Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin declared the Pentagon will back Israel in their fight against Hamas, according to a statement issued Saturday.
Austin said the Pentagon will make sure Israel “has what it needs to defend itself” after the country was attacked by Hamas militants. The defense secretary added he is “closely monitoring developments in Israel.” (RELATED: ‘With Overwhelming Force’: 2024 Presidential Candidates Respond To Attack On Israel)
“Our commitment to Israel’s right to defend itself remains unwavering,” Austin stated. “Over the coming days the Department of Defense will work to ensure that Israel has what it needs to defend itself and protect civilians from indiscriminate violence and terrorism.”
I am closely monitoring developments in Israel. Our commitment to Israel’s right to defend itself remains unwavering, and I extend my condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in this abhorrent attack on civilians.
More at: https://t.co/FqABVAxEWB
— Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III (@SecDef) October 7, 2023
Hamas lauched a barrage of over 2,000 rockets into Israeli territory from Gaza, according to the Associated Press (AP). Hamas militants also invaded the country, reportedly taking hostages and murdering civilians, including children and the elderly, per the AP. Over 250 Israelis are dead, according to reports, with the toll expected to rise. Videos of the insurgency and terror attacks spread on social media in the hours following the invasion.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared war on Hamas hours after the bloody attacks, the outlet reported.
U.S. President Joe Biden issued a statement early Saturday acknowledging the terror attacks committed against Israel and reaffirming the nation’s commitment to help Israel protect itself. Later in the day, Biden issued a televised statement, condemning Hamas’s attacks and offering expansive support to Israel.
“Terrorism is never justified. Israel has a right to defend itself and its people. The United States warns against any other party hostile to Israel seeking advantage in this situation,” Biden said.