Over the last several weeks, members of Congress have openly discussed the idea of conditioning US aid to Israel.
The conversation has been driven by the climbing death toll and worsening conditions for Palestinian civilians in Gaza, far-right policies pursued by the Netanyahu government, and a sense that Israel has not been interested in pursuing a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in recent years.
Conditions aren’t likely to happen, at least in the near term. The Senate version of the national security defense bill, released on Tuesday, does not place any restrictions on the more than $14 billion in aid allotted to Israel. Furthermore, Republicans — who control the House — are almost unanimously opposed to it, and not even a majority of Democrats are on board.
But a willingness to discuss the topic, ranging from the sober observations of more mainstream Democratic senators to the fiery pronouncements of progressive House members, represents the unexpected shattering of a longstanding taboo in Washington. [Continue reading…]