Rep. Betty McCollum (D-Minn.), an outspoken critic of Israels occupation of Palestine, accused the influential lobby group American Israel Public Affairs Committee of being a hate group that weaponizes anti-Semitism to silence dissent.
Last month, AIPAC started running paid Facebook advertisements with pictures of McCollum, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.). The ads warned that the radicals in the Democratic Party are pushing their anti-Semitic and anti-Israel policies down the throats of the American people, according to the Jewish Telegraph Agency. The ads included a link to a petition urging supporters to protect our Israeli allies especially as they face threats from Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah, ISIS and maybe more sinister right here in the U.S. Congress.
AIPAC claims to be a bipartisan organization, but its use of hate speech actually makes it a hate group, McCollum said in a statement on Tuesday. By weaponizing anti-Semitism and hate to silence debate, AIPAC is taunting Democrats and mocking our core values.
The implication that McCollum and her colleagues represent a bigger threat to Israel than ISIS is not a call to action, it is incitement, McCollum said. Omar and Tlaib, who are the first Muslim women elected to Congress, have faced racist threats and attacks including from the president. Hate speech is intentionally destructive and dehumanizing, which is why it is used as a weapon by groups with a stake in profiting from oppression, McCollum continued.
AIPAC removed the most offensive ads and apologized on Saturday for the inaccurate assertion that the poorly worded, inflammatory advertisement implied. But the group reiterated its claim that a certain group of members in Congress are deliberately working to erode the bipartisan consensus on this issue and undermine the U.S.-Israel relationship.
It was just a matter of time before cognitive dissonance shattered the coalition of the weak minded.