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CONTACT: Congressman Dennis Kucinich
Kucinich Speaks Against Israel Resolution
'We Must Take a New Direction in the Middle East'
WASHINGTON - January 9 - Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) today spoke out against a resolution affirming U.S. support for Israel's military action in Gaza. While a firm supporter of the people of Israel and a critic of rocket attacks by Hamas militants, Congressman Kucinich led opposition against the incomplete resolution.
H.Res. 34, "Supporting Israel in Its Battle with Terrorist Hamas," is incomplete because it does not address the humanitarian crisis of Palestinians in Gaza, fails to insist on an immediate ceasefire, and neglects Israel's potential violation of the Arms Export and Control Act which governs U.S. arms exports to foreign countries.
The Arms Export Control Act (AECA) requires that each nation that receives a shipment of arms from the United States must certify that the weapons are used for internal security and legitimate self-defense, and that their use does not lead to an escalation of conflict. Congressman Kucinich informed the administration of Israel's possible violation of AECA through Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on January 6, 2009. Kucinich has yet to receive a response.
The full text of Congressman Kucinich's statement follows:
January 9, 2009
"In Gaza, the United Nations gave the Israeli army the coordinates of a UN school, and the school was then hit by Israeli tank fire, killing about forty. The UN put flags on emergency vehicles, coordinating the movements of those vehicles with the Israeli military, and the vehicles came under attack, killing emergency workers. The Israeli army evacuated 100 Palestinians to shelter, and then bombed the shelter, killing thirty people.
"Emergency workers have been blocked by the Israeli army from reaching hundreds of injured persons. Today's Washington Post: 100 survivors rescued in Gaza from roads blocked from Israelis. Relief agencies fear more are trapped, days after neighborhood was shelled. Today, the U.S. Congress is going to be asked to pass a resolution supporting Israel's actions in Gaza. I'm hopeful that we don't support the inhumanity that has been repeatedly expressed by the Israeli army. The U.S. abstained from a UN call for a ceasefire. We must take a new direction in the Middle East, and that new direction must be mindful of the inhumane conditions in Gaza.