It really is not news for Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., to make anti-American or anti-Israel comments, as she does it quite frequently, but her recent claim that those two nations have committed “crimes against humanity” has finally gotten the attention and strong condemnation of some of her fellow Democrats.
It is becoming an American pastime for Rep. Omar to make outrageously anti-American or anti-Israel statements, for Democrats to feign a weak opposition, for her and her allies to scream about how anyone criticizing a Muslim black woman is Islamophobic and sexist, and then claim that those criticisms will stir up violence against Muslims.
In the latest episode of this ongoing saga, Omar said during a House Foreign Affairs Committee hearing, “We must have the same level of accountability and justice for all victims of crimes against humanity. We have seen unthinkable atrocities committed by the U.S., Hamas, Israel, Afghanistan, and the Taliban.”
Omar was speaking of conducting investigations of alleged war crimes by U.S. and Israeli military. Addressing Secretary of State Antony Blinken, she said, “In both of these cases, if domestic courts can’t or won’t pursue justice and we oppose the ICC [International Criminal Courts], where do we think victims are supposed to go for justice?”
Critics pounced on the comments. Republican Sen. Tom Cotton said that she should be “stripped of her committee assignments for accusing the U.S. of crimes against humanity.” He added that Omar “was a refugee from Somalia and America welcomed her. If she really believes America is a hateful country on par with the Taliban and Hamas, she’s welcome to leave.”
For the first time, perhaps, a number of Omar’s fellow Democrats seem to think she’s gone too far. Former New York Assembly member Dov Hikind, D, said, “This vile hater has the audacity to enjoy American freedom while using her position to demonize America by lumping it with Hamas and the Taliban! No mention of Iran, Turkey, Syria, China, or Russia. Odd…. Unless you’re anti-American, then it makes total sense!”
Democrat Rep. Brad Sherman said,
“It’s not news that Ilhan Omar would make outrageous and clearly false statements about America and Israel. What’s newsworthy is that she admits Hamas is guilty of ‘unthinkable atrocities. It’s time for all of Israel’s detractors to condemn Hamas. And it’s time for all those of good will to reject any moral equivalency between the U.S. and Israel on one hand, and Hamas and the Taliban on the other.”
On the opposite end of the spectrum, Electronic Intifada co-founder Ali Abunimah tweeted, “Outrageous and offensive for @IlhanMN to compare Palestinians resisting US-backed apartheid in the same category as the US empire which has killed millions, and Israel’s illegitimate terrorist colonial regime. Omar must stop pandering to Zionists with anti-Palestinian attacks.”
A handful of Democrats released a statement condemning her comments. It read:
“Equating the United States and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban is as offensive as it is misguided. Ignoring the differences between democracies governed by the rule of law and contemptible organizations that engage in terrorism at best discredits one’s intended argument and at worst reflects deep-seated prejudice.”
Nancy Pelosi, while defending Omar’s right to her opinion, said that “drawing false equivalencies… foments prejudice and undermines progress toward a future of peace and security for all. We welcome the clarification by Congresswoman Omar that there is no moral equivalency between the U.S. and Israel and Hamas and the Taliban.”
Omar’s typical allies again came to her aid. Fellow Squad member and Rep. Cori Bush, D-Mo., said, “Stop attacking @IlhanMN. Stop attacking us. I’m not surprised when Republicans attack Black women for standing up for human rights. But when it’s Democrats, it’s especially hurtful. We’re your colleagues. Talk to us directly. Enough with the anti-Blackness and Islamophobia.”
Fellow Muslim congresswoman Rashida Tlaib tweeted, “Once again disappointed in my colleagues quicker to condemn @Ilhan than they are to condemn the human rights abuses of the apartheid state of Israel. This statement purposefully distorts her words, stokes anti-Muslim hate toward my sister in service, and is unacceptable.”
Omar defended her comments by saying,
“On Monday, I asked Secretary of State Antony Blinken about an ongoing International Criminal Court investigations. To be clear: the conversation was about accountability for specific incidents regarding those ICC cases, not a moral comparison between Hamas and the Taliban and the U.S. and Israel. I was in no way equating terrorist organizations with democratic countries with well-established judicial systems.”
She added, “It’s shameful for colleagues who call me when they need my support to now put out a statement asking for ‘clarification’ and not just call. The Islamophobic tropes in this statement are offensive. The constant harassment [and] silencing from the signers of this letter is unbearable.”
To quote Joe Biden, “No malarkey!” We’ve endured this show enough times now that it’s gone from rage-inducing to just pathetic and annoying. Omar’s comment did not happen in a vacuum. She has a very long and well-documented history of anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, and anti-American words and policies. Her friends in Congress, particularly Tlaib, are no different. These are people who view Israel as a movie villain that would probably enjoy killing puppies but see Palestinian terrorist leaders as sacred and spotless.
Every time Omar makes one of her patently ridiculous and horribly offensive comments, she inevitably draws criticism and she and the Squad immediately cry that critics hate her because she is Muslim and black and a woman. In doing so, they have three cardinal “sins” that they use as ad hominem attacks against those who question their views. Criticizing Omar for being dangerously bigoted and anti-American is not Islamophobia, racism, or sexism. It’s common sense.
It is high past time that the Squad stop hiding behind these weak excuses and take responsibility for their words, actions, and policies, but they won’t. They must shut down debate because they cannot withstand any scrutiny.
Rep. Omar, should be specific: What crimes against humanity does she think the United States has committed? Being a beacon of freedom and bringing democracy to the world? Saving the globe from annihilation at the hands of the Germans and Japanese in World War II? Standing for freedom against the tyrannical Soviets in the Cold War? Fighting to free people in the Middle East? Or by opening our country to refugees like you and allowing them to serve in the halls of Congress?
And since Rep. Omar obviously believes Israel has no right to exist, where does she propose its millions of citizens go? Or does she believe they should be exterminated?
The fact is that Omar will never cease her ridiculous comments nor her advocacy for heinous policies like the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. But not to worry. Both the United States and Israel have stood against tyrants, terrorists, and all other manner of challenges and threats throughout the years and there is no question that both countries will be able withstand Rep. Omar and her Squad colleagues as well.