According to a 2021 Gallup survey, 79% of Republicans and 33% of Liberal Democrats said they sympathise with Israel.
Republican US Senator Mitt Romney has urged the Joe Biden administration to ensure “a full and transparent investigation” is conducted into the killing of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh.
In a rare move by a member of the Republican party, the Utah senator submitted the request in a letter to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
“We urge that the State Department ensure there is a full and transparent investigation and accountability for Ms. Akleh’s death,” said Romney in a joint letter with Senator Jon Ossoff.
The Palestinian veteran journalist was killed on 11 May by an Israeli sniper while she was covering the occupation forces’ raid of Jenin in the West Bank. Palestinian authorities say she was deliberately targeted despite clearly identifying as a member of the press.
As Tel Aviv’s key ally, and with Abu Akleh’s status as a US citizen, the Biden administration faced global pressure in the aftermath of her killing.
According to a 2021 Gallup survey, 79% of Republicans and 33% of Liberal Democrats said they sympathise with Israel. The research also found that 48% of moderate or conservative Democrats sympathise with the apartheid state.
Overall in the US, 58% of adults sympathise with Israelis and 25% lean towards Palestinians. However, the net sympathy for Israel among younger US adults has been on the decline since 2011.
Calls for an investigation
Al Jazeera has continued to demand an investigation into the killing of its veteran correspondent. Abu Akleh was known as the voice of Palestinians for her coverage of crimes committed by the Zionist state, amid its ongoing occupation of Palestine.
At the time of her killing, Israeli authorities were quick to attempt to distort the facts of the incident, claiming armed Palestinians in the vicinity may have shot her.
However, authorities were quickly forced to backtrack on the claims following testimonies from eyewitnesses at the scene of the incident.
Reports by Israeli media had said Israel refuses to conduct a criminal investigation into the killing despite the occupation forces (IOF) soldier admitting to the crime.
Despite claiming that he did not see Abu Akleh through his car, investigations revealed that the journalist was shot in an area that was not covered by her protective gear. Last month, an investigation by the Palestinian Authority (PA) further proved that the IOF soldiers deliberately shot and killed Abu Akleh.
Palestine’s foreign ministry also submitted a letter to the International Criminal Court (ICC) over ongoing crimes against Palestinians, urging an investigation into the assassination of Abu Akleh.
Al Jazeera’s Washington Bureau Chief Abderrahim Foukara also told an informal UN Security Council meeting in May to conduct an investigation.
“Al Jazeera’s position is crystal clear, Shireen Abu Akleh’s life matters, and so does a transparent and independent investigation of her killing and of the serious violation of her funeral by the Israeli security forces,” Foukara told the council, as quoted by the network.
Since then, calls for a transparent investigation intensified, given that the Israeli court regularly backs the apartheid state‘s crimes against Palestinians.
The killing of the journalist has also exposed the Israeli regime’s ongoing crimes against Palestinians, with IOF forces filmed attacking pallbearers carrying Abu Akleh’s coffin at her mass funeral.
Speaking to the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos last month, Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani slammed double standards in addressing the killing of Abu Akleh.
“The Palestinian-American journalist was killed two weeks ago in Palestine, and then robbed, of a dignified-burial. Shireen was covering the suffering, of the Palestinian people for decades, and our hearts, are broken,” said the Qatari leader.