Democratic socialist politicians like Cori Bush and Rashida Tlaib are right about the violence in Israel and Palestine: we should both be mourning civilian deaths and calling for an end to the Israeli occupation.

By Ben Burgis, Jacobin

After the last few days of bloodshed in Israel and Palestine, nearly every American politician has sung the same tune. The Hamas incursions into Israel were “unprovoked.” Israel “has a right to defend itself.”

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) speaks in support of the No Muslim Ban bill during a press conference at the U.S. Capitol.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken went momentarily off-script and tweeted that he’d “encouraged Turkey’s advocacy of a cease-fire and the release of all hostages by Hamas immediately.” While that might be about what you’d expect a diplomat to tweet, it seems to have been far too diplomatic for the current mood in Washington. He quickly deleted it and replaced the cease-fire language, “Israel has the right to defend itself, rescue any hostages, and protect its citizens.”

Even the Republicans and conservatives who’ve spent the last several years pretending to be “antiwar” have been talking like Bush-era neocons. J. D. Vance, for example, immediately issued a statement not only intoning the same phrase as everyone else — “Israel’s right to self-defense” — but chillingly specifying that this right “includes striking back with overwhelming force.”

In other words, as Israel begins military operations, funded by generous US aid that will leave who knows how many thousands of Palestinian civilians dead, almost the whole mainstream American political spectrum is united in cheering it on. The only politicians offering any kind of real dissent are democratic socialists like Cori Bush and Rashida Tlaib.

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