Kilmeade smears Sanders, AOC over their responses to Hamas’ terrorist attacks on Israel

Brian Kilmeade is not very good at doing research. The Fox News host falsely accused Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) of failing to condemn Hamas’ brutal terrorist attacks on Israel, claiming that the senator instead only criticized the Israeli government for “committing war crimes in Gaza” in its response. In fact, Sanders had condemned Hamas in the very statement Kilmeade cited.

“Bernie Sanders just tweeted out that Israel is committing war crimes in Gaza by shutting off the water and the power,” Kilmeade said while guest-hosting Jesse Watters Primetime on Wednesday. He then quoted from a Sanders statement, the text of which appeared on-screen: "Targeting of civilians is a war crime, no matter who does it. Israel's blanket denial of food, water, and other necessities to Gaza is a serious violation of international law.” 

“Really? As a Jewish-American, not a comment that I could find, unless it's on some Threads website that Mark Zuckerberg dreamed up, that condemns the killing and butchery we witnessed, but he wants to condemn the retaliation,” he added.

Kilmeade concluded that the situation he described was “unbelievable,” which is the most accurate thing he had to say: You shouldn’t believe what Kilmeade was saying because it isn’t true.

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Citation From the October 11, 2023, edition of Fox News' Jesse Watters Primetime.

In the very same October 11 statement from which Kilmeade read, Sanders began by saying, “Hamas’ terrorist assault on Israel will have horrific short- and long-term consequences. As a result of this attack, thousands of Israelis and Palestinians — including many women and children — have been killed and injured. That toll will rise. The gunning down of young Israelis at a music festival is an image the world will not soon forget.” 

He went on to say that “the United States has rightly offered solidarity and support to Israel in responding to Hamas’ attack” but added that “children and innocent people do not deserve to be punished for the acts of Hamas.”

Kilmeade claimed to have been unable to find evidence of Sanders condemning Hamas’ “butchery” and joked that perhaps such statements had been made on the social media site Threads. But in addition to the comments in the statement from which Kilmeade read, Sanders also posted on X/Twitter on the day of the terrorist attack, “I absolutely condemn the horrifying attack on Israel by Hamas and Islamic Jihad. There is no justification for this violence, and innocent people on both sides will suffer hugely because of it. It must end now.”

Kilmeade also smeared Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y) during the same segment. He falsely claimed that she “condemned comments made by pro-Israeli protesters” — a reference to her Twitter/X post responding to calls by attendees at a pro-Israel rally to “kill every Palestinian” and “erase Gaza” — “but still has nothing to say about the pro-Hamas rally supported by her fellow socialists in New York City.”

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Citation From the October 11, 2023, edition of Fox News' Jesse Watters Primetime.

In fact, Ocasio-Cortez issued a statement on Monday in which she said of the rally Kilmeade referenced: “The bigotry and callousness expressed in Times Square on Sunday were unacceptable and harmful in this devastating moment. It also did not speak for the thousands of New Yorkers who are capable of rejecting both Hamas’ horrifying attacks against innocent civilians as well as the grave injustices and violence Palestinians face under occupation.”

That statement received widespread coverage from major media outlets — including from Fox News’ website, which described it as a “slam” of the rally.