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Press Conference: Karine Jean-Pierre Holds a Press Briefing at The White House - April 4, 2024

  • Karine Jean-Pierre
    Person
  • John Kirby
    Person
  • Question
    Person
Unknown

Karine Jean-Pierre

Positive
00:00:00-00:00:01 (2 sec)
Hi, everyone. Good afternoon. 1

Question

Positive
00:00:01-00:00:03 (2 sec)
Good afternoon. 2

Karine Jean-Pierre

Slightly Positive
00:00:03-00:00:09 (6 sec)
I have just a couple things at the top, and then we'll -- we'll get going. 3

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Positive
00:00:09-00:00:36 (27 sec)
So, tomorrow, as you all know, the President is going to be traveling to Baltimore, where he will receive an operational update on response efforts from the unified command. Leaders from the Coast Guard and Army Co- -- and the Army Corps of Engineers will share updates on the assistance they are providing to state officials in surveying and removing the wreckage in the channel and allowing the Port of Baltimore to reopen as soon as humanly possible. 4

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:00:36-00:00:47 (11 sec)
The President will be joined by Governor Moore and other Maryland and Baltimore-area elected officials. He'll also be joined by Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg. 5

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Negative
00:00:47-00:01:11 (24 sec)
As we all know, six individuals tragically lost their lives when the Francis Scott [DEL: King :DEL] [Key] Bridge collapsed last week. They were hard workers, laboring in the middle of the night to repair potholes on a bridge that tens of thousands of travelers crossed every day. The President will meet with loved ones of those individuals during his trip tomorrow. 6

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Negative
00:01:11-00:01:25 (14 sec)
The President is continuing to lead a whole-of-government approach in responding to the bridge collapse. As the President said within hours of the collapse, this administration will be with the people of Baltimore every step of the way. 7

Karine Jean-Pierre

Positive
00:01:25-00:01:33 (9 sec)
SBA Administrator Guzman is in Baltimore today as part of this administration's efforts to support small businesses in need. 8

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Positive
00:01:33-00:01:55 (22 sec)
I also want to share a very big announcement that the Vice President and the -- EPA Administrator Regan made today in Charlotte, North Carolina. They announced a $20 billion -- 20 -- $20 billion in awards to expand access to clean energy, tackle the climate crisis, improve air quality, lower energy costs, and create good-paying jobs. 9

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Positive
00:01:55-00:02:07 (12 sec)
This investment through the EPA's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund will stand up a national network that will finance tens of thousands of climate and clean energy projects across America. 10

Karine Jean-Pierre

Slightly Positive
00:02:07-00:02:27 (20 sec)
At least 70 percent of these funds will be invested in low-income and disadvantaged communities. This makes the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund the single-largest non-tax investment in the Inflation Reduction Act to build a clean energy economy while benefiting communities that have historically been left behind. 11

Karine Jean-Pierre

Neutral
00:02:27-00:02:33 (5 sec)
And finally, finally, finally, I want to briefly preview the President's schedule next week. 12

Karine Jean-Pierre

Slightly Negative
00:02:33-00:02:39 (6 sec)
On Monday, we -- he will travel to Madison, Wisconsin, and discuss how he is lowering costs for Americans. 13

Karine Jean-Pierre

Positive
00:02:39-00:02:49 (11 sec)
Later in the week, the President and the First Lady will host the Prime Minister of Japan and his wife for an official visit to the United States. This will include a state dinner on Wednesday, April 10th. 14

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Positive
00:02:49-00:02:59 (10 sec)
The visit will underscore the enduring strength of our alliance, the unwavering U.S. commitment to Japan, and Japan's increasing global leadership role. 15

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:02:59-00:03:13 (14 sec)
On Thursday, April 11th, President Biden will host [DEL: Prime Minister :DEL] [President] Marcos of the Philippines, Prime Minister Kishida of Japan at the White House for the first trilateral U.S.-Japan-Philippines leaders' summit. 16

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:03:13-00:03:22 (9 sec)
In addition, President Biden will host President Marcos for a meeting at the White House on April 11th to review the historic momentum in U.S.-Philippines relations. 17

Karine Jean-Pierre

Very Positive
00:03:22-00:03:30 (8 sec)
Thank you for your patience. With that, the Admiral is here to talk about the President's call with Prime Minister Netanyahu and any updates that we have in the Middle East. 18

Karine Jean-Pierre

Somewhat Positive
00:03:30-00:03:31 (1 sec)
Admiral. 19

John Kirby

Somewhat Positive
00:03:31-00:03:32 (1 sec)
Thank you very much. 20

John Kirby

Positive
00:03:32-00:03:35 (2 sec)
Good afternoon, everybody. 21

Question

Positive
00:03:35-00:03:35 (1 sec)
Good afternoon. 22

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:03:35-00:03:50 (15 sec)
Obviously, a busy day here. I do want to take a moment just at the start to recognize the 75th anniversary of the NATO Alliance, the greatest military alliance in the history of the world. And you all saw the statement from the President earlier today celebrating this historic milestone. 23

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:03:50-00:04:07 (17 sec)
Now, for 75 years, the NATO Alliance has stood together for freedom and against aggression, provided an unrivaled bulwark of security that has helped protect the American people. And during that time, our NATO Allies have come to our aid in our time of need, with NATO forces serving alongside ours in Afghanistan. 24

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:04:07-00:04:22 (15 sec)
Today, NATO is larger, stronger, it's more relevant than ever before thanks in no small part to the President's leadership. And we look forward to building on all that progress in July when we host our 31 NATO Allies here in Washington, D.C., for the next NATO Summit. 25

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:04:22-00:04:37 (15 sec)
Now, as I'm sure you're all aware, the President had a chance to speak with Prime Minister Netanyahu earlier today. On that phone call, the President emphasized that the strikes on humanitarian workers and the overall humanitarian situation in Gaza are unacceptable. 26

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:04:37-00:04:51 (14 sec)
He made clear the need for Israel to announce and to implement a series of specific, concrete, and measurable steps to address civilian harm, humanitarian suffering, and the safety of aid workers. 27

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:04:51-00:05:01 (10 sec)
He made clear that U.S. policy with respect to Gaza will be determined by our assessment of Israel's immediate action on these steps. 28

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:05:01-00:05:15 (14 sec)
He underscored that an immediate ceasefire is essential to stabilize and improve the humanitarian situation and to protect innocent civilians. And he urged the Prime Minister to empower his negotiators to conclude a deal without delay to bring the hostages home. 29

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:05:15-00:05:26 (10 sec)
The two leaders also discussed public Iranian threats against Israel and the Israeli people. President Biden made clear that the United States strongly supports Israel in the face of those threats. 30

John Kirby

Unknown
00:05:26-00:05:26 (1 sec)
That's all I have. 31

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:05:26-00:05:28 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Zeke. 32

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:05:28-00:05:46 (18 sec)
Thanks, John. First, on that last piece there. You said -- you have said it from this podium several times that that -- the -- Hamas was the obstacle to getting some sort of ceasefire deal. Calling on the Israelis to empower the negotiators suggests that has changed. Has the U.S. assessment of Israeli willingness to reach a ceasefire deal changed in the last several weeks? 33

John Kirby

Positive
00:05:46-00:06:04 (18 sec)
No. It -- look, it takes -- it takes active participation and the negotiation of both sides here. And -- and that's what the President is urging. He's certainly, in the call with Netanyahu, urging that -- that the Prime Minister empower his team to the maximum extent possible to see if we can get this deal in place. 34

Question

Slightly Positive
00:06:04-00:06:23 (19 sec)
And then just on the substance of the real news from the President's statement there, saying that he's going to condition future U.S. support for this -- for Israeli -- the Israeli operation in Gaza on what Israel does. First off, what is at stake? What would be potentially cut off from Israel for use in this war if the -- if he doesn't change course? 35

Question

Positive
00:06:23-00:06:30 (6 sec)
And second, what do you want specifically to see from Israel were -- to do to protect civilians and humanitarian aid workers? 36

John Kirby

Unknown
00:06:30-00:06:37 (8 sec)
I'm not going to preview any potential policy decisions coming forward. 37

John Kirby

Neutral
00:06:37-00:06:48 (10 sec)
What we want to see are some real changes on the Israeli side. And, you know, if we don't see changes from their side, there will have to be changes from our side. 38

John Kirby

Somewhat Positive
00:06:48-00:06:49 (2 sec)
But I won't preview what that could look like. 39

John Kirby

Unknown
00:06:49-00:06:50 (1 sec)
Now -- 40

Question

Unknown
00:06:50-00:06:51 (1 sec)
Is that just body count -- 41

John Kirby

Neutral
00:06:51-00:06:52 (1 sec)
-- they talked about -- wha- -- I'm sorry? 42

Question

Unknown
00:06:52-00:06:54 (2 sec)
Is that just the body count, or is there specific changes? 43

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:06:54-00:07:34 (40 sec)
Again, I'm -- I'm -- in terms of concrete steps, what we are looking to see and hope to see here in coming hours and days is a dramatic increase in the humanitarian assistance getting in, additional crossings opened up, and a reduction in the violence against civilians and certainly aid workers. We want to -- we want to see that -- that even as the Israelis work through their investigation that they are willing and able to take practical, immediate steps to protect aid workers on the ground and to demonstrate that they -- that they have that civilian harm mitigation in place. 44

John Kirby

Unknown
00:07:34-00:07:44 (10 sec)
So, again, those are broad brushes. I'll let the Israelis speak to what they will or won't do here. But, again, in coming hours and days, we will be looking for concrete, tangible steps that they're taking. 45

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:07:44-00:07:45 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Nancy. 46

Question

Very Positive
00:07:45-00:08:04 (19 sec)
Thanks. John, just to go back to that point. In your readout, when you say the President made clear that the U.S. -- "that U.S. policy with respect to Gaza will be determined by our assessment of Israel's immediate action," could you decode that for us? What exactly is the warning that's being issued here? 47

John Kirby

Neutral
00:08:04-00:08:15 (11 sec)
I think it's very clear in the language itself, Nancy. We're going to -- the -- we're looking for concrete steps to alleviate humanitarian suffering in Gaza. 48

John Kirby

Unknown
00:08:15-00:08:22 (6 sec)
Again, I won't get ahead of what the Israelis will or won't say or announce. We're looking for concrete steps to be announced here soon. 49

John Kirby

Unknown
00:08:22-00:08:33 (11 sec)
And it's not just about the announcement of concrete steps and changes in their policies, but it's the execution of those announcements and those decisions and implementing them. 50

John Kirby

Leans Negative
00:08:33-00:08:48 (15 sec)
And so, we're -- we obviously will -- will watch closely and monitor how -- how they do on -- on the commitments that they make. And as -- as I said earlier, if there's no changes to their policy and their approaches, then there's going to have to be changes to ours. 51

Question

Very Negative
00:08:48-00:09:00 (11 sec)
I think -- I think what the world wants to understand is: Is the White House warning that it may remove military aid? What exactly is the threat here? 52

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:09:00-00:09:14 (14 sec)
I think I've -- I've stated it pretty clearly. And I'm not going to -- I'm not going to -- as I said earlier, I'm not going to preview steps. I'm not going to preview decisions that haven't been made yet. But there are things that need to be done. 53

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:09:14-00:09:29 (15 sec)
There are too many civilians being killed. The risk to aid workers is unacceptable. Now we have certain aid organizations that are reconsidering whether they're even going to be able to continue operations in Gaza while famine looms. So, there has to be tangible steps. 54

John Kirby

Unknown
00:09:29-00:09:34 (5 sec)
Let's see what they announce. Let's see what they direct. Let's see what they do. But I'm not going to get ahead of that. 55

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:09:34-00:09:34 ( sec)
Go ahead, Mary. 56

Question

Unknown
00:09:34-00:09:38 (3 sec)
So, I'm going to try this one more time, because the President seems -- 57

John Kirby

Unknown
00:09:38-00:09:39 (1 sec)
I reckoned you would. [Laughter] 58

Question

Leans Negative
00:09:39-00:09:51 (12 sec)
That's what we do. The President seems to have said to -- to the Prime Minister today, you know, "Make these concrete changes or else." It's the "or else" that I want to make clear here. Is the President threatening to withhold aid to Israel if they do not make these changes? 59

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:09:51-00:10:08 (17 sec)
The President made it clear that our policies with respect to Gaza will be dependent upon our assessment of how well the Israelis make changes and implement changes to make the situation in Gaza better for the Palestinian people. 60

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:10:08-00:10:13 (5 sec)
And how much time are you giving them to make these changes, to implement these concrete steps? 61

John Kirby

Positive
00:10:13-00:10:19 (6 sec)
Again, we -- we would hope to see some announcements of changes here in coming hours and days. And I'll leave it at that. 62

Question

Unknown
00:10:19-00:10:20 (1 sec)
That's short. 63

John Kirby

Unknown
00:10:20-00:10:22 (2 sec)
Hours and days. 64

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:10:22-00:10:23 (1 sec)
Go ahead. 65

Question

Unknown
00:10:23-00:10:24 (1 sec)
John, why today? 66

John Kirby

Unknown
00:10:24-00:10:25 (1 sec)
Why today what? 67

Question

Unknown
00:10:25-00:10:26 (1 sec)
Why was -- 68

John Kirby

Unknown
00:10:26-00:10:28 (2 sec)
Why today for the phone call? Why -- 69

Question

Unknown
00:10:28-00:10:31 (4 sec)
Why -- why this apparent shift in policy today? The -- 70

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:10:31-00:10:54 (22 sec)
I think -- look, the President -- well, all of us, but particularly the President -- was certainly shaken by the attack on the WCK convoy and the aid workers. As I said earlier, it wasn't the only event. There had been others like that: humanitarian aid convoys coming under fire and losing people. 71

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:10:54-00:10:59 (6 sec)
And -- and the President felt strongly that it was time to -- to talk to Prime Minister Netanyahu about his concerns. 72

Question

Unknown
00:10:59-00:11:02 (3 sec)
Would you characterize this call as an ultimatum? 73

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:11:02-00:11:29 (27 sec)
I would characterize this call as very direct, very businesslike, very professional on both sides. And the President laid out his significant concerns about the direction and where things are going and, quite frankly, laid out, as is clear in the readout, that -- that we are willing to reconsider our own policy approaches here, dependent upon what the Israelis do or don't do. 74

Question

Unknown
00:11:29-00:11:31 (2 sec)
And can you just tell us who all was on the call? 75

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:11:31-00:11:42 (11 sec)
Well, it was -- it was a bilateral call between the two leaders -- Prime Minister Netanyahu and the President. They were the only two speakers on the -- on the call. 76

Question

Slightly Positive
00:11:42-00:11:45 (3 sec)
Okay. But Vice President Harris also dialed in or -- 77

John Kirby

Positive
00:11:45-00:11:46 (2 sec)
Vice President Harris did -- did dial in, yes. 78

Question

Unknown
00:11:46-00:11:48 (2 sec)
And the Secretary of State and the -- 79

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:11:48-00:11:59 (11 sec)
Secretary of State dialed in. Jake Sullivan, yes. I don't know who was also listening in on the Israeli side. But the -- but the discussion was between the two leaders. 80

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:11:59-00:12:00 (1 sec)
M.J. 81

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:12:00-00:12:08 (7 sec)
So, Admiral, you're not specifying what concrete steps Israel must take exactly. 82

John Kirby

Neutral
00:12:08-00:12:35 (28 sec)
I -- I gave you some -- a broad sense of it. We want to see more crossings opened up. We want to see more trucks getting in, particularly from Jordan. We want to see tangible steps at the mitigation of civilian harm, particularly to humanitarian aid workers but, obviously, all civilians. But we want to see that they have -- that they have moved forward on proper steps to deconflict with aid workers as they move around, that the information flow is viable. 83

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:12:35-00:12:48 (13 sec)
Sure. But that's language we've heard for weeks now. You're not talking about sort of telling us how exactly you will measure those measurable steps, right? 84

John Kirby

Unknown
00:12:48-00:13:09 (20 sec)
What I said was we're going to -- we're going to examine our policy approaches based on the -- our assessment of the way the Israeli side modifies their behavior, modifies their policy and decision-making processes. 85

John Kirby

Unknown
00:13:09-00:13:18 (9 sec)
And so, first of all, let's see what they say they're going to do. And then let's watch and see how they execute to what they say and do. 86

John Kirby

Neutral
00:13:18-00:13:28 (11 sec)
I don't want to get ahead of them on what they -- on what they -- what they plan to say about the changes they're going to make. But we- -- we'll base our policy decisions based on an assessment of how they execute to their policy decisions. 87

Question

Unknown
00:13:28-00:13:30 (1 sec)
Haven't you been doing that all along? 88

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:13:30-00:13:38 (8 sec)
And you're not talking about what potential U.S. policy changes are on the table. Can you say whether the President shared that with the Prime Minister on this phone call? 89

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:13:38-00:14:03 (25 sec)
The President made clear that -- that absent changes in the protection of civilians on the ground; absent changes to the volume of humanitarian assistance getting in; absent -- absent any movement on a ceasefire that will allow hostages to get out and more aid to get in; absent, you know, a calming down, that he will have to reconsider his own policy choices with respect to -- to Gaza. 90

Question

Neutral
00:14:03-00:14:10 (7 sec)
And one of the seven aid workers was obviously a dual American citizen. Did the Prime Minister offer the President an apology? 91

John Kirby

Neutral
00:14:10-00:14:18 (8 sec)
I -- I -- I'll let the Prime Minister speak to his side of the conversation. The -- I would note that the Israeli Defense Forces, their Southern Command commander has made a public apology for the -- the strike. 92

Question

Slightly Negative
00:14:18-00:14:24 (7 sec)
And there was no mention of Rafah in this readout. Can you talk to us about how -- if that did come up and how that might have been discussed between the two leaders? 93

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:14:24-00:14:40 (16 sec)
This conversation was -- was focused primarily on the need to get a temporary ceasefire in place, the need for there to be a pause in -- in the fighting so that we can get the hostages out, humanitarian assistance; the need to see that steps are being taken to learn from this strike and to make changes in the way civilian harm is mitigated from an operational perspective. 94

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:14:40-00:14:56 (16 sec)
And they did spend time, as the readout makes clear, talking about the very public threats from -- from Iran to Israel. And the President, as I said, made very clear to the Prime Minister that the United States' support for Israel's ability to defend itself from a range of threats, not just Hamas, remains ironclad. 95

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:14:56-00:14:57 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Danny. 96

Question

Very Positive
00:14:57-00:15:03 (6 sec)
Thanks, Karine. Thanks, Admiral. Just a couple of things. Firstly, how -- how long did this call last? 97

John Kirby

Unknown
00:15:03-00:15:05 (1 sec)
It was about 30 minutes or so. 98

Question

Somewhat Negative
00:15:05-00:15:16 (12 sec)
And just going back to, I mean, Jeff's question about the -- you know, why -- why the sort of change in tone. I mean, has there been growing frustration on the part of President Biden that previous messaging to Prime Minister Netanyahu just doesn't seem to have gotten through? 99

John Kirby

Neutral
00:15:16-00:15:19 (3 sec)
Yes, there has been growing frustration. 100

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:15:19-00:15:20 (1 sec)
Raquel. 101

Question

Slightly Positive
00:15:20-00:15:42 (21 sec)
Thank you so much, Karine. John, one question on Israel and another on Venezuela. We saw, in the past, President Biden pushing Netanyahu to protect civilians, but how much words really matter here when -- on actions, the same day of the attack on the humanitarian words -- the U.S. was approving more bombs to Israel? The U- -- we are now six months into the war. How much the U.S. actions are actually encouraging Israel to not do enough to protect civilians? 102

John Kirby

Neutral
00:15:42-00:16:01 (19 sec)
Yeah, look, I -- I'm kind of glad the question came up, because I would tell you, when -- I've seen press reporting, you know, about the -- about the -- the arms sales and that kind of thing. And I would just remind you that -- that it -- with the exception of the immediate two months after the attack, we haven't really sent emergency aid and assis- -- military assistance to -- to Israel. There was in the first couple of months. 103

John Kirby

Unknown
00:16:01-00:16:16 (15 sec)
But what you're seeing here is the result of a -- a process of foreign military sales to Israel that takes years, and a lot of this materiel that's been reported publicly was notified to Congress many, many months, if not years ago, and are in the train to get to Israel. 104

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:16:16-00:16:50 (34 sec)
I think it's important to remember, as I tried to mention in the last answer, that Israel still has a lot of threats it faces. I mean, we're all focused on Hamas, and I understand that, but they still face active threats throughout the region, including from Iran. And the United States still has an ironclad commitment to help Ir- -- Israel with its self-defense. And so, a lot of these articles, including the 2,000-pound bombs and the F-35s, that's -- those are things that have been long in the train and not tied -- the sale -- the foreign military sales process was not tied to this conflict. 105

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:16:50-00:16:50 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Tam. 106

Question

Unknown
00:16:50-00:16:51 (1 sec)
Can I have a one more -- 107

Karine Jean-Pierre

Slightly Positive
00:16:51-00:16:52 (1 sec)
Yeah. 108

Question

Very Positive
00:16:52-00:17:12 (20 sec)
-- on Ven- -- on Venezuela quick. Because yesterday, Nicolás Maduro enacted a law creating a province of Venezuela in Guyana, and he accused the United States of building secret military bases in Essequibo. So, what is your reaction? And is the U.S. considering build a military base to support Guyana to defend their sovereignty? 109

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:17:12-00:17:14 (2 sec)
There's no p- -- there's no plans for a secret military base. 110

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:17:14-00:17:23 (9 sec)
And we've said ma- -- many times that there's an 1899 arbitral ruling about the border between Guyana and Venezuela, and we want both sides to respect that ruling and to do it peacefully. 111

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:17:23-00:17:24 (1 sec)
Tam. 112

Question

Very Positive
00:17:24-00:17:30 (6 sec)
Thank you. You said, "We would hope to see an announcement of changes." I'm wondering if that is just hope or is it an expectation? 113

John Kirby

Unknown
00:17:30-00:17:31 ( sec)
We ex- -- 114

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:17:31-00:17:33 (2 sec)
Is it based on a commitment? 115

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:17:33-00:17:45 (13 sec)
We expect that -- that there will be some -- some announcements coming from Israel in the coming hours and days, but I want to respect their right to manage that process on their own. 116

Question

Slightly Positive
00:17:45-00:17:51 (6 sec)
Okay. And was there any update given by the Prime Minister on what exactly happened with the World Central Kitchen envoy? 117

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:17:51-00:18:07 (15 sec)
They -- they didn't talk about the actual strike in great detail. The -- the Prime Minister did reiterate, as his military has reiterated, that this was on them; that the investigation was -- was concluding; that he looked forward to seeing it; and that, you know, he would take appropriate actions to make sure something like that couldn't happen again. 118

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:18:07-00:18:21 (14 sec)
I mean, they did -- obviously, they talked about it, of course. But did they go through point by point the investigation's findings? No, because I think the Prime Minister's office is still evaluating the actual investigation results. 119

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:18:21-00:18:35 (15 sec)
And just to try to get a technical understanding as you described the very long process of supplying arms to Israel, if this contingency isn't met and there is a change in U.S. policy, how easy or hard would it be to slow down or change shipments to Israel based on current law and all of the requirements and all the things you just described? 120

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:18:35-00:18:47 (12 sec)
Yeah, again, I don't want to get ahead of where we are. Let's see what the Israeli side does and says and what they implement and where they go before we talk about actual policy decisions. 121

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:18:47-00:19:04 (17 sec)
And I'm certainly not going to close down decision space for the President of the United States. He gets to make those decisions. But I mean, obviously, as Commander-in-Chief -- and, yes, the foreign military sales certainly is -- is supported by legislation, but -- but there are certain authorities that you can do to manage that. 122

John Kirby

Unknown
00:19:04-00:19:13 (9 sec)
But, again, let's not get ahead of where we are. This is really about seeing what the Israelis say they're going to do and then act on -- on those -- on those changes. 123

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:19:13-00:19:14 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Gabe. 124

Question

Unknown
00:19:14-00:19:18 (4 sec)
Admiral, has the U.S. lost its leverage with Prime Minister Netanyahu? 125

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:19:18-00:19:33 (16 sec)
You know, I keep getting this question about leverage. Israel is an ally and a friend and a partner. And the President believes strongly, and has for his entire public career, in the security of the Israeli people and the -- and the longevity of the Israeli state. And that's not going to change. 126

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:19:33-00:20:03 (30 sec)
And I can say unequivocally -- and I don't think the Prime Minister would mind me saying here -- that, in the call today, the Prime Minister reiterated his thanks to President Biden and this administration for the support that -- that we have continued to provide Israel. It's longstanding. It was before the 7th of October, and it is now. And that support is -- that support is going to continue. 127

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:20:03-00:20:14 (11 sec)
But, again, with respect to Gaza, we need to see certain changes. And if we don't, then we'll have to consider changes to our own policy. 128

John Kirby

Positive
00:20:14-00:20:33 (19 sec)
But it's not about -- it's not about leverage. It's about the relationship, and it's about the credibility -- I would even say the unique credibility that this particular president has in Israel and with Israeli leadership based on his long public service of support to -- 129

Question

Unknown
00:20:33-00:20:39 (6 sec)
But you talk about this relationship. Do you think the Prime Minister is really listening? 130

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:20:39-00:20:54 (15 sec)
It was -- I think it was evident in the phone call today. It was a good discussion. Direct -- no question -- but a good discussion. And -- and I believe the -- the President made very clear his concerns and the Prime Minister acknowledged those concerns. 131

Question

Slightly Negative
00:20:54-00:21:05 (11 sec)
And in -- and in terms of the timing of this call, we understand that this call was set up after the strike on the World Central Kitchen workers. Would you say that this call was a direct result of that? Was that the reason behind the call? 132

John Kirby

Positive
00:21:05-00:21:06 (1 sec)
Yes. 133

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:21:06-00:21:07 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Nadia. 134

Question

Unknown
00:21:07-00:21:09 (2 sec)
And then, one -- 135

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:21:09-00:21:09 (1 sec)
Thank you. 136

Question

Unknown
00:21:09-00:21:17 (8 sec)
-- one last thing: response to José Andrés. Chef Andrés says that the convoy was deliberately targeted. Any response from the U.S. on that? 137

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:21:17-00:21:34 (16 sec)
Again, I -- I haven't seen the Israeli investigation. They have said themselves publicly, after a preliminary investigation, that there was no deliberate targeting of WCK and -- and Chef Andrés. They -- they're working their way through, now, independent follow-on investigation, which I understand is very, very close to complete. 138

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:21:34-00:21:42 (9 sec)
The Prime Minister just talked about it broadly. And reiterated today -- the Prime Minister reiterated today that there was no deliberate targeting of -- of that aid convoy. 139

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:21:42-00:21:43 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Nadia. 140

Question

Very Negative
00:21:43-00:22:02 (18 sec)
Thank you, Karine. Two questions. Senator Coons, who is very close to the President, said that we have reached a moment where arms restriction to Israel should be considered. Senator Warren also said that we have -- Israel has violated our own laws. Are they wrong in their assessment? 141

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:22:02-00:22:28 (27 sec)
The President -- I think it's clear in the readout, Nadia, that the -- that the President has -- has made it clear today that if we don't see changes to the way the IDF is treating innocent civilians and aid workers and flowing the humanitarian assistance, that he's going to have to reconsider our Gaza policy. So, I mean, he was very direct with the Prime Minister about that. 142

John Kirby

Positive
00:22:28-00:22:34 (6 sec)
I'm not going to close down his decision space. As satisfying as that may be for some of you, I can't do that. 143

John Kirby

Positive
00:22:34-00:22:37 (3 sec)
But he made it very clear that we need to see some changes on the Israeli side. 144

Question

Very Negative
00:22:37-00:23:05 (28 sec)
Okay. I want to ask you about very disturbing investigative report by an Israeli journalist who said that -- is the White House aware of an AI program called "Lavender" that's being used by the Israeli army to target operative in Gaza in what they call a "kill zone," where this program has only 20 seconds of human supervision. And it led to the death of thousands of women and children in Gaza. Do you think -- are you aware of it, number one? And, second, does the White House believe that AI can be used in this way with that supervision? 145

John Kirby

Unknown
00:23:05-00:23:09 (4 sec)
I'm -- I'm not aware of it. You're going to have to let me take question. We'll get back to you. 146

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:23:09-00:23:10 (1 sec)
Go ahead. 147

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:23:10-00:23:18 (9 sec)
Thank you so much, John. I'm going to start with the trilateral summit, then I'm going to move to Rwanda. 148

Question

Unknown
00:23:18-00:23:36 (18 sec)
First of all, looking ahead to the trilateral summit next week, what are some of the priorities? And we recently heard the Filipino Ambassador say that the U.S., Japan, and the Philippines are going to start joint patrols in the South China Sea very soon. Can you confirm that and give us any details? 149

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:23:36-00:23:48 (12 sec)
I believe the Pentagon will have more to say about that this afternoon. So, I don't -- I don't want to get ahead of -- of them on that. We're always looking for opportunities to improve cooperation with our allies in the Indo-Pacific. 150

John Kirby

Positive
00:23:48-00:24:05 (17 sec)
We're looking forward to this trilateral summit next week. I think it'll be very, very important. As you know, we have self-defense treaty commitments with both countries. And so, the chance to sit down with -- with both his Japanese and his Filipino counterparts is something the President is very much looking forward to. 151

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:24:05-00:24:22 (17 sec)
There's an awful lot to discuss. Certainly, the tensions in the South China Sea are not going away. That was an issue that was raised in the President's call with President Xi just a -- a couple of days ago. And so, there's -- there's an awful lot to talk about there. 152

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:24:22-00:24:24 (2 sec)
Cool. Then on Rwanda -- 153

John Kirby

Somewhat Positive
00:24:24-00:24:24 (1 sec)
Cool. 154

Question

Unknown
00:24:24-00:24:27 (2 sec)
I'm going to ask -- [laughter] -- a multi-part question. 155

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:24:27-00:24:28 (1 sec)
Cool. 156

Question

Unknown
00:24:28-00:24:28 (1 sec)
It's -- 157

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:24:28-00:24:33 (4 sec)
I did not think my answer was cool, but I appreciate the compliment. [Laughter] 158

Question

Neutral
00:24:33-00:24:42 (10 sec)
It's -- sorry, it's a small country. It doesn't get a lot of attention. But President Biden has decided to send President Clinton -- 159

John Kirby

Unknown
00:24:42-00:24:43 ( sec)
Correct. 160

Question

Very Negative
00:24:43-00:24:55 (12 sec)
-- to observe the 30th anniversary of the genocide. You know, what message does this send to Rwandans who are understandably upset about President Clinton's lack of action when the genocide was happening? 161

Question

Unknown
00:24:55-00:25:07 (12 sec)
Secondly, what message is President Clinton taking to President Kagame, who has been in power since 1994 and has become increasingly authoritarian? 162

Question

Very Positive
00:25:07-00:25:26 (20 sec)
And then, finally, in 1998, President Clinton pledged to the Rwandan people that his administration was going to work to identify triggers of genocidal activity so that something like this would never happen again. Do you think Washington has improved on that front in the last 30 years? 163

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:25:26-00:25:44 (18 sec)
We -- we -- I -- I believe -- I can't speak for every administration between 1998 and today, but I can tell you that President Biden absolutely takes those responsibilities very, very seriously, particularly when it comes to genocidal threats, wherever they occur around the world. 164

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:25:44-00:25:53 (9 sec)
And he's very grateful that President Clinton has agreed to lead the delegation for the 30th anniversary. Eight hundred thousand people slaughtered in that -- in that -- 165

Question

Unknown
00:25:53-00:25:56 (3 sec)
Some people say it's over 1.2 million. 166

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:25:56-00:26:07 (11 sec)
-- in that conflict. And our hearts and our prayers go out to the families of the -- of the survivors -- of those who were -- who were killed. Just a -- just a dreadful situation. 167

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:26:07-00:26:13 (6 sec)
And, again, the President is grateful that President Clinton has agreed to -- to go down there and represent the administration. 168

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:26:13-00:26:14 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Phil. 169

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:26:14-00:26:18 (4 sec)
Thank you. I have two questions, one on Israel and another on China. 170

Question

Somewhat Negative
00:26:18-00:26:24 (6 sec)
At this point in the conflict, does President Biden believe that a military victory against Hamas is possible for Israel? 171

John Kirby

Leans Positive
00:26:24-00:26:28 (4 sec)
Obviously, that's going to be up to the Israeli Defense Forces and the Israeli government to determine. 172

John Kirby

Somewhat Negative
00:26:28-00:26:53 (25 sec)
As I've said many, many times: It's difficult to eliminate an ideology with military means, but you can absolutely, through military means, decapitate their leadership; dry up their resources; eliminate their infrastructure, their ability to -- to operate and store weapons, train troops. I mean, all of that stuff can be -- can be targeted with military means. 173

John Kirby

Leans Positive
00:26:53-00:27:00 (7 sec)
What -- the -- but as I've also said, and -- and you have to keep it in the context of this call, it matters how you do that. It really matters a lot how you do that. 174

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:27:00-00:27:11 (10 sec)
And it's the how that the President was focused on today and the -- the way these operations are being prosecuted and the additional harm that's coming to civilian aid workers and innocent Gazans. 175

Question

Unknown
00:27:11-00:27:31 (20 sec)
And then, Xi reportedly told President Biden during their summit in San Francisco that Beijing plans to reunify Taiwan with Mainland China. Did the Chinese leader bring up a similar sentiment in their call the other day? And if so, what was President Biden's response? 176

John Kirby

Somewhat Positive
00:27:31-00:27:46 (15 sec)
I wou- -- certainly, Taiwan came up in the context of -- of the call. There's not a single discussion that we don't have with senior leaders in the PRC where we don't talk about Taiwan. Of course, it came up. 177

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:27:46-00:28:10 (24 sec)
I -- I won't characterize President Xi's comments. But I can tell you that -- that President Biden was very, very clear that -- that nothing has changed about our One China policy. We don't support independence for Taiwan. But we also don't want to see the status quo changed in a unilateral way and certainly not by force. 178

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:28:10-00:28:11 (1 sec)
Thank you, sir. 179

Karine Jean-Pierre

Slightly Positive
00:28:11-00:28:14 (3 sec)
Okay, a couple more. Go ahead, Jared. 180

Question

Unknown
00:28:14-00:28:29 (15 sec)
Did -- I know you said that Rafah wasn't the point of this conversation and it wasn't discussed a lot. Does that mean that that is still sort of a separate issue that's going to be sort of an ongoing discussion between U.S. and Israeli officials in the delegation? 181

John Kirby

Unknown
00:28:29-00:28:43 (13 sec)
I don't know that I'd call it separate. It wasn't a focus of this call. The call was -- as I answered to M.J., it was really about the humanitarian situation and changes we need to see. 182

John Kirby

Positive
00:28:43-00:28:59 (16 sec)
But we look forward to having another conversation with Israeli counterparts in coming days, hopefully in a week or so, on Rafah specifically. And we hope this next one will be in person, but we'll have more to say about that as we get closer to it. 183

Question

Unknown
00:28:59-00:29:05 (6 sec)
So, an operation in Rafah would not, sort of, run counter to -- to these new conditions that the President laid out to -- to the Prime Minister? 184

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:29:05-00:29:19 (14 sec)
Oh, I didn't say that at all. I mean, one of the big concerns about a ground operation in Rafah that we've expressed is the damage it could do -- the death and destruction it could render to the 1.5 million Gazans that are seeking refuge there. 185

John Kirby

Neutral
00:29:19-00:29:34 (15 sec)
So, again, today's call was really focused on humanitarian assistance, civilian casualties, and that includes humanitarian aid workers. You can't talk about Rafah and the possibility of operations going after those Hamas battalions in Rafah without also talking about the humanitarian situation down there, which is dire. 186

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:29:34-00:29:35 (1 sec)
Go ahead, Brian. 187

Question

Positive
00:29:35-00:29:41 (6 sec)
Thanks a lot, Admiral. Does President Biden agree with Donald Trump that the -- Israel's war against Hamas is taking a long time? 188

John Kirby

Unknown
00:29:41-00:29:45 (4 sec)
I'm not going to compare the President's views to -- to Mr. Trump. I think you can understand I need to stay out -- out of that. 189

John Kirby

Slightly Positive
00:29:45-00:29:58 (13 sec)
All I would tell you is we have expressed our concerns about the manner in which operations are being conducted and the -- the speed and the energy with which we want to see changes to the way those operations are being conducted. And I think I'd leave it at that. 190

Question

Negative
00:29:58-00:30:02 (4 sec)
Well, does -- does the President think that Israel's war against Hamas is taking too long? 191

John Kirby

Leans Positive
00:30:02-00:30:20 (18 sec)
The President believes that they have a right to go after the Hamas threat, which is still viable. And the President made it clear again today that we support and we will continue to support -- not just philosophically but tangibly -- Israel's right to defend itself against a range of threats. And it -- certainly that includes this -- this fight against Hamas. 192

John Kirby

Leans Negative
00:30:20-00:30:35 (16 sec)
But, again, I want to -- I want to reiterate what I said earlier. It's not just the threat of Hamas that Israel is facing. They are facing broader threats throughout the region, including directly and publicly from -- from Iran. 193

Karine Jean-Pierre

Unknown
00:30:35-00:30:36 (1 sec)
Peter. 194

Question

Very Negative
00:30:36-00:30:48 (12 sec)
John, a follow-up on that first. Did the CIA warn Israel or did President Biden warn Netanyahu today about an Iranian plan to attack inside Israel within 48 hours? 195

John Kirby

Leans Positive
00:30:48-00:31:00 (12 sec)
I'm not going to talk about intelligence matters, Peter. I think you can understand. But they did talk about a very public and very viable, real threat by Iran to Israel's security. And I think I need to leave it at that. It's really as far as I can go. 196

Question

Very Positive
00:31:00-00:31:10 (10 sec)
On October 7th, President Biden said, "My administration's support for Israel's security is rock solid and unwavering." That is not true anymore, correct? 197

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:31:10-00:31:16 (6 sec)
That i- -- no, it is true. Still true today. 198

Question

Slightly Positive
00:31:16-00:31:22 (6 sec)
How is his support unwavering, but you're also reconsidering policy choices? 199

John Kirby

Positive
00:31:22-00:31:23 (1 sec)
Both can be true. 200

Question

Leans Negative
00:31:23-00:31:27 (4 sec)
They cannot be true. They're -- they're completely different things. 201

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:31:27-00:31:30 (4 sec)
No. No, no. I just -- 202

Question

Unknown
00:31:30-00:31:31 ( sec)
He is -- 203

John Kirby

Neutral
00:31:31-00:31:32 (2 sec)
I'm sorry -- I -- 204

Question

Leans Negative
00:31:32-00:31:33 (1 sec)
He is wavering. 205

John Kirby

Unknown
00:31:33-00:31:37 (4 sec)
Now, now, now. Come on, Peter. 206

Question

Neutral
00:31:37-00:31:38 (1 sec)
How is he not wavering? 207

John Kirby

Unknown
00:31:38-00:31:40 (1 sec)
Come on. [Laughter] Come on, now. 208

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:31:40-00:31:58 (18 sec)
As I said, and as it says in that readout, we made clear -- and -- and he made it clear to the Prime Minister in his call -- that our support for Israel's self-defense remains ironclad. They face a range of threats. And the United States isn't going to walk away from helping Israel defend itself. 209

John Kirby

Very Negative
00:31:58-00:32:16 (17 sec)
That said, you can say all that and you can act on that and you can believe that -- and the President does -- and still believe that the manner in which they're defending themselves against the Hamas threat needs to change. And that is the conversation that we had today. 210

John Kirby

Very Positive
00:32:16-00:32:32 (17 sec)
But both things are true. Our support is ironclad and consistent. It's not going to -- not going to stop; it's not going to -- not going to -- not going to waver. But will there perhaps be some policy changes we might have to make if we don't see policy changes out of Israel? Yes. 211

Question

Somewhat Positive
00:32:32-00:32:36 (4 sec)
How is that unwavering? It sounds like you guys are trying to have it both ways here. 212

John Kirby

Slightly Negative
00:32:36-00:32:38 (1 sec)
No. I don't know that I'd char- -- 213

Question

Neutral
00:32:38-00:32:43 (5 sec)
"We support Israel, but we are going to make all these changes because we don't support Israel." 214

John Kirby

Somewhat Negative
00:32:43-00:33:05 (22 sec)
I didn't say we're going to make changes. I said we need to see w- -- how Israel responds to the humanitarian crises in Gaza and how they respond to protection of aid workers. I think we can all agree, I think you would agree, you don't want to see innocent civilians killed or targeted, do you? You don't want to see Gazans starve. You don't want to see famine in Gaza, do you? 215

Question

Unknown
00:33:05-00:33:07 (1 sec)
Nobody wants to see -- 216

John Kirby

Unknown
00:33:07-00:33:08 (1 sec)
Of course not. 217

Question

Unknown