American Jews on the Left Are Just Shocked by Their Fellow Leftists

Rashida Tlaib, the lovable and patriotic U.S. representative from Khan Younis, has just once again clambered up to the moral high ground. Tlaib demonstrated anew why she is a moral lodestar for so many young Americans when she called for the arrest of the cunning and ruthless prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, on charges emanating from the genocide he is perpetrating in Gaza. There’s just one catch: there is no genocide.

The Jerusalem Post reported Monday that Tlaib charges Netanyahu with violating the Genocide Convention. Displaying her always remarkable eloquence and restrained, compelling rhetoric, Tlaib declared: “It’s no coincidence that immediately after our government sent the Israeli apartheid regime over $14 billion with absolutely no conditions on upholding human rights, Netanyahu began a ground invasion of Rafah to continue the genocide of Palestinians—with ammunition and bombs paid for by our tax dollars.”

This would be alarming indeed if it were true. But it isn’t. It’s not even close to true. Article 2 of the 1948 United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide defines genocide as “any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: killing members of the group; causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; [and] forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.” 

Has Israel been trying to “destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group”? Any wartime action could be claimed to be such, but the facts are not on Tlaib’s side. In 1950, the population of Gaza was 63,444. Now it is estimated to be over 800,000. If Israel has intended to carry out a genocide of the Palestinian Arabs, it’s done a remarkably ineffective job. 

Even since Oct. 7, the population of Gaza has increased, not decreased. And the casualty figures that have circulated all over the world have been completely discredited. Tlaib claimed that “Israeli forces have already killed over 35,000 Palestinians.” This figure comes from the Gaza Ministry of Health, which is run by Hamas. Hamas has every reason to inflate the number of casualties in order to turn international public opinion against Israel, and it has done an effective job of doing so. The tide, however, is beginning to turn.

The UN just cut in half the number of women and children it claims that the Israelis have killed in Gaza. The Jerusalem Post reported Sunday that in the UN’s latest report on the number of casualties in Gaza, it added a disclaimer that should have been there from the very beginning: “The UN has so far not been able to produce independent, comprehensive, and verified casualty figures.” 

The UN also quietly revised its casualty figures, drastically lowering the number of women and children who have been killed. “On May 6, the UN published data showing that 34,735 people had reportedly been killed in Gaza, including over 9,500 women and over 14,500 children. On May 8, the UN published data showing 34,844 people had reportedly been killed, including 4,959 women and 7,797 children.”

So 9,500 women and 14,500 children had been killed as of May 6, but as of May 8, over 4,500 of those women and nearly 7,000 of those children had come alive again? A miracle? No, just the failure of Hamas propaganda.

Related: Hamas Top Dog Antony Blinken Sends a Stern Demand to Israel

And so Tlaib’s call for the arrest of Netanyahu couldn’t have been more ill-timed. The winsome and ever-reasonable congresswoman, however, will not issue a retraction or any adjustment of her statements. She is not dealing in the realm of facts, but of emotions, playing on ancient antisemitic paradigms that have, like all those women and children in Gaza, come alive again. 

It doesn’t really matter how much the facts affirm or disconfirm what Tlaib says. She is doing what she was elected to do, and for her constituents, that’s all that matters. Islamic antisemitism is deeply rooted in the Qur’an and the example of Muhammad, although that is almost completely unknown in the West. 

Tlaib knows that in playing to it, she will cement her constituents’ love for her, and secure a place for herself in Washington for as long as she wants to stay there. And so even if Netanyahu is not arrested (he very well could be, however), for Tlaib, it is mission accomplished.

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