Trevor Norwitz

An Open Letter to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Blood Libel in the US Congress

Dear Representative Ocasio-Cortez:

A few days ago, you stood up in Congress and accused Israel, the nation-state of the Jewish people, of committing genocide.  Since then you have doubled-down in a television interview saying that you fully understood the gravity of that accusation and the high bar of requiring the specific intention to exterminate a people, but continued to allege that is what the Jewish state is doing.  More recently you made the same false accusation in an op-ed in The Guardian.

Your statements represent a dangerous blood libel against the Jewish people.

While Holocaust inversion is a well-known tactic used by anti-Semites and those seeking to eliminate the Jewish state, it is astounding that an elected representative from New York City, home to hundreds of thousands of vulnerable Jewish children, elderly people and students, would express such a malicious and incendiary slander.  This is especially so in light of the volcano of anti-Semitism that has erupted since the Hamas atrocities of October 7, including in our own city. Whether or not your libel is protected by Congressional privilege, it is shockingly irresponsible.

I do not know if you actually support Hamas, but your comments (including citing as fact their misleading statistics without attribution) could not have been more favorable to that explicitly genocidal terrorist organization had they been crafted by their own propaganda department.

Are your false accusations based on ignorance or a cynical calculation that lying will enhance your political career?  You claim that Israel is deliberately starving a million people to death.  In fact, Israel is facilitating massive amounts of humanitarian aid, even knowing that much of it gets stolen by Hamas terrorists to sustain their continuing barbarity that is responsible for the terrible suffering in Gaza.

Information regarding Israel’s efforts to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians in Gaza is readily available and I would be happy to gather it for you if you are not willing to do so yourself.

Moreover, it is perverse of you to pretend to occupy the moral high ground while you remain shamefully silent on the over 130 kidnapped hostages being held and abused for over 5 months (if they are even still alive) and the mass rape and sexual atrocities perpetrated by Hamas and its followers.

I hope you will reconsider the irresponsible path you have chosen, and retract your dangerous blood libel before it leads to more tragedy.


Trevor Norwitz

About the Author
Trevor Norwitz is a practicing lawyer in New York, who also teaches at Columbia Law School.
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