According to local authorities, a mob of about 10,000 protesters showed up for a weekend demonstration in front of the White House to express their support for Hamas-sponsored terrorists in the ongoing conflict between Israel and Gaza.
After sustaining weeks of relentless rocket strikes from Palestinians in Gaza, the Israeli army mounted its own campaign and began dropping missiles on strategic targets in the neighboring region. Despite the origin of the current unrest, however, Saturday’s protest in D.C. reportedly included widespread chants accusing Israel of genocide.
While some pro-Israel demonstrators ventured into the hostile territory, Breitbart reported that they required constant police protection and were ultimately escorted away from the protest site for their own safety. One protester, retired U.S. Marine Manny Vega, refused to back down from the massive and unruly crowd.
In an interview with Breitbart, he explained that he stood up to the anti-Israel activists, making his allegiance clear by carrying both an American and an Israeli flag. He said he felt compelled to counter a sentiment he feels is growing across much of the U.S.
“What brought me out here is this sort of anti-Israel atmosphere that this administration is holding over the United States,” he said. “I want to show the Israeli people there are American people in our nation that support the state of Israel.”
By carrying both flags, he said he hoped his gesture would be seen as “a show of solidarity with the Israeli people.”
The Iraq War veteran described the Jewish nation as resilient and eager to make peace with foes who have no such similar desire.
“Israelis love life,” he stated, noting that they can “coexist with other nations and they have since 1948.”
While the beleaguered nation has attempted to “extend a hand to shake” toward its surrounding enemies in the past, however, “they shake it and go back to fight.”
His reception from the pro-Hamas crowd in D.C. showed just how strained the relationship between Israel and the U.S. has become within some communities. Not only did protesters shout at him and display vile hand gestures, Vega recalled; at least one demonstrator attempted to ignite his Israeli flag.
Though he ultimately escaped from the confrontation unharmed, he said he would not have been as lucky if he had attempted to support Israel in more hostile regions.
“If I was in Palestine, my throat would be slit,” he said, “but I’m in front of the White House.”
He said that he had “every right to be here” to stand up for Israel in the face of such blatant opposition.
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom