Senate Drops Ball on Human Rights Oversight, But Can’t Avoid Debate Much Longer


Last Updated on February 15, 2024.

WashingtonWin Without War President Stephen Miles released the following statement responding to the Senate vote on S.Res.504, a request for a human rights report over the Israeli government’s actions in Gaza and the West Bank: 

“By voting to halt debate on Senator Sanders’ 502B resolution, S.Res.504, the Senate ducked its responsibility to ensure that respect for human rights and protection of people caught up in conflict remains at the center of U.S. foreign policy. 

“Passing S.Res.504, which invokes a little-known section of the Foreign Assistance Act to request a simple human rights report over the Israeli government’s actions in Gaza and the West Bank, was a no-brainer. It would have compelled the administration to do what it has publicly dodged so far: formally assess whether the Israeli government is violating human rights, which it is already legally obligated to do as it rushes weapons into the conflict. With the deepening of a humanitarian catastrophe and regional crisis that will impact U.S. global standing for years to come, this push for oversight was both necessary and the bare minimum Congress could take up at the moment.

“Senator Sanders is used to forcing necessary votes and letting his colleagues catch up with him – and the scale of destruction in Gaza, in addition to the thousands on the street calling for an end to the war, will force this debate back onto the Senate’s agenda sooner or later. In the not-too-distant future, even those who opposed this resolution today will act confused at how a majority of the Senate failed to pass such a straightforward request for information.” 


Win Without War is a diverse network of activists and national organizations working for progressive foreign policy in the United States.

January 16, 2024