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Trump’s game: bring on the Democratic Party’s ‘crisis’ over Israel

Philip Weiss on

Trump’s refrain that the Democrats are anti-Israel is a strategic effort to foster division among Democrats over Israel so that he can get Jewish donors and voters in 2020. That division exists. The party’s progressive base wants to strip US aid to Israel, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Israeli President Rivlin are leaping in to assure the Democratic establishment that Israel is above politics.

Trump saying he is ‘king of Israel’ is not that far off the mark 

Yossi Gurvitz on
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a speech before the newly-unveiled sign for the new settlement of "Ramat Trump", or "Trump Heights" in the Golan Heights on June 16, 2019.

Donald Trump took to Twitter to quote someone who claimed he is considered in Israel to be a king and the second coming of God. Yossi Gurvitz says that when you combine this with Trump’s claim that American Jews who vote Democrat are disloyal, you get a pretty accurate picture of what many Jews in Israel actually believe.

It is not Netanyahu or Trump who blocks Palestinians from Israel — it is Zionism

Nada Elia on
Rep Rashida Tlaib at a Shabbat service in a Detroit park arranged by Jewish Voice For Peace Action after she was denied entrance to Israel.

With national attention focused on the two US congresswomen who have been denied entry into Israel, members of Congress and even presidential candidates are not only openly criticizing Israel, they are considering ways to hold it accountable. At what is clearly a watershed moment, activists and organizers must be extremely cautious about steering the conversation in the right direction. 

If you are Palestinian, it’s just as difficult to leave Palestine as it is to enter it

Megan Giovannetti on

When US congress members Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar were barred from entering Israel it was shocking for many. Traveling for an American citizen is a privilege often taken for granted. But if you are a Palestinian living under Israel occupation it becomes almost impossible. “Most of our visas get rejected,” Malkon Marizian explains to Mondoweiss. “This is related to our status. It is all related to the occupation.”

Building our power for a free Palestine

Jennifer Bing and Michael Merryman-Lotze on
Preparing for 2020: Advocating for Rights, Justice, and Freedom in Palestine and Israel

The last five years have witnessed unprecedented change in the struggle for justice in Palestine. These changes offer opportunities that our movement needs to act on, particularly during the 2020 election cycle. 

Biased ‘NYT’ article on Tlaib/Omar trip says Democrats criticizing Israel will undermine US national security

James North and Philip Weiss on
New York Times headquarters

A ‘New York Times’ analysis of the Israeli government’s refusal to allow two American congresswomen to visit the West Bank embraces a central claim of the Israel lobby, that bipartisan support for Israel is critical to US national security, and leaves out Trump’s largest donors, the Adelsons, for whom Israel is the overriding issue.

Political upheaval over Tlaib and Omar shows the power of BDS

Philip Weiss on
Representative Rashida Tlaib and Representative Ilhan Omar

By banning Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar from visiting the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, Israel has created a political upheaval in the U.S., with many Americans now favoring cutting aid to the country. One thing achieved this result: The women support BDS, and they have demonstrated the power of the nonviolent campaign.

Tlaib refuses to ‘bow down to oppressive & racist policies,’ cancels Palestine trip over Israeli conditions

Mondoweiss Editors on
Rashida Tlaib

US Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib was told by Israel today that she could visit her family on the West Bank so long as she does not “promote boycotts against Israel” on the trip. She has refused the offer. “I have decided that visiting my grandmother under these oppressive conditions stands against everything I believe in–fighting against racism, oppression & injustice.”

Now is the time for the Democratic Party to stand up to Israeli racism

Nada Elia on
Rep. Ilhan Omar and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Photo: J. Scott Applewhite/AP Images)

Democratic Party leaders’ responses to the Israeli decision to ban Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar are the latest sign of division between progressives and enablers of Israeli apartheid. Nada Elia says this division is rending the Democratic Party apart, and threatens to secure Trump a second term.

‘Tlaib and Omar gave us hope’: Decision to bar entry to congresswomen sparks anger and disappointment amongst Palestinians

Yumna Patel on

Palestinians are joining the chorus of international condemnation facing Israel for barring entry to US Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar. “We are extremely disappointed and saddened that Rashida and her colleagues won’t be coming to visit us in Palestine,” Muhammad Tlaib, 44, a cousin of Congresswoman Tlaib and former mayor of her hometown in the West Bank, Beit Ur al-Fauqa, told Mondoweiss. “We wanted to show Rashida how proud we are of her and how much we appreciate her dedication to fighting Trump’s racism against the Palestinian people, and her efforts to fight against the occupation.”

Trump tweets Israel should ban Tlaib and Omar, says they ‘hate Jews’

Allison Deger on

Hours after Israeli media reported Representatives Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib would not be allowed to enter the West Bank for a planned Congressional delegation, President Donald Trump tweeted Israel should deny the two entry, claiming “they hate Israel” and “all Jewish people.”

Netanyahu will fall in September, experts predict — unless Trump releases peace plan!

Philip Weiss on

Polling suggests that Netanyahu will fall from power in Israel’s September elections His Hail Mary to stay as prime minister and avoid indictment is that the Trump administration interferes, by releasing its peace plan, thereby putting pressure on Netanyahu’s rivals to make a government with him, says Evan Gottesman of Israel Policy Forum.

Israeli lawmakers to Congress: two-state solution far more dangerous to Israel than BDS

Michael Arria on
Tzipi Hotovely waving an Israeli flag with the Dome of the Rock in the background, in a 2014 promotion

On August 12, Twenty-one Israeli lawmakers sent a letter to members of Congress criticizing a bill that condemned the boycott of Israel because it endorsed a two-state solution. “We would like to make our position clear that the establishment of a Palestinian state would be far more dangerous to Israel than BDS,” the letter reads.

Raja Shehadeh is disrespected in the United States– but he won’t give up on us!

Philip Weiss on

In a far-ranging interview, Palestinian author Raja Shehadeh relates how annoyed he is when American media read from the Zionist script and demand that he defend Hamas. He also talks about how difficult it is to maintain human relationships with Israelis when Israelis cannot confront the past of ethnic cleansing. And how the late Amos Oz patronized him…