Nadia B. Ahmad writes that Establishment Democrats with the Biden campaign question the efforts of Muslim-American grassroots activists and are failing to mobilize the community.
The Democratic Party has squelched the Palestinian issue. Yesterday, Kamala Harris had a conference call with 1800 Jewish Democratic donors and assured them a President Biden will never condition aid to Israel over its conduct and that Biden-Harris will show “unwavering support” for Israel. The party has shut down the left’s criticism of Israel saying it could damage the effort to make Donald Trump a one-termer.
Aides to presidential candidate Joe Biden have apologized for their attack on Palestinian-American activist Linda Sarsour and promised that a Biden administration would be “genuinely inclusive” towards Muslims. However, the admission came during a private call that Sarsour was not a part of.
The Democratic Socialists of America came under attack this week when the organization challenged candidates for New York city council to not accept free trips to Israel.
In Missouri’s 1st district race, the longtime Democratic incumbent has apparently sent out a mailer darkening his primary opponent’s skin and attacking her for supporting Palestinian rights.
On the basis of alleged “anti-Semitic tropes,” numerous critics of Israel, many of them writers of color, have been accused of bigotry for their criticisms of Israel. The latest is Ali Abunimah, accused by Matt Seaton of NYRB. Meantime, you can say anything you like to dehumanize Palestinians and no one in the mainstream will call you out.
On Monday members from the House of Representatives announced the establishment of the Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations, which was created to combat the rising tide of white nationalism. However, the group includes New York Rep. Lee Zeldin, the GOP congressman who has made headlines for his connections to the alt-right and his repeated attacks on Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar on Twitter.
UMass Amherst Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy has urged organizers of a campus forum about efforts to shut down pro-Palestinian voices, featuring Roger Waters and Linda Sarsour, to include “differing points of view” in the panel so that there will be “dialogue” between pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian advocates.
The “vast majority of world Jewry” perceive Roger Waters, Marc Lamont Hill, and Linda Sarsour to be anti-Semites because they have called for democracy in Israel and Palestine, say 80 groups trying to end UMass’s sponsorship of a May 4 forum on– the quashing of speech on Palestinian human rights. The letter is classic McCarthyism, says organizer Jeremy Earp.
Anti-Palestinian racism is at last moving the needle in US politics. The demotion by leadership of NY City Councilman Kalman Yeger for his anti-Palestinian comments this week sends a message to the Democratic Party nationwide, that the profound political shifts that the left is generating on a host of issues, from sexual harassment to economic inequity, will include Palestine, too.