US House passes pro-Israel resolution amidst controversary

US House of Representatives
US House of Representatives. (Photo: Twitter)
WASHINGTON — The US House of Representatives has passed a resolution proclaiming that Israel is “not a racist or apartheid state,” a message directed at progressive critics. On Tuesday, the measure passed in a 412-to-nine vote, hours after Israeli President Isaac Herzog met with President Joe Biden. اضافة اعلان

The legislation comes as a response to comments on Saturday from US Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal who called Israel a racist state, Al Jazeera reported. In a statement published on her website, Jayapal highlighted that while she does not believe the idea of Israel as a nation is racist, she does point to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s extreme right-wing government who have engaged in discriminatory and outright racist policies.

US taking a stern approachTuesday’s approach highlighted an increasingly stern approach Israel’s supporters are taking to its critics. Meanwhile, Palestinian rights advocates expressed anger at the measure on Tuesday, as well as toward Democratic leaders who sided with Republicans to slight their own progressive colleagues.

In 2020, the Republican majority in the House stripped Congresswoman Ilhan Omar of her seat on the Foreign Affairs Committee over accusations of anti-Semitism linked to her criticism of Israel. In May, Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib similarly faced backlash for hosting an event at the US Capitol on the anniversary of the Nakba.

DeSantis says West Bank is ‘not occupied’
Furthermore, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is seeking the Republican presidential nomination, has reiterated claims that West Bank is not occupied, suggesting Israel should be able to continue to build settlements on Palestinian territory without US interference.

On Monday, DeSantis spoke to Christians United for Israel where he underscored a pro-Israel stance, including efforts to crack down on companies that boycott the country. CUFI is one of the largest Christian Zionist organizations, who back Israel for religious reasons.

He added Israelis have “the strongest claim of right” to the West Bank, pointing to its biblical names.

Occupied since 1967
However, the West Bank is Palestinian territory. Israel captured the land in 1968, and it has been building settlements for its citizens in the area in the violation of international law, while having de factor control over millions of Palestinians in the same territory. Moreover, several human rights groups, including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, concluded that Israel is imposing apartheid on Palestinians. UN experts have also said that the settlements amount to war crimes.

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