Civilians have paid a horrific price in the ongoing violence in Gaza. As a person of faith, I hope my representatives in Congress will support and work for a lasting cease-fire that includes lifting the Israeli blockade of Gaza. The United States has particular responsibility to help end the killing because U.S. weapons are fueling this conflict. The International Committee of the Red Cross has called the blockade collective punishment against a civilian population. U.S. policymakers must call for lifting the blockade to ensure a durable cease-fire.
I also hope the U.S. will go beyond addressing the immediate crisis and support long-term stability by shifting from a militarized approach in the Middle East to one rooted in inclusive, diplomatic solutions. The success of the ongoing nuclear talks with Iran and the agreement to destroy Syria’s chemical weapons demonstrates that the world can be made a safer place through diplomacy, not more bombing.