Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) faced criticism from a far-left political party she associates with over a pro-Palestinian demonstration in New York City shortly after a deadly incident in Israel, resulting in the loss of over 1,100 lives.
The Democratic Socialists of America in New York City endorsed the rally, held just one day after the incident, expressing their stance “in solidarity with the Palestinian people and their right to resist 75 years of occupation and apartheid,” as per a post on their platform that has been subsequently removed.
According to Politico Playbook, AOC’s response to the rally provoked discontent within the DSA.
“It should not be hard to shut down hatred and antisemitism where we see it. That is a core tenet of solidarity,” she said.
“The bigotry and callousness expressed in Times Square on Sunday were unacceptable and harmful in this devastating moment. It also did not speak for the thousands of New Yorkers who are capable of rejecting both Hamas’ horrifying attacks against innocent civilians as well as the grave injustices and violence Palestinians face under occupation,” she added.
Nadia Tykulsker, the NYC DSA’s steering committee member, fired back on Monday, telling Politico Playbook that the rally was “at the request of a coalition partner because we believe in equality and justice for all Palestinians and Israelis, and we know that war will take more lives.”
Ilhan Omar, AOC, Cori Bush, Rashida Tlaib and the entire SQUAD should be expelled from Congress for their hateful rhetoric towards Israel.
— Brigitte Gabriel (@ACTBrigitte) October 8, 2023
“It is shameful that politicians in our state are exploiting this moment to target a socialist organization and divide the vibrant left in New York — whose sole aim in politics is to grow the power of working people for freedom against exploitation and oppression — instead of focusing our attention where it should be: on the atrocities and tragic loss of life in the region,” she added.
AOC Needs to answer for this
This is a DSA Promoted event
AOC Is a card carrying member of the DSA https://t.co/gDJSIdBdjW
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) October 9, 2023
In the meantime, Israel’s domestically developed Iron Dome anti-missile system, used to shield its cities and citizens from incoming rockets and missiles launched by Hamas forces, was partly funded by the United States. However, this decision didn’t sit well with one of Congress’s most left-leaning members at the time.
For example, AOC’s opposition to this funding resurfaced after Hamas launched a barrage of rockets into Israel last week, targeting Israeli communities, causing numerous casualties, and taking hostages in a surprise attack that resulted in over 1,100 fatalities.
Back in September 2021, “AOC” expressed her discontent on the floor of Congress when lawmakers passed a bill allocating $1 billion in funding for Israel to further develop the Iron Dome system. The system struggled to cope with the sheer volume of rockets fired from Gaza by Hamas.
Fox News host Sean Hannity recently posted a ‘reminder’ on the X platform.
AOC Cries on the House Floor as Congress Passes $1 Billion in Funding for Israel’s Iron Dome pic.twitter.com/30HANNsSzZ
— 🇺🇸 ERIC BOLLING 🇺🇸 (@ericbolling) October 13, 2023
The measure passed 420 to 9, meaning the vast majority of AOC’s party also voted in support of the funding.
A week after the vote, People Magazine interviewed her about the incident. The New York ‘Squad’ member claimed that she was frustrated and disappointed “that the bill was ‘rushed’ to a vote through a process that prevented the legislation from receiving the ‘usually-necessary committee debate, markup, or regular order.’”
She also complained that “for far too long, the U.S. has handed unconditional aid to the Israeli government” and that “Congress should take greater scrutiny with all military funding across the world.”
“Yes, I wept,” AOC said. “I wept at the complete lack of care for the human beings that are impacted by these decisions, I wept at an institution choosing a path of maximum volatility and minimum consideration for its own political convenience.
“And I wept at the complete lack of regard I often feel our party has to its most vulnerable and endangered members and communities — because the death threats and dangerous vitriol we’d inevitably receive by rushing such a sensitive, charged, and under-considered vote weren’t worth delaying it for even a few hours to help us do the work necessary to open a conversation of understanding.”