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July 19, 2019 10:54 am

Ilhan Omar’s Pro-BDS Resolution Isn’t About Free Speech — It’s About Hating Israel and Jews

avatar by Adelle Nazarian

Opinion

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) participates in a news conference outside the US Capitol in Washington, DC, April 10, 2019. Photo: Reuters / Jim Bourg / File.

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) revealed her hypocrisy, double-standards, and antisemitism yet again this week when she took to Congress to introduce a bill lauding the boycott of Israel.

Her resolution is the height of absurdity. It likens the boycott of Israel, a free and democratic state, to previous boycotts of historically evil regimes in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

Her resolution is not about free speech. It’s about antisemitism — rampant antisemitism — and hatred of Israel.

While the crafty resolution does not mention Israel by name, it is clear that the Jewish state is her target. The resolution attempts to legitimize the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the state of Israel. Supporters of the BDS movement have confided that BDS means the end of the Jewish state,” and that the real aim of BDS is to bring down the State of Israel.

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Omar’s avid support for the BDS movement is just one of the many ways in which she has sought to undermine Israel and our traditional allies. Unfortunately, her associations and funding sources encourage her continuing disdain not just for Israel, but the Jewish people as a whole.

Whether it’s her support for the Islamist government in Turkey, or receiving a treasure trove of campaign cash from radical Islamist groups stateside, Omar represents perhaps the most anti-Israel, extremist base of support in the United States.

Hatem Bazian, a known BDS leader — who is hellbent on seeing Israel’s destruction — and founder of anti-Israel extremist organizations Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), donated to Omar on three occasions. Bazian, a university lecturer, has called for an “intifada” in the United States.

Second, there is CAIR (the Council on American-Islamic Relations), an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terror financing trial for funneling money to Hamas, the US-designated terrorist organization that rules the Gaza Strip. In addition to CAIR’s donation, the group’s Executive Director in California, Hussam Ayloush, donated to Omar. Ayloush has called for Israel’s “termination.” 

Additionally, one James Zogby, president of the anti-Israel Arab-American Institute (AAI), and the chairman of the anti-Israel Palestine Human Rights Campaign — who falsely accused Israel of committing a “Holocaust” against Palestinians, and called Israelis “Nazis” — also donated to her campaign.

And that’s just a small taste of Omar’s base of support.

Instead of endlessly attacking Israel, the lone Jewish state in the world, perhaps she should spend more time trying to help her native country, Somalia. Despite being an American Congresswoman, Omar has remained very outspoken about Somali internal politics. Notably, American Jews have not reciprocated her claim and suggested that she might have dual loyalties.

Instead of considering action on her pro-BDS resolution, Congress should take a different approach. Given Omar’s extremism, which includes an unapologetic labeling of our ally Israel as “evil” and an “apartheid state,” they should remove her from her post on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

The most senior Democrat in the US government, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, has also condemned “Omar’s use of antisemitic tropes and prejudicial accusations about Israel’s supporters” as “deeply offensive.”

It’s a start. But more needs to be done. History has taught the Jewish people that their enemies mean what they say.

Let’s not wait for history to repeat itself.

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