US-ISRAELI RELATIONSHIP ‘REMAINS STRONG’ DESPITE ISRAEL’S ATTACKS ON UN SCHOOLS
Washington, 9 Shawwal 1435/5 August 2014 (MINA) – The White House says the relationship between Washington and Tel Aviv “remains strong and unchanged” despite Israel’s targeting of United Nations schools in Gaza.
On Sunday, Israel launched an attack on a UN-run school sheltering about 3,000 displaced Palestinians in southern Gaza, leaving at least 10 people dead and about 30 others injured, Press TV quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting, Tuesday.
This was the third time in 10 days that a UN school has been targeted by the Zionist forces in their nearly month-long offensive against the besieged Gaza Strip.
US officials strongly condemned the deadly Israeli airstrike, saying they are “appalled” by the “disgraceful” attack.
On Monday, however, the White House sought to downplay suggestions of a growing rift between Washington and Tel Aviv over Israel’s blatant killings of Palestinian civilians.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest called on the “Israeli military to live up to their own standards when it comes to protecting the lives of innocent civilians.”
Earnest added, “Israel continues to be one of this country’s strongest allies, and you saw that sentiment reciprocated in the remarks delivered by Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu over the weekend, where he praised the United States for the level of support that the United States is providing to our ally.”
On Saturday, Netanyahu bluntly told the Obama administration “not to ever second-guess me again” after a ceasefire between the Tel Aviv regime and the Palestinian resistance movement Hama collapsed.
The Egyptian-brokered 72-hour ceasefire broke down on Friday within two hours of taking effect when Israeli forces shelled central and southern parts of the Gaza Strip, killing dozens of Palestinians. However, Israeli officials blamed Palestinian resistance fighters for the collapse of the fragile truce.
On Sunday, Texas Governor Rick Perry said the Obama administration was trying to “criticize” Israel over its war on Gaza.
“There have been messages sent both publicly and privately that have not been strong in their support of Israel,” Perry said.
On Friday, President Barack Obama expressed concern about rising civilian casualties among Palestinians, saying, “Innocent civilians in Gaza caught in the crossfire have to weigh on our conscience and we have to do more to protect them.”
Israeli warplanes have been pounding numerous sites in the Gaza Strip, since July 8, demolishing houses and burying families under the rubble. Israeli forces also began a ground offensive against the impoverished Palestinian land on July 17.
More than 1,865 Palestinians have been killed and over 9,500 others injured by the Israeli regime’s offensive against the coastal sliver despite pressure from the international community. The United Nations says over 80 percent of the fatalities in Gaza have been civilians.
Renowned Jewish American scholar Noam Chomsky told Press TV on Saturday that Israel has committed major “war crimes” in Gaza. He said Israel is much worse than the former apartheid regime in South Africa. (T/P012/E01)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)