Biden, and many Democrats poured their anger on the US president for what they considered complete complicity in the aggression on the Gaza Strip.

Hence, many observers considered that Biden's speech to the American people is an attempt to reformulate his damaged image among a large segment of Democratic voters, and to show him from a supporter of war to a peacemaker.

Personal role

In his address to the American people, Biden said, "We can express our gratitude today for the meeting of families with their loved ones held hostage for nearly 50 days, as the fighting in Gaza will cease for 4 days, under a deal reached thanks to extensive American diplomacy, including through several contacts I had from the Oval Office with leaders from across the region."

Biden added several phrases highlighting his personal role in reaching this truce: "Today is the fruit of a lot of hard work and weeks of work on a personal level, and my team and I have worked around the clock to release the hostages from the moment Hamas kidnapped them."

"I have consistently pushed for a truce in the fighting for two reasons: first, to accelerate and expand humanitarian deliveries to Gaza, and the other is to facilitate the release of hostages," he said.

"Over recent weeks, I have spoken repeatedly with the emir of Qatar, Egyptian President Sisi and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to help reach this deal."

Biden also sought to humanize his speech, saying, "All of these hostages have suffered, and this is the beginning of a long journey toward recovery for them. My wife Jill and I remember them in our prayers today."

"This prolonged truce provides a crucial opportunity to deliver the food, medicine, water and fuel aid needed by civilians in Gaza, and we will not waste any minutes," Biden said, adding, "I have focused on this since my visit to Israel."

One reporter asked Biden, "Mr. President, how long do you expect this war to take? Did you encourage Prime Minister Netanyahu to set a time frame for the end of this year, for example, to stop the fighting?"

But Biden ignored the timing point of the cessation of hostilities as demanded by millions of Americans, replying: "I encouraged the prime minister to focus on trying to reduce the number of casualties while trying to get rid of Hamas, and that's a legitimate goal for him.

Al Jazeera broadcasts scenes of the Qassam Brigades handing over the second batch of Israeli and foreign detainees to the Red Cross #GazaWar #الأخبار

— Al Jazeera (@AJArabic) November 25, 2023

Youth Voices

A Reuters/Ipsos poll in mid-November suggests that 77 percent of Democrats believe Israel should call for a ceasefire and try to negotiate.

The latest NBC nationwide poll also found that President Biden lags behind former President Donald Trump among young voters ages 18 to 34, with Trump receiving 46 percent support from that group and Biden receiving only 42 percent.

During the 2020 election, according to the results of the Pew Research Center's voter analysis, Biden won the vote under the age of 30 by 59% to Trump's 35%.

Many commentators attribute this significant decline in support for young people to several reasons, foremost of which is Biden's position on the ongoing aggression on the Gaza Strip.

Many commentators believe that Biden's principled position in full support of the Israeli side did not take into account the strength of the youth voices and their interest in the issue of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories.

The retired US diplomat told Al Jazeera Net that "Biden represents the last symbols of the generation of elders in American politics, and does not allow him age to realize the importance of young people's voices, preferences and political tendencies, this generation does not know Biden, these voters do not derive their information and vision of the world from traditional media such as their parents and grandparents, they do not watch news networks, and do not read traditional newspapers, their main source is Instagram, Tik Tok and YouTube."

It does not seem that Biden's coloring will succeed in convincing young people to change their position given their full support for Israel and their demand to eliminate Hamas as soon as the Israeli aggression returns with the end of the truce days.

Source : Al Jazeera