Biden’s Temporary Pier In Gaza Will Cost At Least $320 Million

( — The estimated cost for the US military to construct a temporary floating pier in Gaza to receive humanitarian aid deliveries from sea has already climbed to $320 million, prompting the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee to question whether the Biden administration’s efforts were worth the drain on US taxpayers.

President Biden announced his plan to have the US military construct the pier during his State of the Union address in March. The Pentagon confirmed last week that construction was underway and deliveries were expected to begin in early May.

Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) said the $320 million cost, which is nearly double the initial estimate, hadn’t just risen but “exploded.”

The Armed Services Committee Republican blasted the “dangerous” and costly effort to construct a pier that will only be in service for 90 days.

Wicker, along with other Republican lawmakers, has questioned if the expense and effort were worthwhile, especially in light of the risk to US military personnel in the volatile region.

Just last week, Gaza militants launched mortars at the staging area near where the temporary pier is being constructed.

Pentagon officials insist that no US military personnel will be on the ground in Gaza. Instead, construction of the pier was done several hundred yards from shore in the Mediterranean Sea. Israeli military personnel who were trained by a unit from the US Army Corps of Engineers would be responsible for anchoring the pier to the causeway.

However, Senator Wicker questioned how much more expensive the temporary project would be once it was finally constructed. He said that each day the mission proceeds, the cost continues to climb, as does the risk to the 1,000 US troops currently within the range of Hamas rockets.

Last Thursday’s mortar attack caused only “minimal” damage, and no US equipment was affected. US officials said the attack would not delay the pier’s construction, which began the following day.

According to the Pentagon, once open, the pier would initially handle around 90 trucks worth of aid per day. This would eventually increase to roughly 150 trucks when the pier is fully operational.

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