Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., faced backlash for her social media post that attempted to liken Jesus to the Palestinian people and criticize Israel, but did not mention Hamas or its hostages.
“In the Christmas story, Christ is born in modern-day Palestine under the threat of a government engaged in a massacre of innocents,” Ocasio-Cortez wrote, referring to Jews who lived in the land that had been under Roman control for more than 2,000 years. He added: “He was part of a targeted group who were killed randomly to protect the power of an unjust leader.”
“Thousands of years later, right-wing forces are violently occupying Bethlehem while similar stories unfold for Palestinians today, so much so that the Christian community in Bethlehem canceled Christmas Eve celebrations this year from both. [fear for their] “Safety and respect,” she added, even though the area is currently under the control of the Palestinian Authority.
She concluded by saying: “The story of Christmas and Christ himself is about standing with the poor and the weak, the marginalized and the oppressed, the refugees and migrants, the outcast and the misunderstood, without exception.”
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Jacob Kornbluh, a senior political correspondent at The Forward, responded with a post on X in which he criticized the actor for “not mentioning Hamas terrorism” or “the victims of the October 7 attack.”
The New York Post reported that pro-Israel activist Andrea Karshan lamented that some people don’t enjoy Christmas and instead seek “social justice politics about it.”
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In November, Ocasio-Cortez joined 23 Democrats to ask President Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken for details on their plans to calm violence in the region as Israel continues its invasion of the Gaza Strip.
“We reaffirm our unequivocal condemnation of the October 7 Hamas attacks on Israel, in which Hamas killed more than 1,200 Israelis and foreigners, and took more than 200 hostage, who were then transferred to Gaza,” the Democrats wrote.
“We also share grave concerns about the ongoing Israeli response, in which the IDF has killed more than 11,078 Palestinians, nearly half of whom are children,” they continued, citing figures provided by Hamas.
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The city of Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus Christ, announced that it will not hold its usual Christmas celebrations in solidarity with Gaza and the ongoing violence. The city council wrote in a Facebook post that the regularly displayed decorations had been removed “in honor of the martyrs.”
The entire decision was “a political statement that goes beyond something that we Christians and Bethlehem Christians hold to be very sacred,” theologian Jonathan Morris told Fox News.
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However, a Bethlehem City Council spokesman told The Telegraph in November that the celebration was “inappropriate… while there is a massacre in Gaza and attacks in the West Bank.”
Fox News Digital’s Megan Myers contributed to this report.