Israel’s ban on Representatives Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib exposes the reality that many of our clients are dealing with: Students, teachers and now even members of Congress face the full weight of state suppression for supporting Palestinian human rights.
Coming just days after 72 congressional representatives took free AIPAC-affiliated propaganda trips to the country, the ban shows that Israel is only willing to offer Congress a carefully curated glimpse into the country's policies.
Israel regularly bans people it fears will witness and oppose its policies, including its 71-year ban on Palestinian refugees wishing to return to their homeland. Israel discriminates based on religion and ancestry and uses a political litmus test to deny entry to Palestinians and their allies alike.
Banning this congressional delegation is one of many tactics used to shield Israel's violations of Palestinian rights from scrutiny.
Trump, Republicans, and Israel supporters have lobbied to prevent this trip, to pass anti-boycott laws, and to redefine antisemitism to include criticism of Israel, often employing racist, xenophobic, and anti-Muslim rhetoric in the process.
The attack on Omar and Tlaib puts a spotlight on efforts to suppress advocacy for Palestinian rights, which have impacted thousands of activists around the country. While this story holds our national attention, we must continue to fight to ensure that human rights defenders can raise their voices for marginalized people in Palestine and around the world.
Contact your representatives and demand they put pressure to #LetThemIn (via US Campaign for Palestinian Rights).
Read more about attacks on the #RightToBoycott here.