Strategy à la Biden

When it comes to Iran’s massive missile and drone attack on Israel this past Saturday evening, President Biden has instructed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to let bygones be bygones. I don’t think he cited Sun Tzu in support of the Biden doctrine, but the White House has not released a readout of Biden’s call to Netanyahu following the attack. Rather, the White House released this statement publicly seeking to deter Israel:

I’ve just spoken with Prime Minister Netanyahu to reaffirm America’s ironclad commitment to the security of Israel. I told him that Israel demonstrated a remarkable capacity to defend against and defeat even unprecedented attacks – sending a clear message to its foes that they cannot effectively threaten the security of Israel.

You have to use your imagination to fill in the blanks.

Biden further arranged for a joint statement by the G7 to the same effect yesterday — the mighty arm of Biden diplomacy made itself felt.

Biden told Israel that the interception of nearly all of the Iranian drones and missiles used to attack it constituted a major victory, and so further retaliation might not be necessary, according to U.S. official who spoke with the New York Times. Referring to the phone call with the missing readout, the Times reports:

Mr. Biden spoke with Mr. Netanyahu on Saturday after the Iranian attack and repeated his “ironclad commitment” to Israel’s security. Mr. Biden urged restraint, telling Mr. Netanyahu that it was time to “think carefully and strategically” about the risks of escalation if the Israelis respond in kind with military force, according to one senior administration official.

You have to love it in a laughter is the best medicine kind of way. Israelis really need the help of Joe Biden in thinking through the risks of conflict.

If he ever resumes retirement with a phony baloney job at the University of Pennsylvania, Biden must teach the course on strategy à la Biden. Forget about deterrence! Biden could enlist Robert Gates as his teaching assistant.

Biden would have to devote several classes to the deep meaning of “don’t.” It is an invitation to do — to do it, Biden style. According to Reuters (more here this morning), this is how “don’t” applied in this case:

Iran informed Turkey in advance of its planned operation against Israel, a Turkish diplomatic source told Reuters on Sunday, adding that Washington had conveyed to Tehran via Ankara that any action it took had to be “within certain limits.”

The grand strategy of Joe Biden — within certain limits, you can’t make it up.

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