Bernie Sanders Slams Biden's 'Totally Absurd' Israel Policy: 'You Can't Reconcile It'

The senator said Friday that “this wholesale slaughter” of Palestinians "makes my stomach turn" and urged the U.S. to stop funding it.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) isn’t biting his tongue concerning U.S. policy toward Israel.

The progressive senator has continued to support President Joe Biden on his campaign for re-election, but made an impassioned appearance Friday on “Alex Wagner Tonight” — and slammed the “absurd” policy of funding what Sanders called “an unprecedented disaster.”

The ongoing conflict erupted when Hamas killed 1,200 Israelis and abducted around 200 others on Oct. 7. Conditions in Gaza have worsened into a humanitarian catastrophe since: Gaza’s health ministry says over 30,000 Palestinians have been killed, most of them women and children.

Sanders said Friday that the hunger and death in the region “makes my stomach turn.”

“We are talking about hundreds of thousands of children facing starvation,” he told Wagner. “We’re talking about Israeli bombs making it impossible for humanitarian aid to get to places that it is needed, that the borders are being blockaded and aid is unable to get through.”

Biden approved airdrops of humanitarian aid into Gaza Friday, after more than 100 Palestinians were killed and 750 others were injured when Israeli troops fired at civilians scrambling for goods from an aid convoy. The first 38,000 airdropped meals arrived Saturday.

“So I think what the president is doing is an important step forward, but we need to do more,” Sanders told Wagner of the aid. “We need to tell Netanyahu and his right-wing government that they’re gonna have to open those borders.”

Sanders urges the U.S. not to give Netanyahu "another nickel" to "slaughter" Palestinians.
Sanders urges the U.S. not to give Netanyahu "another nickel" to "slaughter" Palestinians.
Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc/Getty Images

Israel has barred the entry of food, water and medicine into Gaza since the latest hostilities began, save for scarce aid pallets entering from Egypt at the Rafah crossing in the south. The United Nations says a quarter of Gaza’s 2.3 million people are now facing starvation.

Sanders recently broke with a progressive group he co-founded in urging Michigan voters to abandon Biden in the state’s primary over his support for Israel, but emerged last month as one of the sole progressive votes against a bill that included $14 billion in new military aid for Israel.

Sanders argued Friday that the U.S. has given Israel “lots of money” for “many, many years” and needs “a new approach for Israel” that doesn’t include supplying Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with the same weapons troops use kill Gazans scrambling for food.

“My view: not another nickel for Netanyahu’s government if he’s gonna continue this wholesale slaughter of the Palestinian people,” Sanders told Wagner.

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