Sen. McConnell says U.S. needs to stand by Israel, criticizes Democrat calls for a ceasefire

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., speaks at a Senate Rules Committee markup to argue against the “For the People Act,” which would expand access to voting and other voting reforms, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, May 11, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

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UPDATED 11:01 AM PT – Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is pushing back again his Democrat colleagues who are calling for a ceasefire between Israel and the terrorist organization Hamas. While speaking from the Senate floor on Monday, he said he was proud to stand with the U.S. ally while stating Israel deserves an opportunity to “restore deterrence.”

“I’ve been proud to stand with Israel for years and I’m proud to stand with Israel today,” he stated. “The United States needs to stand foursquare behind our ally. Israel deserves an opportunity to restore deterrence and to impose costs on terrorists the international community has been unwilling or unable to impose.”

McConnell then accused senators from the left of pushing a false narrative that supports the terrorist aggressors. The Republican further said calling for both sides to de-escalate would downplay the responsibility the terrorists have for initially causing the conflict.

“There’s a saying that’s been around quite a while,” he noted. “If Hamas laid down its weapons tomorrow, there would be no more fighting. If Israel laid their weapons, there would be no more Israel.”

McConnell then pointed how the Islamic militant group uses violent tactics for political gain.

“Hamas has sought to hijack recent tensions to advance its own narrow, violent objectives,” said the Kentucky lawmaker. “In that sense, it’s a conflict between Israel and a terrorist rump state in Gaza that uses its civilian population as human shields and exploits their suffering for political gain.”

In the meantime, at least two dozen Democrat senators have called for an immediate ceasefire agreement while Republicans are continuing to support Israel’s right to defend itself.

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