By MATTHEW LEE and ZEKE MILLER / The Associated Press
Source: Read full article at Truthdig
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s encouragement and support of Israel’s decision to ban two Democratic lawmakers may play well to his political base, but it could endanger the foundations of the U.S.-Israel relationship in the longer term.
The move on Thursday to bar Reps. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota from Israel fueled a partisan fire over the Jewish state that has been raging in the United States, with Trump eagerly fanning the flames.
On Friday, though, Israel’s interior minister, Aryeh Deri, said he had received and granted a request by Tlaib to enter the Israeli-occupied West Bank on humanitarian grounds, to visit her 90-year-old grandmother. Tlaib’s letter said she would respect any restrictions and would “not promote boycotts” during her visit, according to Deri’s office. But Tlaib announced later Friday she would not make the trip, saying “oppressive conditions meant to humiliate me would break my grandmother’s heart.”
Trump had celebrated Israel’s Thursday decision on Twitter and framed the issue in decidedly political terms: “Representatives Omar and Tlaib are the face of the Democrat Party,…