Palestine Update 275
Trump-Netanyahu prove they are the ultimate in trivial-mindedness
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib may not have got entry into Palestine on her terms, but she sure proved that she was the winner of a moral battle. Trump and Netanyahu look like the pathetic paltry political clowns. Rashida Tlaib will walk with her held up high. The Trump- Netanyahu duo has reached the depths of the pits of political gutters.
Tlaib’s grandmother has handed Trump the equivalent of a curse: “May God ruin him.” This was in response to Trump’s unintelligent statement to her that she should be happy Rashida is not coming” Muftia Tlaib, who is in her eighties, lives in the Israeli-occupied West Bank has not met her granddaughter for over 13 years. Israel tried to recoup some political credibility by allowing the visit but subject to conditions. Tlaib rejected the offer, saying Israel had imposed restrictions meant to humiliate her. Trump and Netanyahu end up looking quite the political comics by the snubs and Tlaib gains huge political points. And the world knows just how utterly trivial Trump and Netanyahu can look.
Rashida Tlaib, like Ms Omar, has voiced support for the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, which opposes the occupation and Israel’s policies toward Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza. The pair are the first two Muslim women to be elected to Congress, and Detroit-born Tlaib is the first Palestinian-American congresswoman.
Read the handful of stories and interviews from people who matter.
Congresswoman Tlaib’s Statement on travel to Palestine & Israel
Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib released the following statement regarding travel to Israel and Palestine:”In my attempt to visit Palestine, I’ve experienced the same racist treatment that many Palestinian-Americans endure when encountering the Israeli government. In preparation for my visit, my grandmother was deciding which fig tree we would pick from together, while Palestinians and Israelis who are against the illegal military occupation were looking forward to Members of Congress finally listening to and seeing them for the first time.
The Israeli government used my love and desire to see my grandmother to silence me and made my ability to do so contingently upon my signing a letter – reflecting just how undemocratic and afraid they are of the truth my the trip would reveal about what is happening in the State of Israel and to Palestinians living under occupation with United States support. “I have therefore decided to not travel to Palestine and Israel at this time. Visiting my grandmother under these oppressive conditions meant to humiliate me would break my grandmother’s heart. Silencing me with treatment to make me feel less-than is not what she wants for me – it would kill a piece of me that always stands up against racism and injustice.
“When I won the election to become a United States Congresswoman, many Palestinians, especially my grandmother, felt a sense of hope, a hope that they would finally have a voice. I cannot allow the Israeli government to take that away from them or to use my deep desire to see my grandmother, potentially for the last time, as a political bargaining chip. My family and I have cried together throughout this ordeal; they’ve promised to keep my grandmother alive until I can one day reunite with her.
It is with their strength and heart that I reiterate I am a duly elected United States Congresswoman and I will not allow the Israeli government to humiliate me and my family or take away our right to speak out. I will not allow the Israeli government to take
away from our hope. “Racism and the politics of hate is thriving in Israel and the American people should fear what this will mean for the relationship between our two nations. If you truly believe in democracy, then the close alignment of Netanyahu with Trump’s hate agenda must prompt a re-evaluation of our unwavering support for the State of Israel.
The denial of entry of a congressional delegation is not only about Congresswoman Omar and I, but also about the deep-rooted racism within Israel that is taking us further away from peace. The Israeli and Palestinian people need us to be more courageous and to be honest brokers of peace. Being silent and not condemning the human rights violations of the Israeli government is a disservice to all who live there, including my incredibly strong and loving grandmother. “This type of oppression is painful for all humanity, but it is especially painful for me personally every time I hear my loving family members cry out for the freedom to live and the right to feel human.”
Meet Rashida Tlaib’s Grandma: ‘Who wouldn’t be proud of a granddaughter like that?
Muftiyah Tlaib — who says she is somewhere between 85 and her early 90s — lives in the village of Beit Ur al-Fauqa, about 15 miles outside Jerusalem and close to the seam line between Israel and the West Bank, territory that Israel occupied in the 1967 war and that Palestinians hope to see as part of an independent state someday. She lives in the same elegant limestone house in the same sleepy village she has called home since 1974 — the house where the whole village once came to celebrate Rashida Tlaib’s wedding, and the house that looks directly onto an Israeli settlement with a visible military presence.
“She’s in a big position, and she cannot visit her grandmother,” she laughed, seated in her living room on Friday. “So what good is the position?” In the end, Muftiyah Tlaib will not see her granddaughter in the coming week. The reunion would have marked the first meeting for the two since about 2007, she said.
Read report and see video
Dr Mustafa Barghouti speaks with ‘Democracy Now‘ about Israel‘s decision to bar Tlaib and Omar
Israel’s widely condemned decision to ban US Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from entering Israel has been met with fierce backlash from the international community.
Pro-Israel Democrats condemn Israeli decision to grant conditional access to Tlaib and Omar
Pro-Israel Democrats railed against Israel’s decision to ban US Reps. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., and Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., from visiting the West Bank. The decision was made under apparent pressure from President Donald Trump. Key Democratic leaders who had previously clashed with Tlaib and Omar over their vocal support for the pro-Palestinian boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement wasted no time in publicly urging the Israelis to reverse course.
“The decision of the Israeli government to deny entry to Israel by two members of Congress is outrageous, regardless of their itinerary or their views,” House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said in a statement, noting that he had urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to ban the two lawmakers as recently as Wednesday. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Eliot Engel, D-N.Y., who had made a similar case to Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer on Wednesday, also argued that “refusing entry to members of Congress looks like Israel closing itself off to criticism and dialogue.”