Although tension in the Middle East between Israel and Hamas has simmered down after months of conflict due to a ceasefire, the subsequent political conversations continue in the United States. Over the course of the political turmoil, members of Progressive “ Squad” voiced their opposition to tactics that Israel employed. In response to their comments shared, a number of GOP members criticized Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar (D), New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D), Massachusetts Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D), and Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D) for various comments they made. In the Sunshine State, Florida Rep. Michael Waltz (R) is now introducing a resolution to censure the four Democratic members of the Squad for allegedly contributing to anti-Semitic attacks across the country and for “defending foreign terrorist organizations.”
Commenting on the censure, Waltz argued that the country “cannot turn a blind eye to members of Congress openly defending terrorist attacks by Hamas against our close ally Israel nor their dangerous rhetoric which has contributed to anti-Semitic attacks across the country.” Having served as a Green Beret, Waltz shared that he’s experienced “firsthand gross atrocities against women and ethnic minorities at the hands of the Taliban.” “I’ve personally been fired upon by terrorists hiding behind women and children and seen the Taliban place suicide vests on teenagers,” Waltz noted, mentioning that “for members of the U.S. Congress to make equivalencies to Israel and the American military, which puts its own soldiers at risk to avoid civilian casualties, is ignorant of the facts, shameful, and should be condemned in the strongest terms.”
Hamas was designated as a terrorist organization by the Department of State in 1997.
In a press release announcing the censure, Waltz’s office argues that “despite this fact, Representatives Omar, Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib, and Pressley continually lie to the world in attempting to equate Israel’s right to defend itself with the attacks coming from Hamas.”