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Pressure on Joe Biden Mounts Amidst Criticism of Strikes in Syria, Iraq

Vice President Joe Biden pauses while speaking at a labor rally, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015, in New York

John MilesThe US president has received criticism from both sides of the aisle for his response to the intensification of the Palestine-Israel conflict in recent months.US President Joe Biden was criticized by Republican lawmakers Sunday for his response to a strike by militants killing 3 US troops on the Syria-Jordan border last week.

“If the goal is to deter Iran, you’re failing miserably,” said Senator Lindsay Graham (R-SC) during an interview on US television. “If you’ve convinced Iran you don’t want a wider war, they believe you. ‘Oh, I don’t want a war with you.’ They got the message… they’re not afraid of us. They were afraid of [former US President Donald] Trump.”

Graham criticized the timing of Biden’s retaliatory strikes late last week, which killed some 40 people on Friday, claiming the US President gave groups “a week’s notice.”“People are not afraid of us,” he insisted. “This idea of hitting hundreds of targets… doesn’t matter. The only Iranian we killed in Syria or Iraq… is some dumbass that doesn’t know to get out of the way.”WorldUS Airstrikes Over Eastern Syria Kill Civilian, Military Personnel – Defense Ministry3 February, 08:10 GMTThe United States has alleged Iranian support for militant attacks on US bases throughout the Middle East in recent weeks amidst opposition to US backing of Israel. Iran has denied responsibility.US House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-LA) offered a similar criticism in a statement released Friday.“The tragic deaths of three U.S. troops in Jordan, perpetrated by Iran-backed militias, demanded a clear and forceful response,” said Johnson. “Unfortunately, the administration waited for a week and telegraphed to the world, including to Iran, the nature of our response. The public handwringing and excessive signaling undercuts our ability to put a decisive end to the barrage of attacks endured over the past few months.”White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan responded to Johnson’s criticism Sunday, saying he found his comments “somewhat strange.”“The president made clear before we were attacked… before our brave services members were tragically killed, that if we were attacked, we would respond,” said Sullivan during an appearance on US television.“So, Iran and its military groups knew that the United States was going to respond. We also said we’d do it at a time and place of our choosing. We planned the attack. We executed the attack,” he said of the massive blitz on Friday.Some 40 people were reportedly killed during US strikes, although the number of deaths is still being assessed. Sullivan has claimed more attacks are being planned.AnalysisStrikes Against Anti-ISIS Militias in Syria and Iraq Prove US War on Terror is a Sham3 February, 17:58 GMTThe US also continued its strikes on Houthi targets in Yemen over the weekend, hitting 13 locations. The Houthis are resisting Israeli action in the Gaza Strip, which has killed more than 27,000, via a blockade of ships associated with Israel in the Red Sea.The Houthi attacks have not resulted in any casualties as the group responds to Israel’s ongoing violent incursion, which many international figures and groups have deemed a “genocide.”Meanwhile, polling has suggested Democrats are also displeased with Biden’s handling of the Palestine-Israel conflict in recent months, with a survey in November showing that 46% disapprove of his response.

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