The following letter to Congressional candidate Bowman is published at the writer’s request.
To Jamaal Bowman,
As a Scarsdale resident, I recently learned that U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is endorsing you for Congress.
Mr. Bowman, please educate us on your position with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Are you prepared to say that you oppose the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) policy of financially supporting families of terrorist murderers? And will you condemn the human rights abuses of the PA and Hamas?
What is your opinion on BDS — Boycott Divestment Sanctions?
Most recently, there was a bill in Congress titled “Opposing Efforts to Delegitimize the State of Israel and the Local Boycott Divestment Sanctions Movement Targeting Israel.” When the time came to vote on it, 398 congresspersons voted yea, 17 voted nay. Reps. Ocasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib were amongst the few nay votes.
Speaking of Reps. Omar and Tlaib, you tweeted that “@IlhanMN @RashidaTlaib do not hate Israel.” As many know, both Omar and Tlaib have made highly anti-Semitic statements in recent years, and their anti-Semitism has been condemned by the Anti-Defamation League and the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Do you still stand by your defense of these congresswomen?
How would you support Israel’s human rights record?
You’re quoted as saying that American aid to Israel should be conditional on exploring Israel’s human rights record. I believe there is no country anywhere facing the same threats as Israel that has a better human rights record.
Do you support the Taylor Force Act?
Taylor Force was an American veteran who was murdered in Tel Aviv by Palestinian terrorists. In 2018, the Taylor Force Act was passed in Congress. The bill calls for America to decrease aid to the PA until it stops supporting terrorist families. Due to the PA’s “pay to slay” policy, the families of these terrorists will be receiving financial support from the PA for life.
You have raised questions about Israel’s human rights record and labeled Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as an “authoritarian.” However, Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East. Yet you’ve said nothing about the PA, whose President Mahmoud Abbas is now in his twelfth year of a four-year term. Will you similarly label Abbas an authoritarian?
And amongst the issues most important to us is the well-being of the State of Israel, one of America’s greatest allies. I would welcome your response to all of the questions raised.
I know how important it is to have representatives in Congress who understand values, including racial harmony and equality for all.
Your adversary, Rep. Eliot Engel, has always done an outstanding job and he deserves our support for reelection. In addition, living in Scarsdale, I can safely say that Eliot has worked hard to strengthen our community and the quality of life for the people who live in his district and his position is solid.
Now, it is time for you to prove yourself to District 16 and the values we share.