update deskU.S. News

Maryland legislators push to remove CAIR leader from hate-crimes panel

Zainab Chaudry, director of the state’s Council on American-Islamic Relations chapter, praised Hamas as “Palestinian freedom fighters.”

Zainab Chaudry. Credit: Maryland Attorney General’s Office via Wikimedia Commons.

A Muslim leader in Maryland faced a barrage of questions about her anti-Israel, anti-Jewish social-media postings after the Oct. 7 terrorist attacks by Hamas in a move to challenge her place on the state’s hate-crimes commission.

On Tuesday, at a Maryland House Judiciary Committee hearing, delegate Lauren Arikan asked Zainab Chaudry, director of the state’s chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR): “You stated, ‘That moment when you become what you hated the most’ in reference to Israel, comparing it to Nazi Germany. Have you retracted those statements?”

Delegate Chris Tomlinson also asked, “Have you apologized for any of this language in the last three months?”

In addition to her comparison to World War II, Chaudry had referred to Hamas as “Palestinian freedom fighters” and Oct. 7 as “the uprising in Palestine.”

Chaudry stated that she had been the target of an “onslaught of hatred,” adding that “when you work for justice, sometimes you have to navigate difficult spaces and uncomfortable conversations when we talk about what justice looks like. The intention behind the posts is not to hurt anyone.”

In December, the White House removed CAIR from the U.S. national strategy to counter antisemitism after Nihad Awad, the organization’s co-founder and executive director, said the Oct. 7 terror attack made him “happy” and that Israel “does not have that right to self-defense.”

You have read 3 articles this month.
Register to receive full access to JNS.

Just before you scroll on...

Israel is at war.

JNS is combating the stream of misinformation on Israel with real, honest and factual reporting. In order to deliver this in-depth, unbiased coverage of Israel and the Jewish world, we rely on readers like you.

The support you provide allows our journalists to deliver the truth, free from bias and hidden agendas. Can we count on your support?

Every contribution, big or small, helps JNS.org remain a trusted source of news you can rely on.

Become a part of our mission by donating today
Thank you. You are a loyal JNS Reader.
You have read more than 10 articles this month.
Please register for full access to continue reading and post comments.
Never miss a thing
Get the best stories faster with JNS breaking news updates