US Airman Aaron Bushnell, 25, Reportedly Screamed “Free Palestine” Before Setting Himself on Fire in Protest Over the Gaza War

Credits: Newsweek

Aaron Bushnell’s dramatic protest was captured on camera as he posted a video of walking to the scene and explaining his reasons for his extreme act. He repeatedly shouted “Free Palestine” before setting himself on fire and was subsequently rushed to the hospital in critical condition.

In the video, a man can be heard asking, “Hi Sir, can I help you?” as Bushnell douses himself in a flammable substance. He then lights the fluid, and the flames quickly engulf him, causing him to collapse moments later.

Before carrying out the protest, Bushnell stated, “I will no longer be complicit in genocide.” He also posted online, “Many of us like to ask ourselves, ‘What would I do if I was alive during slavery? Or Jim Crow South? Or apartheid? What would I do if my country was committing genocide?’ The answer is, you’re doing it. Right now.”

US Airman (Credits: New York Post)

Law enforcement officials obtained and reviewed a copy of the video, which was broadcast live on Twitter but later removed from the platform. Bushnell set himself on fire at around 1 pm on Sunday outside the Israeli embassy in Washington, DC.

In the video, he introduces himself as an active-duty member of the United States Air Force and expresses his refusal to be complicit in genocide.

He justifies his actions by comparing them to the suffering of Palestinians at the hands of their colonizers, stating, “This is what our ruling class has decided will be normal.”

The incident occurred as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sought cabinet approval for a military operation in the southern Gazan city of Rafah while a temporary ceasefire deal was being negotiated.

Israel has denied genocide allegations and stated that its operations in the Israel-Hamas conflict are following international law.

In a similar incident in December, an individual self-immolated outside the Israeli consulate in Atlanta using gasoline as an accelerant, according to Atlanta’s fire authorities.

The Metropolitan Police Department in Washington responded to the scene outside the Israeli Embassy to assist US Secret Service officers, and its bomb squad examined a suspicious vehicle but found no hazardous materials.

Im Ashley, I'm from India but you will often find me covering non india celebrity news.