“We should make it clear…that US military assistance is not to be used to aid and abet settler violence,” said Senator Chris Van Hollen in a recent interview. Is the Biden administration listening?

By Michael Arria, Mondoweiss

An increasing number of prominent Democrats are suggesting that the United States begin conditioning military aid to Israel in an effort to shift of its current government.

stop arming Israel sign at protest in UK

The U.S. currently gives Israel over $3.8 billion in military aid every year.

This week Maryland Senator Chris Van Hollen (D) told The Guardian that conditioning could prevent Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from further annexing portions of the West Bank or compel his government to crack down on settler violence against Palestinians.

“President Biden should get more personally engaged in addressing these issues. We should make it clear, for example, that US military assistance is not to be used to aid and abet settler violence, and not to be used for the purpose of expanding settlements or protecting those who are erecting illegal outposts,” said Van Hollen.

The Senator wants the Biden administration to look at 1997’s “Leahy Law,” which prohibits the United States from sending assistance to foreign militaries that carry out human rights abuses. Van Hollen recently returned from Israel and the illegally-occupied West Bank, where he says he witnessed Israel engaging in a “land grab” of Palestinian territory.

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