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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomes US President Joe Biden upon his arrival in Israel on Wednesday, Oct. 18, in a show of solidarity following the unprecedented Hamas attack mounted from Gaza.

Reuters Marketplace/DPA Multimedia Wire

Biden lands in Israel with half an agenda

Half of Joe Biden’s trip to the Middle East fell apart before he even boarded Air Force One. The US president was meant to spend part of Wednesday with Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, before traveling onwards to Amman for a summit with the leaders of Jordan, Egypt, and the Palestinian Authority.

So much for plans. Things changed dramatically when a blast destroyed the Al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza City Tuesday night, killing hundreds of people. Hamas blames Israel, and Israel blames an errant rocket launched from within Gaza. Neither side showed fully convincing evidence, but with anger against Israel already surging on Arab streets, Jordan’s King Abdullah scrapped the Amman summit altogether.

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