Wednesday Briefing

Salvaging items from a building that had been hit in Rafah, southern Gaza.Credit…Ahmad Hasaballah/Getty Images

The growing gulf between Israel and the U.S.

Relations between Israel and the U.S. appeared to have sunk to a new low after the U.S. allowed the U.N. Security Council to pass a Gaza cease-fire resolution — and domestic political pressures in both nations are increasing the tension.

President Biden faces outrage from global allies and his political supporters about the civilian death toll in the war on Hamas and Israel’s restrictions on aid entering Gaza.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel faces sharp criticism from his far-right coalition partners, whom he needs to maintain his government, over any hesitation in the war against Hamas or in the expansion of Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. One of those partners recently accused Biden of tacitly supporting Israel’s enemies, and at a campaign event yesterday Biden conceded that Gaza demonstrators “have a point.”

But despite the political signaling, officials said that U.S. policy on supporting Israel has not changed, and talks between Israel’s defense minister and the U.S. secretary of defense continued yesterday even after Netanyahu called off a delegation to Washington.

More news:

  • In Gaza, the authorities said that several people had drowned while trying to retrieve airdropped aid.

  • A former hostage became the first Israeli to speak publicly about being sexually assaulted while she was held captive by Hamas.

The collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge, near the Port of Baltimore.Credit…Erin Schaff/The New York Times
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