In the wake of Hamas’ recent surprise attack on Israel, critics are wonder whether President Joe Biden inadvertently aided Iran and ultimately helped fund the assault.
Some Republicans speculate that a hostage-release agreement gave Iran access to $6 billion in frozen funds, potentially enabling Iran to support Hamas financially. In August, the U.S. reached an agreement with Iran to secure freedom for five U.S. citizens in exchange for granting Iran access to $6 billion of its frozen funds held in South Korean banks. These funds were Iranian oil revenues frozen since 2019 when former President Donald Trump imposed sanctions on Iran’s oil exports and banking sector, Politifact reported.
“The Biden Administration must be held accountable for its appeasement of these Hamas terrorists, including handing over billions of dollars to them and their Iranian backers,” U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., wrote on Twitter/X Oct. 7, Reuters reported.
Also on Oct. 7 in a video posted on Twitter/X, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said, “Iran has helped fund this war against Israel and Joe Biden’s policies that have gone easy on Iran have helped fill their coffers.”
But according to Politifact, the $6 billion remains under restricted oversight, deposited into a Qatari bank account, and has not been disbursed to Iran. The agreement mandates the use of these funds strictly for humanitarian purposes, such as purchasing medicine and food.
Palestinians walk amid the rubble following Israeli airstrikes that razed swaths of a neighborhood in Gaza City, Oct. 10, 2023. The militant Hamas rulers of the Gaza Strip carried out an unprecedented attack on Israel Oct. 7, killing over 900 people and taking captives. Israel launched heavy retaliatory airstrikes on the enclave, killing hundreds of Palestinians. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)