'May God ruin him': Rep. Rashida Tlaib's grandmother reacts to Trump's tweet about her not wanting to see the congresswoman after she was barred form Israel
Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images
- Representative Rashida Tlaib from Detroit, Michigan declined Israel's offer of a humanitarian visit to see her elderly grandmother in the West Bank after she and Representative Ilhan Omar from Minneapolis were barred from visiting the country on Thursday.
- President Donald Trump, who publicly pressured Israel to bar Tlaib and Omar from visiting the country, tweeted on Friday that the only "real winner" in Tlaib turning her approval down was her grandmother, who "doesn't have to see her now."
- Tlaib's grandmother reacted to Trump's tweet on Saturday, telling Reuters from her garden in the village of Beit Ur Al-Fauqa that "Trump tells me I should be happy Rashida is not coming. May God ruin him."
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After her granddaughter, a US congresswoman, was barred from entering her country, then attacked by the president on Twitter, 90-year-old Muftia Tlaib had some choice words for President Donald Trump:
"Trump tells me I should be happy Rashida is not coming," the elder Tlaib told Reuters, from her garden in the village of Beit Ur Al-Fauqa on the West Bank. "May God ruin him."
The latest turn in an unprecedented conflict between the US president, the country of Israel, and Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar, Tlaib's grandmother's seething words came after Trump's Twitter tantrum and Tlaib's refusal to accept the terms of a humanitarian visit to see her Palestinian family.
On Thursday, after Trump publicly urged Israel to block a visit from Tlaib, from Detroit, and Omar, from Minneapolis, the country officially barred the two freshman congresswomen from their planned trips to the contested land they call Palestine, but is officially regarded by Israel as its own territory.
Read more: Israel blocking 2 US Muslim congresswomen from entering the country is a huge show of weakness that will probably backfire
In his official reasoning, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the congresswomen's itineraries "clarified that they planned a visit whose sole purpose was to support boycotts and deny Israel's legitimacy."
Initially, Tlaib wrote a letter asking to be let in to see her elderly grandmother despite the ban, stating that she would not boycott Israel during her visit. Her request was approved by Israel's Interior Minister, but Tlaib then walked back her visit on Twitter, citing the country's "oppressive conditions."
On Friday, Trump then tweeted that "Israel was very respectful & nice to Rep. Rashida Tlaib, allowing her permission to visit her 'grandmother.' As soon as she was granted permission, she grandstanded & loudly proclaimed she would not visit Israel. Could this possibly have been a setup? Israel acted appropriately!"
He followed that tweet with "Rep. Tlaib wrote a letter to Israeli officials desperately wanting to visit her grandmother. Permission was quickly granted, whereupon Tlaib obnoxiously turned the approval down, a complete setup. The only real winner here is Tlaib's grandmother. She doesn't have to see her now!"
In her retort, Tlaib's grandmother told NBC News that "It's been a long time since I've seen her - five to six years. But sometimes I see her on TV and talk with her on the phone."
"Why didn't they allow her to come here?" Muftia asked reporters on Saturday. "I can't do anything. I'm really very sad. I hope, inshallah, that she will come back. I'm waiting for her."
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Israel was very respectful & nice to Rep. Rashida Tlaib, allowing her permission to visit her "grandmother." As soon as she was granted permission, she grandstanded & loudly proclaimed she would not visit Israel. Could this possibly have been a setup? Israel acted appropriately!- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2019
Rep. Tlaib wrote a letter to Israeli officials desperately wanting to visit her grandmother. Permission was quickly granted, whereupon Tlaib obnoxiously turned the approval down, a complete setup. The only real winner here is Tlaib's grandmother. She doesn't have to see her now!- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 16, 2019
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