Rep. Rashida Tlaib rejects Netanyahu's terms and forgoes trip to visit grandmother

Clay Curtis
August 17, 2019

"I would like to request admittance to Israel in order to visit my relatives, and specifically my grandmother, who is in her 90s and lives in Beit Ur al-Fouqa", Tlaib wrote.

An emotional Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib spoke to supporters in Detroit Friday, following her decision not to travel to Israel to visit her 90-year-old grandmother in the occupied West Bank.

"This is the sovereign Israeli government's decision to make, but as friends of Israel and the US-Israel relationship, we offered our perspective that reversing the earlier decision and barring entry to these two members of Congress could be even more costly than letting them in to do whatever shenanigans and stunts they were planning to do while there", he said, as quoted by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. The group's CEO, David Harris, joins us now on the line from NY.

However, a few hours after Deri's announcement, and after signing a letter promising to "respect any restrictions", Tlaib changed her mind and tweeted that she won't visit the West Bank after all, citing "oppressive conditions".

"This could be my last opportunity to see her", Tlaib wrote, according to CNN.

On Friday, Palestinian activists had been urging Tlaib on social media not to visit her grandmother under the Israeli terms. She hoped to host a tour that would help humanize Palestinians in the eyes of her congressional colleagues and provide a different lens than the trip sponsored by an arm of the lobby AIPAC typically attended by first term lawmakers, she told reporters a year ago.

When Tlaib initially requested the visit to her grandmother, she pledged not to "promote any boycotts against Israel".

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She continued by saying, "I have therefore chose to not travel to Palestine and Israel at this time". The decision is a policy of discrimination against her because her opinions about Israel contradict the opinions of Israel.

They might also be protesting the formal Israeli government policy of shooting down unarmed protesters with snipers who gather on the Palestinian side of the Gaza border to protest the boycott and blockade that Israel has imposed on them. We're pleased that Congresswoman Tlaib has been admitted. They alleged that they were there to learn about Israel.

And this is who Rep. Tlaib and Rep. Omar would align themselves with.

The Democratic leadership has echoed Trump's efforts to brand critics of Israel on the left as anti-Semites. The Post editorial on Friday stated that "Both [Omar and Tlaib] have made statements that play on anti-Semitic tropes".

Trump weighed in late Friday, calling Tlaib s turnaround "a complete setup".

He declared: "Republicans believe our cities should be sanctuaries for law abiding Americans, not for criminal aliens". Rather, Trump is an expression of the breakdown of democratic forms under conditions of an unprecedented crisis of world capitalism, an huge growth of social inequality, an eruption of great power conflict and trade war and a resurgence of the class struggle. The Congresswoman from the radical wing of the Democratic Party had been allowed to visit by Interior Minister Arye Deri, after she sent him a letter asking to visit the West Bank for humanitarian reasons.

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