Antony Blinken has arrived in Tel Aviv and has a full day scheduled with Israeli leaders.
Unlike most international journeys by the US secretary of state, which are heavily scripted and meticulously planned in advance, this trip has the feel of a diplomatic team working things out, quite literally, on the fly.
His morning begins with a meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu. On the secretary’s last visit, his talks with the Israeli prime minister stretched for seven hours. Today, the Americans’ itinerary is much tighter.
After an hour with Netanyahu, Blinken visits the Israeli war cabinet and then Israeli President Isaac Herzog.
He will next talk with those of us in the press and, perhaps, recount what – if anything – he has accomplished.
The Americans are hoping these meetings will result in more progress in allowing humanitarian aid to enter Gaza.
Israel’s Arab neighbours are becoming increasingly outspoken in their condemnations of Israel’s ground campaign against Hamas.
After today’s Israeli meetings, the secretary heads to Jordan, where he will hear from some of those Arab leaders directly.
The horizon for determining where the secretary goes next from here is measured in hours – and entirely depends on where the Americans determine his diplomatic efforts would be most productive.
The goals for the US, however, are straightforward. To continue to demonstrate support for Israel, to make visible and effective efforts to limit a growing humanitarian crisis in Gaza. And to prevent the Israeli-Hamas war from embroiling the entire region in a growing conflict.
Post Views: 61