IslamismOctober 5 2022, 13:05 pm

US Congresswoman Tlaib Says You Cannot Be Progressive and Support “Apartheid Israeli Government”

Israeli media is report­ing that as part of a 20 Sep­tem­ber 2022 “Vir­tu­al Pales­tine Advo­ca­cy Day,” US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Rashi­da Tlaib (D‑MI) assert­ed that nobody can call them­selves “pro­gres­sive” and sup­port “Israel’s apartheid gov­ern­ment” at the same time. Accord­ing to a Times of Israel arti­cle:

Sep­tem­ber 22, 2022 “I want you all to know that among pro­gres­sives, it’s become clear that you can­not claim to hold pro­gres­sive val­ues, yet back Israel’s apartheid gov­ern­ment, and we will con­tin­ue to push back and not accept that you are pro­gres­sive except for Pales­tine,” Tlaib said in an online forum orga­nized by Amer­i­can Mus­lims for Palestine.

Read the rest here.

Tlaib’s com­ments were crit­i­cized by fel­low par­ty mem­bers, with Demo­c­ra­t­ic New York Con­gress­man Jer­ry Nadler say­ing he “fun­da­men­tal­ly” reject­ed the notion of her remarks. This is not the first time Tlaib has drawn crit­i­cism over her remarks. In August 2021, Amer­i­can Jew­ish lead­ers accused her of mak­ing anti­se­mit­ic com­ments when she allud­ed to peo­ple “behind the cur­tain” exploit­ing “the rest of us” from Gaza to Detroit.

The live-streamed pan­el was part of a 19–24 Sep­tem­ber 2022 lob­by­ing event that was co-spon­sored by the Amer­i­can Mus­lims for Pales­tine (AMP), a Pales­tin­ian advo­ca­cy group with strong ties to the Glob­al Mus­lim Broth­er­hood (GMB) and the Hamas sup­port infra­struc­ture in the US. It was orga­nized by the Amer­i­cans for Jus­tice in Pales­tine Action (AJPA), the AMP’s own affil­i­at­ed polit­i­cal advo­ca­cy group in Wash­ing­ton, DC. A report by the Anti-Defama­tion League describes the AMP as “the lead­ing orga­ni­za­tion pro­vid­ing “anti-Zion­ist” train­ing and edu­ca­tion to stu­dents and Mus­lim com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tions in the coun­try. The “Vir­tu­al Pales­tine Advo­ca­cy Days” includ­ed advo­ca­cy train­ing ses­sions, online ple­nar­ies, and con­gres­sion­al meet­ings with Mem­bers of Con­gress and Capi­tol Hill staffers. In total, more than 800 peo­ple reg­is­tered for the event. AJPA said that reg­is­trants had met with “over 130 Con­gres­sion­al offices” and that, as a result, a bill that would lim­it US assis­tance to Israel and estab­lish report­ing require­ments relat­ed to Israel’s activ­i­ties in the West Bank had gained 19 new co-sponsors.

Sev­er­al Demo­c­rat Rep­re­sen­ta­tives made speak­ing appear­ances, includ­ing:

  • Con­gress­man André Car­son, the US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Indi­ana’s 7th Dis­trict and with a his­to­ry of exten­sive ties to the GMB
  • Marie New­man, the US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Illi­nois’s 3rd Dis­trict, with a his­to­ry of asso­ci­at­ing with Hamas sup­port orga­ni­za­tions. New­man has also said that Israel endan­gered itself with “unpro­voked” mil­i­tary attacks.
  • Con­gress­woman Bet­ty McCol­lum, rep­re­sent­ing Min­neso­ta’s 4th Dis­trict in the Unit­ed States House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives. In Novem­ber 2020, McCol­lum par­tic­i­pat­ed in an AMP con­fer­ence with sev­er­al GMB and Hamas sup­port net­work leaders.
  • Con­gress­woman Judy Chu, rep­re­sent­ing Cal­i­for­ni­a’s 27th Dis­trict in the Unit­ed States House of Representatives

Oth­er con­trib­u­tors includ­ed AMP Exec­u­tive Direc­tor Osama Abuir­shaid, a board mem­ber of the US Coun­cil of Mus­lim Orga­ni­za­tions (USCMO), an umbrel­la group of US Mus­lim orga­ni­za­tions com­prised almost sole­ly of ele­ments of the GMB in the US. Also par­tic­i­pat­ing was Huwai­da Arraf,  anoth­er Pales­tin­ian-Amer­i­can activist who helped plan and who par­tic­i­pat­ed in the June 2010 flotil­la attempt­ing to break the Israeli block­ade of Hamas-con­trolled Gaza.

In July 2022, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed that a 2020 cam­paign fund-rais­er held on behalf of Con­gress­woman Cori Bush (D‑MO) had been host­ed by a pro-Pales­tin­ian activist with a his­to­ry of anti-Semi­tism and past lead­er­ship posi­tions in AMP-Missouri.

In Decem­ber 2020, we report­ed that Tlaib was one of three US Con­gress­women who par­tic­i­pat­ed in an AMP vir­tu­al con­fer­ence titled “Against All Odds: Pales­tine Beyond 2020.


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