Democratic Rep. Jared Moskowitz criticized Sen. Bernie Sanders for his call to make Israeli aid conditional on its actions in Gaza, at a time when tensions in the Middle East continue to drive a wedge between Democrats in the region. United State
Sanders, who caucus with Democrats, issued a statement over the weekend urging President Biden to force Israel to reduce its settlements in the West Bank and pledged not to impose a long-term blockade on Gaza before the United States releases aid money.
Moskowitz pledged that he would work to remove those conditions from the legislation if it is sent to the House of Representatives or impose stricter measures on aid to Gaza.
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“I fully support humanitarian aid to Gaza,” Moskowitz wrote on X. “But if Bernie Sanders places policy requirements on aid to Israel, I will work in the House of Representatives to remove those requirements or impose conditions on aid to Gaza that require the removal of Hamas.” during the Weekend. Both Moskowitz and Sanders are Jewish.
Moskowitz added, “Let’s not play this game. Send aid to both of them.”
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Hamas fighters infiltrated southern Israel on October 7, brutally killing nearly 1,400 people – most of them civilians.
Israel responded with force, bombing Gaza and launching an armed ground invasion. The Hamas-controlled Gaza government said over the weekend that the death toll in the area had reached 13,000 since October 7.
The issue of Israel has exacerbated divisions within the Democratic Party, especially between neo-progressives and the left establishment.
More than 20 hard-left Democratic lawmakers broke from their party to vote against a resolution condemning anti-Semitism and support for Hamas on school campuses earlier this month. Later, a similar number of moderate Democrats joined Republicans to censure Representative Rashida Tlaib, Democrat of Michigan, the only Palestinian American in Congress, for her statements about the war.
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“The Netanyahu government, or hopefully a new Israeli government, must understand that not a penny will come to Israel from the United States unless there is a fundamental change in their military and political positions,” Sanders wrote on X over the weekend.
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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., supported the call for conditional aid. “Imposing conditions on aid to Israel, as we do with nearly all other US allies, is a responsible course of action,” she wrote on the platform.
“The United States has a legal and moral responsibility to ensure that public resources do not facilitate gross violations of human rights and international law,” Ocasio-Cortez said.