Women's March board member critical of Israel and the FBI removed after 2 days
September 27, 2019
(JTA)—A new board member of The Women’s March who has disparaged Israel and the FBI on Twitter was voted off two days after she was appointed.
“Zahra Billoo has been removed from board membership effective immediately,” the board posted Wednesday on Twitter. “We found some of her public statements incompatible with the values and mission of the organization. Women’s March will continue to build an inclusive and effective movement that holds space for all women.”
Billoo is a lawyer who serves as executive director of the San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations,
Her appointment to the board, along with 16 others, was announced Monday, the same day as the announcement of the resignation of founding board members Linda Sarsour, Tamika Mallory and Bob Bland. They have been at the center of a controversy over allegations that they failed to condemn and in some cases fostered anti-Semitism in the movement.
The Women’s March told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that the women were leaving because their terms had expired.
In a series of 25 tweets late Wednesday night, Billoo blamed the decision to remove her on an “Islamophobic smear campaign led by the usual antagonists, who have long targeted me, my colleagues, and anyone else who dares speak out in support of Palestinian human rights and the right to self-determination.”
Billoo has called herself a “proud anti-Zionist” and said that she does not believe Israel has a right to exist. She also has accused Israel of committing war crimes “as a hobby” and accused it of “ongoing apartheid.”
Among her past tweets, she wrote: “the Israeli Defense Forces, or the IDF, are no better than ISIS. They are both genocidal terrorist organizations,” and that “racist Zionists who support Apartheid Israel” scares her more than “the mentally ill young people the #FBI recruits to join ISIS.”
Billoo wrote Wednesday that “in looking at the tweets in question, I acknowledge that I wrote passionately. While I may have phrased some of my content differently today, I stand by my words.”