White House Scrambles To Distance Itself From CAIR

(ConservativeJournal.org) – President Joe Biden is taking flak for an association with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) after its executive director made comments in support of Hamas’ October 7th attack against Israel in late November.

Nihad Awad spoke at a convention in Chicago by American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) when he said he was “happy” that Hamas was “breaking the siege” in Gaza. He further claimed that the people of Gaza had a right to defend themselves, while Israel, as an occupying nation, did not have the same right.

CAIR was included in the Biden administration’s National Strategy to Counter Anti-Semitism fact sheet which declined to include the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism which conflates criticism of Israel with racist hatred of Jews.

Staunch Israeli defenders like Ben Shapiro criticized the inclusion of CAIR in a working ground that tried to pin down an appropriate definition of anti-Semitism.

White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates told Jewish Insider that the White House condemned the remarks by Awad “in the strongest terms.” Bates further suggested that all leaders should oppose anti-Semitism.

CAIR was eventually removed from the fact sheet. A White House official told Jewish Insider that the reference was removed directly as a consequence of Awad’s remarks. The White House has further claimed that CAIR is not involved in formulating its national response to Islamaphobia.

Israel’s retaliatory strikes on Gaza have inspired international backlash with most of the protests seemingly in support of the Palestinians. A new report from the New York Times suggests that Israel was informed a year in advance of Hamas’ plans to launch a surprise attack, but claims the intelligence was ignored.

The war seems to be winding down as thousands of alleged Hamas fighters have surrendered in recent days, according to Israeli authorities. The claims of mass surrender have been challenged by critical commenters noticing that videos of the surrenders seem to have had multiple takes, suggesting some kind of scripted presentation. It’s very difficult to know what’s happening on the ground during an armed conflict due to the fog of war, however.

Copyright 2023, ConservativeJournal.org