June 3, 2010
In News The Israel-Palestine Conflict
Washington – Democratic Congressman Barney Frank had “harsh words” for Israel in an interview with the Boston Herald, the paper reported Wednesday.
Frank commented that “as a Jew” he is “ashamed that there would be Jews that would engage in that kind of victimization of a minority,” in reference to Israeli treatment of the Palestinians.
Israeli officials and pro-Israel Jewish groups in the US have responded to outrage over Monday’s high-seas raid that killed at least nine, by saying Israeli soldiers were defending themselves. Boston Jewish Community Relations Council Executive Director Nancy K. Kaufman told the Herald, “They weren’t innocent at all, it’s pretty clear,” referring to the activists. “There’s something called self-defense and (Israeli officials) have a right to use it. As usual, everyone’s jumping on Israel and blaming Israel,” she said.
Frank took a harder line, saying “Once you have a combat situation and innocent people die, I mean, you know, look at our problems in Afghanistan, and we have an obligation to try and avoid it.”
Frank also called for a “genuinely impartial” inquiry into Monday’s events. The Boston Herald said local Jewish leaders were skeptical that any international panel could be impartial toward Israel.