American official resigns over US support for Israel’s ‘genocidal’ war on Gaza

American official resigns over US support for Israel’s ‘genocidal’ war on Gaza

WASHINGTON, Jan 04 (APP): A US Education Department official resigned on Wednesday in response to the Biden administration’s handling of the conflict in Gaza, becoming the second senior government official to step down in protest over Washington’s military support for Israel’ s campaign against the Palestinians in the enclave.

The latest sign of dissent in the administration came as Palestinian deaths continue to grow under deadly Israeli bombardments of ravaged Gaza.

Also on Wednesday, 17 Biden re-election campaign staffers issued a warning in an anonymous letter that President Joe Biden could lose voters over the issue.

Tariq Habash, special assistant in the Education Department’s Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development, in a letter to Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, said: “I cannot stay silent as this administration turns a blind eye to the atrocities committed against innocent Palestinian lives, in what leading human rights experts have called a genocidal campaign by the Israeli government.”

Habash, a Palestinian-American and an expert on student debt, was appointed early in Biden’s presidency as part of a build-out of the Education Department’s student loan expertise.

“I cannot be quietly complicit as this administration fails to leverage its influence as Israel’s strongest ally to halt the abusive and ongoing collective punishment tactics that have cut off Palestinians in Gaza from food, water, electricity, fuel, and medical supplies, leading to widespread disease and starvation,” he added.

He also pointed in the letter to the actions of the Biden administration that have put millions of innocent lives in the besieged Gaza Strip in danger.

“Today, I resigned from the Biden-Harris Administration. I cannot represent an administration that systematically dehumanizes Palestinians and enables their ethnic cleansing. The President must call for a permanent ceasefire.”

The 17 anonymous Biden re-election campaign staffers, in their letter, published on Medium, urged Biden to call for a ceasefire in Gaza.

Days after Israel began carrying out aerial strikes in Gaza on October 7, a senior State Department official who worked on arms transfers became the first Biden official to step down in protest.

Josh Paul, who served as a director at the department’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, publicly announced his exit on LinkedIn in opposition to the provision of additional military aid to Israel.

In his resignation letter Paul wrote that he believed: “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.”

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