On Tuesday in New York, Vice President Joe Biden was feeling Israel’s pain.
“I think Israel has an absolute right to deal with its security interest,” he told Charlie Rose on his interview show. “I mean, again, look, you can argue whether Israel should have dropped people onto that ship or not and the — but the truth of the matter is, Israel has a right to know — they’re at war with Hamas — has a right to know whether or not arms are being smuggled in.”
“So what’s the big deal here? What’s the big deal of insisting [aid] go straight to Gaza?” Biden asked.
AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobbying group, rushed out a statement enthusiastically endorsing his position. “He’s clearly a friend of Israel and what he did was a very courageous thing to do in the face of worldwide criticism,” said Jack Rosen, a Biden friend who chairs the American Council for World Jewry.
But a few hours later, other administration officials gave reporters a very different line on the Israeli attack on a convoy of ships carrying relief supplies to Gaza.