JACKSONVILLE, Florida — Rallying behind Huma Abedin, more Indian Americans have slammed the Hindu Republican Coalition’s attempt to malign and attack the close aide of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton for her ethnicity and religion, according to a PTI report Nov. 4. (See earlier India-West story here: http://bit.ly/2f9Jp9A)
"This needs to be opposed by all South Asians," said Rajwant Singh, an eminent Sikh American as he slammed a television commercial produced by the RHC.
"Her (Clinton’s) current aide Huma Abedin is of Pakistani origin and will become chief of staff if she wins. Her husband Bill Clinton wants to give Kashmir to Pakistan. Vote Republican great for you, great for U.S.-Indian relations and great for America," the video advertisement said.
"The current attack on Huma and tying her emails to Hillary is a destructive and vile move of Donald Trump, who is targeting her because she is a woman, she is an immigrant and she is a Muslim," said Kaleem Khwaja, executive director of the Association of Indian Muslims of America.
"God willing next week Hillary will win the election to become U.S. president. That will be the day many all over the world are waiting for. Thereafter, Huma is expected to get a good position in the Hillary White House and do well in safeguarding Hillary's programs," Khwaja said.
Meanwhile, Abedin appeared at a fundraiser for Clinton in Washington DC, her first appearance after the FBI announced last week that it is reopening a case against the Democratic presidential nominee after it found emails in a laptop that she shared with her estranged husband Anthony Weiner.
Abedin was joined at the event by famed designer Diane Von Furstenberg and Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.
In India-West’s earlier story, Shalabh “Shalli” Kumar, founder of the RHC, said he had not seen the ad, but nevertheless gave India-West an earful on Abedin’s alleged ties to terrorism.
Kumar – who with his wife has donated more than $1 million to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s campaign and organized a rally for the candidate last month in Edison, New Jersey – noted that Abedin’s mother was the editor-in-chief of a Muslim magazine which has opined that the U.S. was responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Moreover, Abedin’s family has extensive ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, which has ties to radical Islam, claimed the Chicago-area businessman.
“Such a close connection to the source of terrorism. How Clinton can associate with her is unfathomable to me,” Kumar told India-West.
A spokesman for the RHC told India-West that the new ad was meant to appeal to the Indian American community, and said that the U.S.’s relationship to India and, conversely, to Pakistan “resonates the most with the Hindu community.”
“We’re not saying (Huma) is a terrorist, we are questioning the backgrounds of the influencers to Hillary. We would not condemn anyone because of their ethnic background,” he said.
The Hindu American Foundation immediately issued a statement condemning the attack on Abedin.
“Condemning anyone simply because of their religion, ethnicity, or sexual orientation is against the pluralistic ethos of Hinduism and has no place in a democracy,” said Suhag Shukla, HAF’s executive director.
Two more ads will be released before the election Nov. 8.
Abedin, ironically, is half Indian American. Her father, the late Syed Zainul Abedin, who died in 1993, was born in New Delhi. Huma Abedin was born in Kalamazoo, Mich., but raised in Saudi Arabia. She came back to the U.S. in the early 1990s to study at George Washington University, and began her political career as then First Lady Hillary Clinton’s intern, in the White House.