US Deputy National Security Advisor Jon Finer says the Biden administration has not given Israel a deadline to wrap up its military operation in Gaza.
“We’re not in the business of being that prescriptive with a core partner and ally who has suffered such an egregious, appalling terrorist attack and who is responding in our view with what is absolutely necessary in their responsibility to reduce the threat to their own civilian population,” Finer says in response to a question on the matter during a fireside chat at the Aspen Security Forum.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken did, however, tell the war cabinet last week that Israel has weeks, not months, to prosecute its war against Hamas at the high intensity it has been since it launched its ground operation on October 27, an Israeli official told The Times of Israel.
“We have not given a firm deadline to Israel — not really our role. This is their conflict,” Finer says.
“That said, we do have influence, even if we don’t have ultimate control over what happens on the ground in Gaza,” he clarifies.
“We are trying to use our influence to steer that conflict in the most constructive… way possible,” he continues, referring to the need to abide by international law.
“But in terms of telling them ‘you must stop at this moment’ — that’s not the way we conduct our business.