As the conflict in the Gaza Strip grows more violent, individuals around the world have been weighing in with an opinion regarding Israel's policies.
Israel has long been a close ally of the United States, but for some Americans the attacks being carried out against Palestinian civilians in recent days have been too much to justify continued support. As the New York Times reports, more than 650 Palestinians, many of whom are civilians, have died in the recent outbreak of fighting. That number is compared to 35 Israeli citizens, 32 of whom are soldiers. The United States was the only country to vote against a commission of inquiry into alleged war crimes that have occurred in Gaza.
On Comedy Central’s "The Daily Show," host Jon Stewart was critical of the typically difficult-to-publicly-criticize Israel, explaining that the nation has a disproportionate amount of power in the region compared to the country which they are attacking.
Another entertainment host with similarly influential views has a vastly different opinion. Howard Stern, a longtime supporter of Israel, reaffirmed his beliefs when a caller on his SiriusXM radio show claimed he would “change his tune” when HBO host John Oliver came in the studio.
“I’m not going to change my tune. Israel’s at no fault,” Stern responded.
When the man pressed further, Stern unleashed the following (vulgar) statements: “Oh, f*** off. I don’t want to hear any anti-Semitism today. Jews get enough s**t all over the world. They get s**t on all the time. Jews are the indigenous people of that area. I’m sick of the bullshit. And the Arabs don’t even want those Palestinians, otherwise they’d let them matriculate into their country.”
Later, Stern said, “If you’re anti-Israel, then you’re anti-America. It’s the only democracy over there, it’s the only friend we have who’s willing to fight and stand up for what’s right.”
The relationship between the U.S. and Israel may have remained strong throughout the existence of the latter nation, but recent events have sparked public discussions by Americans on whether or not they should continue supporting Israel's actions.
Warning: Strong Language