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Rashida Tlaib Event at Arizona State University Canceled Amid Backlash

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) addresses attendees as she takes part in a protest calling for a ceasefire in Gaza outside the US Capitol, in Washington, DC, US, Oct. 18, 2023. Photo: REUTERS/Leah Millis

Arizona State University (ASU) has canceled an event featuring US Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) that was organized by anti-Israel groups and scheduled to be held on campus on Friday.

An ASU spokesperson told The Algemeiner that organizers of the event — which included ASU’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter — had circumvented school polices for organizing events on campus.

“Organizers of events using ASU facilities must be properly registered with ASU and must meet all university requirements for crowd management, parking, security, and insurance,” the university official said. “In addition, the events must be produced in a way which minimizes disruption to academic and other activities on campus. The event featuring Congresswoman Tlaib was planned and produced by groups not affiliated with ASU and was organized outside of ASU policies and procedures.  Accordingly, that event will not take place today on the ASU Tempe campus.”

Groups supportive of the event quickly campaigned to pressure ASU to change course. SJP had promoted the Tlaib event on its Instagram page this week, describing the only Palestinian American in Congress as an “unapologetic advocate for justice” and “one of the leading voices in our country today.”

Over the last couple days, pro-Israel activists and antisemitism watchdog groups had called on ASU to cancel the event. A bipartisan group of Arizona state lawmakers even issued a joint press release saying that, while the congressman has a right to speak on campus, her “extremist, antisemitic views are not welcome in the state of Arizona.” The lawmakers also lambasted SJP, which has come under increased scrutiny in recent weeks for blaming Israel for Hamas’ Oct. 7 massacre across southern Israeli communities and rationalizing the Palestinian terror group’s brutality.

Tlaib’s presence on campus could risk further inflaming an already tense situation over the Israel-Hamas war. The lawmaker has received widespread, bipartisan criticism for a wave of virulent comments attacking the Jewish state since the Hamas atrocities last month.

Friday’s event would have been held just three days after anti-Israel demonstrators were accused of throwing landscaping rocks on campus at the second-floor windows of a building, disrupting a student government meeting inside. The student government was considering resolutions expressing support for ASU students impacted by the ongoing Israel-Hamas war and boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) legislation against Israel. Students with several Jewish organizations on ASU’s campus also attended the meeting, which was reportedly ended as the rocks were thrown. Some students with SJP were among the protesters.

According to press reports and video circulated on social media, Jewish students had to be escorted out of the building by university police, who are now investigating the incident.

After Hamas killed over 1,200 people and abducted more than 240 more as hostages during the Palestinian terror group’s onslaught across southern Israel, Tlaib flew a Palestinian flag outside her home and seemingly blamed the Jewish state for the attack, accusing the country of having an “apartheid system” that fosters “conditions that can lead to resistance.” Tlaib and other members of the so-called “Squad” of far left progressive House members came under fire for slamming Israel without condemning Hamas by name.

The lawmaker also accused US President Joe Biden of supporting a “genocide” against Palestinians by supporting Israel’s right to defend itself in the wake of the Hamas atrocities.

Late last month, Tlaib refused to apologize after falsely claiming on social media that Israel bombed the Al Ahli Hospital in Gaza as part of its military operations targeting Hamas, which rules the coastal Palestinian enclave. It turned out that a misfired Palestinian rocket from Gaza caused a widely reported explosion near the Al Ahli Hospital, according to intelligence from Israel and several Western governments. Experts agreed that Israel was not responsible, but Hamas and several media outlets continued to falsely blame an Israeli air strike for causing the blast.

“Both the Israeli and United States governments have long, documented histories of misleading the public about wars and war crimes,” Tlaib said in a statement at the time. “This debate should not distract us from the urgent need for a ceasefire to save innocent lives.” The congresswoman did not mention Hamas.

Earlier this month, Tlaib was censured by her colleagues in the US House of Representatives for her recent spate of anti-Israel comments amid the Jewish state’s war with Hamas. The censure measure accused Tlaib of “promoting false narratives” regarding Hamas’ Oct. 7 invasion of the Jewish state and of “calling for the destruction of the state of Israel.”

Friday would not have been the first time that ASU’s SJP chapter hosted a public figure accused of antisemitism. In 2021, it invited Mohammed El-Kurd to address students, using about $10,000 in student government funding to pay for the event. The Palestinian writer has trafficked in antisemitic tropes, demonized Zionism, and falsely accused Israelis of eating the organs of Palestinians, according to the Anti-Defamation League.

Tlaib’s office did not respond to a request for comment for this story.

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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Israeli Official: ‘Important Operation’ in Yemen Sends Strong Message to Shiite Axis

Drones are seen at a site at an undisclosed location in Iran, in this handout image obtained on April 20, 2023. Photo: Iranian Army/WANA (West Asia News Agency)/Handout via REUTERS

i24 NewsA senior Israeli security official spoke to i24NEWS on Saturday on condition of the retaliatory strike carried out by the Israel Air Force against the Houthi jihadists in Yemen.

“This is an important operation which signals that there’s room for further escalation, and sends a very strong message to the entire Shiite axis.”

“We understood there is a high probability of counter attacks, but if we do not respond, the meaning is even worse. Israel has updated the US prior to the operation.”

The strike on Hodeida came after long-range Iranian-made drone hit a building in central Tel Aviv, killing one man and wounded several others.

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IDF Confirms Striking ‘Terrorist Houthi Regime’ in Yemen’s Hodeida

Houthi leader Abdul-Malik al-Houthi addresses followers via a video link at the al-Shaab Mosque, formerly al-Saleh Mosque, in Sanaa, Yemen, Feb. 6, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Khaled Abdullah

i24 NewsThe Israeli military on Saturday confirmed striking a port in Yemen controlled by the Houthi jihadists, a day after the Iranian proxy group perpetrated a deadly drone attack on Tel Aviv.

“A short while ago, IDF fighter jets struck military targets of the Houthi terrorist regime in the area of the Al Hudaydah Port in Yemen in response to the hundreds of attacks carried out against the State of Israel in recent months.”

After Houthi drone attack on Tel Aviv, reports and footage out of Yemen of air strikes hitting Hodeida

— Video used in accordance with clause 27A of Israeli copyright law

— i24NEWS English (@i24NEWS_EN) July 20, 2024

Yoav Gallant, the defense minister, issued a statement saying “The fire that is currently burning in Hodeidah, is seen across the Middle East and the significance is clear. The Houthis attacked us over 200 times. The first time that they harmed an Israeli citizen, we struck them. And we will do this in any place where it may be required.”

“The blood of Israeli citizens has a price,” Gallant added. “This has been made clear in Lebanon, in Gaza, in Yemen, and in other places – if they will dare to attack us, the result will be identical.”

Gallant: ‘The fire currently burning in Hodeida is seen across the region and the significance is clear… The blood of Israeli citizens has a price, as has been made clear in Lebanon, in Gaza, in Yemen and in other places – if they dare attack us, the result will be identical.’

— i24NEWS English (@i24NEWS_EN) July 20, 2024

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One Part of Cyprus Mourns, the Other Rejoices 50 Years After Split

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan leaves after attending a military parade to mark the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus in response to a short-lived Greek-inspired coup, in the Turkish-controlled northern Cyprus, in the divided city of Nicosia, Cyprus July 20, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Yiannis Kourtoglou

Greek Cypriots mourned and Turkish Cypriots rejoiced on Saturday, the 50th anniversary of Turkey’s invasion of part of the island after a brief Greek inspired coup, with the chances of reconciliation as elusive as ever.

The ethnically split island is a persistent source of tension between Greece and Turkey, which are both partners in NATO but are at odds over numerous issues.

Their differences were laid bare on Saturday, with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan attending a celebratory military parade in north Nicosia to mark the day in 1974 when Turkish forces launched an offensive that they call a “peace operation.”

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis was due later on Saturday to attend an event in the south of the Nicosia to commemorate what Greeks commonly refer to as the “barbaric Turkish invasion.” Air raid sirens sounded across the area at dawn.

Mitsotakis posted an image of a blood-stained map of Cyprus on his LinkedIn page with the words “Half a century since the national tragedy of Cyprus.”

There was jubilation in the north.

“The Cyprus Peace Operation saved Turkish Cypriots from cruelty and brought them to freedom,” Erdogan told crowds who gathered to watch the parade despite stifling midday heat, criticizing the south for having a “spoiled mentality” and seeing itself as the sole ruler of Cyprus.

Peace talks are stalled at two seemingly irreconcilable concepts – Greek Cypriots want reunification as a federation. Turkish Cypriots want a two-state settlement.

Erdogan left open a window to dialogue although he said a federal solution, advocated by Greek Cypriots and backed by most in the international community, was “not possible.”

“We are ready for negotiations, to meet, and to establish long-term peace and resolution in Cyprus,” he said.

Cyprus gained independence from Britain in 1960, but a shared administration between Greek and Turkish Cypriots quickly fell apart in violence that saw Turkish Cypriots withdraw into enclaves and led to the dispatch of a U.N. peacekeeping force.

The crisis left Greek Cypriots running the internationally recognized Republic of Cyprus, a member of the European Union since 2004 with the potential to derail Turkey’s own decades-long aspirations of joining the bloc.

It also complicates any attempts to unlock energy potential in the eastern Mediterranean because of overlapping claims. The region has seen major discoveries of hydrocarbons in recent years.


Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides, whose office represents the Greek Cypriot community in the reunification dialogue, said the anniversary was a somber occasion for reflection and for remembering the dead.

“Our mission is liberation, reunification and solving the Cyprus problem,” he said. “If we really want to send a message on this tragic anniversary … it is to do anything possible to reunite Cyprus.”

Turkey, he said, continued to be responsible for violating human rights and international law over Cyprus.

Across the south, church services were held to remember the more than 3,000 people who died in the Turkish invasion.

“It was a betrayal of Cyprus and so many kids were lost. It wasn’t just my son, it was many,” said Loukas Alexandrou, 90, as he tended the grave of his son at a military cemetery.

In Turkey, state television focused on violence against Turkish Cypriots prior to the invasion, particularly on bloodshed in 1963-64 and in 1967.

Turkey’s invasion took more than a third of the island and expelled more than 160,000 Greek Cypriots to the south.

Reunification talks collapsed in 2017 and have been at a stalemate since. Northern Cyprus is a breakaway state recognized only by Turkey, and its Turkish Cypriot leadership wants international recognition.

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