Antisemitic Congresswoman Demands Answers After American Airlines Bans Palestinian Sweater

On Wednesday I wrote about an American Airlines passenger being made to remove to turn their sweatshirt inside out in order to fly on American Airlines flight 2829 from New York JFK to Phoenix. The sweatshirt said “Palestine” and defined it as, in essence, the whole of Israel.

American’s policy on passenger attire says “Dress appropriately; bare feet or offensive clothing aren’t allowed.” There’s not enough guidance to gate agents or flight attendants on what clothing is offensive, but in New York and in the aftermath of Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel, the employees interpreted the policy to include a sweatshirt that appeared to promote the elimination of the Jewish state.

Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib is now demanding a response from American AIrlines. (HT: Live and Let’s Fly)

[A] young man who I have known most of his life informed me that on his @americanair flight AA2829 home from New York, he was instructed by a flight attendant to remove his sweater that said Palestine on it.

Does American Airlines have a bias towards Palestinians? Is there a policy that enables this kind of targeting and mistreatment?

He was devastated and felt like the erasure of Palestinians in our country has no limits. I emailed @americanair and I’m waiting for a response.

The sweatshirt is a visual representation of the slogan “From the river to the sea, Palestinians will be free.” This is the same slogan that Tlaib has used repeatedly, defended, and was censured by the House of Representatives for. It does not mean Palestinian freedom or a call for a Palestinian state (such as a two-state solution).

  • “From the river to the sea” means the eradication of Jews from the State of Israel.

  • It’s not ‘the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem’ it calls for Palestinian dominion of the whole of Israel.

  • And it is the battle cry of Hamas, that Jews must be removed from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea.

  • It derives from the Arabic chant that translates, “from the water to the water, Palestine will remain Arab.” It is a call to ethnically cleanse non-Arabs (Jews) from the land.

It is possible that someone ‘might mean something else by it,’ but Tlaib also knows this is how it is frequently used and understood. The leader of her own party calls it divisive, hurtful, and understood to be antisemitic. Twenty two House Democrats joined Republicans in censuring her over its use.

She stands by it even knowing how it lands because she means it. She was a member of a private Facebook group including Hamas supporters and Hamas financiers have raised money for her Congressional campaigns.

While I wouldn’t have made the same decision as flight attendants on American Airlines flight 2829 – in the absence of actual conflict amongst passengers, I would have let this particular person be an idiot and support terrorist kidnappers and murderers. While American Airlines might put out a statement generally about the incident, it shouldn’t respond to Representative Tlaib.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »

Pingbacks

  1. […] Antisemitic Congresswoman wants Jews eradicated from Israel and Delta flight attendants unionized even though that would be bad for Delta cabin crew. This is not an anti-union point. It works well at Southwest, and the weakness of the flight attendants union at American notwithstanding I don’t think I’d want to be a cabin crew at American without one. But at Delta they’re far better off without paying dues to AFA-CWA. […]

Comments

  1. @CM
    You are wasting your time
    Just like the purple hair idiots at harvard, nobody wants to think independently, so here they seat in their comfy houses and without any knowledge or “skin” in the game, try to feel good about themselves by playing the superior moral being….

  2. You are wrong on so many counts. Palestine existed before Israel. Palestine was a land of Arabs who were Muslim, Christian, and Jewish. In 1948, Jewish terrorist gangs mass murdered multiple Arab villages, forcing an exodus of hundreds of villages, hundreds of thousands made refugees. In 1967, Israel stole more land, eradicated more villages, and forced out more refugees into what today is Gaza and the West Bank. The vast majority of Palestinians have always called for one state, one nation of all faiths, all peoples. Israel is the “Jewish State” and maintains their own form of apartheid with illegal colonies (settlements) on stolen Palestinian land, and Palestinian bantustans, like Gaza where people are caged in like a prison. Palestinian refugees the world over still want to return and have a right to return to their land, to their villages in what is called Israel today. Calling for one state, from the river to the sea, is still the vision today. It does not mean the eradication of the Jews, and no where even within Hamas political documents do they say that. Multiple Zionists have alleged this but have not proven it. Israel, meanwhile, maintains a settler colonial racist state from the “river to the sea” and many racists around the world celebrate this. An ongoing genocide of Palestinians in Gaza is ongoing and Tlaib had the guts to speak for those being crushed by Israel’s massive military. I’m sure you either know all this and still choose to regurgitate the lies and distortions we hear from our so called leaders. The vast majority of the poeple of the world and nearly all nations are against what Israel is doing right now.

  3. @Frank, what is the basis of your argument that “Palestine existed before Israel.” when Egyptian inscriptions first use the term translated as Israel in 1209 BCE and other Egyptian inscriptions use the term translated as Peleset around 1150 BCE. Herodotus used the term translated as Palaistinê in the 5th century BCE?

  4. @Frank:
    > You are wrong on so many counts. Palestine existed before Israel. Palestine was a land of Arabs who were Muslim, Christian, and Jewish.

    A land, not a people.

    > In 1948, Jewish terrorist gangs mass murdered multiple Arab villages, forcing an exodus of hundreds of villages, hundreds of thousands made refugees.

    You have things pretty much backwards. In 1948 Israel declared a state and it’s neighbors promptly attacked it with no provocation other than it’s very existence.

    Most of those people who left did so at Arab behest and before the conflict started. Yes, an exodus but not due to Israeli action. As for murdering villages–there were a couple of massacres. This is why Geneva requires combatants to fight in uniform–when combatants dress as civilians and are mixed with civilians sometimes those civilians end up massacred because they look just like the combatants.

    They expected to return to their homes victorious–oops, they backed the wrong horse.

    And I note no mention of the approximately equal numbers of Jews who were displaced from Arab lands, never voluntarily. Israel absorbed all the refugees and went on with life, the Arabs kept the refugees in poverty to use as cannon fodder.

    > The vast majority of Palestinians have always called for one state, one nation of all faiths, all peoples.

    Then why have they been driving out the Christians?

    > Palestinian refugees the world over still want to return and have a right to return to their land, to their villages in what is called Israel today.

    In other words, Holocaust 2.0

    > It does not mean the eradication of the Jews, and no where even within Hamas political documents do they say that.

    They made it not so obvious anymore. They didn’t change their position. Their minimal acceptable position is cleansing the area of all Jews.

    > An ongoing genocide of Palestinians in Gaza is ongoing and Tlaib had the guts to speak for those being crushed by Israel’s massive military.

    That’s what happens when you go attacking the biggest power in the region. If Hamas didn’t want the beatdown they shouldn’t have engaged in a genocidal attack. Note that they proclaim an intent to do it again and again.

    > I’m sure you either know all this and still choose to regurgitate the lies and distortions we hear from our so called leaders.

    Pay attention to the facts, not what the leaders say.

    > The vast majority of the poeple of the world and nearly all nations are against what Israel is doing right now.

    Russia, China and Iran have very effective disinformation campaigns. If you don’t actually look for the truth you’ll fall for them.

    What Israel is doing is not good–war is never good. However, there is no good path, the question is whether it’s the least bad path. It’s Hamas that chose the path of war, they knew what would happen. Blame them.

  5. Thank you Loren for spending the time to provide facts when Frank writes incorrect information.

  6. @Frank – Well, that’s a story. And I suppose if it were completely true, it could justify some of the actions of the Palestinians. But not October 7. Which you conveniently fail to acknowledge.

    I’ll also note that you say: “It does not mean the eradication of the Jews, and no where even within Hamas political documents do they say that.” Tell me how you interpret this?

    ‘The Day of Judgment will not come about until Moslems fight Jews and kill them. Then, the Jews will hide behind rocks and trees, and the rocks and trees will cry out: ‘O Moslem, there is a Jew hiding behind me, come and kill him.’ (Article 7)

    ‘The enemies have been scheming for a long time … and have accumulated huge and influential material wealth. With their money, they took control of the world media… With their money they stirred revolutions in various parts of the globe… They stood behind the French Revolution, the Communist Revolution and most of the revolutions we hear about… With their
    money they formed secret organizations – such as the Freemasons, Rotary Clubs and the Lions –
    which are spreading around the world, in order to destroy societies and carry out Zionist interests… They stood behind World War I …and formed the League of Nations through which they could rule the world. They were behind World War II, through which they made huge
    financial gains… There is no war going on anywhere without them having their finger in it.’ (Article 22)

    ‘Zionism scheming has no end, and after Palestine, they will covet expansion from the Nile to the Euphrates River. When they have finished digesting the area on which they have laid their hand, they will look forward to more expansion. Their scheme has been laid out in the ‘Protocols of the Elders of Zion’.’ (Article 32)

    ‘The HAMAS regards itself the spearhead and the vanguard of the circle of struggle against World Zionism… Islamic groups all over the Arab world should also do the same, since they are best equipped for their future role in the fight against the warmongering Jews.’ (Article 32)

    I suppose one could read that as not calling for the eradication of Jews – if one were an antisemite. To admit otherwise would ruin the narrative.

  7. This shirt had nothing to do with “from the river to the sea”.
    The shirt was made by an artist who has a whole line of shirts for all different countries all in this art style of a travel brochure. Nothing about it is pushing an agenda. Talk about propaganda you calling anything that says palistine on it evil.
    Gusse what Palestinians are semitic too not just jewish people so you are the antisemitic.

  8. I will object to anyone wearing a Trump hat or T-shirt on a flight or any degregory clothing about Biden. Leave your political leanings at home before you get to the airport. With all the hatred being espoused by one political party we don’t need this to be displayed in an aluminum can at 30,000 feet. And Democrats don;t need to add to the problem even though they have not, to my knowledge, espoused the hate that some on the right have. We don’t need this country’s divisiveness exploited in confined public areas.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *