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Shocking Image Shows US Air Force Member Set Himself on Fire at Israeli Embassy: ‘Free Palestine’

A member of the US Air Force is in critical condition after reportedly setting himself on fire outside the Israeli Embassy in Washington, DC, Sunday afternoon.

A video live streamed on Twitch appeared to show the airman in uniform standing in front of the embassy gate and identifying himself as a member of the US Air Force, the New York Times and Washington Post reported.

“I will no longer be complicit in genocide [in Gaza]. I am about to engage in an extreme act of protest,” the man apparently said before setting himself alight and repeatedly shouting “Free Palestine!”

The man says his name is Aaron Bushnell at the start of the clip, according to footage circulating online. A spokesperson for the Air Force confirmed that the protestor is an active-duty airman, though would not discuss his identity or rank.

Authorities at the scene could be heard asking “May I help you, sir?” and yelling at the man to get down on the ground while he was on fire, the footage showed.

One person sprayed the man with a fire extinguisher, while another appeared to draw his gun.

The troubling footage was quickly removed on Sunday afternoon because it violated the streaming app’s guidelines. But recordings of it — some blurred — made their way onto other social media platforms.

First responders were dispatched to the scene at about 1 p.m., a spokesperson from DC Fire and EMS confirmed to The Post.

By the time first responders arrived, the flames had already been extinguished by members of the US Secret Service, the fire service added.

The man was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries.

No embassy staff were injured during the fire, the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, according to GLZ Radio.

The airman was not known to the embassy before the incident, the statement added.

He was still alive in critical condition as of 3 p.m. Sunday, according to MPD. Emails to the police department and Air Force were not immediately returned Sunday night about his condition.

The Secret Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are investigating alongside MPD.

Earlier footage showed more fire trucks and a hazmat crew arriving at the scene to inspect the man’s car, freelance reporter Andrew Leyden shared on X.

The vehicle appeared to be a silver Prius, according to video footage from Alexis Wainwright of WUSA9.

The car was later cleared and authorities determined there was no active threat, the MPD spokesperson said.

Hours after the incident, there still appeared to be a charred spot on the pavement outside the embassy, FOX5 reported David Kaplan shared on X.

It’s not the first instance of the extreme method of protest against Israel’s offensive in Gaza.

In December, a protester set herself on fire outside Atlanta’s Israeli Consulate.

The self-immolations come after months of intense political tensions over Hamas’ Oct. 7 terrorist attack that killed 1,200 Israelis and Israel’s subsequent ground operations in the Gaza Strip.

The death toll in Gaza has reached nearly 30,000 people, including thousands of women and children, the Hamas-backed health ministry said. More than 200 Israeli soldiers have also died during the military’s ground campaign.

Earlier on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu defended Israel’s controversial assault on the southern city of Rafah, saying it “has to be done” for a “total victory.”

Rafah is now the most densely populated Gazan city after Palestinians in the north were forced to flee the Israeli military’s assault on the north.

READ 80 COMMENTS
  • David says:

    If the idiot wanted to REALLY protest he should have went to the mideast, but no– the fool has to do it on the street in washington! probably a nut case! or one of the idiot “woke” people that the air force is letting in now.

  • Loring says:

    Interesting that our military has been looking to out radicals. You know, like Christians and people that think they should have the right to choose whether they want to take an experimental drug or not. People that set themselves on fire, obviously are not radical?

  • Me says:

    Too SKINNY! I want my BARBECUE PORK with a little FAT on the BONES!

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