Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y. insisted that she was not defending Hamas as she accused Israel of committing war crimes on Sunday.
Ocasio-Cortez appeared on MSNBC’s “The Mehdi Hasan Show” to defend her position of calling for a ceasefire following Hamas’ attack against Israel on Oct. 7. When asked whether Israel had a right to defend itself, she argued that “war crimes” are not the appropriate response.
She began, “I think one of the things that’s important to recognize about this situation is the asymmetry of what is going on as well as the collective punishment of what is happening to the Palestinian people at this moment. Hamas has absolutely engaged in horrific attacks. Every single day there are more details that are released about what occurred on October 7th that shocks the human consciousness and shocks our conscience, our collective conscience.”
“However we do know as well that war crimes do not constitute and are not an appropriate response for other war crimes,” Ocasio-Cortez explained.
“It is inacceptable to think that 1700 Palestinian children alone, their deaths will somehow make up or justify the violence of what we saw on October 7th.”
The progressive “Squad” member went on to accuse Israel of committing an “indiscriminate bombing campaign” against Gaza and questioned the effectiveness of its recent actions.
“It occurs to me, I think a question we all must ask ourselves, what price of innocent life is acceptable in terms of targeting Hamas? And are we even receiving? We are receiving daily counts every day about the number of innocent people that are dying. We are not seeing reports on how effective this has actually been in terms of dismantling Hamas. I think it’s very important for us to raise that point. I think it’s important for us to understand that this is part of a larger intergenerational cycle of violence,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez also insisted that is “absolutely not a defense of Hamas” to criticize Israel and claimed that the “political aims of violence” on both sides is the “dehumanization” of the other.
Ocasio-Cortez along with her fellow “Squad” members like Reps. Ilhan Omar, D-Mich., and Cori Bush, D-Minn., have repeatedly called for a ceasefire while dodging questions over whether Israel has a right to defend itself after the deadly attacks.
As the interview closed, she also suggested that her fellow lawmakers’ reluctance to call for a ceasefire are motivated by race.
“I have long found the ignoring and sidelining of Palestinians in the U.S. House of Representatives, the humanity of Palestinian populations in the five years that I’ve been in Congress, quite shocking. This is not something that is new to many of us,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
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