The far-left Democrat “Squad” is seeking to block the United States from selling arms to Israel as the Jewish state faces continued rocket attacks from the radical Islamic terror organization, Hamas.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), Rashid Tlaib (D-MI), and several other progressive Democrats lawmakers introduced a resolution designed to the arms sale on Wednesday. The measure is co-sponsored by Democrat Reps. Ilhan Omar (MN), Ayanna Pressley (MA), Cori Bush(MO) and Pramila Jayapal (WA).
The Hill reports:
The resolution is largely symbolic as Democratic leaders who support the sale are unlikely to give the legislation a vote and the window for Congress to block the sale closes in a couple days. […] The Biden administration notified Congress on May 5 that it approved selling Israel $735 million in weapons, mostly Boeing-made Joint Direct Attack Munitions that can turn so-called “dumb” bombs into precision-guided missiles. Most arms sales are subject to a 30-day congressional review period during which lawmakers can block the deals if they want. But some close allies, including Israel, are afforded a 15-day review period, and just two days remain in the window to block the latest sale to Israel.
“For decades, the U.S. has sold billions of dollars in weaponry to Israel without ever requiring them to respect basic Palestinian rights. In so doing, we have directly contributed to the death, displacement and disenfranchisement of millions,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a statement. “At a time when so many, including President Biden, support a ceasefire, we should not be sending ‘direct attack’ weaponry to Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu to prolong this violence.”
The resolution comes after President Joe Biden urged Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to scale back deadly attacks on targets on Gaza despite ongoing terror rocket attacks.
“The President conveyed to the Prime Minister that he expected a significant de-escalation today on the path to a ceasefire,” the White House said in a readout of the president’s call with Netanyahu.
Israel continued to pound targets in Gaza with airstrikes Wednesday, while Palestinian militants bombarded Israel with rocket fire throughout the day. In another sign of potential escalation, militants in Lebanon fired a barrage of rockets into northern Israel.
After a visit to military headquarters, Netanyahu said he “greatly appreciates the support of the American president,” but said Israel will push ahead “to return the calm and security to you, citizens of Israel.”
He said he is “determined to continue this operation until its aim is met.”
The Associated Press contributed to his report.