Biden Reversed Course on ICC Sanctions Because of... George Clooney?

Among many other Trump-era policies and positions, President Joe Biden reversed sanctions on the International Criminal Court upon taking office. Once the ICC moved ahead with arrest warrants for Israeli leaders alongside Hamas terrorists, Biden called the ICC's case "outrageous."

"[W]hatever this prosecutor might imply, there is no equivalence — none — between Israel and Hamas," Biden said in a statement condemning the ICC for pursuing charges against Israel for its response to the October 7 terrorist massacre. 

In response, Congress took up a bill that would reinstate sanctions on the ICC. Secretary of State Antony Blinken told lawmakers that the administration would work with legislators on the penalties. Then, President Biden changed his mind and said he was "strongly opposed" to the sanctions. But why?

While Biden's opposition to the case against Israel (see here for more on why charges against Israel are farcical a violation of the ICC's founding treaty) was ignored, one instrumental advisor on the panel who spent four months reviewing evidence of the supposed "war crimes" and recommended charges didn't appreciate the heat coming from the White House and her husband got involved. This ICC advisor who worked on the case against Israel is Amal Clooney, wife of George Clooney. 

International Criminal Court 1 by Greger Ravik is licensed under Flickr Greger Ravik
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