A year following Israel’s Operation Protective Edge —- its 51-day assault on Gaza —- members of the U.S. Congress have received precious little information about the impacts of Israel’s military campaign, the one they generously funded and restocked on this day in 2014. ABC News reported (7-30-14):
On July 20 Israel made a foreign military sales request for munitions that included an undisclosed amount of 120 mm tank rounds and 40 mm illumination rounds for grenade launchers. The defense official said the ammunition was sold to Israel as a “routine” foreign military sales request and not an emergency request to tap into the U.S. military stockpile in Israel.
The Israeli request to purchase the ammunition was made just days after Israel launched its ground offensive into Gaza. The fighting in Gaza since has resulted in the deaths of 1,340 Palestinians and 59 Israelis, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry. More than 7,200 have been injured.
The U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, along with others, organized a briefing for Congress yesterday. About 75 people attended, a good number considering the event was competing with a hearing on the nuclear agreement with Iran.
The full hour-long video of the briefing is available here. The speakers were:
Nadia Ben-Youssef, USA Representative, Adalah: The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel
Each speaker is a heavy-weight in his/her own right and each presents compelling testimony. You can view each of their presentations separately here.
If you have time or a limited attention span and can only watch one, I recommend Nadia’s presentation. She is an attorney who talks about the efforts to hold Israel accountable.
Although I invited my Congressional delegation, they didn’t attend. 😦 I’m going to send them this blog post with a simple request. After funding Israel’s military and giving the Green Light for its operation last summer, they should be informed about the impacts of U.S. unconditional support for Israel’s “right to defend” itself. I’m going to be a pitbull and demand they listen to Nadia Ben-Youssef.