As insurgent hard-Left socialists become the face and the “future” of the Democratic Party, their connections to anti-Semitic organizations and attitudes are becoming more apparent.
The latest democratic socialist candidate to have ties to anti-Semitic groups is Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, the Democratic candidate for governor in Florida. Gillum is “pleased and proud” to be endorsed by groups that support the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. One of these groups, Dream Defenders, “supports efforts to abolish U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, and is intertwined with backers of the BDS movement, which has made common cause with the Black Lives Matter movement,” Adam Kredo reported for the Washington Free Beacon.
Dream Defenders is staunchly anti-Israel, accusing the sovereign Jewish nation of committing “genocide” on Palestinians and previously employing a convicted terrorist as a tour guide in a 2016 delegation to Palestine. One of the group’s co-founders, Ahmad Abuznaid, is the son of a “veteran diplomat” for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and has a history of terrorist sympathies.
Gillum’s opponent, Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., told the Free Beacon he had concerns about Gillum’s anti-Israel affiliations.
“In all my years in Florida, I’ve never seen a candidate for state office who has been as anti-Israel as Andrew Gillum,” DeSantis said. “He opposes our embassy in Jerusalem, he does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s eternal and indivisible capital, and he even criticizes Israel’s response against Hamas [militants] in May of 2018. His anti-Israel views are part and parcel of his overall far left wing, Democrat socialist agenda. He doesn’t share the values of the vast majority of people in Florida with his position.”
DeSantis is spot-on when he links anti-Israel views to democratic socialism. In fact, each major democratic socialist candidate who has become a cause celebre on the Left in this midterm cycle has worrying anti-Semitic or anti-Israel associations.
A democratic socialist candidate for Congress in Boston, Ayanna Presley, held an event with Nation of Islam members outside a mosque known for hosting anti-Semitic conspiracy theorists. One speaker at this mosque, Dr. Wesley Muhammad, gave a lecture titled “The Secret Relationship between Blacks and Jews: The Homosexual Conspiracy!” The Nation of Islam is considered a hate group by even the leftist Southern Poverty Law Center, and its leader, Louis Farrakhan, is a known anti-Semite.
Rashida Tlaib, a Palestinian-American democratic socialist and the Democratic candidate for Congress in Michigan’s 13th Congressional District, has endorsed a “one-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and openly supports the BDS movement. Tlaib’s radicalism prompted J Street, a leftist Jewish organization, to withdraw its endorsement of her candidacy.
Hard-left Muslim Democratic candidate Ilhan Omar, who is running to succeed Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., has called Israel an “apartheid state,” claiming that Israel has “hypnotized the world” and hoping that Allah would show people “the evil doings of Israel.” She has since retreated from those comments, acknowledging Israel’s right to exist and calling BDS “not helpful” and “counteractive.” Omar’s campaign sought the endorsement of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), as Warren Henry reported for the Federalist.
Then, of course, there is the poster-girl for democratic socialism, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who while silent on the BDS movement is at the same time a card-carrying member of the DSA, which is outspokenly anti-Israel. Ocasio-Cortez has accused Israel of a “massacre” at the Gaza strip, where in May Hamas terrorists used protests as a pretext to attack Israel. In a widely panned interview, Ocasio-Cortez called Israel the occupiers of Palestine before backtracking and claiming ignorance on the Israeli-Palestinain conflict.
The rise of these socialist candidates, the radicalism and anti-Semitic tendencies of the far Left, ought to concern every American. The inroads democratic socialists are making within the Democratic Party and the mainstreaming of anti-Israel rhetoric and policies should be widely discussed by a mainstream media all too willing to attack President Donald Trump and conservative Republicans like Ron DeSantis as racists at any opportunity. But instead, the Left is given a pass by a left-wing media that believes the most anti-Semitic socialist is preferable to a conservative Republican.
Chris Pandolfo is a staff writer and type-shouter for Conservative Review. He holds a B.A. in politics and economics from Hillsdale College. His interests are conservative political philosophy, the American founding, and progressive rock. Follow him on Twitter for doom-saying and great album recommendations @ChrisCPandolfo.
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