Democratic California Rep. Brad Sherman condemned Hamas for committing war crimes against Israeli civilians during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing.
“Hamas has fired 4500 rockets into Israel for the sole purpose of killing as many civilians as possible. Every one of these rockets was a war crime,” Sherman said Monday. He then asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken to explain the Biden administration’s efforts to fund Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.
“Israel’s missile defense system … saved countless Israeli civilian lives, and also countless Palestinian lives, by bringing this fight to a more speedy conclusion. Every one of those 4500 rockets was an attempt to kill as many civilians as possible,” Sherman continued. (RELATED: Watch The Moment Israel’s Iron Dome Intercepts A Barrage Of Rockets Over A Major City)
“Unfortunately we won’t bring the criminals to international justice. But we can prevent those crimes in the future by replenishing Iron Dome. What is the status of potential supplemental assistance for missile defense?” he asked Blinken.
“With regard to Iron Dome, we are committed to its replenishment,” Blinken responded.
“The Israeli Defense Minister was in Washington just last week. I met with him. Most importantly, Secretary Austin met with him. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan did. And we are working with the Israelis to fully understand their needs and working with Congress, most importantly, to make sure we can secure the funding for that replenishment. So this is under very active review, and we look forward to working with you to make sure that happens,” he said.
Sherman was one of 25 Democrats to vote against former President Barack Obama’s Iran deal in 2015, although he signed a letter in late 2020 calling on President Joe Biden to return to the agreement. (RELATED: Kerry Can’t Say If He Will Follow The Law If Congress Rejects Iran Deal [Video])
Some Democrats have complained that Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system is unfair to Palestinians. “Palestinians deserve protection. Unlike Israel, missile defense programs, such as Iron Dome, don’t exist to protect Palestinian civilians,” Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar said in May.
“The president and many other figures this week stated that Israel has a right to defend itself, and this is a sentiment that’s echoed across this body. But do Palestinians have a right to survive? Do we believe that?” New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez added.