Democratic New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez once admitted she wasn’t an expert on Middle Eastern conflicts after she was pressed for her opinion on the “occupation of Palestine.”
During a 2018 interview on PBS’s “Firing Line” with Margaret Hoover, Ocasio-Cortez said Palestine was being occupied but was unable to elaborate on what occupation meant.
“I also think that what people are starting to see, at least in the occupation of Palestine, is just an increasing crisis of humanitarian condition and that to me is just where I tend to come from on this issue.”
Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez attacks Israel, calls them the occupiers of Palestine.
When pressed on what she meant she struggled to give an answer and then admitted she does not know what she is talking about. pic.twitter.com/e3Uq1eupD3
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) July 16, 2018
Hoover then pressed Ocasio-Cortez on what she meant by the “occupation of Palestine” and Ocasio-Cortez appeared to become flustered.
“Umm, I think what I meant is like the settlements that are increasing in some of these areas and places where Palestinians are experiencing difficulty in access to their housing and homes,” she said.
Ocasio-Cortez gets pressed again to expand her thought but is unable to do so.
“Yeah I mean I think I also would just: I am not the expert on geopolitics on this issue,” she says laughing. “I am a firm believer in finding a two-state solution on this issue, and I’m happy to sit down with leaders on both of these – for me, I just look at things through a human-rights lens, and I may not use the right words. I know this is a very intense issue.”
The Simon Wiesenthal Center, a Jewish human rights organization, said Ocasio-Cortez didn’t understand what she was talking about in a tweet at the time.
Road to hell paved with good intentions and scant knowledge. Happy to provide info to Alexandra who knows zero about 3,500 yr relationship of Jewish people to Land of Israelhttps://t.co/DUqVpxtG5x
— SimonWiesenthalCntr (@simonwiesenthal) July 16, 2018
Despite admitting nearly three years ago that she was not an expert on the conflict, Ocasio-Cortez has since taken a strong pro-Palestine stance. (RELATED: How The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Is Dividing Democrats)
She recently criticized President Joe Biden for “taking the side of occupation” after he expressed support for Israel following a barrage of rocket attacks against the Jewish state from Hamas.
By only stepping in to name Hamas’ actions – which are condemnable – & refusing to acknowledge the rights of Palestinians, Biden reinforces the false idea that Palestinians instigated this cycle of violence.
This is not neutral language. It takes a side – the side of occupation.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) May 12, 2021
Ocasio-Cortez also slammed the U.S. government for their intended sale of weapons to Israel.
“The United States should not be rubber-stamping weapons sales to the Israeli government as they deploy our resources to target international media outlets, schools, hospitals, humanitarian missions and civilian sites for bombing. We have a responsibility to protect human rights,” she wrote on Twitter.
The Biden administration approved $735 million in weapons sales to Israel in the beginning of the month, The Washington Post reported. Congress reportedly knew about the sale one week prior to Hamas’ indiscriminate attacks on Israel.