Back in March, the House Democrats blew it when they had a chance to condemn anti-Semitic statements by Rep. Ilan Omar, D-Minn. Instead, the House passed a watered-down resolution condemning every kind of ‘hate’ speech.
However, the House got a second bite at the apple and managed to vote to condemn an anti-Semitic group called the BDS movement in a lopsided vote of 398 to 17. Nevertheless, Omar, a champion of the BDS group, was not pleased, to put the matter mildly. Neither was her sister from the so-called “Squad” of radical House members, Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich, disposed to be pleased.
The Hill noted that despite the lopsided nature of the vote, the anti-BDS resolution is politically dicey for House Democrats:
“Most Democrats in the House oppose the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement, an international campaign meant to exert pressure on Israel over the treatment of the Palestinians. Critics say it would isolate and harm Israel, which retains strong support in Congress from both parties. But the BDS movement has support in Congress from some progressives, including Omar, who has offered her own resolution affirming the rights of Americans to participate in boycotts meant to promote human rights either in the United States or other countries.”
“Omar has cited boycotts of Nazi Germany and Apartheid-era South Africa in making the case for her resolution — comparisons that have drawn the ire of Israel’s supporters.”
It should be noted that Nazi Germany was a totalitarian state that systematically murdered entire groups of people, including Jews, that the government believed should not be allowed to live.
Apartheid-era South Africa denied basic civil and human rights to non-whites. Israel, on the other hand, is a democracy that grants full civil rights to every citizen, including non-Jews.
CNN explains what the intent and nature of the anti-BDS resolution was:
“Introduced by a bipartisan group of members, the resolution supports a two-state solution, argues the global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (sometimes short-handed as BDS) movement is an effort to delegitimize Israel and urges Israelis and Palestinians to return to direct negotiations as the only way to achieve an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
“It also recognizes the right of an American citizen to ‘protest or criticize the policies of the United States or foreign governments.’ Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, and Republican Reps. Lee Zeldin of New York and Ann Wagner of Missouri were initial co-sponsors of the resolution.”
The Anti-Defamation League is unsparing in its criticism of the BDS movement:
“The campaign to delegitimize Israel is being waged across the globe: The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS), which rejects Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state, is the most prominent effort to undermine Israel’s existence. The BDS campaign is rampant with misinformation and distortion. ADL responds to BDS threats through advocacy and education, and we recently partnered with the Reut Institute to develop an in-depth analysis and strategic initiatives to marginalize and expose the illegitimacy of the BDS movement.”
“Advocates of BDS target multinational companies, college communities, and well-known institutions, meaning it touches almost everyone. College and university campuses have become battlegrounds.”
Other analysts have compared the BDS movement to the “do not buy from Jews” campaign waged inside Germany by the Nazi Reich that had the goal of driving German Jews out of the country’s economic sphere.
They suggest that BDS is waging nothing less than economic and cultural warfare against the Jewish state. BDS pressures performing artists not to hold concerts inside Israel as part of its campaign.
A recent survey by Scott Rasmussen suggests that Omar and Tlaib are swimming against the consensus of Americans where it concerns Middle East issues. 67 percent of Americans have a favorable view of Israel. 32 percent believe the United States should support Israel while just five percent state the country should support the Palestinians.
The reason for the low number is explained when it is broken down on party lines. 52 percent by 2 percent of Republicans support Israel over the Palestinians. Independent voters support Israel over the Palestinians by a 29 percent to three percent margin. However, Democrats are more split by an 18 percent pro-Israel margin to a 10 percent pro-Palestinian margin.
Most ominous for Omar and Tlaib and the Democrats is that 73 percent of Americans agree that anti-Semitism is a serious problem. Considering that Omar and Tlaib have demonstrated anti-Semitic tendencies and the Democrats have been accused of coddling the two radical House members, the poll numbers reveal a problem for the opposition party.