Should Israel Let Its Enemies Wander Its Streets?
Recently I invited an enemy into my home. I’d never done anything to him, but he hated me anyway. I knew he wanted to turn my children against me. He wanted to convince them that their mother and I oppressed them and they should fight back. I knew that he wanted to leave my house and tell everyone I knew that life in my family was just horrible. He had written me to tell me he planned to do this. Still, I thought that in the interest of being a nice guy, I should give him the run of the place.
This didn’t happen. But that’s what the left expects Israel to do. The left demands that Israel welcome Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib — both of them among the most radical and most anti-Israel persons ever to serve in the U.S. Congress.
Disdain for Israel
Rashida Tlaib was born in America of Palestinian parents. Her disdain for Israel runs deep. After running on a “two-state solution” platform, she promptly abandoned it after getting elected in what is perhaps the safest Democratic district in the nation. She supports the “BDS” (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) movement to crush Israel into submission to those who would destroy it. And in one of her first acts as a Member of Congress, she placed a sticky note with the word “Palestine” over Israel on a map of the world in her office.
Ilhan Omar and her buddy Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez are of the same ilk. Their antisemitism is so notorious as to need no documentation. But for anyone who wants to read about it, just go to journalist Ryan Saavedra’s report. Be prepared to feel a strange combination of outrage and nausea.
Oh, the rich hypocrisy. The brutality of Islamic regimes is legendary. From stoning homosexuals to beheading infidels, Sharia law, where applied as envisioned by Islamists, is a system of brutality and repression.
Is Israel, as these women have asserted, an apartheid “regime”? Or a nation with a right to exist, the only country with representative self-government in the vast Middle East, a homeland for a people slaughtered in the millions within living memory?
Of course, “Palestine” is a wonderland of love and justice, right? “The Fatah-led Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas authorities in Gaza routinely arrest and torture peaceful critics and opponents,” reports Human Rights Watch. Then there is the decades-long history of financial corruption among the Palestinian leadership, which the Palestinian Arabs are themselves now fed up with.
A Thriving Democracy
Maybe not letting these women into Israel is a tactical error. Perhaps the Netanyahu government erred in not letting these Salons of our republic wander Israel’s streets. Maybe they would have then been compelled to admit that Israel is a thriving democracy. The only one in the Middle East.
Is Israel a perfect country? Has it made mistakes? Does it sometimes enact policies that are unwise or unjust? Yes to all of these. But it does these things with far less frequency than any other country from Algeria to Iraq, from Syria to Saudi Arabia.
Ten Israeli Arabs serve in the country’s parliament (the Knesset). How many Jews serve in the legislatures of her Arab neighbors? Those few that have legislatures, that is. Can anyone say, “Crickets”?
If Reps. Omar and Tlaib ever do make it to Israel, perhaps they could meet with Mr. Netanyahu. Then, he could have ask them, in front of cameras and on the record, if Israel has the right to exist as a secure, independent, and Jewish state. We can only hope.
Rob Schwarzwalder is a senior contributor at The Stream and a senior lecturer at Regent University.