Nobody’s hands are clean, Obama says over Israeli war on Gaza

AP , Sunday 5 Nov 2023

Former US President Barack Obama said Saturday “nobody’s hands are clean”, referring to the Israeli war on Gaza, and acknowledged that he’s questioned in recent days whether his administration could have done more to push for a durable peace when he was in power.

Former US President Barack Obama speaks during Obama Foundation Democracy Forum in Chicago, 3 November, 2023. AFP


“If you want to solve the problem, then you have to take in the whole truth,” Obama said in an interview Pod Save America. “And you then have to admit nobody’s hands are clean. That all of us are complicit to some degree.”

The former president did make an attempt at peace between Israel and Palestinians during his second term, but months of talks collapsed in 2014 amid disagreements on Israeli settlements, the release of Palestinian prisoners and other issues.

“I look at this and I think back what could I have done during my presidency to move this forward — as hard as I tried, I’ve got the scars to prove it,” Obama said in excerpts of interview released on X, formerly known as Twitter.

US administration officials have voiced new concerns and warnings that President Joe Biden's quick support for Israel in its war on Gaza could backfire, amid the continuous Israeli airstrikes on Palestinian civilians and the worsening humanitarian situation in Gaza.

The 80-year-old Democrat has been accused of turning a blind eye to the suffering of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, but the US leader has defended his actions, pointing to his efforts to get humanitarian aid into the besieged strip.

Democrats in Michigan have warned the White House that Biden’s handling of the Israeli war on Gaza could lead the Arab American community to sway the outcome of the 2024 election, in a state he almost certainly can’t afford to lose in his bid for reelection.

Israel has continued its intense bombardment of Gaza since 7 October, killing over 9,500 Palestinians, including women and children.

Numerous buildings have been reduced to rubble, and over a million individuals have been displaced in the besieged strip.

Essential resources such as water, food, and other basic supplies are becoming increasingly scarce.

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