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Rep Cleaver on Israel attack: Hamas ‘threw rocks at a beehive’

Cleaver Interview Oct 10 2023.png
Posted at 5:43 PM, Oct 10, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-10 18:44:42-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The fallout from this weekend’s attack by Hamas on Israel continued Tuesday as global leaders both condemned the attack and charted a course for what’s next.

Earlier Tuesday, President Joe Biden provided an update on the United States’ response to the attack. As part of his update, the president said at least 14 Americans had been killed as part of the attack.

KSHB 41 anchor Dia Wall spoke with Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D - Kansas City) about the attacks and what’s next.

“I’m going to start out by blaming Hamas,” Cleaver said in the Zoom interview. “I think they started this by throwing rocks at a beehive, and as a result, hundreds and hundreds, perhaps before it’s over, thousands of human beings are going to die.”

During the interview, Cleaver referenced his religious background as a pastor in helping to understand the conflict. In referencing monotheistic religions, Cleaver said they all come from the Abrahamic tradition.

Cleaver said he believes that Hamas took the opportunity to strike given the ongoing internal unrest in Israel. He further believes the unrest in the United States - specifically about the recent vote in the House of Representatives to oust former Speaker Kevin McCarthy - may have also played a role in the timing of the attack.

“I think that Hamas thought this to be a moment of weakness that this was the right time to push the dastardly deeds on Israel,” Cleaver said.

Cleaver, whose district includes the Kansas City, Missouri, area, said his office has not been contacted by any constituents needing help.

“I had been anticipating that, but we have not received any phone calls,” Cleaver said. “In terms of the Kansas City area, we don’t have any information about anybody who has either been captured and taken over into the area of control by Hamas, or any of the people who were killed just randomly in Israel, including the music festival massacre.”