Rep. Chip Roy slammed Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) on Monday for criticizing President Donald Trump and the Israeli government after they were barred from the country over their anti-Semitic advocacy.
“For Congresswoman Omar and Tlaib to be going after and criticizing Israel, our great ally, it’s the height of hypocrisy,” Roy told Fox News host Shannon Bream. “For them to then throw that back on the president or to those of us who want to defend Israel, to some how say that it’s on us — they’re the ones criticizing our great ally. It’s despicable and it is, in fact, anti-Semitic the way they carry themselves.”
A total of 41 Democrats and 31 Republican members of Congress, including Roy, visited the Jewish state over the Congressional summer break on two separate tours. The delegations traveled to Israel to tour the country and see firsthand its unique security challenges. While there, they meet with Israeli leaders on both sides of the aisle including Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Palestinian Authority.
“It was a very thorough trip where we got to see Israel from top to bottom,” Roy said. The delegation was able to see that the small country “is facing adversaries with 130,000 missiles targeted at Israel, sitting in Lebanon that are being operated by Hezbollah.”
“We got to see the extent to which Hamas has operational control of the Gaza strip and are sending balloons with explosives devices on them,” he continued. “We’re seeing what Israel is facing every single day and the last thing they need is their greatest closest ally, the United States, having members of the Congress actually saying that Israel is not our ally and not a democracy and disparaging Israel.”
Tlaib and Omar declined to travel to Israel with the Democratic delegation and instead partnered with the Palestinian-based organization Miftah. Miftah has a history of promoting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories such as accusing Jews of using “the blood of Christians” during Passover, and has reportedly praised suicide bombers.
Only days before the two progressive congresswomen were scheduled to travel to Israel, the Israeli government blocked them from entering the country, citing their vocal support of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
“Prime Minister Netanyahu and the government of Israel was absolutely correct to be calling out Congresswoman Tlaib and Congresswoman Omar for their anti-Israel, anti-Semitic language and behavior, which is unconscionable for the American leadership in Congress,” Roy said.
The duo subsequently accused Israel of trying to silence them and treating the lawmakers like criminals. On Monday, Omar and Tlaib held a press conference where they suggested Israel is not a democracy, nor an ally of the United States.
Last week, Israel granted Tlaib a special request to visit her relatives in the West Bank on the condition that she would not promote the BDS movement during the visit, but Tlaib declined.
“We’ve got a great ally in Israel,” Roy said. “It’s providing us intelligence — who’s on the front lines of defense for us, sharing technology with us, to be able to develop missile defense, which is central to their ability to defend themselves against rocket attacks being launched against them every single week.”
“It’s happening all the time while we were there,” he added.