Editor's note: The following is Rep. Ron Paul's statement on H.
Res. 34, "Recognizing Israel's right to defend itself against attacks
from Gaza, reaffirming the United States' strong support for Israel, and supporting
the Israeli-Palestinian peace process."
Madame Speaker, I strongly oppose H. Res. 34,
which was rushed to the floor with almost no prior notice and without consideration
by the House Foreign Affairs Committee. The resolution clearly takes one side
in a conflict that has nothing to do with the United States or U.S. interests.
I am concerned that the weapons currently being used by Israel against the
Palestinians in Gaza are made in America and paid for by American taxpayers.
What will adopting this resolution do to the perception of the United States
in the Muslim and Arab world? What kind of blowback might we see from this?
What moral responsibility do we have for the violence in Israel and Gaza after
having provided so much military support to one side?
As an opponent of all violence, I am appalled by the practice of lobbing homemade
rockets into Israel from Gaza. I am only grateful that, because of the primitive
nature of these weapons, there have been so few casualties among innocent Israelis.
But I am also appalled by the long-standing Israeli blockade of Gaza
a cruel act of war and the tremendous loss of life that has resulted
from the latest Israeli attack that started last month.
There are now an estimated 700 dead Palestinians, most of whom are civilians.
Many innocent children are among the dead. While the shooting of rockets into
Israel is inexcusable, the violent actions of some people in Gaza does not
justify killing Palestinians on this scale. Such collective punishment is immoral.
At the very least, the U.S. Congress should not be loudly proclaiming its support
for the Israeli government's actions in Gaza.
Madame Speaker, this resolution will do nothing to reduce the fighting and
bloodshed in the Middle East. The resolution in fact will lead the U.S. to
become further involved in this conflict, promising "vigorous support
and unwavering commitment to the welfare, security, and survival of Israel
as a Jewish and democratic state." Is it really in the interest of the
United States to guarantee the survival of any foreign country? I believe it
would be better to focus on the security and survival of the United States,
the Constitution of which my colleagues and I swore to defend just this week
at the beginning of the 111th Congress. I urge my colleagues to reject this