Biden’s Gaza Pier Disaster: US Vessels Beached on Shore After Heavy Waves

Joe Biden’s $320 million floating pier built to deliver humanitarian aid to Gaza took another blow early Saturday when heavy waves sent four U.S. Army vessels servicing the pier adrift, with two ending up beached on the Israeli coast. No injuries were reported and the pier is reported to be functioning. The incident follows a report from earlier this week in which three servicemembers working the pier sustained non-combat injuries with one hospitalized in critical condition. News reports state little of the aid from the pier is reaching Palestinian civilians in Gaza.

Screen image of U.S. Army vessel from Gaza pier beached on Israeli shore via Lord Bebo/X, May 25, 2024.

Statement by Centcom released Saturday morning:

This morning (Gaza time), four U.S. Army vessels supporting the maritime humanitarian aid mission in Gaza were affected by heavy sea states.

The vessels broke free from their moorings and two vessels are now anchored on the beach near the pier. The third and fourth vessels are beached on the coast of Israel near Ashkelon. Efforts to recover the vessels are under way with assistance from the Israeli Navy.

The IDF is supporting the recovery efforts near the pier. No U.S. personnel will enter Gaza. No injuries have been reported and the pier remains fully functional. We will release additional details as they become available.

Photos and videos:

This caption for this early video of a beached vessel is incorrect, the pier was not destroyed and is still functioning.

Fox News reporter Trey Yingst posted on scene video:

Middle East analyst Seth Frantzman posted videos of efforts to free the vessels:

The beached American military vessels have become an attraction for the locals as well as a rare joint American-Israeli military operation:

Two days ago the New York Times reported Biden’s pier effort to deliver aid to Gaza is “struggling” (excerpt):

U.S. Military Faces Reality in Gaza as Aid Project Struggles
The Pentagon predicted that a stream of humanitarian aid would be arriving in Gaza via the floating pier, but little relief has reached the besieged strip, officials acknowledged this week.

In the week since the U.S. military and allies attached a temporary pier to the Gaza shoreline, Pentagon planners have come face to face with the logistical nightmare that critics had warned would accompany the endeavor.

The Defense Department predicted that a steady stream of humanitarian aid would be arriving in Gaza via the pier by now, but little relief has reached Palestinians in the besieged strip, officials acknowledged this week. Several trucks were looted as they made their way to a warehouse, the U.N. World Food Program said, and the complexity of operating the pier project in a war zone is continuing to slow distribution.

The problems, as expected, are on the back end of the operation. Looting of aid trucks has continued, officials said, and forced the World Food Program to suspend operations for two days. The U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, suspended food distribution in Rafah on Tuesday, citing lack of security. It added that it had not received any medical supplies for 10 days because of closures and disruptions at the Rafah and Kerem Shalom border crossings.

The project was always expected to be difficult. For one thing, White House policy does not allow U.S. troops to be on the ground in Gaza. So the Pentagon has the ability to start but not finish the mission, a situation one military analyst likened to having the engine of a car but not the wheels.

The Wall Street Journal also reported on the initial failure of Biden’s Gaza pier on Saturday (excerpt):

The U.S. Built a $320 Million Pier to Get Aid to Gazans. Little of It Has Reached Them.
Challenges to distributing food, water and other supplies continue; good alternatives to ground crossings prove elusive

An ambitious U.S. effort to get aid into Gaza via a floating pier in the Mediterranean Sea has gotten off to a sluggish start, facing many of the same logistical challenges that have throttled broader attempts to ease the humanitarian crisis in the besieged Palestinian enclave.

The Pentagon spent $320 million and engaged 1,000 soldiers and sailors to open a major maritime corridor last week, delivering on President Biden’s promise in March that the U.S. military would install a temporary dock off the Gaza coast for cargo ships to unload food, water and other supplies. Fourteen ships from the U.S. and other countries are involved in a mission supported by humanitarian groups and several nations including Israel.

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Kristinn Taylor has contributed to The Gateway Pundit for over ten years. Mr. Taylor previously wrote for Breitbart, worked for Judicial Watch and was co-leader of the D.C. Chapter of FreeRepublic.com. He studied journalism in high school, visited the Newseum and once met David Brinkley.

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