A Palestinian activist for a Chicago-based organization who told the audience of a Muslim Brotherhood-linked television channel that Israel was a "dagger" used by the West to tear apart the Middle East recently shared a stage with Michigan congresswoman Rashida Tlaib.
Osama Abuirshaid, the National Policy Director and a board member of American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), was speaking on Al-Mash-had (The View), on AL Hiwar TV, based in London.
"is a long-time member of the Muslim Association of Britain (MAB) and recently switched allegiance to the British Muslim Initiative (BMI), both organizations being part of the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.K. He is the director of the Institute of Islamic Political Thought (IPT), whose Advisory board has included global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi (...)."
AMP is the leading organization in the United States for the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. According to congressional testimony, Israeli government reports, and an ongoing civil court case, and the Anti-Defamation League, AMP promotes extreme anti-Israel views and provides a platform for anti-Semitism.
AMP is the successor to the Islamic Association of Palestine, a Muslim Brotherhood-founded organization which the federal government allegedprovided support for the terrorist group Hamas. Abuirshaid, a former employee of IAP, was editor of IAP's Pro-Hamas newsletter Al-Zaytounah.
Abuirshaid appeared to discuss, "The Deal of the Century: From Wadi Araba to Bahrain Workshop" referring to the workshop in Manama, Bahrain, on improving Palestinian economic development led by President Donald Trump's advisor, son-in-law Jared Kushner.
In addition to Abuirshaid, two guests were on the program, Dr. Ghassan Al Otaibi, President of Global Center for Strategic Studies, and Saleh Al 'Armouti, a Jordanian Member of Parliament for the Muslim Brotherhood's Islamic Action Front political party.
Ziad al Sayyed, the program host, explained that the topic for discussion was Arab relations with Tel Aviv, in the "shadow of the economic promises" at the Manama workshop, and whether the goals of the meetings were exclusively economic, or a ploy to normalize the relations with Israel.
Al Sayyed asked Abuirshaid: "How do you see the [Arab] public opinion, in dealing with Tel Aviv?
"Israel has always been rejected, and her rejection has never abated (...) Israel remains the eternal enemy in the Arab sub-consciousness and will always be the exemplar of aggression in the region."
Asked by the host whether Israel is so far content with its accomplishments in the region Abuirshaid explained that Israel had successfully divided the Middle East, blaming it for the Syrian and Yemeni conflicts. AbuIrshaid said:
"The Zionist Project was founded in order to be a dagger that would tear, divide, and undermine the region so that it [the Middle East] would remain in a state of attrition. Look at what is happening in Syria! Israel is a main player... [Look at] what is happening in Sinai, Egypt! Israel is a main player... the Gulf... Saudi Arabia and the Gulf conflicts with Iran! Israel is a main player. Israel cannot survive in a peaceful and integrated region that lives in harmony. There is no way that this [Zionist] project, that was founded as a dagger in the region would be allowed to accept you [the Arab], even [Israel is not allowed] by the West, to accept you in peace."
Abuirshaid's blaming all of the Middle East's misfortunes on Israel comes as no surprise given his history of anti-Israel, and anti-Jewish statements, including publicly praising the terrorist group Hamas as an "army of liberation" and echoing theories that modern Jews are not "real" Jews.
While one might hope that Abuirshaid's conspiracy-theorizing would make him a fringe figure, unfortunately, his, and AMP's profile seems to continue to rise as its lobbying efforts grow. On July 24, 2019 AbuIrshaid led an AMP conference on Capitol Hill, featuring remarks from Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib.
Arab-Americans do not need Islamists, like Osama Abuirshaid, who praise terrorist groups and promote conspiracy theories and victimhood to position themselves as the authorities on what Arabs should believe.
Hesham Shehab is the Illinois Associate for the Counter-Islamist Grid (CIG)