U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., a daughter of Palestinian immigrants, is taking heavy flak for being slated as the guest speaker Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol that will mark the 75th anniversary of the “catastrophe” for Arabs that was the creation of Israel.
Tlaib, who has been criticized for using antisemitic tropes, is scheduled to appear at the Capitol Visitor Center alongside various pro-Palestinian organizations for an event called “Nakba 75.” Nakba is a Palestinian phrase related to the “catastrophe” of the establishment of Israel in 1948.
According to an invitation, the event aims to “educate Members of Congress and their staff” about Nakba and will “be followed immediately afterward by dinner.”
May 15 marks the 75th anniversary of the establishment of Israel through United Nations Resolution 181. Also on May 15, the United Nations will hold a commemoration of Nakba Day, an event the U.S. and United Kingdom are expected to skip. The Jersualem Post reported Monday that Israel is urging other countries to boycott the event.
“This gives the optics of being federally supported, also fundraising this sick cause at a cost to all voters,” Jeffrey Berk, CEO of TruthTells, a nonprofit group that seeks to “stop the rise of antisemitic politicians,” told the Washington Examiner.
Tlaib, a member of the far-left wing “squad” of Democratic House members, including Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, is a vocal supporter of the global boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement that targets Israel.
Ronna McDaniel, chair of the Republican National Committee, tweeted Monday: “Rashida Tlaib, who has repeatedly used antisemitic tropes, is hosting an event to attack Israel with groups that defend terrorism and support the antisemitic BDS movement. This is outrageous. We condemn this completely. Republicans stand with Israel!”
The New York Post reported Monday a group behind the event, Jewish Voice for Peace, is described by the Anti-Defamation League as a “radical anti-Israel activist group that advocates for a complete economic, cultural and academic boycott of the state of Israel” and that “celebrates figures who have been convicted of engaging in terrorism.”
Liora Rez, executive director of nonprofit group StopAntisemitism, told The Post that she wishes Tlaib “would spend as much time helping Michigan’s 12th District as she spends demonizing the world’s only Jewish state.”
Tlaib recently criticized House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., who during a visit to Israel said the U.S. and Israel are “the only two countries in history that were conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that we are all equal.”
“Speaker McCarthy wants to rewrite history, but the apartheid state of Israel was born out of violence and the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians,” Tlaib tweeted May 1. “75 years later, the Nakba continues to this day.”
Last year, Tlaib and her fellow squad members introduced a House resolution that “commemorates the Nakba (the uprooting, dispossession, and refugeedom of some Palestinians) through official recognition and remembrance and rejects efforts to enlist, engage, or otherwise associate the U.S. government with denial of the Nakba.” The resolution was never voted upon.