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Draymond Green draws flak for Israel visit

Draymond Green, Warriors

Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green has recently drawn a wave of criticism by political activists after posing for a photograph with the Israeli SWAT Department during his offseason tour, where he met Israel President Reuven Rivlin.

“It’s not every day that I meet an All-Star,” Rivlin said, according to the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (via Gary Peterson of the San Jose Mercury News).

Part of Green’s trip to Israel was sponsored by the Friends of the IDF (Israel Defense Forces).

“You got played,” Black Lives Matter activist Shaun King chided Green, per JTA. “Flashing a toothy grin w/ a sniper rifle in Israel on a trip sponsored by Friends of the IDF is so horribly offensive. They’ve recently slaughtered 100s of unarmed Palestinians w/ those rifles.”

Others echoed the same sentiment, noting that had Green been briefed of the situation, the outcome would have been different.

Dave Zirin, Sports Editor of The Nation:

“Why reject Donald Trump and accept the invitation of Rivlin?” Zirin wrote. “It is, frankly, shocking to see Draymond Green smiling and shooting guns in their company. These counterterrorism border police units are part of a military that shot and killed more than 60 Palestinians who were protesting at the border in May, less than two months ago.”

“I’m confident that if he had been briefed, he would not have gone,” Temple University professor Marc Lamont Hill told the Christian Broadcasting Network.

The Warriors have been united in their political beliefs and even more so on their stance against U.S. President Donald Trump, but this is the only stance that goes against the grain, as Hill said — likely a product of ignorance.

Green also played basketball at a sports center donated by FIDF supporters from Michigan (according to CBN), as well as visited several cultural sites during his visit.