Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) announced Thursday that he will introduce legislation to try to block a $735 million American arms sale to Israel. The resolution would stop the sale of joint direct attack munitions and small-diameter bombs to the main U.S. ally in the Middle East.
Information on the resolution was detailed in a draft Sanders sent exclusively to The Washington Post. To pass, it needs a simple majority in the Senate. If vetoed by President Joe Biden, it would need a two-thirds majority in both chambers to take effect.
“At a time when U.S.-made bombs are devastating Gaza and killing women and children, we simply cannot allow another major arms sale to go through without even a debate in Congress,” Sanders said in the statement.
Americans arms sales to Israel and support remain divisive
According to the media, Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Mark Pocan and Rashida Tlaib introduced a similar resolution on Wednesday opposing American arms sales to Israel.
The proposal comes at a time when Democrats, currently the governing party, have differing views on U.S. Middle East strategy. For progressives like Ocasio-Cortez, the Biden administration should not side with Israel, while the Democratic president has expressed his support for the Israeli state ambiguously and without taking firm positions.
On the other hand, Republican senators, such as Ted Cruz, and former President Donald Trump, among others, have expressed their solidarity and support for the people of Israel after receiving attacks from terrorist groups such as Hamas.