Fresh Off Anti-Semitism Censure, Tlaib Speaks at Pro-Hamas Ceasefire Rally

Rep. Rashida Tlaib speaks at a news conference to call for a ceasefire in Gaza outside the U.S. Capitol building (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
November 20, 2023

Days after a bipartisan group of lawmakers censured Rep. Rashida Tlaib for deploying an anti-Semitic slogan, the Michigan Democrat appeared at an event organized by Muslim groups with track records of anti-Semitism and support for the terrorist group Hamas.

The Squad member spoke Thursday at a candlelight vigil in Detroit to urge a ceasefire in Gaza. Leaders of American Muslims for Palestine, one of the event’s organizers, have called for the destruction of Israel, praised Hamas, and raised money for the terrorist organization. Its executive director has referred to the "despicable Jews" and hailed Hamas terrorists as "martyrs." The head of the Michigan Task Force for Palestine, another organizer, has praised Hamas and worked closely with an Islamic cleric imprisoned for funding the terrorist group.

It’s the latest example of Tlaib’s cozy ties with anti-Semitic and pro-Hamas activists. At least six of her campaign bundlers have been linked to Hamas, the Washington Free Beacon reported. And her appearance at last week’s event came after a group of Tlaib’s House colleagues, including 27 Democrats, voted to censure the lawmaker for saying "from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free," a slogan for the eradication of the Jewish state.

Around a dozen American Muslims for Palestine officials have praised Hamas or espoused anti-Semitic views, according to Canary Mission, a group that tracks anti-Semitism.

Osama Abuirshaid, the head of American Muslims for Palestine, cheered in 2014 that Hamas was "raining the Hebrew state with rockets," the group reported. Abuirshaid, who hosted Tlaib at an event in 2021 to urge sanctions against Israel, has also railed against the "Zionist influence in the media" and Hollywood.

Salah Sarsour, an American Muslims for Palestine board member and Tlaib campaign fundraiser, raised money for a Hamas front group in the late 1990s, according to an FBI memorandum.

Neveen Ayesh, a government relations coordinator at American Muslims for Palestine, has said she wants to "set Israel on fire with my own hands & watch it burn to ashes along with every Israeli in it," the Free Beacon reported. Taher Herzallah, the group’s director of outreach, defended Muslims who "use violent means to resist occupation."

Mohamad Hebehh, the director of development for American Muslims for Palestine, wrote in since-deleted posts that "Hamas should make me their official PR dude." He published numerous anti-Semitic screeds, including the claim, "If you work with the Jews you deserve any punishment possible in this dunya [world]," according to Canary Mission.

Michigan Task Force for Palestine, another organizer of last week’s vigil, was recently formed by Khalid Turaani, a longtime Palestinian activist who served as executive director of American Muslims for Jerusalem, a now-defunct group that operated under the umbrella of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Turaani, who has referred to Tlaib as his "good friend" and met with her at an event last year, has praised Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas figures on social media. In a 2014 post, he praised Abu Obeida, a nom de guerre for Hamas fighters, and wrote: "Now the Palestinian resistance imposes a siege on Israel." He worked closely with Sheikh Raed Salah, a radical Islamic cleric who was imprisoned for funding Hamas and for inciting violence against Israel.

Another organizer of the vigil last week, the George Soros-funded Jewish Voice for Peace, organized the protest at Democratic National Committee headquarters last week in which six Capitol Police officers were assaulted.

Tlaib’s office did not respond to a request for comment.