NYC: Jewish Councilman Who Said ‘Palestine Does Not Exist’ Loses Seat on Immigration Committee


New York City’s far-left Mayor Bill de Blasio and Linda Sharia Sarsour are at war with reality. Yeger is right: where is the state of Palestine? What on earth should he apologize for? Stating obvious reality is a crime these days. There is not now and never has been a State of Palestine. The Romans renamed Judea “Palestine” in 134CE and after that it was always the name of a region, never of a people. Saying “Palestinians” is like saying “Upper East Siders.” The “Palestinians” have no actual nationality, no ethnicity, no linguistic, cultural, or religious differences from the Arabs of the surrounding areas. De Blasio and Sarsour are penalizing Yeger for telling the truth when they prefer lies.

And the lies are ominous. Former New York City Assemblyman Dov Hikind said:

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JEWS IN AMERICA: Wake up and be warned! The Democrats are openly telling their Jewish voters – who won’t tolerate a falsified history that’s used to deny Israel the right to exist – that they don’t have a place in the party any more.

If you speak facts of history you may have punitive action taken against you!

This is a dark day for our democracy and for Jewish life in America.

“A Jewish Councilman Who Said ‘Palestine Does Not Exist’ Loses Seat on Immigration Committee,” by Jeffery C. Mays, New York Times, March 31, 2019 (thanks to Mark):

New York City, home to the largest Jewish population outside Israel, has often served as a proxy battleground for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Mayors — dating back from Robert F. Wagner, who in 1957 barred a welcome for a Saudi king he deemed anti-Jewish, to Bill de Blasio, who in 2015 canceled a plan to meet Palestinians in the occupied West Bank — have been forced to confront the highly charged issue.

But as more Palestinian immigrants have settled in New York, the political calculus has grown slightly more complicated, as seen last week, when Kalman Yeger, a Brooklyn councilman who represents the Orthodox Jewish community of Borough Park, took to Twitter on Wednesday to state that “Palestine does not exist.”

Mr. Yeger’s remarks came after Zainab Iqbal, a journalist for Bklyner, reported that Mr. Yeger had referred to “so-called Palestinians” in a tweet. He responded by calling Representative Ilhan Omar of Minnesota anti-Semitic. The councilman’s pronouncements led to a cascade of criticism calling his comments “hateful” and “Islamophobic,” and prompted demands for an apology and his removal from the City Council’s immigration committee.

The latest such call came from Mayor Bill de Blasio, who said on Friday that if Mr. Yeger is “not going to apologize, he shouldn’t be on that committee.”

According to the United Nations, 137 states bilaterally recognize Palestine.

On Monday, the City Council’s leadership team met for more than an hour and decided to remove Mr. Yeger from the immigration committee, The New York Times has learned. There was “broad consensus” that Mr. Yeger’s views were inconsistent with the committee’s mission, participants said.

“I do not believe that someone who engages in the type of rhetoric we heard from Council Member Yeger belongs on the immigration committee, which is supposed to welcome and support immigrants in our city,” Corey Johnson, the Council’s speaker, said in a statement.

Mr. Yeger could not immediately be reached for comment Monday evening. He had been unapologetic about his comments during a news conference on Thursday. “There is no state by that name. There is no place by that name. That’s a fact. I didn’t make it up, I didn’t invent it,” Mr. Yeger said on Thursday.

When the news came out on Monday, Mr. Yeger, on Twitter, cited an editorial from The New York Daily News to defend his comments as free speech.

Linda Sarsour, a New York City-based Palestinian-American activist, applauded his removal from the Council committee.

“This sends a wider message that saying anti-Arab, anti-Muslim and anti-Palestinian things comes with consequences,” Ms. Sarsour said.

The dismissal came as a diverse coalition of Palestinian, Jewish, immigrant and civil rights groups announced it was planning a protest on City Hall’s steps later this week.

Mr. de Blasio agreed with the decision. “It’s important for people to understand that everyone is valued,” the mayor said in an interview on Monday with NY1’s Errol Louis…

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