Palestinians suing Joe Biden over Israel support lay out genocide case

San Francisco, California - The Palestinians suing President Joe Biden and members of his administration spoke about their landmark legal case in a press briefing on Tuesday.

A lawsuit launched by Palestinians accused US President Joe Biden of aiding "the unfolding crime of genocide" in Israel's war on Gaza.
A lawsuit launched by Palestinians accused US President Joe Biden of aiding "the unfolding crime of genocide" in Israel's war on Gaza.  © Collage: REUTERS

The federal lawsuit filed Monday by the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) accuses Biden, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin of being complicit in the weeks-long assault on Gaza launched by Israel after the October 7 Hamas attacks.

It argues that the current administration is not only failing to uphold its duty to "prevent the unfolding crime of genocide," but is actively contributing to it through unconditional diplomatic and military support for Israel.

During the press conference, plaintiffs – some of whom are currently in Gaza and contributed through harrowing voice notes – shared stories of their losses and explained the motivation behind the unprecedented legal action.

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Monadel Herzallah said he joined the lawsuit in order to "amplify the voice of the voiceless" – including the five members of his family killed so far in the relentless Israeli attacks.

"I want to see that we make sure their voices are being heard," he added.

Basim Elkarra, whose staggering losses number "close to 65" relatives so far, detailed the distressing routine that Palestinians in the US repeat every evening, with desperate attempts to make contact with loved ones in Gaza often proving impossible due to communication blackouts.

"The bombs that are killing our people are manufactured here [in the US]," Elkarra said. "Our taxpayer dollars are used to fund this genocide."

Lawyers and historians explain genocidal intent

Attorneys with the CCR also laid out a timeline of statements made by top Israeli officials that illustrate a "genocidal intent" behind the ongoing war.

They were joined by Barry Trachtenberg, a Holocaust historian and Rubin Presidential Chair of Jewish History at Wake Forest University, who submitted a scholars' declaration in support of this claim.

All the while, plaintiffs argue, Biden, Blinken, and Austin have given their full-throated backing to a crime that they are bound by the 1948 Geneva Convention to prevent from happening.

To this end, the CRR will today ask the US District Court for the Northern District of California to order the administration to immediately halt all forms of support that are contributing to Israel's war on Gaza.

Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS

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