A recent Gallup survey has revealed that 55% of Americans now disapprove of Israel’s military campaign in the Gaza Strip, marking a significant shift in public opinion. This decline in support is evident across all major party groups, with Democrats and independents showing an 18-point drop in approval, and Republicans experiencing a seven-point decline. The war has resulted in the deaths of thousands of Palestinians and over 1,000 Israelis, with large parts of Gaza being destroyed and many Palestinians facing extreme hardship, including the threat of famine. Tensions between the U.S. and Israel have escalated in recent weeks, with Netanyahu canceling a delegation to Washington, D.C. after the U.S. refused to veto a UN Security Council resolution calling for a cease-fire in Gaza during Ramadan.

President Joe Biden has criticized Netanyahu for his handling of the conflict, stating that he believes the Israeli prime minister is “hurting Israel more than helping Israel” and calling for more attention to be paid to the innocent lives being lost. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, the highest-ranking Jewish official in the U.S., also delivered a critical speech urging Israel to change its course and hold new elections. Despite this pressure, Netanyahu has resisted U.S. calls for a cease-fire and is determined to expand Israeli military actions into the city of Rafah. He has warned that Israel will proceed with or without U.S. support, emphasizing the need to eliminate remaining Hamas battalions in Rafah.

Former President Donald Trump, a vocal supporter of Netanyahu, has urged Israel to swiftly conclude the conflict in Gaza and criticized the release of images and videos depicting the bombing of Gaza by the Israeli Defense Ministry. Trump expressed concern that Israel is losing support due to the visual impact of these actions on a global audience, emphasizing the need to present a more positive image to the world. Despite the criticisms, Netanyahu remains steadfast in his commitment to intensifying military operations in Gaza, with plans to target Rafah in order to defeat Hamas.

As Americans prepare for the upcoming 2024 presidential election, the conflict in Gaza and U.S.-Israel relations will likely play a significant role in shaping the foreign policy agenda of potential candidates. The ongoing violence in Gaza and the shifting attitudes towards Israel’s military campaign highlight the complex dynamics at play in the region, as well as the challenges faced by the U.S. in balancing its support for Israel with concerns about civilian casualties and humanitarian crises. The role of prominent political figures, such as Biden and Schumer, in voicing their criticism of Netanyahu’s approach underscores the broader implications of the conflict for U.S. foreign policy and global perceptions of American support for Israel.

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