John Fetterman condemns ‘disturbing rush’ to blame Israel for Gaza hospital attack

Hours after the airstrike on a Gaza City hospital, some blamed Israel which President Joe Biden later said was innacurate

Ariana Baio
Thursday 19 October 2023 17:31 EDT

John Fetterman says US is not sending ‘best and brightest’ to Congress

Pennsylvania Senator John Fetterman called out the members of Congress who “rushed” to blame Israel for the airstrike on the Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza City that killed hundreds of people earlier this week.

In the hours after the deadly blast, Palestinian leaders pointed the finger at Israel, while Israeli leaders cited the militant group Islamic Jihad as the culprit

Soon after, people began taking sides, including some members of Congress, like Rashida Tlaib. Then on Wednesday, President Joe Biden said data from the Department of Defense indicated the missile had come from the Islamic Jihad, not Israel.

Mr Fetterman, a vocal supporter of Israel, called some congressional members’ quick assumption that Israel had launched the attack “disturbing”.

“It’s truly disturbing that members of Congress rushed to blame Israel for the hospital tragedy in Gaza,” Mr Fetterman wrote. “Who would take the word of a group that just massacred innocent Israeli civilians over our key ally?”

Mr Fetterman added: “I will always stand with Israel and look forward to supporting any military, intelligence, or humanitarian aid to get the job done.”

The strike occurred more than a week after Hamas launched initial attacks on Israel, leading many to believe the hospital blast was retaliation from Israel.

Ms Tlaib issued a statement on X reflecting the preliminary information about the strike, blaming Israel. Representative Ilhan Omar made a similar statement.

However, a day later, Mr Biden, as well as Adrienne Watson, a spokesperson for the National Security Council, said preliminary intelligence and analysis indicated “Israel is not responsible.”

Mr Fetterman and several other representatives scolded members of Congress for making assumptions.

“It is appalling and unacceptable that Democrats in Congress partook in Hamas’ misinformation campaign which falsely accused the Israel Defense Forces of bombing a hospital in Gaza,” Rep Mike Lawler wrote.

Ms Omar, later clarified on X that the statement she tweeted was not necessarily accurate and based on early reporting.

However, Ms Tlaib has not retracted her statement publicly.

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