American Jewish activist: Blood of Gaza is on hands of US administration, Congress members

American Jewish activist: Blood of Gaza is on hands of US administration, Congress members

Congress does not want to support people of Gaza, 'and they're allowing this starvation to happen,' Medea Benjamin tells Anadolu

By Hakan Copur

WASHINGTON (AA) - The blood of the Gaza Strip is on the hands of the US administration under President Joe Biden and members of Congress, according to an American Jewish activist and co-founder of the women-led peace group, CODEPINK.

Medea Benjamin has been leading protests in solidarity with Gaza since Israel waged a brutal military campaign on the Palestinian enclave in response to a Hamas attack in October.

Benjamin said she is "heartbroken" about the plight of Gaza residents and "very upset" that the US keeps supporting Israel with American tax dollars.

Benjamin’s hands were painted red to symbolize blood.

"I would say to the Biden administration, ‘Shame on you for what you have done already.’ And I wear my hands like this every day because this is the blood of this administration and the members of Congress on their hands. And of course, we call for a cease-fire and no more money to Israel," she told Anadolu.

Israel has launched a deadly offensive on Gaza following a cross-border incursion by the Palestinian resistance group, Hamas, on Oct. 7. The ensuing Israeli bombardment has killed 29,954 people and injured more than 70,000 with mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Benjamin likened the killings to "genocide," "ethnic cleansing," "slaughter" and the "Holocaust."

"It's horrific,” she said. “The fact that over 30,000 people have been killed and so many of them women and children and innocent people. It's horrific. And I'm just amazed that here in Congress they keep supporting Israel."

The activist said that mainstream media in the US does not give a fair picture of what is happening in Gaza.

"And so we have to work so hard to try to get the American people to understand that we can't be supporting the government of Israel. I'm Jewish, so I think I have a very legitimate voice in all of this. This is not helping Jewish people. This isn't helping Israel, and it's certainly not helping US relations with the Muslim world, or the world stability in general," said Benjamin.

Turning to the humanitarian situation, Benjamin said Congress does not want to support the people of Gaza, "and they're allowing this starvation to happen."

"This administration says, ‘Oh, we care about the people.’ They say to Israel, ‘Please stop killing so many people, don't starve people.’ But what they're doing is the exact opposite," she said. "Right now, they're trying to get another $14 billion to go to Israel for more bombs to kill more people.

"So. I would say to the world: Put the money in and force the Israelis to allow those hundreds of trucks that are lined up along the Rafah border and force them to allow air drops in and force them to allow ships to come in like Mavi Marmara did years ago … we need to open up air, sea border and allow the people to have Gaza to live," said Benjamin.

She was referring to the Turkish ship that was in a fleet of vessels carrying humanitarian aid to the besieged enclave in 2010, which came under a deadly attack by Israeli forces.

She also demanded the resignation of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the imprisonment of Israeli officials, whom she referred to as "war criminals."

"But we have our own war criminals here, you know, the United States. Because it's a powerful country, never is held accountable, wasn't held accountable for what it did in Iraq, for what it did in Afghanistan, wasn't still held accountable for what we did in Abu Ghraib and all the torture. I'm a US citizen. I want to hold my own government accountable," she said.

*Servet Gunerigok contributed to this story

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