White House interns call for immediate ceasefire in Gaza in letter to Biden
More than 40 White House interns slammed US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris for Washington's role in Israel's war on Gaza, calling for an immediate ceasefire and the release of all the captives, including Palestinian political prisoners.
The group, made up of interns from the Domestic Policy Council, Executive Office of the President and Office of the Vice President, Office of Presidential Correspondence, and other offices throughout the White House, urged for an end to Israel's apartheid in the region in a letter addressed to Biden.
"[We] will no longer remain silent on the ongoing genocide of the Palestinian people," they said in the letter first published by NBC News. "We heed the voices of the American people and call on the Administration to demand a permanent ceasefire."
The interns said they were dissatisfied with the way both the Israeli and US government handled the war.
"We were horrified by the brutal October 7th Hamas attack on Israeli civilians, and we are horrified by the brutal and genocidal response by the Israeli government, funded by our American tax dollars, which has killed over 14,000 innocent Palestinian civilians in Gaza, a large percentage of whom are children," the letter said with the death toll now rising to over 16,000 Gazans.
The White House had refused to back calls for a ceasefire, choosing instead to support humanitarian pauses in the fighting, such as a recent week-long truce, which expired on Friday.
"We support the work the President and the Administration have done to advocate for minority communities and closing the systemic gaps in our country," one intern told The Daily Beast on the condition of anonymity.
"However, we also believe it is our duty to stand up against injustice and genocide and to point out the wrongs committed by our leaders. We urge the Administration to change course."
The intern added that they were working on making their views known to administration officials in their limited capacity.
"While the Administration expressed support for the humanitarian pause, we maintain that anything other than a complete halt of Israel's mass slaughter of innocent civilians in the Gaza Strip will simply not suffice," they said in the letter.
"We will never forget how the pleas of the American people have been heard and thus far, ignored."
Israel launched a brutal war on Gaza on 7 October, forcing civilians to leave the enclave's most populous city for the south and now moving in on Khan Younis.
Israeli air strikes have knocked out medical facilities, bakeries, schools and markets.