BROOKLYN, Wed March 18–In the wake of Israel's election for Prime Minister, James Lane, Green Party candidate for Congress in the 11th district called for the U.S. to end military and other aid to Israel until it ends the illegal occupation of Palestine and agrees to peace.
While Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's ruling Likud Party won only 25% of the seats up in the election, he appears poised to return to office in a coalition with other parties. Days before the election, Netanyahu had vowed not to negotiate independence for Palestine if elected.
"As a party of peace, the Greens promote nonviolence and wants all residents of the Middle East to be safe. The reality, however, is that in recent decades the primary victims of violence and the deprivation of basic human rights has been Palestinians. The U.S. unconditional support for Israel‒regardless of its actions‒has effectively blocked resolving the inhumane conditions that Palestinians are forced to endure and has prevented serious efforts to negotiate a lasting peace," said Lane.
Lane noted that the Black Lives Matter Movement has stressed the comparisons between the militarized occupation of communities of color at home and abroad. At least two of the four law enforcement agencies used in Ferguson‒the St. Louis County and Metropolitan Police Departments‒obtained training from Israeli security forces. Under the Obama administration, the transfer of military surplus to local police departments has greatly expanded and has primarily been deployed in communities of color.
Lane said the U.S. should end all military aid to countries in the Middle East, including Egypt. Any aid should be provided directly to humanitarian efforts, starting with the reconstruction of the Palestinian territories. The U.S. must also reverse its position and support international efforts to block the illegal construction of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories.