It’s been all over the news that “Squad” stalwarts Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tliab are planning a trip to Israel. Whether this will be at U.S. taxpayers’ expense is unclear.
The two women have shown their affinity for anti-Semitism, so it’s a virtual certainty their visit will be a staged opportunity to accuse Israel of being Nazi Germany and apartheid South Africa rolled into one, or possibly something even more monstrous if they can figure out what that is. Doubtless, an international press crew will traipse after them to record their every calumny.
Israel—a country where there is press freedom unlike, say, Somalia—has already made clear they will admit this pair. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t supervise their itinerary to make it more, shall we say, educational. Since I’ve visited Israel several times, mostly for longer stays than the usual brief congressional junket, allow me to make some suggestions for their itinerary.
Israel has been in a war zone since its founding, most recently near its Syrian border where a non-stop civil war has been going on for years. An estimated half-million are dead and even more innocent civilians wounded by Syrian leader Bashar Assad’s forces, plus various Islamic terror groups, Russians, Iranian Revolutionary Guards, Hezbollah, etc.
So a visit to the Zvi Medical Center in Safed in northern Israel would be in order. There they could learn just which country is caring for the wounded of the Syrian civil war. Thousands of Syrians, many of them injured children, have been treated by Israeli doctors and then returned to Syria in secret so the despotic Syrian government and jihadists do not punish them for seeking treatment from the “enemy.”
Israelis, of course, risk their own lives bringing in the wounded Syrians in the first place. They also treat Syrians—mostly women—with emotional trauma from war.
Since the congresswomen are up by the border, it’s only a short drive to one of the high points overlooking Lebanon. It’s an astonishing sight. You look one way—toward Israel—and see nothing but blooming farms. You turn toward Lebanon and see nothing but barren hills with a sprinkling of Hezbollah flags and gun emplacements.
Why the disparity, since the land is basically the same? The congresswomen would probably explain it as due to Israel’s supposed oppression of the Palestinian refugees who live by the border or something like that.
They’d better start holding their ears, because it’s well documented that Palestinians are treated considerably better in Israel than in Lebanon. A 2017 Associated Press report tells us, but not the congresswomen apparently, that “Lebanese law restricts Palestinians’ ability to work in several professions, including law, medicine, and engineering, and bars them from receiving social security benefits. In 2001, the Lebanese parliament also passed a law prohibiting Palestinians from owning property.”
None of this is true in Israel, of course, where a Palestinian served on the Supreme Court. Actually, he was the second one. Would Omar and Tliab like to meet him? Probably not. Would they like to meet a Jewish judge at one of the 45 Islamic countries? Oh, wait. None of them have Jews any more.
Okay, well, then how about a visit to one of the Israeli universities, where the number of Israeli Arab PhD’s have more than doubled in a decade? Too academic? Not relevant? Okay, I understand.
This is about personal freedom for the Palestinian people, right? They’re oppressed. Like LGBTQ people—the congresswomen support them, I know. (They say they do, anyway.). Why don’t we compare the freedom of those folks in Tel Aviv to those in Ramallah, or anywhere else in the Arab world?
I know, that Tel Aviv was named the most gay-friendly city in the world doesn’t count. After all, it was only Newsweek and we know they’re desperate for readers. And all those gay Palestinians who slipped out of the West Bank to live more comfortably in Tel Aviv are just shills or maybe even Mossad agents. These congresswomen don’t want to talk to them.
So onwards. How about jobs and the treatment of the working class (Arab and Israeli) compared to the rest of the Middle East? Okay, skip that too. It’s all too boring and taking up too much of the congresswomen’s precious time.
Instead, they must go to someone with real knowledge, like Mahmoud Abbas, who has been president of the Palestinian Authority since 2005. He knows the score and will give the congresswomen the information (or is it propaganda?) they need. But be sure to admire the cut of his Savile Row suit, because U.S. and European taxpayers have been paying for several closets full of them for more than a decade.
Above all, the representatives should not, under any circumstances, go anywhere near Yad Vashem. What they’ll see there is almost as bad as El Paso. Almost. After all, on the conclusion of their trip, they will no doubt assure us the real Holocaust is on our southern border and Donald Trump is causing it. That other affair back in the 1940s was unfortunate, of course, but minor by comparison.
One last thing: I know Omar and Tlaib want to boycott everything Israeli, but for the sake of everyone’s relatives, and maybe even for theirs one day, they must omit learning about Israeli cancer research. Israel is one of the world leaders in this area. Only this week they made an advance in one of the most dreadful of cancers, pancreatic.
If the two congresswomen manage to avoid all this and come back to the United States repeating the same tripe they’ve been spouting about Israel and the Middle East for their short political careers, it will be clear to the public that they actually are what they accuse others of being: propagandists for lies.