The Tampa student was part of a demonstration following the death of his cousin, Mohammed Abu Khdeir, the teen found murdered in apparent retaliation for the kidnapping and murders of the three Jewish teens.
Video footage of some of the demonstrations showed Arab rioters throwing pipe bombs, Molotov cocktails, and rocks at Israeli forces and the press. As news of the teen’s arrest and claims of being beaten by Israeli officers, the US State Dept. issued an immediate statement saying it was “profoundly troubled” by reports that an American teenager was severely beaten while being held by Israeli authorities. “We can confirm that Tariq Khdeir, an American citizen, is being held by Israeli authorities in Jerusalem,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a brief statement on July 5th, “He was visited by an official from the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem today. We are profoundly troubled by reports that he was severely beaten while in police custody and strongly condemn any excessive use of force… We are calling for a speedy, transparent and credible investigation and full accountability for any excessive use of force.”
Now let’s compare the alleged treatment by Israeli police who had been attacked by rocks and homemade bombs to that of U.S. Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi who has been imprisoned in Mexico since April 1st and has endured threats and abuse, as he waits for any word from US government. Strangely enough we’ve heard no such calls for accountability from Mexican authorities for any abuse.
Andrew has been described by fellow platoon members as exemplary. He is a decorated Marine who served two tours in Afghanistan and he has served our country with honor, yet our ‘Commander in Chief’ has been silent, even as far as not mentioning Andrew’s case when he spoke with Mexican President Nieto back in June. FOX’s Greta Van Susteren has highlighted Andrew Tahmooressi’s case and most recently spoke to some of his former platoon mates, where they described their thoughts about the fact that nothing has been done yet to bring Andrew home. “At the drop of a dime, we go out and help everyone else, but we can’t help one of our own vets. The Obama administration talks about helping our veterans, but there’s one veteran you could clearly help out and make an example of and nobody is doing anything.”
One of the most poignant and sad comments however was when Greta then asked if they could say one thing to Obama, what would it be:
“I’d like to say sir, you know we care. You’ve got a lot of US Marines who are here watching this and watching what you do. We want to see that you will go to bat for us. That you have our back in that time of need because we clearly have yours and we’d never let anything happen to you, so it’d be nice to feel the same; to know that politicians have our back… Even after we’ve completed our service.”
Never would I have believed that I would ever have to see A US Marine plead with the Commander in Chief of the US Military to have their back. That our troops and veterans have to feel this way doesn’t surprise me, but there’s no excuse for it.