Biden insists US can back two wars at the same time in Israel and Ukraine

Joe Biden has strongly insisted that the US can back two wars in Israel and Ukraine at the same time as the conflict in the Middle East continues to deepen.

“We’re the United States of America for God’s sake. The most powerful nation in the history of the world,” the president told Scott Pelley in a 60 Minutes interview set to air on Sunday night.

“We can take care of both of these and still maintain our overall international defence. We have the capacity to do this and we have an obligation to, we are the “essential nation” to paraphrase the former Secretary of State. And if don’t then who does?”

Mr Biden has been resolute in his support for Israel and its military action towards Hamas since the bloody attacks on the country on 7 October.

More than 1,300 people were killed in the attacks in southern Israel by Hamas fighters from Gaza, with 126 hostages kidnapped and taken back to the territory.

At least 2,670 Palestinians have been killed and 9,600 wounded since Israel launched its retaliatory attack on the Gaza Strip, the enclave’s health ministry said on Sunday.

US officials say that 14 Americans remain unaccounted for since the violence began, and Pelley asked the president what his message to the hostages was.

“I say we’re going to do everything in our power to find them,” Mr. Biden replied. “Everything in our power. And I’m not going to go into the detail of that, but there’s — we’re working like hell on it.”

Mr Biden spoke with the families of those missing for an hour on Friday.

“I think they have to know that the president of the United States of America cares deeply about what’s happened to them — deeply,” added Mr Biden.

“We have to communicate to the world this is critical. This is not even human behaviour. It’s pure barbarism. And we’re going to do everything in our power to get them home if we can find them.”