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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls AIPAC ‘racist and bigoted’

(New York Jewish Week) — New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called the American Israel Public Affairs Committee “an extremist organization that destabilizes US democracy” in a social media post on Tuesday night.

“AIPAC endorsed scores of Jan 6th insurrectionists,” the progressive lawmaker, who represents parts of the Bronx and Queens, wrote on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter. “They are no friend to American democracy. They are one of the more racist and bigoted PACs in Congress as well, who disproportionately target members of color.”

She concluded, “They are an extremist organization that destabilizes US democracy.”

Ocasio-Cortez’s statement was in response to a post the pro-Israel organization published Tuesday, calling her out along with other lawmakers who did not support a pro-Israel House resolution last week. Also named in the post were other members of the “Squad,” the group of progressive Democratic members of Congress, as well as Republican Rep. Thomas Massie.

AIPAC endorsed scores of Jan 6th insurrectionists. They are no friend to American democracy.

They are one of the more racist and bigoted PACs in Congress as well, who disproportionately target members of color.

They are an extremist organization that destabilizes US democracy. https://t.co/I7KeLBHttJ

— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) November 1, 2023

The House passed the resolution on Oct. 25 with 412 votes, as 194 Democrats and 218 Republicans voted in favor. Six lawmakers voted “present” and 10 voted against the resolution, all Democrats save for Massie. The resolution “reaffirms Israel’s right to self-defense, and condemns Hamas’ brutal war against Israel.”

It also “reaffirms the United States’ commitment to Israel’s security, supports emergency resupply and certain other types of assistance to Israel, and urges full enforcement of sanctions against Iran to prevent Iran’s funding of terrorist groups.”

AIPAC, the country’s largest pro-Israel lobby and political action committee, began directly funding candidates in late 2021. It endorsed 365 candidates ahead of the 2022 election, including majorities of House Republicans and Democrats, but attracted criticism for endorsing 109 of the 147 of the Republicans who refused to affirm President Joe Biden’s election in a vote on Jan. 6, 2021. An AIPAC spokesperson said at the time that the group is a “single-issue organization” focused on support for Israel.

In response to Ocasio-Cortez, the organization posted, “AIPAC stands with pro-Israel Democrats and Republicans of all races, genders, and backgrounds who support the US-Israel alliance. And we oppose those who don’t, like you.”

Other lawmakers tagged in AIPAC’s post have also shared posts criticizing the group. Missouri Rep. Cori Bush wrote, “AIPAC’s dark money grift & anti-democracy propping up of insurrectionists are attempts to undermine the will of the people.”

In the weeks since Hamas’ Oct. 7 invasion of Israel, and Israel’s subsequent war against the terror group in Gaza, Ocasio-Cortez has repeatedly expressed support for a ceasefire while also speaking out against antisemitism.

“Two million people. Half children. Starved. Bombed. Cut from communication,” she posted on X on Oct. 28, regarding Gaza. “Some may dismiss a ceasefire as naïve or worse. Yet who has a plan for what follows this destruction? What do we call that?”

On Monday, following reports of rising antisemitism in New York and across the country, she posted, “Antisemitism is disgusting and unacceptable. We have a responsibility to defend our Jewish brothers, sisters, and siblings from hatred. No movement of integrity should tolerate it. Ever.”

Ocasio-Cortez also condemned the pro-Palestinian rally held Oct. 8 in Times Square, calling it “unacceptable and harmful.”


The post Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls AIPAC ‘racist and bigoted’ appeared first on Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

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Kyiv Rejects Putin’s ‘Absurd Ultimatum’ to End War

Russian President Vladimir Putin delivers a speech during a session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. Photo: Reuters/Maxim Shemetov

i24 NewsRussia’s strongman President Vladimir Putin said he would end the war in Ukraine only if Kyiv agreed to drop its NATO ambitions and hand over the entirety of four provinces claimed by Moscow. Kyiv swiftly rejected the demands as tantamount to surrender.

Putin demands that Ukraine transfers to Russia four regions, including a 300,000 city of Kherson and 700,000 Zaporizhzhya as a “precondition” to “peace talks”. This man is delusional, and those in the West who speak of “negotiations” or “cease fire” are enemies of the free world. pic.twitter.com/fqTGVqMdDu

— Sergej Sumlenny, LL.M (@sumlenny) June 14, 2024

“The conditions are very simple,” Putin said, listing them as the full withdrawal of Ukrainian troops from the entire territory of the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions.

Putin’s maximalist conditions apparently reflect Moscow’s growing confidence that its forces have the upper hand in the war.

He restated his demand for Ukraine’s demilitarization and said an end to Western sanctions must also be part of a peace deal. He also repeated his call for Ukraine’s “denazification.”

“He is offering for Ukraine to admit defeat. He is offering for Ukraine to legally give up its territories to Russia. He is offering for Ukraine to sign away its geopolitical sovereignty,” said Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak, rejecting the demands as “absurd.”

The post Kyiv Rejects Putin’s ‘Absurd Ultimatum’ to End War first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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Deadly Explosion Kills 8 IDF Soldiers in Rafah

Illustrative. Some rises after an Israeli strike as Israeli forces launch a ground and air operation in the eastern part of Rafah, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, May 7, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Hatem Khaled

i24 NewsEarly this morning, tragedy struck in the southern Gaza city of Rafah as eight Israeli soldiers lost their lives in a devastating explosion, marking the deadliest incident for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in the region since January.

The IDF has confirmed the casualties, with one soldier identified as Captain Wassem Mahmoud, 23, a deputy company commander from Beit Jann in the Combat Engineering Corps’ 601st Battalion.

The names of the other seven soldiers will be released after their families have been notified.

According to initial reports from the IDF, the soldiers were traveling in a Namer armored combat engineering vehicle (CEV) as part of a convoy around 5 a.m., following a successful overnight operation targeting Hamas militants in the Tel Sultan neighborhood of Rafah. During the operation, troops under the 401st Armored Brigade reportedly neutralized approximately 50 gunmen.

The convoy was en route to buildings captured by the army for the soldiers to rest, when the Namer CEV, which was the fifth or sixth vehicle in the convoy, was struck by a powerful explosion. The nature of the explosion remains under investigation, with possibilities ranging from a pre-planted bomb to an improvised device placed on the vehicle by Hamas operatives.

Initial findings suggest that explosives stored on the exterior of the Namer CEV may have contributed to the severity of the blast. Normally, such explosives are designed to minimize harm to troops inside if detonated.

The IDF probe indicates there was no gunfire preceding the explosion, and the vehicle was not stationary at the time of the incident. The circumstances surrounding the tragedy have prompted intensified scrutiny into the safety protocols and operational procedures during military movements in hostile territories.

The deaths of these eight soldiers bring the total number of IDF casualties in recent ground operations against Hamas to 307. This figure includes a police officer killed during a recent hostage rescue operation and a civilian Defense Ministry contractor also slain in the conflict.

This is a developing story 

The post Deadly Explosion Kills 8 IDF Soldiers in Rafah first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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U.S. Officials Fear Escalating Conflict Between Israel and Hezbollah

Israeli firefighters work following rocket attacks from Lebanon, amid ongoing cross-border hostilities between Hezbollah and Israeli forces, near the border on its Israeli side, June 13, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Avi Ohayon

i24 NewsRecent actions by both Israel and Hezbollah have sparked growing concerns among U.S. officials, who fear that the situation could escalate into a full-scale war, according to reports from CBS News.

The tension has intensified following a series of Israeli airstrikes on Lebanese territory, which some American authorities believe are laying the groundwork for a larger military operation.

Sources within the US government have expressed worries that such a move could trigger a conflict that might strain Israel’s alliance with Washington.

Hezbollah, in response to recent events including the assassination of senior commander Taleb Sami Abdullah, has escalated its own actions. The group has begun launching daily rocket attacks targeting northern Israeli communities since October 8, citing solidarity with Hamas amidst the ongoing conflict in Gaza.

US officials cited by CBS News have highlighted concerns over the potential unintended consequences of Hezbollah’s increased attacks. They fear that these actions could provoke Israel into launching a significant military assault, further exacerbating the volatile situation in the region.

The developments come amid ongoing international efforts to de-escalate tensions and prevent a wider conflict. Diplomatic channels remain active, with calls for restraint and dialogue from various quarters.

The United States, a key ally of Israel, has historically played a crucial role in mediating and influencing regional conflicts. Officials are closely monitoring the situation, emphasizing the importance of avoiding actions that could escalate tensions further.

The post U.S. Officials Fear Escalating Conflict Between Israel and Hezbollah first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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