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Member of Israeli Parliament: ‘Americans urgently needed here’

November 16th, 2012
03:45 PM ET

Israeli politician calls for U.S. to act

Israel and Gaza in the bigger picture

By Samuel Burke, CNN

The United States must take action to quell the escalating violence in the Middle East, Israeli Knesset Member Daniel Ben-Simon said Friday.

“It’s time for the White House to call and to look at what’s happening here,” Ben-Simon of the Israeli Labor Party told CNN’s Hala Gorani.

Even though the United States has publicly given verbal support to Israel and blames the escalation of violence on Hamas firing of rockets into Israel, Ben-Simon senses an absence from the White House in that region. He fears a regional war beyond Gaza, if newly re-elected President Barack Obama does not step in.

“Benjamin Netanyahu has been prime minister for seven years. This is his first war. I cannot predict how far he will go. What I can tell you because is its becoming a serious crisis because Tel Aviv has been hit… I can’t tell you how serious it’s becoming.” He emphasized support from the U.N. and Europe is not enough, without, “the boss” as he referred to the U.S., stepping in.

Jerusalem shocked by rocket fire

Meanwhile, after returning to Egypt from his trip to Gaza Thursday, the Chief of the Egyptian Presidential Cabinet called for an end to the violence.

“I am calling for everybody to deescalate,” Mohamed Refa'a al-Tahtawi told Gorani. “This escalation is not going to lead anywhere.”

Al-Tahtawi accompanied Prime Minister Hesham Kandil to Gaza Friday, a trip critics saw as an opportunity for press exposure. Al-Tahtawi discounted that, saying that saying Egypt is willing to give Gaza tangible support; but said they are not prepared for any type of military action.

“Humanitarian supply will be sent. Political support will be extended – political support is not empty words. Political support means potential positions and I am telling you, the streets in Egypt are very angry.”

For CNN's complete coverage of the violence in Israel and Gaza click here.

Filed under:  Gaza • Israel • Latest Episode • Palestinian territories
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. YesSirMayIHaveAnother

    Israel wants the U.S.A. to come drag itself into another war in the Middle East Israel agitated for? That Netanyahu and Romney agitated for right before the end of the election? That's rich. In 2008 the SAME EXACT thing happened after Obama's election.

    Go here and look at this list:,_2008

    There was NOTHING going on until November 4th, 4 days before the U.S. election when Israel decides to agitate on Nov. 4th and cross into Gaza to close a tunnel. Israel kills 6 Hamas and Hamas in return attacks Israel with rockets.

    So Israel provoked Hamas in the lead up to the U.S. presidential elections in 2008. In October 2008 there was 1 rocket fired according to Wiki. After Israel's raid in November there are 125 rockets fired. Now in 2012 during ANOTHER presidential election, Israel does THE EXACT SAME THING. Agitating the new president to get involved with another stupid and costly war that Americans will have to pay for. Is anyone reporting on it? Not really.

    "Report: Netanyahu says 9/11 terror attacks good for Israel "
    "We are benefiting from one thing, and that is the attack on the Twin Towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq," Ma'ariv quoted the former prime minister as saying. He reportedly added that these events "swung American public opinion in our favor."


    November 16, 2012 at 4:47 pm | Reply
    • Charles Dickens

      First of all,if you have failed to hear and see,this Daniel Ben Simon is from the Israeli opposition and not a member of the government!It is his own obscene and shameful defeatist opinion that America should interfere.Israel does not need America or anyone else to help like in the past when no one lifted a finger to help Israel from 1948 till this present day.Israel decimated 7 armies I believe we can take on a 1000 hooligans.If anything America and the EU should be quite and let Israel dill with Hamas and get their comeuppance!
      Hamas started this "agitation" by firing at a patrol vehicle last Saturday injuring 4 soldiers.That is causus belli!At best,what you wrote is a lie!!!America would have turn Mexico into dust if it was the case there.
      Your rocket counting list is facetious,since 2001 Hamas has fired 12000 rockets on Israel and you dare speak of "Agitation"?
      Every single rocket fired into Israel is designed to kill Israeli civilians!Just because they are Jews!!!
      Do you understand these words I write to you?
      No country in the world would live like this,no reason Israel should live like this.Unless you think only Jews should live like this?
      Then good luck trying to convince us that:
      A.You are not Antisemitic.
      B. You are not an Arab.
      C. You are not an Antisemitic Arab.

      You see,all your twisting of facts that are real like the screen you use to read my comment is a typical Arab deportment!!!

      November 18, 2012 at 1:00 pm | Reply
      • UncleSam

        "Israel does not need America or anyone else to help..."

        $3 billion in support every year from us to you. you can't afford those tanks, planes, and guns without it.

        November 21, 2012 at 3:34 pm |
      • marc

        "" Then good luck trying to convince us that:
        A.You are not Antisemitic.
        B. You are not an Arab.
        C. You are not an Antisemitic Arab."""
        knowing that arabs are semitics too , all your twisting of facts that are real like the screen you use to read my comment is a typical ignorant

        November 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • miriam

      I suppose rockets being fired into Israeli civilian centers for over 12 years isn't an "agitation".
      Over that time, Israel has often chosen not to respond which has only been seen as a sign of weakness by the other side and an opportunity to continue arming.
      If Hamas chose to escalate its attacks at the same time as the US elections, that was their choice, but Israel's response was to Hamas and nothing to do with the US.

      The Israeli official interviewed is an opposition figure and his calls for US intervention is not the Israeli government line. So rather than leaping to false conclusions you should understand Israel's democratic politics and all the undertones that come with it.

      November 20, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Reply
  2. Dan Nelson

    No Israel does not need military support. Israel can handle any military action by any other Arab state. What OUR position should be to let the fighting factions know that there is no military solution and understand that Israel is here to stay. They will not give an inch while there are some in the Muslim world that want to destroy Israel which Iran is trying to get every Muslim to destroy Israel in any way possible and if Iran keeps on pushing Syria and the terrorist organizations that it supports then the western world has no other position but to take out the Iranian regime which most Iranians would be obliged! It's about time to cut off the snakes head of the terrorist groups it supports then they will have no way to continue their attacks on Israel. Now as for Egypt and the Muslim brotherhood their only position should be to stop the terrorist groups from attacking Israel otherwise loose ALL western aid!

    November 16, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Reply
  3. Dan Nelson

    This has to do with terror not any Palestinian statehood! If they want statehood they should distance themselves from these terrorist groups that are attacking Israel and terrorizing the Israeli population! IF THEY ARE SAYING THAT ISRAEL IS AT FAULT HERE THEN THEY TO SUPPORT THE TERRORISTS ACTIONS!

    November 16, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Reply
    • Dan Nelson

      They too support the terrorists! If their so concerned for statehood they act like civil human beings! Then and only then should America put pressure on Israel to move out of Palestinian territory. They cannot give up land if they are being attacked now in the little land they possess. IT WOULD BE SUICIDE!

      November 16, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Reply
  4. Dan Nelson

    then act like not they act like

    November 16, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Reply

    Peace btw Israel en Palestin wil b achivd nt frm outside(i.e USA) bt frm within coz da problem is frm within,nt outside.

    November 17, 2012 at 3:20 am | Reply
  6. Frits Schmidt Rasmussen

    Watching the news one almost get the impression that Hamas rocket attacks on Israel are legitimate, and it only develops into a crisis or a conflict when Israel retaliates. I know that it is easy to question Israeli politicians and report from Israel, but CNN need to ask tough questions to the Hamas leadership on what they think makes it legitimate to fire rockets at the Israeli civilian population. In my mind, an indiscriminate rocket attack on civilians is not an act of war, but an act of terror. Personally I know of no country in the world that will accept almost constant rocket attacks from a neighboring country.

    November 17, 2012 at 5:51 am | Reply
    • Israel

      November 18, 2012 at 10:15 am | Reply
  7. Conricus

    It´s very serious that CNN/Amanpour in its program today about the conflict between Israel and Hamas is trying to sidestep Mahmoud Abbas. He, contrary to Hamas, want to solve the conflict peacefully. No terror shelling is conducted from The Palestinian Authority territory. Why only from Gaza? One answer might be that the Palestinian Authority has realized that much more can be achieved by peaceful means. No Israeli government can or will deny the Palestinians their own land, once terror activities – like daily shelling of southern Israel – ends. CNN/Amanpour agenda of portraying the conflict as merely a result of the upcoming Israeli elections is at the least misleading and only plays in the hands of Islamists who like Hamas want to eradicate Israel from the map. Israel withdrew unilateraly from Gaza 2005 but has since then been "rewarded" with more an more terror shelling of villages and civilians. This is the sole reason for IDF present action. Israelis are united behind the efforts by the present Israeli government to stop this terror. A labour led government would do the same. CNN/Amanpour should instead question the agenda of the rulers of Egypt, Tunis and Qatar, who have showed support for Hamas by visiting Gaza. No country in the world would accept to be targeted almost daily by rocket attacks, like Israel has been since 2005. Stop the terror and peace will prevail!

    November 17, 2012 at 8:52 pm | Reply
  8. Danny

    I am an an expat Australian residing in Israel not far from Jerusalem. Frankly I am shocked by Daniel Levy's commentary on the current flare-up. He showed a clear bias in his assessment of the situation here and phrased the situation in overly political undertones.
    The reason Israel, lead by the Netanyahu government, has gone to war with Hamas is because the residents of the south have been under constant rocket fire for a number of weeks and this has been a cyclic problem of Hamas and their terrorist affiliates firing UNPROVOKED into Israeli territory over a number of years since operation Cast Lead and the unilateral disengagement from Gaza in 2006. When Israel reacts it is Israel's "fault". This is ridiculous and a complete perversion of logic.
    Let's call a spade a spade and realise that from Hamas's point of view Israel will always be the occupiers as long as there is an Israel! We left Gaza (remember!?), they admittedly will not relent until we leave all of Israel (Palestine). We have no intention of that happenning!

    November 18, 2012 at 9:17 am | Reply
  9. Anthony Lee

    its hard to believe that he is an MK so stupid he cant even give a simple answer to the question 4:50 and starts believing in miracles he must be a Hamasnic.

    November 18, 2012 at 11:18 am | Reply
  10. Avi Cohen Ashkelon

    There is a bias and lies of your broadcaster Daniel Levy, I am shocked how can a person lie to the American people that way. I am a resident of Ashkelon, a city located 12 kilometers from Gaza. We experience for 12 years missile launches. Well after the "disengagement" from Gaza we had left, as you requested in 2005. How the U.S. would work if they were firing missiles from Cuba on the cities and coasts of the U.S. 'We Israelis want to live and peace offered them a job because we believed that rehabilitating the economy and standard of living will have to abandon terrorism, and they in return made suicide bombings, blew up buses and cafes. We provide them with water and electricity which they build rockets and anti-tank smugglers.
    George W. Bush pledged that the United States withdraw from the Gaza Strip will back us if rocket fire continues. Unfortunately rocket attacks continued firing Hamas terrorist organization on Tel – Aviv, Jerusalem, southern Israel over 4 million Israelis are hostages spawn several times a day protected area. No military operation right hand, and we will win.
    Israeli politician surreal Daniel Ben Simon led the Oslo agreement and gave the Arabs weapons and guns is made to escalate the situation. There is no one to talk to, these are heinous murderers.
    Unfortunately, my experience as an Israeli, Arab Muslims, wherever they understand only the language of force and concessions are seen as a weakness, no matter what will end and how we give perceived as weak. Israel is a luxurious villa in a poor neighborhood barbaric All we want is to live in peace and quiet, but you can not live like this anymore

    November 18, 2012 at 3:12 pm | Reply
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