Photo Credit: Public Domain Images
Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar

US Congress members Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich) and Ilhan Omar (D-Minn) both shared a cartoon on Saturday drawn by Carlos Latuff, a known anti-Semite who in 2006 placed second in the Iranian “International Holocaust Cartoon Contest).

The drawing depicts US President Donald Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with their hands over the mouths of the two Congresswomen.

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If one looks at the cartoon carefully, it also becomes clear the drawing forms an approximation of the Israeli flag as well, using the arms of the Israeli and American leaders to form the blue stripes embracing the Magen David (Jewish star) centered on its field of white. Latuff refers to himself in his Twitter profile as a “Political cartoonist: visual chronicler of barbarism.” The message could not be clearer.

Tlaib added a political caption to the cartoon while sharing it: “The more they try to silence us, our voices rise. They more they try to weaken us, the stronger we become. The more they try to discredit us, the truth prevails.”

Former New York Democratic Assembly member Dov Hikind expressed his outrage in a video rant on Twitter, warning Congress Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, “We are watching YOU, & [New York Senator Chuck] Schumer after Tlaib and Omar indulged yet again in vile antisemitism.”

Journalist Batya Unger-Sargon, Opinion Editor at The Forward wrote numerous tweets about the issue, including one saying this: “Jews controlling and subverting world leaders is a classic anti-Semitic trope. So is Jews silencing critics. But no one has silenced the Reps. The ways in which it gets the story wrong fits into an aesthetic designed to give anti-Semites pleasure.”

Likewise, her colleague, Iza Tabaro wrote, “When high-profile political figures promote anti-Semitic content, a reaction is crucial. And yet, so far none has materialized from the Democratic Party. Silence from those quarters is tantamount to condoning and legitimizing it. . . When it comes to anti-Semitism, it is time for the left to do some serious soul-searching,” in an op-ed published by The Forward. “Pointing to the right as a worse offender is hardly a convincing strategy; surely the left has better benchmarks than that.”

The conversation continues, but not with the two women with whom it probably should be taking place, because they seem to have no interest in any real exchange of information or different views other than their own.

They made up their minds a long time ago, and clearly have no desire to see or hear anything that might convince them otherwise – like most anti-Semites and racists.

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