Pro-Palestinian Activists’ Dangerous Attempt to Co-opt the Black Lives Matter Movement

A cartoon has been circulating on social media that shows an American policeman crushing a black man’s throat with his knee while embracing an Israeli soldier doing the same to a Palestinian man; atop the picture is a caption reading “Black lives matter.” Such an attempt to link the Palestinian cause to that of the protests taking place across the U.S. is neither an outlier nor something new. Tracing the history of African American leaders’ embrace of anti-Zionism, Joshua Washington sees as a turning point the 1967 decision of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC)—a prominent civil-rights organization in which Jews once played a prominent role—to adopt not just a pro-Palestinian platform, but an anti-Semitic one. In his view, this move was not only wrongheaded, but highly detrimental, allowing Arab leaders to “hijack” the civil-rights movement in order “to legitimize their own cause.”

Such a propaganda campaign is only effective among [those Martin Luther King, in a related context, called] the “color consumed.” If one is color consumed, all Israel’s enemies must do is to get him to see Israel as a country of white Europeans. . . . It’s why Mahmoud Abbas, president of the Palestinian Authority, calls Israel an “apartheid state,” though nothing in Israel resembles apartheid. To the black South African with unresolved hurt and bitterness from apartheid, not much else needs to be said.

Fast-forward to the present day: the Movement for Black Lives is one of the major partners of Black Lives Matter (BLM). In its policy platforms, it has an “invest-divest” section that, under “cut military expenditures,” mentions Israel as an apartheid, genocidal regime that routinely arrest four-year-old Palestinians. All lies, taken straight out of the SNCC playbook—a playbook [based on] unverified libels and anti-Semitic stereotypes.

From its beginning, BLM had an anti-Israel bias. “From Ferguson to Palestine, occupation is a crime” was a slogan taken up immediately following Michael Brown’s killing by officer Darren Wilson [in 2014]. This feigned support is nothing more than a calculated effort by Palestinian leaders to divert attention away their oppression of their own people. And we know now that this is nothing new.

Blacks and Jews have much more history that binds us than we could ever have with the likes of the PLO, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, or Mahmoud Abbas. I will concede, however, that we [African Americans] share a common struggle with the Palestinian people, and that is the struggle of many manipulative leaders who claim to be our saviors.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Anti-Semitism, Black Lives Matter, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Mahmoud Abbas, Martin Luther King

Why Egypt Fears an Israeli Victory in Gaza

While the current Egyptian president, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, has never been friendly to Hamas, his government has objected strenuously to the Israeli campaign in the southernmost part of the Gaza Strip. Haisam Hassanein explains why:

Cairo has long been playing a double game, holding Hamas terrorists near while simultaneously trying to appear helpful to the United States and Israel. Israel taking control of Rafah threatens Egypt’s ability to exploit the chaos in Gaza, both to generate profits for regime insiders and so Cairo can pose as an indispensable mediator and preserve access to U.S. money and arms.

Egyptian security officials have looked the other way while Hamas and other Palestinian militants dug tunnels on the Egyptian-Gaza border. That gave Cairo the ability to use the situation in Gaza as a tool for regional influence and to ensure Egypt’s role in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict would not be eclipsed by regional competitors such as Qatar and Turkey.

Some elements close to the Sisi regime have benefited from Hamas control over Gaza and the Rafah crossing. Media reports indicate an Egyptian company run by one of Sisi’s close allies is making hundreds of millions of dollars by taxing Gazans fleeing the current conflict.

Moreover, writes Judith Miller, the Gaza war has been a godsend to the entire Egyptian economy, which was in dire straits last fall. Since October 7, the International Monetary Fund has given the country a much-needed injection of cash, since the U.S. and other Western countries believe it is a necessary intermediary and stabilizing force. Cairo therefore sees the continuation of the war, rather than an Israeli victory, as most desirable. Hassanein concludes:

Adding to its financial incentive, the Sisi regime views the Rafah crossing as a crucial card in preserving Cairo’s regional standing. Holding it increases Egypt’s relevance to countries that want to send aid to the Palestinians and ensures Washington stays quiet about Egypt’s gross human-rights violations so it can maintain a stable flow of U.S. assistance and weaponry. . . . No serious effort to turn the page on Hamas will yield the desired results without cutting this umbilical cord between the Sisi regime and Hamas.

Read more at Washington Examiner

More about: Egypt, Gaza War 2023, U.S. Foreign policy