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The shameful attacks on Rep. Ilhan Omar

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What is happening to Congresswoman Ilhan Omar should be of concern to all Americans. Because she has dared to challenge the way supporters of Israel have worked to silence debate on US policy toward the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, she has become a victim of incitement and hate crimes, and the target of legislation meant to shame her.

The weapon of choice in this campaign has been to demonize her as an antisemite. Her “sin”, it appears, is her continued umbrage over the double-standard that exists in American policy toward Israel and its treatment of Palestinians.

During Israel’s assault on Gaza, for example, she criticized the failure of the US to pierce through Israeli propaganda and see what was actually happening to Palestinians in that impoverished strip of land. Then after facing down attacks by her new congressional colleagues, she “sinned” once again when she challenged the power of AIPAC to intimidate politicians and silence debate on Israel/Palestine.

New to Washington and what was and was not the “acceptable language” one should use to discuss these issues, she admitted that her word choices had been unfortunate and apologized for the pain she may have caused.
Even with the apology, the die had been cast — she remained a target.

Because she was a hijab-wearing Muslim, who was critical of Israel, the GOP sought to exploit her in their continuing effort to drive a wedge between the Jewish community and Democrats. For their part, some Democrats reacted with hyperventilated outrage. Extreme language was used to denounce Omar. Her words were described as “bigoted”, “vile”, and, of course, “antisemitic slurs.”

What was especially disturbing was that because she was called “antisemitic” so frequently  the term stuck. Never, in all this time, was there a critical examination of what she actually said. Never did she accuse the Jewish community of controlling the media (unless one assumes that Israel’s ability to dominate media coverage of events occurring in the occupation can be attributed to the Jewish community). Nor did she ever accuse the Jewish community of using money to buy influence in Washington (unless one suggests that AIPAC speaks for and acts on behalf of the entire Jewish community).

The entire affair came to a head when, at a Town Hall last week, Omar explained herself. Asked to address the controversy that had erupted over her advocacy of Palestinian rights, Omar’s colleague, Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, spoke first noting that to her the question of Palestine is personal – it is her grandmother still living in the West Bank and her desire that she receive equal justice and recognition of her rights to live in dignity.

Reacting to what she had just heard, Omar said that she couldn’t accept those who fight for human rights and dignity for others and yet exclude Palestinian rights and dignity. For her part, she said, the focus would be universal – leaving no one out. She then chided those in congress who have pressed her to reject her commitment to call out Israeli abuses and ignore Palestinians rights. Because she is a Muslim, she said, her criticism of Israel has been automatically seen as antisemitic in order to silence her. Even more troubling to her was that, as a result of the manufactured controversy over her words, the discussion has become whether or not she’s an antisemite, while ignoring “the broader debate about what is happening in Palestine.”

At that point, Omar said that she resented those who are pushing her to demonstrate allegiance to Israel. She concluded that she wanted to have this conversation about “the political influence in this country that says its okay to push for allegiance to a foreign country.”

The reaction to this newest “sin” was near hysteria. There were demands to censure Omar and to remove her from her committee posts. And this week Congress will debate a resolution denouncing antisemitism – which was initially directed at the congresswoman.

What is most disturbing is that none of the “Whereas” clauses contained in the resolution have anything to do with what Omar actually said. She never accused Jews of “dual loyalty because they support Israel”; nor did she display “prejudicial attitudes” towards Jews”; nor did she ever make “mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews”.

What she did do was challenge official American, and in particular, congressional silence on the suffering of the Palestinians, the efforts by pro-Israel groups to silence debate on this issue, and the virtual identity that pro-Israel groups have established between being pro-Israel with American interests.

Some members of congress in their efforts to upbraid Omar, unwittingly made her point. One congressman said “Questioning support for the US-Israel relationship is unacceptable.” Another said “there are many reasons to support Israel, but there is no reason to oppose Israel.” While still another said that Democrats and Republicans, alike, are committed to insuring that the “United States and Israel stand as one.”

It is exactly this attitude to which Omar objected when she wrote, “I am told everyday that I am anti-American if I am not pro-Israel…I know what it means to be an American and no one will ever tell me otherwise…I have not said anything about the loyalty of others, but spoke about the loyalty expected of me.”

Because Omar has touched what some have come to say is “the third rail of American politics” she is being exploited by Republicans and is being hung out to dry by Democrats. They have put a target on her back. And haters have been quick to respond with frightening death threats and shameful bigoted assaults on her as a Muslim woman. There is no question that these threats against Omar are the byproduct of the sustained campaign of incitement.

It’s important to note, however, that outside of the halls of Congress a different reality is unfolding. The attacks on Congresswoman Omar are being rejected by many Democrats, including progressive Jewish groups, and a debate has been sparked by the issues she has raised and the over-reaction to them by congress.

The House of Representatives may pass their resolution, but that won’t close the door on the discussion Omar’s courage has helped to open. If anything, their behavior and incitement against her has pried it open even further.

James Zogby

James Zogby tweets at @jjz1600 and is the author of Arab Voices and the founder and president of the Arab American Institute (AAI), a Washington, D.C.–based organization which serves as a political and policy research arm of the Arab-American community.

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39 Responses

  1. Boomer on March 6, 2019, 9:49 am

    re: “It’s important to note, however, that outside of the halls of Congress a different reality is unfolding.”

    Maybe so. I’d like to think so. But inside the halls of the White House and the West Wing, and inside the halls of many state capitols (including Texas), the reality remains much the same, as far as I can tell.

    • just on March 6, 2019, 10:43 am

      “American Support for Israel in Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Falls to Ten-year Low, Finds Gallup

      Gallup found Democrat’s support for Israel fell 6 percentage points compared to 2018’s poll, while support among those who identified as Republican dropped by 13 percentage points

      Gallup’s annual World Affairs survey, published Wednesday, finds that American support for Israel in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has dropped to 59 percent, the lowest figure in a decade.

      Support for the Palestinian side has risen to 21 percent – a historic high.

      The results are based on a survey conducted each February. Gallup notes, “the 2019 poll was conducted Feb. 1-10 prior to Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar’s recent remarks,” which have sparked debate over U.S. support for Israel. …

      Jonathan Tobin didn’t get the memo:

      “Ilhan Omar and the Democrats’ Dilemma: Punish anti-Semitism, or Appease It, Corbyn Style

      Right now, the Democratic Party isn’t morally equivalent to U.K. Labour’s anti-Semitism run wild. But if they don’t draw a firm line in the sand, if they rely on whataboutism, if they decide condemning anti-Semitism ‘privileges’ Jews – the signs are ominous

      Is the Democratic Party being Corbynized? Given that the leadership of the party in Congress and its top presidential candidates are all supporters of Israel, even if some of them have been critical of the Netanyahu government, it’s an absurd question.

      Nor is there anything like the tolerance for anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic invective that has become routine in Britain’s Labour Party that is closely identified with the views of its leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

      But though most elected Democrats are still comfortable with AIPAC and the U.S.- Israel alliance, they still need to figure out what to do about Ilhan Omar. …

      … Omar has already demonstrated that her apologies lack sincerity, and that she thinks liberal pro-Israel Jews like the former Democratic National Committee chair are the real problem.

      The fact that President Trump has now weighed in against Omar will not persuade Democrats to act against Omar. That he considers her stands to be “a dark day for Israel!” rather than for American Jews, may be considered by his critics as somehow also implying dual loyalty. But it is probably more reasonable to interpret it as a lament for the growth of anti-Zionist sentiment on the left that her stands illustrate. …

      But irrespective of what Trump is tweeting, Omar has made it clear that the issue isn’t mere criticism of Israel – but that the links between BDS and anti-Semitism are real. If the only Congressional supporters of a movement dedicated to Israel’s destruction can’t refrain from attacks on its Jewish supporters that are inherently anti-Semitic that should be a wake up call for Democrats about the need to cut their ties with Omar.

      Those waiting for Pelosi to dish out a real punishment to Omar, such as booting her out of her coveted seat on the House Foreign Relations Committee, are doing so in vain. That’s not because Pelosi isn’t angry, but because she is aware of Omar’s standing in a party that is drifting to the left and in which intersectional theories about Israel are becoming more popular among minority constituents that regard the Minnesotan as a heroine. …”

      Thank you, Mr. Zogby for your clear- headed assessment and incisive article. Thank you for our leadership on this and so many other important issues.

      • Boomer on March 6, 2019, 3:42 pm

        The poll results are interesting. Thanks.

      • Kay24 on March 7, 2019, 12:29 am

        That poll is very interesting. So despite Netanyahu pouring in millions of shekels in his bid to fight BDS, and AIPAC’s attacks on criticism of Israel’s crimes, it seems Israel is losing it’s popularity among Americans. Finally, Americans are realizing exactly who the victim of this conflict is.
        About damn time.

      • Misterioso on March 7, 2019, 9:37 am

        “The times, they are a ‘changin’.”

        “In Condemning Ilhan Omar, Democrats Have Proved Her Right”

        By Shilpa Jindia, Truthout, March 6/19

        “At a time of heightened anti-Muslim discrimination and hatred, the Democratic establishment has taken unprecedented steps to single out a Muslim representative for her criticisms of AIPAC and the U.S.’s relationship with Israel. After first publicly rebuking Rep. Ilhan Omar, the Democratic establishment, led by House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, began drafting a resolution condemning anti-Semitism, amounting to an indirect censure.

        “The move has spectacularly backfired, threatening deep fissures in the Democratic Party as accusations of anti-Semitism tear apart the Labour Party in the U.K. The rush to heed calls for a resolution has only further exposed the Democrats’ close ties to pro-Israel groups and, more alarmingly, has given a tacit green light to the racism and Islamophobia that fuels the Trump administration and its supporters.

        “The Democrats’ focus on Omar has invited accusations of hypocrisy, given their silence in the face of Trump’s many anti-Semitism comments and a long history of anti-Semitism in the GOP. Unfortunately, the Democrats’ outsized response made them appear in more agreement with Trump, who dismissed Omar’s apology as insincere and called for her expulsion from Congress.

        “Worse, Democrats have left Omar more vulnerable to the fresh wave of racism and Islamophobia unleashed by the right following her comments, including a poster in the West Virginia statehouse smearing her in connection to the 9/11 attacks. The FBI is now investigating a threat to kill Omar after a photo of graffiti that read ‘Assassinate Ilhan Omar’ was circulated on social media.

        “With the escalating backlash from progressives in the House, as well as the Islamophobic threats of violence toward Omar, House leaders delayed the vote and sought to pacify criticisms by amending the resolution to include language condemning anti-Muslim bias. Reps. Eliot Engel and Nita Lowey, who publicly reprimanded Omar, clarified their stance to distance themselves from this Islamophobic rhetoric. But much damage has already been done. For a Democratic leader to introduce such a pointed and political piece of legislation shows the establishment’s wider ignorance of Islamophobia, despite the role of anti-Muslim hatemongering in defining many of the Trump administration’s policies.

        “Trump built his campaign on fervent anti-Muslim statements and xenophobic promises, with an attendant rise in reported hate crimes against Muslims. However, these policies and rhetoric did not start with Trump. They build on nearly two decades of collective punishment toward Muslims under both a Republican and Democratic administration: the creation of an extrajudicial prison system, the expansion of drone wars across Muslim countries, the surveillance of mosques, and the self-policing of communities through Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) programs, which targets Omar’s state of Minnesota, home to the largest Somali population in the U.S.

        “Omar is hardly the first to field the opprobrium levied at critics of the Israeli occupation. The charge of anti-Semitism has been a reliable and effective tool to silence dissent, but as a number of Jewish critics have pointed out, this effort distracts from actual anti-Semitism and bolsters harm and violence against Palestinians.

        “The aggressive effort to stop Omar is part of a wider strategy to stem activism against the Israeli occupation. Twenty-six state legislatures have passed bills criminalizing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which launched in response to Israel’s open defiance of a 2004 International Court of Justice advisory opinion declaring the wall in the West Bank illegal. The Senate passed the Combat BDS Act earlier this year, with similar aims to isolate boycott supporters.

        “In her original comments, Omar named AIPAC, which Vox pointed out, boasts that ‘the United States Congress has provided Israel with the strongest support of any institution in the world.’ The efforts of the pro-Israel lobby have been well documented: Pro-Israel groups provide bipartisan campaign funding, skewing heavily toward Democrats, and exert significant efforts to sway U.S. foreign policy.

        “Despite the Israel lobby’s outrage at the suggestion that it holds any influence, Israel has long been referred to as the 51st state. In a 1971 op-ed for The New York Times, former diplomat David G. Nes identified the singular support that Israel enjoyed from the U.S. through economic, military, diplomatic and cultural channels. ‘Unique also,’ Nes noted, ‘is Israel’s almost total immunity from criticism in this country.’

        “The prospect of losing this immunity in the Democratic Party’s leftward shift has clearly alarmed pro-Israel groups. AIPAC activist Stephen Fiske named Omar along with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Rashida Tlaib as ‘three people who, in my opinion, will not be around in several years.’ An AIPAC-affiliated Republican said he had suggested challenging Omar in 2020. Their fears stoked by new members like Tlaib and Omar build on larger concerns within the Jewish community, which has seen a ‘widening split within the liberal American Jewish community regarding Israel.’

        “Omar and her allies have sought to underline the crucial difference between anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel’s actions and policies. She has also made clear that she’s learned to use careful language on such a sensitive issue, especially given that anti-Semitism is still thriving in many quarters. Over the past few years, as real anti-Semitism has risen in the US — made clear by Charlottesville, the Pittsburgh massacre and the sharp increase in anti-Semitic violence — Israel’s supporters have doubled down on the false equation of anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.

        “If this disgraceful episode produces a piece of legislation condemning religious discrimination and intolerance, it will be a bitter silver lining. Democrats have largely kept their eyes closed to Islamophobia, piping up only when it’s politically expedient. Though they’ve moved to capitalize on the bump they receive from momentarily embracing the progressive new members of their party in Congress, they don’t hesitate to hold these members at arm’s length — or outright feed them to the wolves. Such whiplash will alienate their progressive base, which Republicans are surely noting.”

      • Misterioso on March 7, 2019, 9:48 am

        For the record:


        “Israeli influence on U.S. foreign policy” Col. Lawrence Wilkerson

        “Secretary of State Colin Powell’s former chief of staff explores how Israel’s influence over the U.S. has affected America’s strategic approach toward the Middle East.

        “Panel: Israel’s influence on foreign policy—Dale Sprusansky, moderator

        “Conference: Israel’s Influence: Good or Bad for America?
        Washington, DC – March 18, 2016 at the National Press Club

        “This conference was organized by the American Educational Trust, publisher of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs magazine, and the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy, Inc. (IRmep)”

      • gamal on March 7, 2019, 10:18 am

        ” “The move has spectacularly backfired, threatening deep fissures in the Democratic Party as accusations of anti-Semitism tear apart the Labour Party in the U.K.”

        She is conducting herself like a Superwoman, maybe Gal Gadot can play her in the biopic, who would have thought a hijabi black African Muslim origin woman would prove to have more guts than the entire current American body politic, aren’t Muslim women subservient? What’s going on are we all racists now? what a shame.

      • Misterioso on March 7, 2019, 10:32 am


        “Former AIPAC employee MJ Rosenberg: Is it all about the money?”

        April 10, 2015 Conference at the National Press Club

      • Boomer on March 7, 2019, 10:53 am

        There are several encouraging stories quoted in this thread. Here’s another:

    • Jethro on March 6, 2019, 1:23 pm

      re: “Maybe so. I’d like to think so. But inside the halls of the White House and the West Wing, and inside the halls of many state capitols (including Texas), the reality remains much the same, as far as I can tell.”

      Have no fear. The US government is always the lagging indicator when it comes to what “the people” want. Witness the end of South African Apartheid.

    • Boomer on March 6, 2019, 3:39 pm

      PS: I neglected to express thanks to Mr. Zogby for his spot-on analysis. It’s very clear and articulate. I, on the other hand, get so frustrated by the reactions from the pols and pundits that I wouldn’t know where to begin.

      The reaction from establishment figures that I’ve seen and heard so far, from places like NYT and NPR, is so tendentious, so filled with misleading assertions and assumptions, that anyone who depends solely on those sources will be woefully misinformed. There are exceptions, of course, if one looks for them in various less widely read places. For example, this from Phyllis Bennis:

      “For the Democratic Party leadership to launch these false claims of anti-Semitism is a travesty. Ilhan Omar’s words were powerful, passionate, principled, and based on a deep truth.”

      • JWalters on March 6, 2019, 8:19 pm

        Thanks for the Bennis link. Heard a bit on the BBC last night about the Corbyn flap, and it was as you say, “so tendentious, so filled with misleading assertions and assumptions”, the anti-Semitism slur in full swing. The British Empire has been thoroughly captured.

  2. gingershot on March 6, 2019, 10:14 am

    Omar is winning

    The Resolution against Omar’s ‘Anti-Kahanism’ has been postponed, to be more inclusive

    Of course the whole house of cards falls down at this point, as Encyclopedia Judaica identifies as Kahanism as ‘Jewish H_____ism’

    Omar’s Anti-Kahanism is a grain of sand of a world free of Kahanism

  3. Kathleen on March 6, 2019, 11:26 am

    One truly brave young Rep. Millions coming out in support of her, Some surprising support for her facts

    Amazing comments supporting Omar

    • Marnie on March 6, 2019, 1:10 pm

      I think she’s reminding those who’ve forgotten, or never knew, how vibrant a democracy can be. #IStandWithIlhan

      • CHUCKMAN on March 7, 2019, 9:13 am

        What democracy is that?

        The abuses have gone on for seventy years.

        Not a word.

        Main response: the Neocon Wars to clear out Israel’s neighborhood of people it doesn’t like.

        Countless billions to kill a couple of million people over the 15 or so years.

        That’s some democracy, I must say.

      • Marnie on March 7, 2019, 10:51 am

        @Chuckman –
        “What democracy is that”?

        Seriously? I’m not talking about israel’s phony democracy FFS!

  4. Mayhem on March 6, 2019, 6:23 pm

    “When did congressional office become a deprogramming rehab for radical Islamist ideologies?”

    The president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy admonished freshman Rep. Ilhan Omar Wednesday morning and blasted Democrats for not doing enough to combat anti-Semitism.

    “I’m frankly, as an American and as a Muslim, insulted at their resolution because it doesn’t name Ilhan Omar,” Dr. Zuhdi Jasser told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.”

    Ilhan Omar should be removed from Foreign Affairs Committee: American Islamic Forum for Democracy president

    • JWalters on March 6, 2019, 8:13 pm

      I’d estimate they’ve got something on Dr. Jasser, rendering him a hostage witness.

    • Marnie on March 6, 2019, 9:48 pm


      As a human being, I find all this vitriol spewed at Ms. Omar a racist, hateful distraction. And WTF is ‘an American and as a Muslim’ trolling for faux news, I have to wonder about that one and everything you post Mayhum.

    • Misterioso on March 7, 2019, 9:09 am


      What a pathetic comment!!

      It’s only going to get worse for you and your ilk, much worse. Get used to it. At long last, Americans, including ever increasing numbers of Jews, are waking up. The river will become a flood.

      “Criticizing Israel Isn’t Anti-Semitic. Here’s What Is.”

      “Pro-Israel politicians don’t speak for young Jews like me. They shouldn’t pretend to.”

      By Sarah Gertler | March 5, 2019

      “Weeks ago, when the first accusations of anti-semitism were being leveled against Representative Ilhan Omar, I was deeply agitated.

      “Not long ago I saw her address these accusations at a local town hall. She reminded the world that, as a Black Muslim woman in America, she knows what hate looks like — and spends her life laboring against it. Her words were clear, bold, and unflinching.

      “When members of Congress not only continued to gang up and falsely smear Omar as anti-semitic, but even created a House Resolution painting her words as hateful, I wasn’t just agitated. I was absolutely disgusted.

      “Omar has criticized the U.S. government’s support for Israeli actions that break international law. And she’s spoken out against the role money in politics plays in shoring up that support.

      “Neither is anti-semitic.”

      “What is anti-semitic is the cacophony of mainstream media and politicians saying that criticizing U.S. policy toward the state of Israel is the same as attacking Jewish people.

      “Like most American Jewish youth, I grew up knowing Israel. During holidays, I sang prayers about Eretz Yisrael, the land of Israel. In Hebrew school, I learned about the country’s culture, its cities, its past prime ministers. At my Jewish summer camp, we started every day with the Israeli national anthem, Hatikvah.

      “My image of Israel was a rosy one. When I finally visited it in college, I was spellbound by the lush landscapes and sparkling cities, certain I would one day move to this golden ancestral home myself.

      “All this emotional buildup made it all the more sickening when, in the years that followed, I learned the realities of the Israeli occupation.

      “The modern state of Israel was established by Zionists — a nationalist movement started by European Jews with the aim of creating a ‘Jewish state’ as a refuge for persecuted Jews.

      “It’s true that Jews have faced centuries of brutal persecution in Europe. But the Zionists’ project shared unmistakably European colonialist roots.

      “In 1948, Israel’s war of independence led to the Nakba, an invasion driving 700,000 Palestinians from their homes. These Palestinians were never allowed to return, creating a massive refugee population that today numbers over 7 million.

      “While I was able to travel freely up and down Israel, the Palestinians who once lived there are legally barred from returning. While I wandered the marketplaces trying stews and shawarmas, Palestinians in Gaza can’t afford even the gas to cook their food because of the Israeli blockade.

      “Zionism didn’t create an inclusive Jewish refuge either. In fact, the diverse Mizrahi — or Arab — Jewish population that was already thriving in Palestine was pushed out of Israeli society as Ashkenazi — or European — Jews became the elite class.

      “What it did create is an imperialist stronghold that continues to break international law by building settlements deeper and deeper into Palestinian territory, giving Jewish Israelis superior legal status to Arab Israelis and Palestinians, and attacking all who protest.

      “Since Israel’s origin, the U.S. has supplied tens of billions of dollars of military aid and ardent political support. Congress consistently ignores dozens of UN resolutions condemning Israeli abuses, and year after year gives it more resources to violently oppress impoverished Palestinians.

      “Pro-Israel lobbying groups’ considerable political influence has even pushed Congress to consider bills punishing Americans who support Palestinian rights. (Around half of all states already have such laws.)

      “More broadly, they rely on villainizing critics with false claims of antisemitism — especially when the criticism comes from a person of color, as we’ve seen with Angela Davis, Marc Lamont Hill, and Michelle Alexander before Rep. Omar.

      “I, along with an increasing number of young American Jews, want to discuss U.S. support of Israel. Talking foreign policy is not anti-semitism.

      “What is anti-semitic — always — is saying that all Jews support violence and imperialism.”

    • eljay on March 7, 2019, 10:48 am

      || Mayhem: … “I’m frankly, as an American and as a Muslim, insulted at their resolution because it doesn’t name Ilhan Omar,” Dr. Zuhdi Jasser told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.” … ||

      He frankly, as an American, should be ashamed of himself for acting like a Zionist and:
      – anti-Semitically conflating Israel and AIPAC and Zionism with all Jews and all Jews with Israel and AIPAC and Zionism; in order to then,
      – smear Ms. Omar with destructive accusations of anti-Semitism.

      • Mayhem on March 11, 2019, 12:38 am

        @eljay, in case you are collecting Muslim reformists who don’t toe the fatwa party line here’s another for your ‘contempt’ collection – Asra Nomani who says (horror of horrors) that she accepts the state of Israel, we don’t hate Jews, we are people who believe in secular governance (not shariah law) etc – refer speaking out about the Left’s anti-semitic problem

      • eljay on March 11, 2019, 8:40 am

        || Mayhem: @eljay, in case you are collecting Muslim reformists who don’t toe the fatwa party line here’s another for your ‘contempt’ collection – Asra Nomani who says (horror of horrors) that she accepts the state of Israel, we don’t hate Jews, we are people who believe in secular governance … ||

        I don’t understand why it bothers you so much that, like me, this woman accepts the existence of the state of Israel, doesn’t hate Jews and believes in secular governance.

      • gamal on March 11, 2019, 10:15 pm


        Any Muslim my age is going to wonder could she be related to Shibli Nomani, (turns out she is) that fierce critic of the British and of the Muslim League that they used to disable the Congress party. Nomani, who unlike his descendant was a well qualified rather famous Alim author of a very famous sirat ul nabi in Urdu, he was a modernizer and like Abduh a partisan of science and reason, who he met on his Middle Eastern journey, and an opponent of the division of India as were most of the Muslims who were more numerous in the Congress party than the whole membership of the Muslim League. He died before India/Pakistan went with British connivance to the terrible situation we see now and have seen there for the last century, partition was a catastrophe from which the subcontinent may never recover and what has been done to Afghanistan for 40 years is unimaginably awful .

        He also wrote the first Urdu life of Rumi and is regarded with his pupil, syed sulaiman who actually wrote most of the sirat as he had died, are regarded as two of the most important Indian scholars of that era.

        She, Asra is a journalism don…and what has Islam got to do with anything? how is she ‘reforming it’ with what qualifications, to what end? the comfort of imperialists and colonists? It is sad that his descendant engages in the nonsense I see that comes up when you google her, Shibli for all his caustic criticism of the collaborationist Muslims never supported insurrection hoping that India could gain its independence constitutionally, he died in 1914 and now his descendant accepts Israel so onward and upward in Islamoworld.

      • YoniFalic on March 12, 2019, 7:22 am

        Asra Nomani is an unwed mother. She named her son (Shibli Daneel Pearl) after Daniel Pearl. Daniel Pearl was murdered May 16, 2002. Her son was born October 16, 2002. I must wonder whether Asra’s son is Daniel Pearl’s son.

  5. JWalters on March 6, 2019, 8:09 pm

    “If anything, their behavior and incitement against her has pried it open even further.”

    And yet they can’t help their absurd, extremist behavior because the collection of crimes they are covering up is huge, going well beyond Palestine, and their revelation would be utterly shocking to the public. They could be toast overnight. They are desperate.

    • Misterioso on March 7, 2019, 9:44 am


      Zionists are in shock. For over 70 years they’ve played Americans for suckers. Well, their orgy of lies is coming to an end.

      • Citizen on March 7, 2019, 11:31 am

        As Netanyahu put it to fans: “America is easily moved.”

      • gamal on March 7, 2019, 2:24 pm

        “For over 70 years they’ve played Americans for suckers”

        The guys at medialens have done a Corbyn anti-semite analysis and make some points know one seems to be considering, many people are angry over the Chris Williamson expulsion and feel Corbyn is spineless, English people get vexed by shoddy behavior, lot of tutting going on. (for the ants thing see article not as crazy as it sounds sans context)

        The Fake News Nazi – Corbyn, Williamson And The Anti-Semitism Scandal

        “…..Even if Corbyn was an anti-semite, a racist, he would still be a far safer ethical choice than Tory and Blairite speciesists who value human beings on the level of ants. After all, we find that Jeremy Corbyn:

        ‘Consistently voted against use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        ‘Consistently voted against the Iraq war.’

        ‘… voted to say that the case for war against Iraq has not yet been established’.

        ‘… voted against a motion stating the Government should use all means necessary to ensure the disarmament of Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. Support for the motion by the majority of MPs led to the UK joining the US invasion of Iraq two days later’.

        ‘Generally voted for investigations into the Iraq war.’

        ‘… acted as teller for a vote on UK Air Strikes Against ISIL in Iraq’.

        ‘… voted against the establishment of a no-fly zone in Libya’.

        ‘… voted against the continued deployment of UK armed forces in Afghanistan’.

        ‘… voted to decline to authorise UK military action in Syria’.

        ‘… voted against UK airstrikes against ISIL in Syria’.

        ‘Generally voted against replacing Trident with a new nuclear weapons system.’

        Consider, by contrast, the record of the Labour MPs who have left the Labour Party, supposedly in protest at the rise of anti-semitism, to form The Independent Group:

        Chuka Umunna ‘Almost always voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Angela Smith ‘Almost always voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Mike Gapes ‘Generally voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Chris Leslie ‘Almost always voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Luciana Berger ‘Generally voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Joan Ryan: ‘Consistently voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas’, ‘ Consistently voted for the Iraq war’, ‘Consistently voted against investigations into the Iraq war.’

        Ann Coffey ‘Almost always voted for use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Gavin Shuker ‘Voted a mixture of for and against use of UK military forces in combat operations overseas.’

        Not even his most extreme critics are suggesting that Corbyn is offering the kind of threat to Jewish people consistently offered by Tory and Blairite MPs to millions of people in countries like Iraq, Libya, Syria, Venezuela, Iran and Yemen. Even if Corbyn had erred in failing to perceive the ugliness of a mural declared antisemitic by the press; even if had been lax in taking action against party racists, and so on, how do these failings compare to the destruction of whole countries in lie-based wars of aggression?

        Why do corporate media never make this moral comparison? Because they are incapable of perceiving US-UK crimes against humanity as crimes; a wilful moral blindness that renders them completely unfit to pass judgement on Corbyn. Especially as they are themselves, of course, complicit in these same war crimes.

        The claim that Corbyn is an anti-semite presiding over a surge in Labour Party anti-semitism is fake news; it is a scam of the utmost cynicism and brutality. It should be viewed as the latest in a long line of attempts to destroy Corbyn by all necessary means. He has been smeared for not bowing low enough, for not singing loudly enough, for hating women, for disrespecting gay people, for consorting with terrorists, for refusing to unleash a nuclear holocaust, for being a shambolic leader, for being a shambolic dresser, for leading Labour towards certain electoral disaster, for being a Putinite stooge, for aping Trump, and so on. Now, finally, someone widely admired for thirty years as a decent, socialist MP, has been transformed into an anti-semite; or as game show assistant and political commentator Rachel Riley implies, a ‘Nazi’.

        Anti-semitism does exist in the Labour Party, as it exists throughout UK society, and of course these delusions should be resisted and exposed. But the smear campaign against Corbyn is not rooted in concern for the welfare of Jewish people; it is not even about blocking a political leader who cares about Palestinian rights. It is about preventing Corbyn from undoing Tony Blair’s great achievement of transforming the Labour Party into a second Tory Party”

      • JWalters on March 8, 2019, 12:52 am

        gamal, thanks for that list of facts about Corbyn and his opponents.

  6. Kay24 on March 7, 2019, 12:31 am

    We should thank Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris for at least standing up for her. The other shameless Democrats, are simply proving Rep. Omar’s point – that they are controlled by Israeli lobbies and Israel.

    Now would be a good time to differentiate between anti-semitism, and the right to criticize Israel and it’s policies…..

  7. Kay24 on March 7, 2019, 7:04 am

    Just watched Morning Joe, and it was disappointing to hear Joe Scarborough accusing Ilham Omar of being anti-semitic, and that she has been using tropes and criticizing Israel every day. Scarborough also admitted that he was a staunch Israeli supporters (I guess the Palestinian lives don’t matter to him), and that the Democrats better watch out, they don’t end up like Jeremy Corbyn. Not a surprise coming from Scarborough, but it was a bigger disappointment to hear Mrs. Mika Scarborough and Mike Barnicle agree and not contradict him. I wonder if this performance was to please their zionist bosses, after all they have to keep getting those lucrative contract. MSNBC criticizes Trump so easily, but not a negative word from any of them when it comes to Israel.

    • Marnie on March 7, 2019, 10:54 am

      “I wonder if this performance was to please their zionist bosses, after all they have to keep getting those lucrative contract.”

      It’s all about the benjamins, baby!

  8. CHUCKMAN on March 7, 2019, 9:09 am

    A good piece about a genuinely heroic figure.

    Her experience, right inside the capital city of the United States, shows why people are reluctant to speak about such terrible abuses.

    But it also tells us why it is so important to do so.

  9. Ossinev on March 7, 2019, 11:30 am

    “At my Jewish summer camp, we started every day with the Israeli national anthem, Hatikvah”

    Sarah Gertler`s comment is informative and neatly underpins the “Dual Loyalty” argument. No doubt the practice of obliging young children in an educational scenario to sing a Foreign Country`s national anthem in the US is something that the majority of Americans should be but simply are not aware of. Especially the Trumpettes – as in if you want to MAGA then sing the Star Spangled Banner in all scenarios and in all instances?

  10. Citizen on March 7, 2019, 11:35 am

    Pelosi just gave a press conference saying the resolution would be against anti-semites, Islamophobes, and White Supremists. She also said she had talked with Omar & decided she was not anti-semitic, but needed to cure her ignorance of words with a horrible impact on the Jewish community. In less than a minute after I watched Pelosi, a GOP rep was on TV saying “of course Omar’s an anti-Semite,” Pelosi is dead wrong.

  11. Citizen on March 7, 2019, 11:41 am

    On MSNBC just now: Eli Lake: “There is no stifling of debate on Israel. Omar is questioning the patriotism of supporter of Israel. Risk of Dems going way of anti-semitic UK Labor Party. “

  12. genesto on March 7, 2019, 4:22 pm

    The dam has been breached! All those smug and arrogant, hard-right Zionists best run for cover!

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