US State Dept official resigns over 'continued lethal assistance to Israel'

Washington, Oct 20 (IANS): A US State Department official has resigned “due to a policy disagreement concerning our continued lethal assistance to Israel".

In a LinkedIn post on Wednesday, Josh Paul, whose bio read that he was a former Director at the Department, said: "Today I informedmy colleagues that I have resigned from the State Department,due to a policy disagreement concerning our continuedlethalassistance to Israel.

“Let me be clea... Hamas’ attack on Israel was not just a monstrosity; it was a monstrosity of monstrosities. I also believe that potential escalations by Iran-linked groups such as Hezbollah, or by Iran itself, would be a further cynical exploitation of the existing tragedy.

"But I believe to the core of my soul that the response Israel is taking, and with it the American support both for that response, and for the status quo of the occupation, will only lead to more and deeper suffering for both the Israeli and the Palestinian people – and is not in the long term American interest.

"This administration’s response – and much of Congress’ as well – is an impulsive reaction built on confirmation bias, political convenience, intellectual bankruptcy, and bureaucratic inertia. That is to say, it is immensely disappointing, and entirely unsurprising.

"Decades of the same approach have shown that security for peace leads to neither security, nor to peace. The fact is, blind support for one side is destructive in the long term to the interests of the people on both sides.”

Responding to Paul's resignation, State Department spokesperson Matt Miller said on Thursday that “we understand, we expect, we appreciate that different people working in this department have different political beliefs, have different personal beliefs, have different beliefs about what the US policy should be".

“With respect to this specific criticism that has been aired, we have made very clear that we strongly support Israel’s right to defend itself. We are going to continue providing the security assistance that they need to defend themselves.

We think they have a right, not a right but an obligation, to defend themselves against these terrorist attacks – I think any country would do that. But the President and the Secretary has spoken to this very clearly that we expect Israel to abide by all international law as they defend themselves,” CNN quoted the spokesperson as saying.



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Title: US State Dept official resigns over 'continued lethal assistance to Israel'

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