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Sanders responds to attack from Israeli ambassador: Israel policy must ‘deal with the suffering of the Palestinian people as well’

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Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) responded Sunday to remarks by Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon, who went after Sanders for calling Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a “reactionary racist.”

Asked by CBS’ Margaret Brennan whether he believed there was a political cost for his criticism of the Israeli government and his refusal to attend the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) conference, Sanders responded “Yeah, I do,” and that the Israel lobby has “a lot of money, a lot of power.”

{mosads}“I’m Jewish, I’m very proud of my Jewish heritage,” Sanders added, noting his own experience living on a kibbutz in Israel in his youth, but adding “what we need in this country is a foreign policy that not  only protects Israel but deals with the suffering of the Palestinian people as well.”

“You’ve got 70 percent youth unemployment in Gaza,” Sanders noted, calling current conditions “not sustainable.”

“I want to bring people together to finally achieve peace in that region,” he added.

“Whoever calls the prime minister of Israel a ‘racist’ is either a liar, an ignorant fool or both,” Danon said on the first day of the pro-Israel lobbying group’s annual conference Sunday. “We don’t want Sanders at AIPAC. We don’t want him in Israel.”

Sanders also addressed his loss to former Vice President Joe Biden in the South Carolina primaries Saturday, saying “We lost last night, we’re looking forward to Super Tuesday, I think we’ve got a great chance to win in California, in Texas, in Massachusetts, and a number of states around the country.”

Asked by host Margaret Brennan whether the loss was indicative of broader weakness in the South, Sanders responded “We’re going to see, I think based on the polling we’re doing pretty well in Virginia,” adding that his emphasis on income inequality and health care “are ideas that I think are resonating all around the country.”






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