U.S. Military Issues Stern Warning in Israel Conflict, No Plans for Ground TroopsGo Back to News and Updates
The United States has warned sternly to avoid the crisis between Israel and Hamas. Despite strongly condemning Hamas's surprise assault, U.S. military and government leaders focus on deterrence, intelligence, and captive retrieval rather than deploying "boots on the ground."
Many countries have come out supporting Israel and have condemned the terrorist act that precipitated the conflict over the weekend. In a news conference Tuesday afternoon, the State Department reaffirmed that no plans exist to send ground troops to fight ISIS or other terrorist groups.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has announced a significant change in force posture, with the USS Gerald Ford, the Navy's newest aircraft carrier, joining four destroyers and a cruiser in the area as a show of deterrence. It was reaffirmed by Vice President Joe Biden, who said, "The United States has also enhanced our military force posture in the region to strengthen our deterrence."
Special operations forces are already in Israel to aid with hostage rescue operations, but no military confrontation is planned. According to official statements, the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower's strike group's deployment to Europe is unconnected to the ongoing Israeli conflict and is instead part of the ship's routine operations.
Hamas launched a surprise attack with "ISIS-level savagery," shocking authorities with cruelty. Benjamin Netanyahu, the prime minister of Israel, has threatened to extract a price that would echo through history.
U.S. soldiers and militants in the area are not expected to come to blows, according to military analysts and officials. The United States military's primary objective is to maintain peace and prevent other countries from joining Israel's enemies. Organizations like Hezbollah are a source of concern in the north of Israel.
Senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, Jonathan Lord, stressed the importance of the United States' involvement in resupplying the Israeli military via logistics and assistance. The United States has committed to providing Israel with the precision-guided missiles and interceptors it has sought for its Iron Dome.
President Biden promised Israel that the United States would ensure it had all the resources to protect its cities and inhabitants even as the crisis escalated. The situation is made more complicated by the presence of American citizens in Israel, where 14 people have been confirmed dead and 20 remain missing.
Even if direct military engagement isn't being considered, having the USS Gerald Ford carrier strike group in the Eastern Mediterranean opens up opportunities for information sharing, non-combatant evacuation operations, and defensive capabilities.
Center for Naval Analyses research scientist Zack Gold stressed the significance of U.S. deterrence in restraining Iran and its allies. He underlined the need to prevent other factions, notably Hezbollah and Iran, from joining the battle against Hamas.
There has been a steady increase in tensions between Washington and Tehran, with the United States increasing its maritime deterrent in reaction to Iran's activities in the Persian Gulf. To determine whether or not the Hamas assault had state-level support, intelligence sharing between partners is essential.
U.S. forces, no matter where they are located as the war develops, are always within their legal right to defend themselves. Without sending ground forces, the goal remains to stabilize the area, discourage other participants, and return Israel to its former homeland.