Biden Tells Netanyahu U.S. Will Not Attack Iran, Pledges Defensive Support

Biden Tells Netanyahu U.S. Will Not Attack Iran, Pledges Defensive Support

President Joe Biden speaks to the National Action Network Convention remotely from the South Court Auditorium of the White House, April 12, 2024. Alex Brandon/AP

Date:

A senior Biden administration official told CNN that “the U.S. will not participate in any offensive operations against Iran, U.S. President Joe Biden has made [this] clear to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”

Biden Says No Offensive Action, Pledges Further Defensive Support for Israel:

Biden also stated that “Israel should consider tonight a win because the current U.S. assessment is that Iran’s attacks had been largely unsuccessful and demonstrated Israel’s superior military capability”. This happened during a phone call between the two leaders that took place at the tail end of Iran’s drone and missile barrages targeted at Israel, which were largely intercepted.

Biden reaffirmed “America’s ironclad commitment to the security of Israel” in a statement after the call and said the U.S. helped take down most of the drones and missiles. Hundreds of drones and at least one hundred and fifty missiles of varying cruise and ballistic variety were launched by Iran over seemingly three waves of attack.

Minor damage and impacts were reported at two Israeli airbases, Nevatim and Ramon. Causalities in Israel were reported from injuries due to debris falling from interceptions, and some impacts, but no fatalities.

Additionally, Biden said he is planning to meet with G7 leaders tomorrow to coordinate a diplomatic response to Iran’s attack. The U.S. military moved aircraft and ballistic missile defense destroyers to the region in the past week, according to him, in apparent preemptive anticipation of the attack by Iran.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and national security adviser Jake Sullivan have all reiterated U.S. support for Israel as well.

Biden’s Full Statement:

“Earlier today, Iran—and its proxies operating out of Yemen, Syria and Iraq—launched an unprecedented air attack against military facilities in Israel. I condemn these attacks in the strongest possible terms.

At my direction, to support the defense of Israel, the U.S. military moved aircraft and ballistic missile defense destroyers to the region over the course of the past week. Thanks to these deployments and the extraordinary skill of our servicemembers, we helped Israel take down nearly all of the incoming drones and missiles.

I’ve just spoken with Prime Minister Netanyahu to reaffirm America’s ironclad commitment to the security of Israel. I told him that Israel demonstrated a remarkable capacity to defend against and defeat even unprecedented attacks – sending a clear message to its foes that they cannot effectively threaten the security of Israel.

Tomorrow, I will convene my fellow G7 leaders to coordinate a united diplomatic response to Iran’s brazen attack. My team will engage with their counterparts across the region. And we will stay in close touch with Israel’s leaders. And while we have not seen attacks on our forces or facilities today, we will remain vigilant to all threats and will not hesitate to take all necessary action to protect our people.”

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