Some employees at the State Department have endorsed a diplomatic dissent cable condemning President Biden’s position on the Israel-Hamas conflict, according to a report by Axios. The internal communication accuses Biden of “spreading misinformation” and Israel of committing “war crimes.”
The memo reportedly did not contain any specific examples of the allegations.
The article stated that Sylvia Yacoub, who is assigned to the Bureau of Middle East Affairs, sent an email to her colleagues on Nov. 9 in order to gather signatures in support of the dispatch, and that more than 100 people signed in approval.
According to the report, Yacoub allegedly said that Joe Biden was “complicit in genocide,” in a post on X.
On Monday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken acknowledged the disagreement in a message addressed to his personnel saying, “some people in the Department may disagree with approaches we are taking or have views on what we can do better,” and that the White House’s objective is to “to bring this terrible conflict to a close as quickly as possible, while standing by Israel’s right and obligation, in full accordance with international humanitarian law, to ensure a terrorist attack like October 7th never happens again.”
Politico disclosed last week that an additional dissenting opinion on the war was submitted by two Middle East specialists, criticizing the U.S. reluctance to advocate for a ceasefire and for its failure to publicly admonish Israel.
The State Department has had “dissent cables” since the 1960’s, to provide diplomats with a means to express their personal differences with executive branch policies. Comments made on them are typically free of reprisals from the agency’s leadership.