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Civilian casualties in Gaza don’t matter – top US senator

Lindsey Graham insists no amount of Palestinian deaths should make the US put the brakes on Israel

The US should stand by Israel in its campaign against Hamas no matter how heavy a toll it takes on the civilian population in Gaza, Senator Lindsey Graham has argued. He likened Israel’s military operation against the militants to the allies’ struggle against Nazi Germany and Japan during World War II.

In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Graham was asked if there was a “threshold” for him, after which he would start questioning Israel’s tactics. The Republican replied in the negative, saying there is no limit as to “what Israel should do to the people who are trying to slaughter the Jews.

This idea that Israel has to apologize for attacking Hamas, who’s embedded with their own population, needs to stop,” the senator insisted, adding that it is Hamas that is “creating these casualties – not Israel.

Graham noted that Israel does need to “be smart” by trying to “limit civilian casualties.” The lawmaker also called for the delivery of humanitarian aid to “areas that protect the innocent.

During his visit to Israel last month, US President Joe Biden assured Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that “as long as the United States stands, and we will stand forever, we will not let you ever be alone.

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Soon after Hamas’ deadly attack on Israel last month, Washington scrambled to provide its long-standing ally with additional defense aid worth billions of dollars.

The US has also deployed two aircraft carrier groups and other naval assets, a squadron of F-16 fighter jets, air-defense systems, and 900 troops to the Middle East, saying this increased military presence should serve as a deterrent to other states tempted to join the conflict.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, the director of the UN’s human rights office (OHCHR) in New York, Craig Mokhiber, described Israel’s actions in Gaza as a “text-book case of genocide” and the “wholesale slaughter of the Palestinian people, rooted in an ethno-nationalist settler colonial ideology.

The official handed in his resignation, arguing that the UN had failed in its duty to prevent the killing of Palestinian civilians. He claimed that the international organization had “surrendered to the power of the US” and given in to the “Israeli lobby.
Mokhiber also accused European nations of being “complicit in the horrific assault” on Gaza and “giving political and diplomatic cover for Israel’s atrocities.

Echoing Mokhiber’s assessment on Tuesday in Geneva, a spokesman for the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), James Elder, claimed that “Gaza has become a graveyard for thousands of children,” and a “living hell for everyone else.” He called for a humanitarian ceasefire in the Palestinian enclave.

The conflict has so far left more than 1,400 Israelis and over 8,000 Palestinians dead, with thousands more injured.

 

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