Rep. Rashida Tlaib sent out a fundraising letter regarding the recently cancelled Israel trip she planned with fellow Democrat Ilhan Omar.
By World Israel News Staff
Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan sent an email to supporters in a pitch for contributions following her cancelled Israel trip. The fundraising message referred to the “military rule of Palestine” as a reason to give “whatever you can.”
“As you may have heard, I was supposed to join my friend and fellow Representative Ilhan Omar along with other colleagues in Israel and Palestine for a congressional delegation visit,” her letter states.
The letter says that the visit was cancelled after President Donald Trump sent a tweet urging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to block the visit.
However, the Israeli government rejected the assertion that Trump’s tweet was the reason for their decision. It pointed instead to the itinerary that Tlaib and Omar had submitted called “U.S. Congressional Delegation to Palestine.”
The itinerary made no reference to Israel and included no meetings with Israeli officials. It however included many meetings with Palestinian Authority officials.
Given the two congresswomen’s vocal support for the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions movement and their history of anti-Israel comments, Israel’s government decided that the visit was meant as a provocation and to attack Israel rather than as a fact-finding trip as it had been originally billed.
In her fundraising letter, Tlaib also referred to her 90-year-old grandmother, who lives in an Arab town in Samaria.
“Not only am I heartbroken that I cannot meet the people of Israel and Palestine to witness their struggles firsthand, but I am heartbroken I can no longer visit my Palestinian grandmother, who just days ago was excited to decide which fig tree we’d pick from together,” she wrote.
Tlaib noted that Israel has agreed to allow her to visit her grandmother on humanitarian grounds provided she didn’t engage in BDS activity while in Israel.
Tlaib had agreed to these conditions, indeed, offered them in her letter requesting that she be allowed to visit her grandmother.
However, following Israel’s assent, Tlaib reversed herself and said she wouldn’t come. Using words similar to a tweet she posted on August 16, Tlaib wrote that Israel’s conditions were unacceptable.
“No matter how badly I wish to see my grandmother, I know she would not want me to do so under such degrading circumstances that go against everything I believe in: fighting racism, oppression, and injustice,” she wrote.
Numerous pundits have suggested Tlaib never intended to come and merely used her grandmother as a means to further embarrass Israel.
Israel’s Interior Minister Aryeh Deri, after hearing that Tlaib refused to come, tweeted on August 16 “Apparently her hate for Israel overcomes her love for her grandmother.”
Tlaib’s fundraising letter ends by asking donors to “show the world that we are stronger than racism, Islamophobia, and all forms of hate that seek to divide and oppress us.”