In the first sign of calming these differences, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked Sullivan for US support for Israel in its war against Hamas.
Analysts and observers speaking to Sky News Arabia believe that Jack Sullivan’s visit to Israel contains several urgent, important files, among them setting a timetable for the war in Gaza, avoiding indiscriminate bombing and resuming discussions on the release of detained prisoners. by the Hamas movement.
What did Sullivan discuss?
- According to The Times of Israel, the meeting discussed “eliminating Hamas, eliminating its military capabilities and ending the movement’s rule in Gaza by freeing all hostages, continuing the war and achieving common goals.”
- Before the trip, Jake Sullivan told the Wall Street Journal that he would discuss a timetable for ending the war and urge Israeli officials to move to “a different phase of high-intensity operations than we see today.”
- On the other hand, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Galant confirmed during his meeting with Sullivan that the war in Gaza “will take more than a few months”.
- Netanyahu said he spoke with Sullivan about regional threats, including Hezbollah and the Houthis in Yemen, the return of those detained by Hamas and continuing humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza.
- National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Sullivan’s “message was consistent” in meetings with Israeli officials: The United States would continue to support Israel and do everything we could to broker a new ceasefire that would help reunify the remaining prisoners. with their families.
- It comes as Biden says Netanyahu must “replace his extremist government” after Tel Aviv lost support from the international community as a result of its indiscriminate bombing of Gaza, which is suffering under the weight of a massive humanitarian crisis. Crisis.
- However, Israeli officials are concerned that a visit to Israel by the US national security adviser could see a “US deadline” set for weeks to end the war on Gaza, Haaretz newspaper reported.
Stress in the course of war
Commenting on Sullivan’s visit to Israel, former US Assistant Secretary of Defense for Middle East Affairs Mike Mulroy said in an interview with Sky News Arabia that the US is under great pressure both at home and from its allies. As stated in the vote on the resolution, the cease-fire at the United Nations serves as a warning to the White House against continuing the status quo.
Mulroy, who previously worked for the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), identified several points as the most important priorities of Jack Sullivan’s visit to Israel:
- The White House continues to press for a change in tactics used by the Israeli military due to the high civilian casualties we have seen so far in Gaza.
- Sullivan is trying to reopen discussions on the release of those held by Hamas and is likely to push for more aid to be allowed into Gaza as the humanitarian crisis there continues to worsen.
- The US National Security Adviser is likely to push for an end to major military operations within 3-4 weeks.
- He would like to discuss what comes after the conclusion of major hostilities to include a political path towards a possible settlement based on a two-state solution. This time, regardless of party or ideology, but the answer is very important. The only viable solution to this current conflict is for the United States to implement it.
- Points of contention between Washington and Tel Aviv have been numerous civilian casualties since what President Biden described as “indiscriminate bombing” by the Israeli military.
- The White House may also be concerned about Israel limiting the amount of humanitarian aid allowed into Gaza, and I think they will push hard for no restrictions on the food, water, medicine, and fuel that civilians now desperately need.
6 emergency files
For his part, Ayman Samir, an expert specializing in international relations, said in reports to Sky News Arabia that Sullivan took a number of important messages and files with him on his first visit to Israel since the October 7 operation.
“Sameer” identified these files at several points, including:
- First fileThere is US-Israeli interest in concluding a new deal with Hamas on the prisoner issue, and I believe Sullivan has new ideas about releasing a new number of prisoners in exchange for the release of Hamas prisoners. The number of Palestinian prisoners, and Washington’s contacts with Egyptian and Qatari mediators, may have paved the way for the deal, as Washington sees the deal as one of the clearest victories of the past two months.
- The second fileSullivan tries to persuade Israel to continue military operations, but instead of indiscriminate firing, Israel loses international support and leads to thousands of civilian casualties. So, Sullivan tries to convince Netanyahu that he has another plan to reach Israel. The general goal is to eliminate Hamas and its infrastructure in the Gaza Strip without killing large numbers of civilians.
- Third file: This is about the day after the end of the war in the Gaza Strip, and there is a gap between Israel and America on this issue, and America hopes that Sullivan will try to bridge this gap between the two sides. The Palestinian Authority could be an alternative to Hamas in the Gaza Strip, but Israel says it is directly occupying the strip, which Washington denies.
- Fourth fileThe United States is very concerned about the situation in the West Bank, the actions of Israeli settlers, the distribution of weapons to them by Minister of National Defense Itamar Ben Jivir, and the killing of scores of Palestinians by settlers. The US has sought to impose economic sanctions on some settlers, hoping that securing security in the West Bank would be the start of enabling the Palestinian Authority to play a positive role in the post-war era.
- The fifth file: Perhaps it is to persuade Israel not to respond to Houthi threats, because the US estimates that if Israel tries to respond, it will widen the circle of war, so he is trying to convince the Israelis to stay the same. State of conflict.
- Sixth fileSullivan is seeking some sort of agreement with Lebanon regarding borders that would eventually allow Israel to secure the northern region, which is home to 80,000 Israeli settlers who have fled the northern region as a result of Hezbollah attacks from southern Lebanon. European countries like Washington and France are interested.
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