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ADL CEO: Tlaib Tweet Accusing Israel of “Ethnic Cleansing” is “Dangerous”

Tlaib’s tweet came in response to Israel launching airstrikes against Hamas targets in response to incendiary balloons fired from the Gaza Strip.
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June 16, 2021
Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) speaks during a press conference preceding a House Oversight and Reform subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill on July 10, 2019 in Washington, DC.(Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

Anti-Defamation League (ADL) CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted on June 16 that Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) accusing Israel of “ethnic cleansing” is “dangerous.”

Tlaib’s tweet came in response to Israel launching airstrikes against Hamas targets in response to incendiary balloons fired from the Gaza Strip.

“After racist and violent ‘death to Arabs’ marches earlier today in Jerusalem, children in Gaza are being woken by bombs in the middle of the night,” Tlaib tweeted, referencing a flag march earlier in the day. “Israel’s government doesn’t value Palestinian lives. It has managed a decades-long ethnic cleansing project, funded by the U.S.”

Greenblatt tweeted in response, “We can and should have policy debates. But pushing a narrative libelously accusing Israel of ethnic cleansing or not seeing Palestinians as human – or focusing only on Israeli airstrikes without recognizing those are responses to attacks by terrorists – is wrong and dangerous.”

 

Stop Antisemitism Executive Director Liora Rez similarly said in a statement to the Journal, “We are the first to say these horrific death chants must ALWAYS be condemned. That being said, it’s highly irresponsible of a sitting U.S. Congresswoman to blindly point the finger at our closest [Middle East] ally without mentioning the REASONING behind the bombing of Gaza – the two dozen terror balloons that set the south of Israel ablaze this entire week. This type of agricultural terrorism would not be tolerated anywhere in the world and for Tlaib to hold Israel to a different standard is just pure and simple antisemitism.”

David Lange, Executive Director of Israellycool Israel Advocacy, also said in a statement to the Journal that Tlaib “is stoking the flames of antisemitism with her lies. Yes, there was a flag march, but it was not violent – the only violence came from Arab protesters who clashed with police. Yes, there were some despicable ‘death to Arabs’ chants, but they were uttered by a very small number of participants, who have been roundly and rightly condemned by Israeli officials and the vast majority of Israelis alike.” He also echoed the sentiment from Greenblatt and Rez that Tlaib omitted the fact that the Israeli strikes were in response to the Hamas balloons, “which caused at least 20 fires within lands the Palestinian Arabs claim to hold dear.”

“Given the Palestinian Arab population within Israel and the Palestinian-controlled territories has only continued to grow over the years, I don’t think the words ‘ethnic cleansing’ mean what the Congresswoman thinks they mean,” Lange added.

International human rights lawyer Arsen Ostrovksy similarly tweeted that Tlaib was promulgating “more lies.” “The chants were vile and also condemned. Meantime, no mention by you what led to strikes on Gaza, [which] was Hamas firing dozens of incendiary devices on southern Israel, scorching countless amount on land. Stop shilling for Hamas and inciting racial hatred!”

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