Rep. Ilhan Omar claims Jewish colleagues ‘haven’t been partners in justice’

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) lashed out at her Jewish House Democratic colleagues during a CNN interview Tuesday, claiming that they “haven’t been partners in justice.”

During Omar’s appearance on “The Lead,” host Jake Tapper cited some of the congresswoman’s statements that have led to accusations that she is anti-Semitic. Tapper specifically cited a February 2019 tweet that stated the alliance between the US and Israel is “all about the Benjamins” and a 2012 message in which she claimed that Israel “has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel”.

“Do you understand why some of your fellow House Democrats, especially Jews, find that language anti-Semitic?” Tapper asked.

“I’ve welcomed, you know, anytime my colleagues have asked to have a conversation, to learn from them, for them to learn from me,” Omar responded. “I think it’s really important for these members to realize that they haven’t been partners in justice. They haven’t been, you know, equally engaging in seeking justice around the world.

“And I think, you know, I will continue to do that,” she added. “It is important for me, as someone who knows what it feels like to experience injustice in ways that many of my colleagues don’t, to be a voice in finding accountability, asking for mechanisms for justice for those who are maligned, oppressed, and who have had injustice done to them.”

Omar did not mention any names in her answer. However, earlier this month she blasted a group of Jewish House Democrats who pushed back on her claim that the US, Israel, Hamas and the Taliban had all committed “unthinkable atrocities.”

In a statement released by Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.), Omar was urged to “clarify her words placing the US and Israel in the same category as Hamas and the Taliban.”

“The United States and Israel are imperfect and, like all democracies, at times deserving of critique, but false equivalencies give cover to terrorist groups,” concluded the statement, which was co-signed by Reps. Jake Auchincloss of Massachusetts, Ted Deutch of Florida, Lois Frankel of Florida, Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, Elaine Luria of Virginia, Kathy Manning of North Carolina, Jerrold Nadler of New York, Dean Phillips of Minnesota, Kim Schrier of Washington, Brad Sherman of California and Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida.

Omar accused her colleagues of trafficking in “[I]slamophobic tropes,” as well as “constant harassment & silencing.”

House Republicans called on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), to remove Omar from the House Foreign Affairs Committee over her comments, and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) has vowed to strip Omar of that assignment if Republicans take the House of Representatives in next year’s midterm election.

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