Israel Is ‘Daddy’ to the US Congress

A revealing letter from my Congressman

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Reprinted from Bracing Views with the author’s permission.

I wrote a note to my representative in Congress, William Keating (D), who is the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. I expressed my opposition to massive Israeli bombing and massive U.S. aid that facilitates that bombing. Yesterday, I received a form letter in reply that reveals Israel remains the “Daddy” to the U.S. Congress.

How so? The letter from Mr. Keating is plainspoken and direct in its condemnation of Hamas. There is, however, absolutely no criticism of Israel. None. Hamas is pure evil, Israel is a blameless victim, and that’s all you need to know, according to the letter signed by Keating.

Some examples from the letter: Hamas is described as launching “brutal attacks” that bring “death and destruction” to Israelis and Palestinians. They use Palestinian civilians as “pawns” and “human shields.” They are “terrorists.” It’s their attacks that have “already taken the lives of too many civilians.”

The letter also expresses support for a Palestinian state (no other details), for humanitarian aid to Gaza, while mentioning that Israel, in protecting itself against terrorism, must try to protect innocent civilians in Gaza as well. But perhaps the key passage in the letter is this one:

Israel has the right to protect its citizens against terrorists who continue to attack the country after Hamas carried out the largest massacre of Jewish people since the Holocaust. A ceasefire would only benefit Hamas and allow the terrorist group to rebuild, strengthen, and fortify its positions.

As Ranking Member on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Mr. Keating closes his letter by urging Hamas “to stop these violent attacks, which have already taken the lives of too many civilians.”

Here’s what’s missing from the letter: Any condemnation or even admission of the “violent attacks” by Israel that have already claimed the lives of more than 10,000 Palestinian civilians, including more than 4000 children. (The likely death toll is far higher since many bodies remain trapped and smashed and flattened under rubble.) Mr. Keating is completely unable or unwilling to criticize Israel in any way. Israel is completely in the right, Hamas is totally responsible for all the killing, and that’s all you need to know.

Again, Mr. Keating rejects any ceasefire as a boon to the terrorists (Hamas, of course; there’s no such thing as an Israeli terrorist). Without saying it explicitly, he tacitly supports Israel’s strategy to turn Gaza into rubble while expelling as many Palestinians as possible.

In sum, Mr. Keating, and indeed nearly all members of Congress, are 100% behind the right-wing Israeli government. To the question, “Who’s your daddy?” the clear answer for Keating and his fellow members of Congress is “Israel and Bibi Netanyahu.”

William J. Astore is a retired lieutenant colonel (USAF). He taught history for fifteen years at military and civilian schools. He writes at Bracing Views.