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Muslim American Doctor Walks Out From Biden’s Dinner: Says, “We Are Not Satisfied”

Palestinian American doctor walks out of a dinner party hosted by President Biden as a protest to the US administration’s support for the ongoing Israel-Hamas war. Mr. Thaer Ahmed, a Chicago-based physician, attended the high-profile meeting held inside the White House on Tuesday night. However, he later decided to walk out in the middle of the meeting, surprising everyone.

On Tuesday, President Biden continued his Ramadan tradition by joining influential Muslim community leaders for Iftar. Even though the white house initially planned to send invitations for Iftar or the breaking of the fast, the plan was later changed. Reportedly, Muslim officials didn’t want to attend an iftar event with the President while the US administration was assisting Israel in forcing an artificial famine on the people in Gaza. Hence, a small group of Muslim leaders from various communities were invited for a “meeting,” which Vice President Kamala Harris, national security adviser Jake Sullivan, and Joe Biden himself attended.

According to Ahmed’s interview with CNN, he believed that the event would be a great opportunity to call for strong actions to facilitate a ceasefire. However, the MedGlobal doctor soon realized that the event was not meant for discussing effective measures to help Palestinians amid the ongoing “genocide.” He then decided to leave the gathering.

“I said it was disappointing I’m the only Palestinian here, and out of respect for my community, I’m going to leave,” Ahmed said to the President before leaving. He also mentioned giving a letter from a Palestinian child to President Biden that read, “ I beg you, President Biden, stop them from entering Rafah.” 

Unlike what many would expect, Ahmed said that President Biden understood Ahmed's reasons for leaving. “I wanted a chance to stand up and walk away from the people making decisions the way they are walking from my people,” Ahmed told CNN in an interview.

Another attendee and Ahmed’s colleague described the incident, saying, “This was not him as a doctor; this was him as a Palestinian American, having witnessed the atrocities that he saw firsthand. Thaer and I were both in Gaza together. We watched far too many people killed, coming in dead on arrival in the emergency room.”

Thaer Ahmed expressed his dissatisfaction with the US government’s role in stopping Israel’s atrocities in Gaza. “We are living and breathing this – our lives have been changed. It’s hard to be here and live my life normally thinking about people who are over there suffering – especially having two daughters.” Ahmed said while pointing out his plan to visit Gaza soon. 

Many Muslim officials in America, like Ahmed, are dealing with survivor’s guilt, and nearly 32,000 innocent Palestinians have been killed since Oct 7. It has also frayed their relationship with the President, increasing resistance for him on his way to the white house through the 2024 election.

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