Published On: Tue, Jul 17th, 2018

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez gives embarrassing responses on Israel, capitalist America

Democratic congressional candidate and self-described socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez caused controversy after a recent interview when she said that America wasn’t founded on capitalism and called Israel an “occupation” force over Palestine.

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The former bartender appeared on PBS’s “Firing Line” on Friday and was asked, “What is your position on Israel?”

Ocasio-Cortez responded in non-controversial fashion, calling for a two-state solution and Israel’s absolute right to exist.

When pressed to elaborate, Ocasio-Cortez, a Democratic Socialist, said: “I also think that what people are starting to see, at least, in the occupation of Palestine is just an increasing crisis of humanitarian condition.”

Interviewer Margaret Hoover immediately sought clarification on Ocasio-Cortez’s use of the hot-button word “occupation.”

“Oh I think — what I meant is like the settlements that are increasing in some of these areas and places where Palestinians are experiencing difficulty in access to their housing and homes,” said Ocasio-Cortez.

She chuckled and tried to laugh off her blunder.

“I am not the expert on geopolitics on this issue,” she said. “I just look at things through a human rights lens and I may not use the right words … Middle Eastern politics is not exactly at my kitchen table every night.”

More detailed transcripts are below.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center blasted her in a tweet saying she “knows zero about 3,500 yr relationship of Jewish people to Land of Israel.”

The Alt-left Jacobin magazine said the interview was “not good” for her offering “liberal platitudes about a two-state solution.”

Earlier in the show, Ocasio-Cortez was asked about the modern economy, and she predicted that capitalism would come to an end someday.

She also claimed the United States didn’t have capitalist roots.

“Capitalism has not always existed in the world and it will not always exist in the world,” said Ocasio-Cortez. “When this country started … we did not operate on a capitalist economy,”

Ocasio-Cortez, 28, stunned long-time incumbent Congressman Joe Crowley for the Democratic nomination in the Bronx/Queens district.

Hoover: “You have not needed to take many foreign policy positions, because you were unseating a Democratic incumbent. But now you are very likely going to be going to Washington, and you have to sort of build out some of those foreign policy positions. You, in the campaign, made uh one tweet or one statement that referred to a killing by Israeli soldiers of civilians in Gaza and called it a massacre which became a little controversial. But I haven’t seen anywhere, what is your position on Israel?”

Ocasio-Cortez: “Well I believe absolutely in Israel’s right to exist. I am a proponent of the two-state solution. And for me this is not a referendum of the state of Israel. I think that for me the lens through which I saw this incident, as an activist, as an organizer. Sixty people were killed in Ferguson, Missouri. Sixty people were killed in the South Bronx, unarmed. Sixty people were killed in Puerto Rico. I just look at at that incident, just as an incident. To me that would be completely unacceptable if that had happened on our shores. But-”

Hoover then pointed out the very different contexts of protests in America versus in the Middle East.

Hoover: “Of course the dynamic there with the geopolitics, the war in the Middle East is very different than people expressing their First Amendment right to protest.”

Ocasio-Cortez: “Of course. Well, [pause] yes. But I also think that what people are starting to see, at least in the occupation of Palestine, is just an increasing crisis of humanitarian conditions, and that to me is where I tend to come from on this issue.”

When asked to clarify what she meant by “occupation of Palestine,” Ocasio-Cortez struggled to give a clear response.

Hoover: “You used the term ‘the occupation of Palestine.’ What did you mean by that?”

Ocasio-Cortez: “Oh, um. [pause] I think what I meant is like the settlements that are increasing in some of these areas in places where um, where Palestinians are facing difficulty in access to their housing and homes.”

Hoover pressed back on Ocasio-Cortez’s explanation. After which, Ocasio-Cortez retreated from her earlier statements and claimed not to be an expert.

Hoover: “Do you think you can expand on that?”

Ocasio-Cortez: “Yeah, I think I’d also just say that I am not the expert in geopolitics on this issue. You know for me, I’m a firm believer in finding a two-state solution for this issue.”

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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