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Michigan lawmaker says Gaza should be approached ‘like Nagasaki and Hiroshima’

A
Republican
member
of
Congress
appeared
to
suggest
that
nuclear
weapons
should
be
dropped
on
Gaza,
according
to

a
video
from
a
town
hall
circulating
on
social
media
,
but
his
office
maintains
that
he
was
speaking
metaphorically
“to
show
urgency
to
defeat
these
enemies
swiftly.”

Rep.
Tim
Walberg
(R-Mich.),
was
answering
a
question
from
a
constituent
during
a
town
hall
in
Dundee,
Mich.,
on
Monday,
who
asked
about
the

United
States’
plan
to
build
a
floating
pier

off
the
coast
of
Gaza
to
deliver
humanitarian
aid.

“Why
are
we
spending
our
money
to
build
a
port
for
them?”
someone
asks
in
the
video.

Walberg,
who
is
not
seen
in
the
video,
responds
by
saying
that
the
United
States
“shouldn’t
be
spending
a
dime
on
humanitarian
aid,”
and
then
references
the
two
Japanese
cities
where
the
United
States
dropped
atomic
bombs
during
World
War
II.

“It
should
be
like
Nagasaki
and
Hiroshima.
Get
it
over
quick,”
Walberg
said.

Mike
Rorke,
a
spokesman
for
Walberg’s
office,
said
Saturday
that
the
congressman’s
response
“was
clipped
to
eliminate
the
extension
of
his
metaphor,
which
also
covered
Ukraine.”

“The
full
context
underscores
that
this
was
not
a
literal
statement,
but
a
metaphor
to
show
urgency
to
defeat
these
enemies
swiftly,”
he
said.

According
to
audio
of
Walberg’s
response,
provided
to
The
Washington
Post
by
Walberg’s
office,
after
the
congressman
said
“Get
it
over
quick,”
he
added,
“The
same
should
be
in
Ukraine.”

“Defeat
[Russian
President
Vladimir]
Putin
quick,”
Walberg
continued
“Instead
[of]
80
percent
in
Ukraine
being
used
for
humanitarian
purposes,
it
should
be
80
to
100
percent
to
wipe
out
Russia

if
that’s
what
we
want
to
do.”

Michigan

has
one
of
the
nation’s
largest

Arab
American
and
Muslim
populations,
with
about
300,000
people
who
claim
ancestry
from
the
Middle
East
or
North
Africa,
and
the
United
States’
approach
to
the
war
has
become
a
major
political
issue
for
2024.

The
lawmaker’s
comments
have
drawn
criticism
from
Democrats
in
the
state.

Rep.
Elissa
Slotkin
(D-Mich),

wrote

on
X
that
Walberg’s
comments
were
“a
reprehensible
thing
for
anyone
to
suggest,
especially
an
elected
official
and
someone
who
considers
himself
a
man
of
faith.”

“Rep.
Walberg
should
take
back
his
comments,
and
try
to
put
himself
in
the
shoes
of
the
many
Michiganders
who
see
themselves
in
the
casualties
in
Gaza,”
Slotkin,
who
is
running
for
Senate,
added.

Rep.
Daniel
Kildee
(D-Mich.)

on
X

called
Walberg’s
remarks
“horrific
&
shocking.”

“It
is
an
indefensible
position
to
argue
against
humanitarian
aid
for
the
people
of
Gaza
while
also
calling
for
the
wholesale
massacre
of
the
Palestinian
people.
I
couldn’t
disagree
more
with
these
extreme
&
dangerous
comments,”
he
continued.

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