On Point: Pier Pressure On Gaza's Shore -- And In Michigan

by Austin Bay
May 16, 2024

The Biden administration wants to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza to save the lives of Palestinian civilians.

Good cause? Sure. Absolutely. Saving and protecting innocents when Americans can is a moral and noble goal. Even protecting the lives of innocents a terror cartel like Hamas uses as human shields for its immoral and strategically evil goals is a sign of moral decency in a vicious Iran Ayatollah-Putin-Chinese Communist Party world.

That noted, later in this column I'll discuss the amoral and ignoble U.S. election conniving shaping WHY the Biden administration desperately wants to create the impression it's delivering aid to Gaza, no matter the risk to the lives of U.S. military and aid personnel.

But first, let's understand the saltwater and sand reality of HOW the Biden administration intends to deliver its Gaza aid. Because DELIVERING is where American prestige, expensive equipment and lives are at stake.

I repeat: American prestige, equipment and lives are at stake. If that sounds like an allusion to the Biden administration FLEEING Kabul in 2021, keep that thought in mind.

The expensive equipment of May 2024: The Biden administration wants to use a complicated military structure/system called JLOTS -- acronym for Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore -- to pull off the HOW. The JLOTS costs around $320 million.

I translate the Pentagon jargon: JLOTS is a floating, temporary pier for bringing "stuff" (supplies) from oceangoing big ships to a port-less shore (sand, rocks, etc.).

Sophisticated? You bet. The entire JLOTS system includes the Roll-On, Roll-Off Distribution Facility (RRDF). Maybe this visualization helps explain the Pentagonese: The whole shebang's a floating bridge and parking lot linking oceangoing freighters to a beach. The shebang takes highly trained personnel to create, operate and deliver the goods.

Structure/system isn't a fluff term. The pier complex doesn't deliver the goods. Trained military personnel connect the ships to the shore via the mobile pier. Trucks, driven by human beings, take the goods to the aid distribution centers.

As of late April, two American military JLOTS/RRDFs -- manned by U.S. military personnel and, as I understand it, British contractors, all under the guidance of the U.S. Agency for International Development -- were floating in the Mediterranean Sea just west of the Gaza Strip's shoreline. According to Bloomberg, the two floating piers were links in "a maritime corridor to deliver aid into Gaza."

Three informative notes for those who wish to be informed:

1. The U.S. piers are could-be links. If the U.S. brings the supplies to the beach, do the foods and medicines get to starving and ill Palestinians? Or do Hamas thugs steal the supplies? These are real questions. Hamas is an Iranian proxy army. In Yemen, Iran's Houthi proxies routinely steal United Nations humanitarian food aid shipped through the Red Sea port of Hodeida.

2. Guidance is not command. According to the Jewish News Syndicate, Hamas ("or its friends") on May 8 shelled the JLOTS floating complex in the sea west of Gaza while the structures were being assembled.

Necessary repetition note 3: War zones require command, not guidance. The Biden administration ran the Afghanistan bug-out as a State Department-managed task instead of the military-directed combat zone operation it was. Management and guidance -- scotch the Biden Administration fog words. War zones require command.

Operational fact: Suffering Gazans could be succored by land through Egypt. Gazans could be supplied through Israel. But Hamas stands in the way.

So why the pier posturing? The floating piers are campaign photo-ops for Michigan Muslim voters.

In Joe Biden's administration, "optics" overrule reality. On Aug. 31, 2021, Reuters confirmed that harsh truth when it published the July 23 telephone exchange between Biden and Afghan then-President Ashraf Ghani. Biden told Ghani, " ... the perception around the world and in parts of Afghanistan ... is that things aren't going well in terms of the fight against the Taliban. And there's a need, whether it is true or not, there is a need to project a different picture."

True or not. Take it from a serial liar. Biden knew his poorly planned and incompetently executed withdrawal was failing, but perhaps he could fool the public.

Election year 2024: Enter JLOTS. He may get his Gaza photo-op. But with American lives at risk.

Read Austin Bay's Latest Book

To find out more about Austin Bay and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.


On Point Archives:

On Point Archives: Current 2023  2022  2021  2020  2019  2018  2017  2016  2015  2014  2013  2012  2011  2010  2009  2008  2007  2006  2005  2004  2003  2002  2001



Help Keep Us From Drying Up

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling.

Each month we count on your contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage.
Subscribe   Contribute   Close