On May 16, Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) introduced House Resolution 1123 calling for U.S. policy to:
“(1) commemorate the Nakba through official recognition and remembrance;
(2) resist efforts to enlist, engage or otherwise associate the United States Government with denial of the Nakba”:
Resolution 1123 also calls for the United States Government to “educate” the public about the Nakba, to support UNWRA and to support U.N. General Assembly Resolution 194, a resolution that enemies of Israel cite as authority for the right of all Palestinians and their descendants to “return” to their claimed homes.
The point of Nakba commemorations is not to recall the Palestinians’ tragic rejection of an independent state granted them in 1948 by the United Nations, nor to regret their decision to back the invasion of Israel by five Arab armies seeking to destroy the nascent Jewish state. The point of the Nakba is to commit Palestinian society spiritually to overwhelming and eradicating the Jewish state from “the [Jordan] river to the sea,” no matter how long it takes.
I strongly urge the leadership of the House of Representatives to schedule and hold a vote on H.R. 1123. I am confident the vote will fail by a wide margin, but that is not the reason to hold a vote. H.R. 1123, if voted on, will permit all members to self‑identify. All my sister and brother Americans will know beyond a shadow of a doubt who in Congress—Republican or Democrat—are the unapologetic anti‑Semites and who believe the world will be a better place once the only Jewish majority state is destroyed.
I also anticipate support for H.R. 1123 by one or more Jewish members and by some number of American Jews. That is also a useful thing. Americans of all faiths will benefit by knowing which American Jews, for political reasons, support or at least would tolerate the destruction of Israel.
So let’s do it. Let’s have the vote.
Harvey E. Bines is a partner at Sullivan & Worcester LLP.