Rashida Tlaib has continually found herself repeating Hamas propaganda. As Israel was being struck with hundreds of rockets last week, she took to Twitter to deflect blame and repeated a false claim that Israel randomly shot a pregnant woman and instigated the attacks. In reality, a Hamas rocket fell short and killed the woman in question (as well as her unborn child and another child). Islamic Jihad, one of the terrorist groups operating in Gaza, admitted to the incident.
Tlaib has apparently learned nothing from that episode. She recently went on a podcast named “Skullduggery” where she found herself making more historically illiterate and anti-Semitic remarks about the Holocaust, Jews, and the state of Israel.
The largest point of contention involves this comment.
“There’s always kind of a calming feeling I tell folks when I think of the Holocaust, and the tragedy of the Holocaust, and the fact that it was my ancestors — Palestinians — who lost their land and some lost their lives, their livelihood, their human dignity, their existence in many ways, have been wiped out, and some people’s passports,” Tlaib said just after the 28 minute mark. “And just all of it was in the name of trying to create a safe haven for Jews, post-the Holocaust, post-the tragedy and the horrific persecution of Jews across the world at that time. And I love the fact that it was my ancestors that provided that, right, in many ways. But they did it in a way that took their human dignity away and it was forced on them.”
To start, the whole “calming feeling” thing is really awkward language but I don’t think it’d be fair of anyone to take that as her supporting the Holocaust. To focus on that misses the greater issue and just gives her defenders an excuse to dismiss legitimate criticism. What she’s attempting to say is that she feels proud that the Palestinians opened their arms to victims of the Holocaust and gave up “their” land to do so.
The problem with that thought is that it’s objectively false and it’s a common claim you see in anti-Semitic, Arab propaganda to support the destruction of the Jewish state.
This thread explains the situation well and why Tlaib is saying what she’s saying.
Jews were already living there. There was already a Jewish homeland planned alongside an Arab one. The Grand Mufti, a raving anti-semite, tried to prevent that by allying with Hitler.
By 1944, he was publicly telling his followers to "Kill the Jews wherever you find them"
— (((AG))) (@AGHamilton29) May 11, 2019
Holy crap. Completely missed that Tlaib was using this historically illiterate lie to justify her opposition to the existence of the Jewish state and her support for a one state solution: https://t.co/OKF2CkoZ0Q
— (((AG))) (@AGHamilton29) May 12, 2019
Tlaib is repeating anti-Semitic propaganda that asserts Jews had no right to be in Israel despite predating Arabs in the area by thousands of years. By her telling, the Jewish state as it exists today was a random post-1945 invention led by the migration of European Jews after the Holocaust. It’s a subtle, yet purposeful way to paint the Jewish people in Israel as foreign invaders who “stole” their land.
We know this is nonsense. There is no historical question that Jews were in Israel long before any Arab populations. That should be enough given the typical Democratic position on land rights (i.e. Native Americans for example), but even if we are talking modern day, Jews were migrating back to Israel in large numbers in the 1800s. The state of Israel was planned in the early 1900s. It was not something that just sprung up after the Holocaust to facilitate European Jews.
The Palestinians also never opened their arms to the Jews even though the Jewish people had a clear historical right to be in the area. In fact, the Palestinian leadership joined with Hitler and tried to exterminate the Jews. Furthermore, the surrounding Arab populations, including the Palestinians, tried to destroy Israel in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. The idea that there was any acceptance toward the Jews by Palestinians is a historically ignorant thing to say. It’s also dangerous because it propagates myths about Jews being “outsiders” in their own land, which only foments violence.
Right. David completely changed what she said. She said they lost those things "in the name of" creating a safe-haven for Jews. That's just false, and a deplorable attempt to suggest Jews weren't there before the Holocaust and therefore had no right to a state/land.
— (((AG))) (@AGHamilton29) May 12, 2019
And that’s the big picture here.
Tlaib opposes the very existence of a Jewish state. This is one of the reasons she supports the boycott, divestment, and sanction movement. The entire goal of that movement is the internal collapse of Israel. Implicit in the propaganda she’s repeating about the Holocaust is the false idea that the Palestinians gave up “their land” and that the Jews have no right to be there.
It’s historically illiterate garbage.
What’s sad is that I’m not even sure she realizes what she’s doing. Tlaib strikes me as someone who’s been so pumped full of false anti-Semitic talking points her entire life that she actually believes what she’s saying. That’s no excuse though. She’s a U.S. Congressional member now and is responsible for the things she propagates. At every turn she finds a way to take the side of terrorists in Gaza when it comes to dealing with Israel and this latest outburst is no exception.
If we had a media worth anything, someone would have asked her directly by now if she believes Israel has any right to the land they hold. She’d almost certainly say no because her entire worldview is one where Israel has no right to exist and the Palestinians, even their terrorist leadership, are never at fault. Tlaib’s support for a non-Jewish, one-state solution is insidious because the purpose of such a view is to see Israel overwhelmed and destroyed.
She should be called out and condemned – strongly and often.