Michigan Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib opposed support of Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system Thursday with a Twitter post, claiming Israel has used U.S. aid to “commit war crimes.”
“I will not support a standalone supplemental bill of $1 billion to replenish the bombs Israel used to commit war crimes in Gaza,” Tlaib wrote.
The tweet included a link that highlighted the bill’s support for Operation Guardian of the Walls, the defensive effort of the Israeli Defense Forces used to protect the country’s civilians against bombing from Hamas in May.
I will not support a standalone supplemental bill of $1 billion to replenish the bombs Israel used to commit war crimes in Gaza. https://t.co/YILmG1ZmLy
— Rashida Tlaib (@RashidaTlaib) September 23, 2021
House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro, a Connecticut Democrat, introduced a supplemental appropriations bill on Wednesday to replenish Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.
According to Fox News, DeLauro introduced the standalone bill because Democrats had stripped the Iron Dome funding from a larger spending bill last week.
“The United States’ commitment to the security of our friend and ally Israel is ironclad. Replenishing interceptors used to protect Israel from attacks is our legal and moral responsibility,” DeLauro said in a statement.
“While this funding would ordinarily be included in a year-end spending package, we are advancing this legislation now to demonstrate Congress’ bipartisan commitment to Israel’s security as part of a Middle East with lasting peace.”
Should the U.S. support Israel’s Iron Dome missile protection system?
According to DeLauro’s statement, the funding is part of an agreement reached in the Obama administration.
“The funding is consistent with the 2016 Memorandum of Understanding between the United States and Israel, which commits the United States to providing additional assistance to replenish the Iron Dome after periods of fighting to allow Israel to continue to defend itself from attack,” the statement said.
In May, Israel mobilized 5,000 reserve troops to augment its security and defense after Hamas launched hundreds of missiles at Israeli cities.
Then-Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the attacks and said Israel would pursue aggressive action to defend itself from violence.
“The terrorist groups in Gaza crossed a red line on the eve of Jerusalem Day, a red line, and attacked us with rockets on the outskirts of Jerusalem,” Netanyahu said, according to The Jerusalem Post.
Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, Gilad Erdan, said Israel “has no other choice but to defend its citizens from these indiscriminate attacks, and we demand the international community hold the Palestinians accountable and forcibly condemn their actions,” The Jerusalem Post reported.
Hamas had attacked Israel with more than 500 rockets up to that point, including a barrage of 137 rockets launched in under five minutes, according to The Wall Street Journal.
According to that report, Israel said it struck back at targets including Hamas leadership, weapons manufacturing sites and tunnels used by Hamas forces to stage attacks on Israel.
“At the conclusion of a situational assessment, it was decided that both the strength of the attacks and the frequency of the attacks will be increased,” Netanyahu said, according to Reuters.