By David Jablinowitz, World Israel News
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is calling on U.S. Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib to “clarify” her appearance together with a virulently anti-Israel and anti-Semitic activist.
ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said Thursday: “Days ago, Rashida Tlaib was photographed at an event with Abbas Hamideh, a man who has praised terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah and equated Zionists with Nazis. We ask her to clarify his attendance and denounce his anti-Semitism.”
After serving in the Michigan legislature, Tlaib, a Democrat, came on the national scene with her November election victory to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives. She describes herself as the “first Palestinian-American woman to serve in Congress.” Even before taking office earlier this month, she announced that she was “planning to lead a congressional delegation to Palestine.”
ADL says that Hamideh, an Ohio-based activist, is guilty of “denying Israel’s right to exist.”
On Jan. 12, he posted a photo on Twitter in which he is standing next to Tlaib, holding a painting of the congresswoman wearing traditional Palestinian dress in front of the Capitol in Washington.
In his Twitter message, Hamideh wrote that he was “honored” to be at Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib’s swearing-in ceremony and a “private dinner afterward with the entire family, friends and activists across the country.”
“Hamideh’s brand of anti-Zionist activism includes opposing solidarity with American Jews who identify as Zionists,” says ADL on its website. “This apparently applies even in the aftermath of tragedy; following the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting in late October 2018, when Muslims across the country were uniting in solidarity with Jews, Hamideh issued several tweets which denigrated such bridge-building efforts.”
Representative Brian Babin, a Republican congressman from Texas, wants Democrats to block the official visit to “Palestine” that is being planned by Tlaib, and which would also include the participation of some congressional colleagues.
“Allowed to proceed, this action could undo years of goodwill built by [U.S.] foreign policy,” says Babin. “To signal to our most threatened ally in the region that the United States Congress sanctions an official trip to visit Israel’s nemesis would be an exceedingly dangerous path forward.”
Tlaib issued a counter-statement in which she charges that “Babin has a history of supporting discriminatory policies, including President Trump’s Muslim ban — a degrading executive order.”
The Michigan congresswoman says that her “trip to Palestine is to show my fellow colleagues how life is for Palestinians.”
Tlaib, who is one of two Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives who have endorsed the boycott Israel movement (BDS), has said: “Yes, I am Muslim and Palestinian. Get over it.”