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article imageTed Cruz claims FAA flight ban is 'economic boycott of Israel'

By Dan Pelberg     Jul 24, 2014 in Politics
Texas Republican Ted Cruz attacked the Obama administration on Wednesday, claiming the FAA flight ban to Israel was politically motivated.
Texas Republican Ted Cruz is no stranger to stirring up controversy. Earlier this year Cruz demanded that US Attorney General Eric Holder be impeached for not fully investigating a scandal within the IRS. This time Cruz is attacking President Barack Obama, claiming the Obama administration is attempting to sabotage Israel’s economy by stopping flights to Israel.
“The facts suggest that President Obama has just used a federal regulatory agency to launch an economic boycott on Israel, in order to try to force our ally to comply with his foreign-policy demands,” Cruz stated on Wednesday.
The Texas Senator has long been a supporter of Israel and last month in front of 10,000 supporters (in an almost foretelling of future events) condemned Hamas and vowed to stand with Israel, claiming the bond between the US and Israel should be, “unbreakable.”
These charges are being vehemently denied by US officials. Deputy National Security Adviser Anthony Blinken went on CNN to express his stance that the FAA makes completely independent decisions from that of the Obama Administration. “They made a judgment and we’re not in the business of second guessing the FAA or overturning what they do.” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf would not even acknowledge Cruz’s comments, claiming they were, “ridiculous and offensive.”
Meanwhile, another political figurehead, former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, showed his support for Israel by flying to Tel-Aviv from the United States despite the FAA’s ban. Like Cruz, Bloomberg had a negative reaction to the FAA’s ruling. “Halting flights here when the airport is safe hurts Israel and rewards Hamas for attacking Israel,” he said. “Hamas wants to shut down the airport; we can’t let that happen.”
UPDATE:
Late Wednesday night the FAA lifted its ban on flights in and out of Israel via Ben Gurion Airport. However, many of Europe’s biggest airlines, including Air France are continuing to cancel flights to Israel until European air safety officials determine it is safe to resume flights.
More about Obama, Israel, Middle East, FAA, Ted Cruz
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