Antisemitic congressional candidate demands investigation into Israeli ‘genocide’

Huwaida Arraf has a history of making “hateful, destructive and antisemitic” remarks, says local Jewish leader.

By World Israel News Staff

A prominent anti-Israel activist who says the Jewish State must be investigated for perpetuating a genocide against Palestinians and who supported the Gaza flotilla, which saw ships carrying weapons and terror-linked activists attempt to break Israel’s naval blockade of the Strip, is running for Congress in Michigan.

Huwaida Arraf, an attorney and longtime organizer for pro-Palestinian causes, has raised some $200,000 for her campaign.

Running as a Democrat, she is gearing up for an August 2022 primary in Michigan’s 10th Congressional District, an area which is split nearly evenly about Democrats and Republicans.

Her candidacy has raised serious concerns for local Jews, even among liberal Jewish groups, due to her vocal history of anti-Israel comments that appeared to endorse “armed struggle” against the Jewish State, as well as her support for the so-called Gaza Freedom Flotilla.

When questioned by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) about how Israel could be guilty of genocide — which means the mass slaughter of a people based on their racial or ethnic classification — when the number of Palestinians has quadrupled since Israel’s founding in 1948, Arraf said the term is a matter of semantics.

“It absolutely needs to be looked into whether Israel is committing genocide,” Arraf told JTA.

“It’s not just about getting rid of the numbers of people; it is about erasing people’s identity. There are different forms of genocide. You have social genocide, and you have the traditional meaning of genocide — when we understand that there are mass killings to completely annihilate people. But it is not the only form.”

Rabbi Asher Lopatin, executive director of the Michigan-based Jewish Community Relations Council of the American Jewish Committee, told JTA that Arraf has a history of making “hateful, destructive and antisemitic” remarks.

During the Second Intifada, Arraf and her husband founded the International Solidarity Movement, which recognized the alestinian rights to “legitimate armed struggle.”

She also helped organize multiple Gaza flotillas, including the ill-fated 2010 Mavi Marmara voyage that ended with a deadly clash between Israeli naval commandos and the ship’s passengers, several of whom were armed and found to have terror connections.

Political consultant Adrian Hemond told JTA that it is highly unlikely Arraf will win the Congressional seat.

“I expect a crowded Democratic primary, and a high-quality Republican on the other side if she comes through,” Hemond said.

“The district partisan base is essentially 50-50. I’d rate her winning chances as quite low, overall.”