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Iran's attack adds confusion to US presidential election

Iran's attack adds confusion to US presidential election

Posted April. 15, 2024 08:10,   

Updated April. 15, 2024 08:10


Iran's retaliatory strike on Israel performed last Saturday night (local time) is expected to have a great impact on this November's U.S. presidential election. The head-to-head confrontation between the two biggest rivals in the Middle East has brought trouble to U.S. President Joe Biden despite his efforts to stop the spread of the Israel-Hamas war. Former U.S. President Donald Trump harshly criticized his competition as a weak leader.

Briefed on an Israeli cargo ship seized by Iran's Revolutionary Guards in the Strait of Hormuz, President Biden immediately returned to the White House after cutting a trip to a vacation home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Right after the Iranian airstrike, he sided with Israel, writing on his X account that he reaffirms “America’s ironclad commitment to the security of Israel.” Also, he told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a phone call that he would not support any counterattack from Israel's end.

The Israel-Hamas war, which had day 191 as of Sunday, poses the biggest threat to President Biden's presidential race for staying in power. After all, he has been met with somewhat negative responses across the country since the war stagnated although he was once commended for his outstanding diplomatic skills and competence.

Added to this, his core supporters including Muslim American voters have opposed his support of Israel since a growing number of civilians and relief groups were victimized in the Gaza Strip. The New York Times/Siena College Poll executed from April 7 to 11 found that only 36 percent of respondents were supportive of the Biden government's diplomatic policy. The New York Times analyzed that he finds himself in a dilemma where he cannot turn a blind eye to Israel nor offer generous support to the country's traditional ally and friend.

Jeong-Soo Hong hong@donga.com