Defying logic, Palestinian woman murdered by her family in “Honour Killing” and US Congresswoman Tlaib blames Israel
By David E. Kaplan
If the tried and tested explanation for global calamities was to blame the Jews than today it is to blame Israel.
Where once Jews were blamed for the plague that ravaged Europe in the Middle Ages – the Black Death – now this week, the ‘disease’ of “Honour Killings” prevalent in Palestinian society is blamed on Israel by none other than Democratic Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib.
Yes, there is outrage!
There was anger on the Arab street as well as on social media, as reported in Egyptian Streets of “massive outrage among activists and social media users across the Middle East and North Africa.”
There should also be OUTRAGE as why Congresswoman Tlaib should blame the Jewish state for a malady prevalent in some regions of the Muslim world.
The accusation against Jews for the Black Plague resulted in persecution and massacres; words have consequences, so where will Rashida Tlaib’s false accusations lead?
What are the facts?
Twenty-one-year-old, Israa Ghrayeb, “a makeup artist from Bethlehem,” reported the Egyptian Streets website, “died in a coma due to head trauma, in what activists and sources close to the victim are saying was a brutal honour killing. The culprits are believed to be her father and brothers.”
It all began when Ghrayeb went to meet a potential suitor in a public place and posted a video of the outing on her Instagram page.
She was in love and was happy to show the world.
Her family did not share her happiness.
According to a friend of the victim’s, Ghrayeb’s mother was fully aware of the meeting and the suitor’s sister was also in attendance. The report added that Ghrayeb’s cousin then showed the video to the victim’s father and brothers, who allegedly urged them “to act to prevent scandal and accusing Israa of dishonouring herself and bringing shame to the family by being seen in the company of a man outside the bonds of marriage.”
Attempting to escape the violence from her family, Israa apparently fell from the second-floor balcony of her parents’ home and according to media reports, broke her spine. The family says she jumped after being “possessed by demons.”
In the hospital, Israa posted on social media a photograph of herself showing her injuries and bravely writing:
“I’m strong, and I have the will to live — if I didn’t have this willpower, I would have died yesterday. Don’t send me messages telling me to be strong, I am strong. May God be the judge of those who oppressed me and hurt me.”
Those ‘oppressing” and “hurting” her were her family, not Israelis, Congresswoman Tlaib!
Sadly, those were the last brave words to the outside world of a young woman, whose family had murder on its mind!
Incensed by this latest posting from the hospital, Israa’s brother, along with other male relatives, entered her ward and brutally beat to death.
According to reports, Ghrayeb’s family claimed that they are not responsible for her death, and that their daughter “died of a heart attack.”
The only thing accurate in this statement was that she did die of an “attack” but not of the heart but the male hands of her family.
Message On Instagram
Enter The Dragon
Then comes along Congresswoman Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) who has called for an end to U.S. aid to Israel and expressed support for BDS – the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign whose stated goal is the destruction of Israel by first delegitimizing and dehumanizing the Jewish state.
One of two Muslim women to be elected to Congress, Tlaib released a statement that while decrying the phenomenon of “honour” killings, she attached a link to her tweet for an article that blames “Israeli occupation” for such killings.
The article was posted on a Palestinian site called BabyFist designed to start a conversation about gender oppression.
Yet again, the contriving congresswoman found a reason to condemn Israel; this time linking the Jewish state to a serious problem within Palestinian society that has nothing to do with Israel.
Before tweeting her false accusations, the Congresswoman could have engaged with Palestinian documentary filmmaker, Imtiaz al-Maghrabi, who told Germany’s public international broadcaster Deutsche Welle that “Any Palestinian woman could be a victim of such a crime.”
In March, Al-Maghrabi – who is currently making a film about honour killings – was recognized for her work by the Arab Women’s Media Center in the Jordanian capital of Amman.
While the Palestinian territories have modernised laws dealing with honour killings, al-Maghrabi says that, in reality, the effect of these laws is limited:
“Palestinian society is influenced by custom, tradition, and religion. These all bear more weight than the law, and crimes relating to a violation of honour are often only lightly punished.”
Sociologist Iyad Barghouthi from the Ramallah Center for Human Rights Studies also expressed to Deutsche Welle that the practice of honour killings is so imbedded in tradition that it is likely to continue. He believes that’s because “from a male perspective — the concept of honour has no relation to values such as morality, integrity or success,” it is solely defined “by the reputation of the female family members. A man is willing to take violent action against a woman if she does not meet his expectations.”
According to Palestinian NGO, the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counselling (WCLAC):
– 23 Palestinian women and girls were killed in 2016
– 28 in 2017
– 23 cases in 2018
The General Director of WCLAC, Randa Siniora explained the difficulty in categorizing “femicides” or death as gender-based violence, as many of the killings were constantly “under investigation” or were classified as a “suicide”.
“This year there are 18 cases of unknown reasons for death, suicidal cases and femicide, with 14 in the West Bank and eight in Gaza. Six are confirmed femicide in the West Bank, the others are under investigation,” Siniora told Mondoweiss, a news website covering American foreign policy in the Middle East.
Contributing to the problem, several Palestinian laws tend to grant leniency to men convicted of killing female relatives, in what is widely referred to as “honour killings”. Many are inherited Jordanian regulations that pre-date the Six Day War of 1967 when Israel took over the West Bank and East Jerusalem and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority in the 1990s.
In the past, perpetrators of “honour killings” received reduced sentences under Article 98 and 99 of the Palestinian Penal code, which “grants judges the ability to dramatically reduce sentences,” if “extenuating circumstances” could be proven.
In 2014, a UN human rights report written by Palestinian judge Ahmad al-Ashqar, revealed that the present “legislation in place, contributes, to a large extent, to building a social awareness that killing under the pretext of honour is acceptable.”
There is a problem when young women like 21-year-old Israa Ghrayeb are murdered by family members, because they have fallen in love.
That there was OUTRAGE is a good sign.
That a US Congresswoman should blame Israel is a bad sign.
Rashida Tlaib’s conduct on this issue is naked antisemitism.
Where’s the outrage?
* Title picture: Future Crushed. Israa Ghrayeb relaxed at a café. (Photo: Twitter)