Joe Biden

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks in Raleigh, North Carolina, on January 18, 2024.

(Photo: Peter Zay/Anadolu via Getty Images)

After Gaza Cease-Fire Veto, Biden to Attend Fundraiser at Home of Pro-Israel Billionaire

"The American Muslim community is running out of words to describe our feelings about the Biden administration's support for the Gaza genocide," said one advocate.

Hours after his ambassador to the United Nations vetoed the third cease-fire resolution to be proposed at the U.N. Security Council since Israel began its U.S.-backed bombardment of Gaza in October, President Joe Biden was scheduled to attend a high-dollar fundraiser at the home of an influential pro-Israel billionaire on Tuesday.

Tickets for the event hosted in Los Angeles by media mogul Haim Saban started at $3,300 and cost as much as $250,000. Other exclusive fundraising events for Biden, who is seeking reelection in November, have been disrupted in recent months by protesters demanding that the U.S. end its support for Israel, which has killed more than 29,000 Palestinians in Gaza since October.

Co-hosts of the fundraiser include attorney Cliff and Leslie Gilbert-Lurie, whose own event in November was marked by demands for a cease-fire from people in a crowd as Vice President Kamala Harris spoke. Demonstrators also displayed fake blood at the Gilbert-Luries' home.

Nicole Mutchnik, a vice chair of the Anti-Defamation League, is also a co-host of Tuesday's event. Mutchnik's staunchly pro-Israel organization has frequently accused pro-Palestinian rights groups of anti-Jewish sentiment, equating anti-Zionism with antisemitism.

Jewish-led Palestinian rights group IfNotNow pointed out that Saban has been quoted as suggesting the U.S. should "scrutinize" Muslims "to get them to admit they are or they're not terrorists."

On Monday, the group led a vigil outside the Los Angeles residence of the vice president.

"We are sitting shiva with grief for all those who've been killed, Palestinian and Israeli, and begging the Biden-Harris administration to end it," said IfNotNow.

Ahead of Saban's fundraiser, fresh outrage erupted among Palestinian rights advocates after U.N. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield vetoed Algeria's resolution for a cease-fire.

"The American Muslim community is running out of words to describe our feelings about the Biden administration's support for the Gaza genocide," said Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. "The latest U.S. veto of a U.N. cease-fire resolution is shameful. President Biden should stop acting like [Israeli Prime Minister] Benjamin Netanyahu's defense lawyer and start acting like the president of the United States."

"We call on the American people to continue expressing their opposition to the Biden administration's support for the Israeli government's war crimes by contacting the White House and their elected officials and calling on them to demand a cease-fire, access to humanitarian aid, and the pursuit of a just, lasting peace," Awad added.

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