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As the Obama administration is preparing to offer Israel the largest military aid package in U.S. history, Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) reportedly gunned down a pregnant Palestinian woman in broad daylight.

The brutal incident took place at the Qalandia terminal, north of occupied Jerusalem. IDF soldiers reportedly shot and killed the Palestinian mother of two, who was five months pregnant, and her 16-year-old brother. Then they prevented Palestinian medics on the scene from rendering aid.

According to a report by the International Middle East Media Center:

Ahmad Taha, an eyewitness from Jerusalem said that after the soldiers shot the pregnant woman and her brother, they retreated a few meters back, and fired several additional live rounds on them, “confirming the kill.”

“There was no stabbing attempt, and no reason for the army to shoot, the soldiers shot them from a distance, and later fired more rounds to confirm the kill,” Ahmad said, “The soldiers then placed two knives next to the lifeless body of the pregnant woman, and shortly after that, the police published pictures showing three knives!”

Mohammad Ahmad, a bus driver who witnessed the shooting, said an Israeli soldier, who standing behind a large concrete block, shot the woman from a distance of more than twenty meters.

Neither the woman, nor her brother, posed any threat to the lives of the soldiers,” Ahmad stated, “They were far away from the nearest soldier, and did not pose any threat to them – they just walked the wrong route.”

While these killing were taking place in Israel, in Washington, D.C. 83 sitting U.S. Senators were signatories of a letter calling on the White House to immediately increase military aid to Israel, currently the largest recipient of foreign military aid in the world by a significant margin — equaling 53% of all U.S. foreign military financing.

The current military aid package to Israel, set to expire in 2018, gives the Israelis $3 billion dollars annually. Israel is reportedly demanding an increase to at least $5 billion per year in military support, according to The Times of Israel.

“In light of Israel’s dramatically rising defense challenges, we stand ready to support a substantially enhanced new long-term agreement to help provide Israel the resources it requires to defend itself and preserve its qualitative military edge,” said the letter, as reported by Reuters.

So in effect, the 15 rounds the IDF soldiers are reported to have fired at the pregnant woman, identified as Maram Saleh Abu Ismael, 24, were bought for Israel by the American taxpayers.

According to a report by MintPress News:

Eyewitnesses said the soldiers fired a barrage of bullets on the two Palestinians, and left them bleeding on the ground, in addition to preventing Palestinian medics from even approaching them, after declaring the area a closed military zone.

They added that the soldiers fired at least twenty rounds on the two Palestinians from a distance, and did not even approach them.

The Israeli Police said members of the Border Guard Units, opened fire on the Palestinian woman as she “walked towards the roadblock holding a knife in her hand.”

The Israeli allegations were refuted by various Palestinian eyewitnesses who said the two did not understand Hebrew, and were trying to reach the roadblock, after the woman obtained a permit to enter Jerusalem, for the first times in her life…

The IDF soldiers were reportedly shouting at the pregnant woman and her brother in Hebrew, a language neither of them speaks or understands prior to opening fire.

The entire narrative of the incident was portrayed in a different light in Israeli media, as Israeli daily Haaretz reported that two Palestinians “were ordered to stop, but continued to approach soldiers in a drive-through lane, not intended for pedestrians.”

After the killings by IDF forces, soldiers fired concussion grenades and tear gas to disperse dozens of Palestinians in the area, including journalists.

So, the question becomes; why are the American taxpayers providing funding for an Israeli military that kills pregnant women, shoots children for throwing rocks and that murders people who are already incapacitated on the ground?

The answer is that the ‘pay for play’ system of Washington, D.C. has allowed foreign lobbying and special interest groups, such as the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), to perfect the art of public affairs manipulation.

Without a commitment to AIPAC, and thus by default Israel, any political candidate trying to run for major federal office quickly learns that they will have a difficult, and likely short, political career ahead of them. The vast sums of money provided by AIPAC provide an essential financial backbone for anyone ‘seriously’ seeking office, a fact revealed in the 83 Senators that signed the letter in support of additional military funding for Israel.

AIPAC funds U.S. candidates into elected office, who in turn, owe favors and allegiance to the organization, which directly backs a state that regularly violates the human rights of the Palestinian people. By default, these candidates support the state of Israel no matter how horrid the human rights violations they commit.

The same forces that have molded the U.S. into an oligarchic republic, with the voting in of billionaire’s puppets under the guise of majoritarian democracy, which is controlled by an elite two party system beholden to a wealthy political-elite class,  also allow for foreign entities, such as AIPAC, to hijack the U.S. political process with most Americans completely unaware of these entities’ behind the scenes manipulation and control.


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Jay Syrmopoulos is a geopolitical analyst, freethinker, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at the University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs and holds a BA in International Relations. Jay's writing has been featured on both mainstream and independent media - and has been viewed tens of millions of times. You can follow him on Twitter @SirMetropolis and on Facebook at SirMetropolis.

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