Netanyahu Accepts Johnson's Invitation - First Foreign Leader To Address Congress A 4th Time

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by Tyler Durden
Sunday, Jun 02, 2024 - 07:45 PM

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has accepted an invitation to address both houses of Congress, after House Speaker Mike Johnson issued a formal invitation on Friday, with the backing of fellow Democrat leaders. 

Netanyahu boasted that he will be the first foreign leader in history to make four such appearances there. "I am moved by the privilege of representing Israel before both houses of Congress, and of presenting, to the representatives of the American people and the entire world, the truth about our righteous war against those who seek our destruction," an acceptance statement by the Israeli prime minister's office said.

Back in 2011: Politico

The invitation leader had also been signed by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries. They said "we join the State of Israel in your struggle against terror, especially as Hamas continues to hold American and Israeli citizens captive and its leaders jeopardize regional stability."

“For this reason, on behalf of the bipartisan leadership of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate, we would like to invite you to address a Joint Meeting of Congress.”

However, some House and Senate Progressives are expected to boycott Netanyahu's address, including Senator Bernie Sanders.

Sanders issued a statement saying "It is a very sad day for our country that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been invited – by leaders from both parties – to address a joint meeting of the United States Congress."

"Netanyahu is a war criminal. I certainly will not attend," Sanders added. Indeed it is also the first time that a leader who has an arrest warrant out by the Hague-based ICC has addressed Congress and the American people.

All of this is happening at a deeply strained moment for US-Israel relations. Israel's military has plunged deep into Rafah, violating prior red lines issued by Biden. Also, Netanyahu appears to have slammed the door on Biden's publicly backing the current ceasefire deal on the table.

Other Progressive Congressional members say they will ask hard questions during his visit:

The Israeli PM has vowed that the military operation in Gaza won't stop until Hamas no longer has military or governing capacity. He has said he won't withdraw troops until the group is eliminated.