The White House made a blunder when it posted a photo on Instagram without blurring out the faces of special operation force members who were meeting with President Joe Biden during his visit to Israel. The revealing photo was uploaded with the caption, “In Israel, President Biden met with first responders to thank them for their bravery and the work they’re doing in response to the Hamas terrorist attacks.” However, the photo was quickly taken down after an hour when it had already accumulated over 6,000 likes.
White House Says It Deleted Uncensored Photo of Special Forces Personnel in Israel
Photo removed an hour later after it had garnered over 6,000 likes on the official White House Instagram page.https://t.co/bp0RHW8dxp
— The Epoch Times (@EpochTimes) October 20, 2023
Self-proclaimed intelligence analyst Sam Shoemate shared a censored screenshot of the photo, expressing his concern about the White House’s failure. He took to X, formerly known as Twitter, saying, “This is a massive failure on the Biden admin.” The U.S. Department of Defense normally ensures that the faces of special operations forces troops are obscured in photos and videos due to the sensitive nature of their operations.
The White House was quick to apologize for the mistake and deleted the photo from its social media account. A representative from the White House told Fox News, “As soon as this was brought to our attention, we immediately deleted the photo. We regret the error and any issues this may have caused.” However, Republican congressional candidate Joe Kent, a retired Green Beret combat veteran, criticized the Biden administration for jeopardizing the anonymity of service members involved in dangerous missions.
During a press briefing, Pentagon Press Secretary Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder was asked about the service members in the photo and whether there is a policy against photographing special forces. Brig. Gen. Ryder referred the question to the White House, stating that he didn’t have any information to provide. He did mention that the United States is providing planning and intelligence support to Israel for hostage recovery but did not go into further detail.
The situation in Israel remains tense, with 199 hostages being held in Gaza by Hamas, including several Americans. In response, Israel has launched bombardments on Gaza and imposed a strict blockade. President Biden has expressed his commitment to rescuing the hostages but stated that there are no plans to send U.S. troops to Israel. The State Department has confirmed the deaths of 30 U.S. citizens and is in contact with the families of the 13 missing Americans.