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Letter: Bush’s defense of Palestinians doesn’t equal anti-Semitism

Letter: Bush’s defense of Palestinians doesn’t equal anti-Semitism

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EPA chief tours city water plant

U.S. Rep. Cori Bush, D-St. Louis, makes comments following a tour of the Chain of Rocks drinking water plant alongside St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones and Environmental Protection Agency administrator Michael Regan on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. Photo by Robert Cohen, rcohen@post-dispatch.com

Regarding the editorial “Cori Bush needs to explain her stand on BDS” (May 26): I agree with the Editorial Board’s conclusion that Rep. Cori Bush and supporters of boycotts of Israel are supporting Palestinian human rights, not targeting Jewish people. However, the editorial concludes that Bush and other boycott supporters must condemn fringe acts of anti-Semitism.

I disagree. In my opinion, linking the Palestinian freedom movement to anti-Semitism is anti-Palestinian, baseless, and harmful. Those who try to link Palestinians to the anti-Semitism of a few is no better than the anti-Semites who link all Jews to the actions of the Israeli government.

The editorial spends a lot of time critiquing human rights defenders like Bush while paying less attention to the brutal violence of Israel against Palestinians in Gaza and across Palestine. Bush is a consistent advocate for ending state violence here at home and abroad. It is her job as a member of Congress to question how U.S. tax dollars are spent, and she is clear that we must divest from systems of harm and invest our resources in the care and safety of St. Louisans.

Finally, I believe the Editorial Board did not give a complete picture of the anti-Israel boycott, divestment and sanctions movement. It is a call from Palestinian society to compel Israel to abide by international law by ending its military occupation, ensuring the equality of Palestinian citizens of Israel, and providing justice for Palestinian refugees. Settlements are only one aspect of Israel’s abuses.

Sandra Tamari • Glen Carbon

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