Seven weeks into the Israel-Hamas war, the State Department faced questions on Monday about how the Biden administration sees an end to the conflict and what steps should be taken afterwards.
Matthew Miller, a spokesperson for the State Department, emphasized the importance of prioritizing the Palestinian people in any decision-making process, aiming for the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.
Miller stated, “We want to see the Palestinian people determine their own future through the establishment of a united Palestinian state that includes the West Bank and Gaza.
This is the policy we support and will work towards accomplishing.” He also stressed that decisions regarding the Palestinian people should not be imposed by the United States or Israel.
During the press briefing, a reporter highlighted the apparent disagreement between Miller’s comments and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s statement that Israel will maintain security control in Gaza and stay there indefinitely.
In response, Miller acknowledged that after the conflict, there will need to be a broader conversation between the government of Israel, the Palestinian people, and other regional countries to determine the way forward.
He added, “We are very clear about what the path forward cannot entail: a return to Hamas governance in Gaza and the establishment of a safe haven for launching terrorist attacks against Israel.
Even in the past week, Hamas leaders have expressed their intentions to continue launching attacks.”
Hamas, an Iranian-backed terrorist group, initiated an invasion of Israel on October 7th. The attack resulted in the death of over 1,300 Israelis, with numerous casualties, hostages, and acts of violence, including rape, torture, and murder.
Hamas came into power in 2007 through the Palestinian people’s vote and promptly initiated a reign of terror in the Gaza Strip, attempting to enforce sharia law on the population.
Internationally, Hamas is recognized as a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States, the United Kingdom, the European Union, and several other countries.