CAIR Official Declares U.S. Jewish Groups, Synagogues ‘Enemies’

A man wearing a kippah Jewish skullcap arrives at the synagogue in Halle, eastern Germany, on October 10, 2019, one day after the attack where two people were shot dead. - German leaders visited the scene of the deadly anti-Semitic gun attack carried out on the holy day of Yom …
RONNY HARTMANN/AFP via Getty Images

The executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) in the San Francisco Bay Area called to “know your enemies” as she blasted Jewish organizations, “Zionist” synagogues, and Hillel campus groups who she accused of betrayal and supporting human rights violations.

Speaking on a panel at the American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) annual conference in Chicago last month, Zahra Billoo, who manages one of the largest CAIR offices, warned the audience to “pay attention” to Jewish groups and institutions which she associated with betrayal.

“We need to pay attention to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). We need to pay attention to the Jewish Federation. We need to pay attention to the Zionist synagogues. We need to pay attention to the Hillel chapters on our campuses,” she said.

“Because just because they’re your friend today doesn’t mean that they have your back when it comes to human rights,” she added.

Speaking against “Zionists,” a term historically used as a euphemism for “Jews” to avoid charges of antisemitism, Billoo called to “oppose the vehement fascists” as well as the “polite Zionists, too,” claiming they “are not your friends.” 

“They will not be there for you when you need them,” she said. “They will take your friendship and throw your Palestinian brothers and sisters under the bus.”

She then ridiculed the notion of friendly relations with such “Zionists.”

“‘Oh, you get along because you’re all in Girl Scouts together?’” she asked mockingly. “Talk to them about what is happening in Palestine and see how that conversation goes.”

Highlighting the “connections” between Islamophobia and Zionism, she suggested the audience “know who is on your side” and “know your enemies.” 

“I’m not going to sugarcoat that,” she said. “They are your enemies.” 

She also accused “Zionist” and “foreign policy” organizations of seeking to harm them.

“There are organizations and infrastructures out there who are working to harm you. Make no mistake of it. They would sell you down the line if they could, and they very often do behind your back,” she said.

“I mean the Zionist organizations,” she clarified. “I mean the foreign policy organizations who say they’re not Zionist but want a two-state solution.” 

Only days after Billoo’s remarks, Rep. Cori Bush (D-MO) and Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) spoke at a CAIR virtual banquet as Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) accepted the group’s “American Muslim Public Servant of 2021” award.

CAIR, the largest Muslim human rights advocacy organization in the U.S., is a Muslim Brotherhood entity that was designated a terrorist group by the United Arab Emirates (UAE). 

The group was also named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial and Hamas financing case that resulted in the FBI discontinuing its working relationship with the organization. 

In 2009, a federal judge concluded the government had found “ample evidence” to link CAIR with Hamas, an Islamic terrorist organization that routinely disseminates and distributes both anti-Israel and antisemitic tropes.

It was at a private fundraiser for CAIR of Greater Los Angeles when Omar referred to the September 11 terror attacks as a day in which “some people did something.” 

Billoo, who served as a board member of the Women’s March before being ousted for tweets deemed antisemitic, has made headlines in the past for her opposition to honoring fallen U.S. soldiers on Memorial Day, bashing the U.S. military, and taking aim at Muslim-Americans who serve in it.

She has also equated the Jewish state with the Islamic State (ISIS) terror group.

In 2007, she shared an essay in which her brother, Ahmed Billoo, who served as president of Long Beach’s radical anti-Israel Muslim Student Association, expressed his belief in the righteousness of suicide bombers, of whom he said need to be evaluated on a “case-by-case basis.”

“Blowing yourself up is not something everyone can do or something that everyone has the courage to do,” he said.

“I just think it is something that Islam justifies,” he added.

Follow Joshua Klein on Twitter @JoshuaKlein

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