Bernie Sander’s generic stance on Israel
Bernie Sanders is often perceived as the most liberal choice out of the 2016 presidential candidates. But when it comes to Israel and Palestine, he takes a stance identical to the rest of the pack. All major 2016 candidates appear to support the apartheid state of Israel that continues to illegally occupy Palestine.
Sanders, an Independent Senator from Vermont and Democratic presidential candidate, is gaining popularity and emerging as a leading rival to presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Sanders is the only Jewish candidate running in the 2016 presidential race.
Clinton is still leading in support of the liberal base for 2016, however her lead has shrunk in recent months, according to a Monmouth University poll, as Sanders continues to make steady gains.
Sanders’ presidential campaign is built on crusades against income inequality and tax breaks for the top one percent. Sanders published a 12 step agenda detailing his plans for America which includes raising the minimum wage, pay equality for women workers, and making college affordable for all.
While Sanders is running on a socialist platform, he is liberal on everything except for Israel. In fact, Sanders has a history of short temperedness when discussing the issue.
Recently, Sanders became defensive again when NPR’s radio host Diane Rehm questioned Sanders about rumors of his dual Israeli citizenship. Sanders said, “Well, no I do not have dual citizenship with Israel. I’m an American. I don’t know where that question came from. I am an American citizen, and I have visited Israel on a couple of occasions. No. I’m an American citizen, period.”
That was not the first time Sanders has been asked about Israel and the occupation of Palestine.
In 2014, a woman at a Vermont town hall meeting asked Sanders about his support of a Senate resolution that condemned Hamas but “said nothing” about Israel’s “massacre” of Palestinians in Gaza. Sanders became defensive and told the crowded room to, “Shut up!” He told the audience that he believes Israel “overreacted” in its offensive against Hamas and was “terribly, terribly wrong” in its bombing of UN facilities. “On the other hand,” Sanders said, “you have situation where Hamas is sending missiles into Israel.”
Sanders has yet to establish a current stance regarding Israel in his quest for the 2016 Democratic nomination. However, Sanders support of Israel might be dangerous to his left- wing voter base as a recent survey indicates that many Democrats believe Israel is a racist state with too much influence over the U.S.