The politics of the Middle East arrived in the Rio Grande Valley after federal and local law enforcement officials raided Lone Star Motors last week in San Benito.
The incursion follows a couple of other raids at a Brownsville residence and another car dealership in Laguna Heights named Rafidi Auto Sales. The Lone Star Motors raid occurred Thursday, April 25.
The target of the investigation is George Zahi Rafidi, a Palestinian immigrant born in 1975 in Ramallah, a Palestinian city in the central West Bank located six miles north of Jerusalem and occupied by Israel since 1967.
Two employees of Lone Star Motors, who did not want to provide their names, said George Rafidi is not a terrorist and he was only named a terrorist after he was arrested by Israeli security forces and charged with dubious crimes for protesting the Israeli occupation in the past. In the meantime, George Rafidi’s brother, Fayes Rafidi, is apparently running the business in San Benito.
“They don’t have common ground,” said one of the employees who did not want to give out his name. “If they were terrorists, we’d be closed.”
The employee said they are open because they have not done anything illegal. He added that authorities are making it seem like they are doing something illegal. One of them said the U.S. government has not charged Rafidi with terrorism.
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