US: Israel Shouldn’t Punish Innocent Palestinians for Shooting

State Dept: Israel Should Avoid Escalating Tensions After Attack

In a rare rebuke, the US State Department has cautioned the Israeli government against a crackdown on Palestinian civilians after yesterday’s Tel Aviv shooting, saying they need to consider the impact of their moves on innocent civilians and avoid “escalating tensions.”

With Israel having already arrested the two attackers, and a suspected accomplice, and no signs of a larger group being behind it, their options for a military retaliation are few, and so far the far-right coalition has had to content itself with banning Ramadan travel of random Palestinians and sealing off the occupied territories.

Of course, with the culprits in custody, everything else is by definition punishing innocent Palestinians, with State Department spokesman Mark Toner saying Israel should allow the Palestinians to “go about their daily lives.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fired back that the attack proved those people “don’t value life,” and that Israel will “do what is required” in response to the attacks. In practice, that seems to mean collective punishment, which will give way to protests, which will lead to more punishment, and so on.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of