U.S. Air Force Member Dies After Setting Himself on Fire Outside Israeli Embassy in D.C.

Tragic Incident Involving U.S. Air Force Member

A U.S. Air Force member who tragically set himself on fire outside the Israeli Embassy in Washington, D.C., in what seems to be a protest against the Israel-Hamas war has passed away, as confirmed by a U.S. official. The airman, identified as 25-year-old Aaron Bushnell of San Antonio, Texas, was clothed in military fatigues and recorded himself shouting “Free Palestine” before collapsing.

US Air Force member sets himself on fire outside Israeli Embassy in Washington in protest over Gaza war
Police officers outside the Israeli Embassy in Washington on Feb. 25, 2024.
Celal Gunes / Anadolu via Getty Images

Live Protest and Tragic Outcome

During a livestream, Bushnell criticized the Israeli crackdown in Gaza, referring to it as “genocide,” and stated that his action was not as extreme as the suffering of the Palestinian people. Subsequently, he placed his phone down, poured a liquid from a water bottle over his head, and then ignited himself.

Response and Aftermath

Emergency services were alerted to the incident just before 1 p.m. on Sunday, responding to a person engulfed in flames outside the embassy. Upon arrival, the Secret Service had already put out the fire. Bushnell was rushed to the hospital with critical injuries but unfortunately succumbed to them. An Air Force representative verified his active-duty status.

Context and Similar Incidents

This tragic event occurred amidst the prolonged Israel-Hamas conflict. Notably, there was a comparable occurrence in December when a woman set herself on fire outside the Israeli Consulate General building in Atlanta.

Current Situation and Concerns

Given the ongoing conflict with numerous casualties and hostages, tensions remain high. Recent developments suggest possible evacuations and military actions in Gaza, prompting international figures such as United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres to express concerns regarding safety and aid accessibility for affected individuals.

Support Resources

If you or someone you know is in crisis, call or text 988 to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline or chat live at 988lifeline.org. You can also visit SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources for additional support.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

Read More of this Story at www.nbcnews.com – 2024-02-26 17:00:01

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